Saturday, April 30, 2016

Happy Birthday Liz

I was away for Her Maj's birthday and so I did not have an opportunity to tell her that I am surprised that the very young me who promised to love, honour and obey her, some 45 years later I am still obeying her and ok, in spite of being a republican, I do love and honour her. A belated cheers, Liz.

This short clip amused me. It seems GB is competing against the US in some sporting competition. If you don't know, Her Majesty is with her grandson Prince Harry, son? of Prince Charles and the late Princess Diana and fifth in line to the Throne.

Perth Day 1 & 2 Pt 1

It was almost a trouble free flight to Perth. We had parked the car at the airport, booking well in advance and getting it for half the price had we have just turned up, and everything went smoothly. Terminal 4 is not quite finished and we still had to walk through a temporary passage to the plane.

As we were descending to Perth Airport after a slightly quicker flight than scheduled, there was a thump and one of the strapped in flight attendants unbuckled and jumped up and rushed down the plane. She was back thirty seconds later and strapped back in. We did not know what happened but apparently an old man had fallen on the floor, so an ambulance crew greeted the plane. No sooner was he dealt with and a skinny and dirty looking teenager dressed in those hideous dark blue Adidas type pants so often seen on drug users collapsed in front of us. He was crying and muttering and slumped on the floor and it seemed like he was having a bad come down after some drug use. The airline staff were terrific with him and ascertained there was someone there to meet him, they called the person and escorted him over the tarmac and there was no need for the ambulance officers to act. Our bags arrived very quickly, as is usually the case with Tiger Airlines, and we hopped into a cab and $25 later, we were at our hotel.

Perth airport's Terminal 2 seemed very sparkly and new.

We had requested twin beds but because we had upgraded to a nicer suite, they only had double beds and nothing could be done about it.  Photos of the room later. These were rather curious skylights on the terrace below. The room was spotlessly clean and well equipped. Before dark we headed out to the nearest supermarket, well the nearest one that showed on google maps and a bottle shop for wine. There was a closer supermarket, we discovered later, and the one we found was only a small express supermarket. We bought some staples; bread, milk, cereal, tea, coffee and a few other bits and returned to the hotel via the bottle shop. I was already learning Perth Streets. We had walked along Hay Street and William Street. It was quite a decent walk and we were tired and so when it came time for dinner, R asked me I would mind staying in and we would just have crumpets. So much for our dinner for the first night in Perth. I slept on the couch but later lay on bed with a sheet and the bed was quite stable and I decided I could sleep in the same bed as R.

The morning dawned gorgeously fine and yes, I did see the dawn as I was still on eastern time, that is two hours later. R slept on regardless. This kookaburra arrived for a quick visit and left a rather large and nasty calling card. After breakfast I checked my phone and there was a message from Grace of the blog Perth Daily Photo asking if we would like to catch up with her and her husband P at 10 for coffee in town. It was already close to 10 and we made it to The Shingle Inn by 10.15.

Now I have known Grace quite some time via our respective blogs and I always have to be very sure about people before inflicting them on R. Grace on her blog comes across as interesting, interested, warm, friendly and witty and guess what? She is like that in real life too and we immediately felt comfortable with her and P, who was also very nice. Tick to another street, St Georges Terrace.

After coffee, Grace and P. led us down to the newly developed Elizabeth Quay, of which although I will hold my final judgement until the apartment towers are built, I found to be pretty good. There were plenty of people enjoying the warm and sunny day, especially the many children who were on school holidays.

Behind the Quay looms Kings Park right on the edge of the city and the war memorial can be seen.

Looking towards the city.

A footbridge structure at the outer edge of the Quay.

I thought quite a bit of clever design and thought had gone into the redevelopment of what was once a small but essentially unusable beach. Perth sits on the very wide Swan River about half an hour by slow ferry upstream from the Port of Fremantle and the Indian Ocean.

I used this photo in a Facebook post and I have no intention of telling you anything about it as what it is supposed to represent is very difficult to see in the sculpture.

We wandered along, passing through the Supreme Court Gardens and Stirling Gardens.

Busy lads at a government administrative building.

A nice water feature sitting below.....

.... and these larger than life kangaroo sculptures above. I just struck it lucky to be able to get a photo without someone trying to ride one of the 'roos. Where is R? I turned around and here he was chatting to a former resident of our building at home in Melbourne. She had just alighted from a bus right in front of R. We knew they had moved to Perth for family reasons. She is a former ballerina and I remember our former building manager Helen saying 'she walks like she has a broomstick stuck up her a***'. Their apartment was below and to the front of ours and she used to sleep topless on warm nights with us having a very clear view of her mammaries . TMI for us. Her husband can often be seen online in gay hook up apps and was a part time actor. Small world, hey.

Grace and P were going off to see something, so we decided to mosey around the city. I particularly wanted to see this building after Grace featured it on her blog. It is the quite new City Library. 

As a modern building, I like it.

It is a great internal space. This sign was unfortunate on the doors to the upper terrace, given it is a brand new building.

Looking up from the first floor.

An occasional table.

There are quite a number of buildings in Perth with castellations. I don't think we have any in Melbourne. Australia's most famous castellated building was the former Sydney tram depot called Fort Macquarie where the Sydney Opera House is now.

The pianist busker in Hay Street Mall was brill. The coins poured in. In the meantime, Grace and P were seeing a different busker.

Many fine buildings in Perth have been kept and restored and it is an interesting mix of the old and the new, and what from what I saw, can work quite well.

Even a bit of art deco.

Friday, April 29, 2016

Flying west

Promise, Saturday morning I will begin our Perth holiday posts. Sorry, what? You are not salivating in anticipation?

These pictures have hung around for a long time and here is the time to use them. Australia is a big place, so to fly from one side to the other as we did is a four hour flight. From Melbourne in the south east to the west and Perth, and back is almost like an overseas holiday.

Australia is like a strange doughnut, with a very thin dough, half of which is missing, and a huge hole in the middle where very few live. We cling to our seaside shores.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

I have returned, from Perth

That is the Western Australia Perth, not the Scottish Perth. Have you ever heard an educated, perhaps slightly posh Scot pronounce Perth? It is a joy to the ears.

We are just back and it is Mother day tomorrow and it is now 1:00 am here, 11:00 pm Perth time so holiday posts won't be up for a day or so. Well, that is actually today. We met Grace from Perth Daily Photo while in Perth. At some point she said, to paraphrase, it is with some trepidation I will read your opinion of Perth.

Subsequently, I tried really hard to think of a negative about Perth and the best I can come up with is that the traffic on Saturday night in the city and the inner north area of Northbridge is hideous.

All will be fleshed out in time and I am so looking forward to my own bed and my own high pressure, water extravagant hot shower in the morning.