Saturday, May 14, 2016


A not really finished post that has been sitting around for too long.

Radio legal advice talk back callers often suffer from a disease which I doubt has a name. The disease gives them a propensity inclination to use a license to use  (ok, a long word is apt here) longer words than necessary, or less commons words at least..

Here are a few examples.

They seldom buy anything. They either purchase or acquire.

An event did not take place about two months ago, but approximately two months ago.

They always survey, rather than check.

Like when watching or hearing police getting tangled up in their formal cop speak, it is fun when talk back callers do the same.

Friday, May 13, 2016


Randomosity is a good name for a blog. Oh, it has been chosen already. No post ready, so ten minutes of writing.

I have six weeks of holiday booked in September/October. It was for a Mediterranean cruise and if you memory is good, a catch up with English rels in Spain. It was not to be.

Our travel agent worked out a cruising plan for us but I was not liking the plan or the cost. R called it at the end of the day and cancelled. He was not visiting places he wanted to see. There is a problem between us. R wants to see Greece and Italy. I don't want to. For a start the countries are respectively full of Greeks and Italians.  I want to see France, Spain and Portugal, and I really want to see Prague.

An Aussie who has been to the US a few times was recently sent straight back home by US immigration after flying to the US for an artistic feel good meeting. No reason was given. How very dare they. Maybe it was because he was born a black in Africa. Being an Australian passport holder should override all...........umm well, unless the Australians arrive on a speedboat.

So what to do for my booked holidays in September and October? R is worried that I will be bored. Please, when he was working I had long holidays just staying at home and amusing myself. Nevertheless, we have have booked a campervan for two weeks in October. We can pretty well do a full circuit of our state without staying in caravan parks and just plugging in to power points of friends and family in various parts of the states. Look out Pants and Ann O'Dyne. We may be stealing your electric. Promise we won't empty our caravan lavatory into yours.

I am not a suspicious person but today is Friday the 13th. I really don't like such an omen and I won't do anything important and be extra careful about things.

R's phone is digustingly  old and an embarrassment when he pulls it from his pocket. Ok, not so old, a Samsung 3, but we are now up to Samsung 7. Given I said I was going to pay for the majority of the new SMEG  appliances and I forgot about that, such being his March birthday present and he paid half for the SMEGs, I have bought him a new Samsung 7 phone which will be delivered in a week or so. Thanks for your help Fen. I am my own worst enemy, as I will hear words like 'this thing is effing useless. I don't understand how it works', but he will grow to love it.

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Perth Day 9

As our flight home was late afternoon and we had to check out of our hotel at 10 am, Grace and P had very kindly offered to take us out for a while before dropping us at the airport.

This woman with a dog was one of two people I noticed several times in our street. I believe the dog is a Pitt Bull Terrier and it was a very old dog and certainly no threat to anyone at its age. The other character was an older man who would walk up Mount Street, then back down and do this twice or thrice. What was noticeable about him is that he was always shirtless and in brief shorts. As I have said in the past, it is the obligation of the young to expose their bodies for our appreciation and the obligation of people over a certain age to cover their up. He was certainly in the latter category. He proved that you can be very fit and also fat.

Already my memory is getting hazy about what we saw. We leisurely journeyed up the northern suburban coast from Perth, stopping off at some scenic vantage points and stopped for refreshment at Hillarys Boat Harbour, so often featured on Grace's Perth Daily Photo. Hillarys was interesting to see. It is not an historic place but a very modern construction, including a hotel, a shopping centre and many small businesses. We must have arrived just before 11am as shops were beginning to open their doors. The hotel bar has a wonderful outdoor decked area which would clearly be very popular on a warm summer evening and at other times too. Now here is a lesson for you folk. If you want a beer, go to a bar. If you want coffee, go to a cafe. Bars do generally serve coffee but the standard can be very patchy and in this case, it was a fail. Nevertheless, it was very pleasant sitting outdoors. I should have taken more photos.

We drove around to the other side of the small harbour and walked out on a breakwater and climbed this tower to the viewing platform.

Cats? On a breakwater?

Apparently the breakwater was once infested with cats but the campaign to not feed them seems to have worked and the numbers have reduced. You may have to embiggen the photos to see them.

From there we turned inland to visit Whiteman Park. The park was once a large cattle grazing area with much of the land owned by Mr Lew Whiteman. Over time the government bought up the land and created this huge park where one could easily spend a day investigating its attractions.

Here is a bit of a list. Caversham Wildlife Park, Children's Forest, Woodland Reserve, heritage tram rides, Motor Museum of WA, Tractor Museum of WA, vintage train rides and a transport museum.

We barely touched the sides of the park and what we saw was very interesting. Some people who I shan't name, managed to find Ye Olde Lolly Shoppe, and indulged, sure.

The museum is housed within what look like train or tram storage sheds. Nicely done.

I think this is to service overhead electric wires of trams and trains.

We said our goodbyes to Grace and P at the airport and it was an uneventful flight home. Perhaps one more summary post to come.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Neighbourly Thoughts

Back here I mentioned a neighbour who had just been diagnosed with dementia.  He told me about the diagnosis and also that his doctor had been forced to take his driving license away from him. N said that the doctor said how ridiculous it was that he was forced to take away N's license when he was such early onset dementia and he clearly had his faculties at this point. That was last November.

We recently ran into his wife who has put N into an expensive nursing home, initially for a two week respite, but then when N returned home, he said he wanted to go back to the nursing home. He found the luxurious place, $350,000 (bond?) to get into the place plus ongoing fees, a nice place to live and many people who were prepared to hear him talk, unlike his long suffering wife.

We knew they were going on a cruise and the last crunch was then, when there was a possible man overboard situation when N disappeared for five hours. While he is an hour away by car from his home, he is near his daughters who see him regularly and his wife makes the trip to see him a couple of times a week. She thinks she will sell their apartment here and find someone near the nursing home to live. That may be rash if he continues to deteriorate at the speed he is now.

While I used to chat to him and he was a significant presence on the body corporate committee when we were, I can't say I really liked him. He was a know it all, bombastic at times, always argumentative yet he had an excellent memory.  I liked him more after we left the body corp committee and there was no friction between us. We would just chat and he was a gossip and enjoyed passing on news about other people, including the ructions within the body corp committee.

As far as I know, there is no dementia on either side of my family, nor R's, so maybe we won't experience it in our family and so avoid such the extreme sadness, never mind the difficulties, that when a person you know becomes  a person you don't know and who know longer knows you. Already N is not recognising people. Before too long, it will be his own family. R tells me he knows of such quick progression but I don't. I don't know much about his wife but she is Melbourne born and bred. Her father, Brighton born (umm, don't read too much into that. Brighton was not always as expensive as it now is) only died a few years ago and I expect she has roots here in Melbourne and so, as I said, I hope she does not make a rash decision to sell here.

Once one reaches a certain age, one does ponder the future, what might be good and what might be bad. Fatal heart attack in bed at 5am, way to go! Shocking for your loved ones, but you are past caring and they don't have to suffer anything drawn out and lingering.

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Perth Day 8

I had spent quite a lot of time researching a visit to Rottnest Island. I did not want to spend more than we had to. I principally wanted to see quokkas and once I heard about a coach tour around the island, well that sounded good too. The tour company we used for our Margaret River trip offered a tour to Rottnest Island, but I thought it was expensive. However, by the time I added up the cost of the ferry there and back, or a train to Fremantle and the ferry from there, the government entrance fee to the island, the tour around the island in a coach, I was getting close to the figure for the tour and the tour included lunch. Coordinating the trip on my own would be difficult and the 8.30 ferry seemed to be the only one for the day from Perth city itself, otherwise, make the trip to Fremantle where there were more services.

We were picked up by a minibus at the Hilton Hotel in Mill Street at 7.30, driven around, including down Mounts Bay Road and back again, only to end up at the ferry wharf at Barrack Street Wharf around ten past eight. We could have just walked there from our digs and left home later. The ferry windows were spotlessly clean but just as we were about to depart, a front of showers arrived.

Past Swan Brewery and Kings Park.

New York from the Hudson or Perth from the Swan?

We walked across this bridge with Grace and P.

I just liked the palm trees.

Poverty abounds in Perth, not. This I think is the suburb of Mosman Park, where Rose Porteous lived in her house, Prix D'Amour.

The water tower dominated the scene.

As you can see, I was lazy and took some photos through the windows.

A lovely old hotel, with plenty of history, which of course I have forgotten.

We stopped at North Fremantle to pick up and drop off.

It was a windy day and I felt sorry who decided they should see the island by bicycle.

To say the crossing was rough is an understatement. The bow rose on a wave and then thumped down into a trough but the ferry also rocked from side to side. Staff appeared with sick bags, but they weren't required. Some stupid parents moved their children around on the boat as the ferry lurched, twisted and turned. It is a wonder no children were injured.

As we arrived, the skies cleared.

There were three different markers painted on the pavement to follow. We followed the one that looked like a coach, as we had been told.

We had been allocated the afternoon tour but while on the ferry, we were told we would be the only two and so would we like to join the morning tour. We would and did.

Much of Rottnest Island is surrounded by reefs, making the seas calm within the protection of the reefs.

This osprey nest is a fine construction, withstanding the extreme winds. While maybe it has to be repaired at times, it is used by subsequent generations of osprey.

Right on cue, Mr or Mrs Osprey appears.

The tour guide lass commentated that this wind turbine generated 30% of the island's power, with the rest provided by diesel generators. She then said any excess generated by the wind turbine is returned to the Western Australian power grid, presumably by osmosis.

I like most people, thought trees grew on an angle because of the wind. No, take the species to a place with no wind and they will still grow on an angle. I became cynical about tour commentaries in New York, so don't trust that information either.

What is that cute thing on the back of our bus?

The original light house was atop the small building. It was inadequate and this new lighthouse was built.

I am rather pleased with this photo.

The lighthouse keeper's cottage.

Look, our first sighting of a quokka, in its natural environment.

 A nice little bay.

By golly, the seas were rough. I could have stayed and watched them for a long time, if it wasn't so horribly windy.

I took many photos of waves blasting through this rock opening and so did many others.

Accommodation on the leeward side of the island.

The lunch was at the very pleasant Rottnest Lodge and the meal was large and absolutely delicious.

Here we go. R had seen quokkas on the island about a decade ago. No doubt due to the campaign against feeding them, their numbers around the tourist spots are much reduced compared to when R last visited, but still, there are a few to see.

A Dutch explorer thought they looked looked rats from a distance, hence Rottnest. They are very cute, with soft fur and quite unafraid of humans. They have no predators on the island bar occasional stupid humans. Don't look up Quokka Soccer.

They are of course marsupials, carrying their young in a pouch. Their eyesight is poor but sense of smell is good and the quokka quickly learnt that there was nothing to its taste in our backpacks. Apparently spearmint gum is unappealing to them.

A peacock roamed.

The quokka is eating the leaf? of a Norfolk Island Pine.

While they generally move slowly, you can be taken unawares by them being in another place almost undetected. Clearly they were a problem for this supermarket.

Naturally the Catholic church is on a high point in the main settlement area of Thompsons Bay.

It was school holidays in Western Australia, so a children's movie was showing at the local picture theatre.

The Anglican church was a much more modest affair.

The history of Rottnest Island is long, from being a penal colony,  an imprisonment island for Aborigines, a internment camp during WWI, crucial to the defence of the Port of Fremantle during WWII and an island for punishment and reform of naughty lads, mostly Aborigines. For most of the 20th century it was used for recreation too and it is still marketed as such today.

Our ferry has arrived to return us to the mainland. The other ferry may the one that runs to and from Hillarys Boat Harbour.

Some Asian tourists found these pelicans of great interest.

The group had left when we went out onto the jetty, but another Asian lad who was walking out asked if they were safe and said that they were so big and he was a bit scared. We didn't tell him how pelicans can massacre humans, and for the sake of our tourism industry, assured him he would be fine.


The next day I asked Grace's P about these birds and I expect my description was poor but he said they are robins. I suspect they may be female scarlet robins.

The seas were a bit calmer for our uneventful return journey. Instead of taking a hotel tour of Perth with the coach drop offs, we walked home from the Barrack Street Ferry Terminal. After a large lunch, we just ordered in pizza for the evening. Tomorrow we head for home, but not early so there will be another day, albeit a brief post.