Thursday, December 28, 2017

Christmas that was

Apart from plans for the evening of Christmas Eve, we had nothing else planned. We went for a wander in a area close to where we shop in Prahran, but at the Windsor end of Chapel Street, where we rarely venture. I think this is on top of a tertiary education building, which itself is being transformed.


An old sign I'd not noticed before, maybe recently exposed. Five seconds of research tells me H Metcher was about to open a shop in Glenferrie Road, Malvern, in 1909. The shop would offer house decorating, picture framing and supply wallpapers and artists' materials. I would assume he also had this shop in Chapel Street with similar offerings.


Rosenbergs Shoes has been here for as long as I can remember. I always thought it was called Dr Rosenberg's but it seems it is D Rosenberg's.


Strange frontage of Holy Grail. It must be new, although it doesn't look it.


I'll pass on the squid, thanks.


Looks like a place to get very messy in a Russian kind of way.


The upstairs here was once part of a nightclub, but it may no longer be there. Behind the little shutter was an aquarium and at night the shutter was raised to reveal the blue lit aquarium and the swimming fish to passersby below.

We eventually chose a trendy little cafe for brunch, which was hard as the area now abounds with trendy little cafes. We were spoilt for choice but chose well and had some good food and superb single blend coffee at School of Seven Bells. I've no idea what the name means. The coffee was seriously excellent.


Maples Corner Store no longer and hasn't been for many years. I am pleased it was saved and reinvented.


So tiring going out for two hours and having brunch, so home for a rest, then into town for dinner and to see the Christmas light displays. We went later than we normally would, so the gap between dinner and darkness at 9pm wouldn't be too great. There was a Christmas Eve queue to get into St Pauls.


We decided to dine in the very ancient and historically important Princes' Bridge Hotel, aka, Young and Jackson's. The downstairs part has a great pressed tin ceiling (most likely Wunderlich).


The view out the window towards St Pauls and Federation Square. The window seats were not popular and I wasn't sure why, until we sat there and the air con outlets blow cold air on your legs. It was ok for us with jeans on, but not for women and men in dresses and shorts.


R was just inside at the third window along. Flinders Street Station in the background. Young and Jackson's is the home of the large female nude painting, Chloe, but she is in an upstairs dining area. Young and Jackson's has a rooftop cider bar, which is rather fun, but it is an effort to climb so many stairs.


Another recently revealed sign after a building was demolished.


People adore the Manchester Unity building, and so do I.


We needed strawberries for Christmas Day champagne sparkling wine, and they were found and bought. There were light projections on the State Library, Town Hall and Fed Square. We were underwhelmed by the Library projections and decided we'd had enough of town and caught a tram back home.




Christmas morning arrived and we travelled for an 1 hour 15 (normally 50 minutes) to Tradie Brother's where Sister and Bone Doctor had prepared Christmas dinner. We just had time to open the block of chocolate gift from our Friend in Japan before we left. It is made in her town and now sits in a prominent place. We keep looking at it, but can't bring ourselves to open it. Do Japanese write bad English as attention seeking behaviour. You know I would happily proof read labels for a small Japanese company like this one for free. "RAW" CHOCOLATE HAVE A SPECIAL AND PURE ENERGY. WILL BE A NEW STANDARD IN CHOCOLATE


Tradie Brother writes signs and spreads them around.


Great niece Little M could not understand the concept of harmony, so she changed it to sunshine. Tradie Brother makes the actions with his hands as he tells his grandchildren the sayings.


Tradie Brother has seen out two dogs, Aussie and Buster, but his attachment and love for his Cobber knows no bounds. The chook, Thelma, made some appearances from nearby under the ferns, but because of her toilet habits, she was not encouraged.  


His neighbour Joyce died early this year. There was an opening on fence fitted with a venetian blind. TB has now removed the opening as the house has been sold. Ring the bell, Joyce would call out through the hole, and she then visited for a drink or a cuppa. She was lovely.


Gift wise, it did not work so well. For the past two years we have done Kris Kringle after a draw from a hat. Oldest Niece said this year, let's drop that and just buy for the kids. We agreed. When I spoke to Sister before Christmas and she and Little Jo had great fun out buying presents for everyone. But, but........well, we haven't. Just for the kids. I take no responsibility for not buying for anyone other than the children. We did slip Mother $100 in an envelope. Mother looked lovely on Christmas Day. Come Boxing Day, no stockings and just wearing socks, hence showing her bad legs to garner sympathy. Though I must say, she did well, attending both days and not moaning on to all and sundry about her medical problems. ABI Brother took her home early from the Boxing Day Christmas celebrations.

Ah, I haven't mentioned Boxing Day. Another Christmas lunch, this time at Ex Sis in Laws. She promised this is the last one she is doing too. Heaps more gift giving. All the family was there, plus some of Ex Sis in Law's husband's children. Just Sister, Bone Doctor and Little Jo missing, oh yes, and Fire Fighting Nephew and his wife, as he was on fire call. Children really do make Christmas special, and there are some very spoilt children gift wise in our family. I did get the names of the baby twins right but only when I could see them together. I studied their differences hard yesterday. Their Mother, Hippy Niece, is back on keel and enjoying her offspring and the twin's father was quite sociable and friendly to our quite large family.


It was a great couple of days of Christmas celebration but very tiring. Let Tradie Brother's Betty have the last word.


Peace tomorrow (Wednesday), with nothing to do but late Boxing Day sales in town for a set of towels. Thursday, Little Jo will be here while Sister and Bone Doctor sees the third day of the cricket test. While I am very much sports ignorant, did I note that the captain of the English team is called Rooter. I wonder how fast and how hard.

29 comments:

  1. Goodness. I got tired just reading your post. Love knowing that there are other sports iggerant people about. And am tired of being told it is unOrstrayan.

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    1. EC, in times past I have pretended an interest in sports. I don't bother any more, unless is salacious gossip or a scandal, and there seems to be rather lot of them.

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  2. Andrew

    your blog has been worth all the blood, sweat and tears! "Borsch, Vodka and Tears" is a brilliant idea in a brilliant part of Melbourne. Well done, you!

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    1. Hels, thank you. I know I can be challenging at times, but I am a generally a good person. The restaurant name is just brilliant, yes. I can well imagine doing that in the correct order.

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  3. How does Cobber get along with Thelma? :) Sounds like you had a wonderful Christmas. Glad to hear Hippie Niece is on the mend. Excited to hear about the late boxing day sales! I thought of catching the train up to Sydney but really we don't need anything, plus The Other Half was home, so did not go. Traffic is chaos about here right now..

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    1. Snoskred, best of mates. When Cobber gets a nice big meaty bone, he likes to leave it to mature for a couple of days. In the meantime, Thelma picks the meat off it. It was rather quiet in town today, for a big sale day, but the person how served us said it was manic on Boxing Day. We got our towels, at half price. The traffic is bad because of tourists?

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    2. Every man and his dog plus wife cat and half the house is escaping Sydney and Canberra at the moment. ;) We get maybe 40-50% of them here and the rest go to the north coast. So basically we batten down the hatches and hibernate for a couple of weeks. :)

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  4. I've not been out since Friday last...Friday before Christmas. I might do a brief visit to the newsagency and supermarket tomorrow (Friday), and then again, I may not.

    I can never understand the madness of the Boxing Day sales. I can think of little worse than rushing around like a maniac the maniacal crowds on Boxing Day! I guess, it's just me, but there seems to be so much ugly greed on display. Not my scene or desire at all.

    If there was anything I needed that desperately, I'd rather let my fingers do the walking and purchase it online...far away from the madding crowd.

    As I said...that's just the way I am.

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    1. Lee, so agree. It was fine today. Without office workers around, somewhat quiet and no problem in shops, unlike yesterday. Shopping in the busy city is one thing, but why the 4km queue on a freeway to get to Chadstone, and then try to find a car space, and then fight for bargains. People are mad.

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  5. Ha! Had a good laugh for the 'Rooter' couldn't help myself :)
    Sounds as if you had a good Christmas/Boxing Day. Tradie brother, seems he keeps people entertained with his signs.
    The buildings look good.

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    1. Tradie Brother drinks way too much but he is quite entertaining. I may have got Rooters name wrong. I think it may be Root.

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  6. I only watch the Cricket if England are winning!

    Those buildings are amazing, I'd never imagined Melbourne like that. I quite expect we'll spend our winters again in the UK before too long; I'm quite looking forward to a few months of town life.

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    1. Cro, gold rush money saw many fine buildings erected in Melbourne, and subsequently some of the best, destroyed in the name of progress.

      When you get older, extremes of temperatures need to be ameliorated by proper heating and air con.

      I'll save you checking. England are losing. They are rooted by Root.

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    2. That's why I'm not following it.

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  7. England are a touch ahead at the moment but ha ha, we have the Ashes anyway. Yeah, I'm a cricket tragic. Sad, innit.
    And his name is Root, Andrew, and right now he is, ahem, rooted. Well, out, anyway.

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    1. Rozzie, you are more up to date than I am. Oh yes, Root is rooted, as I wrote above.

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  8. You have had a busy time of it! Less busy here, but still tired from it all and I still have a Christmas/New Year dinner to go to on Saturday.
    New towels? I'm set for life there, neighbour P gave me a huge stack of brand new towels when she emptied out her flat.
    Cricket? What's that? ha ha.

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    1. Did you have some family time River? Your forthcoming dinner will be tiring, but enjoy the moment. We have few towels, two sets actually, a hand towel, bath mat and towel for the bathroom and a towel and bathmat for my ensuite. We keep an old set for guests. Our second last set with a white background had become horribly stained where we dry our hands.

      Cricket is a game that was played on pretty green English fields, where people sat around drinking a gin and tonic, or a cup of fine tea with scones jam and cream. They politely applauded both teams when the did well. It has changed.

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  9. I was going to start blogging again on January 1 but this year is intent on being a bastard right up to midnight 2017. Came perilously close to losing the family grave in the fire yesterday. Only thing to do was order Double Black Vodka in triple in case I ran out of Gin because I'm not leaving the house until well into next week.
    Christmas Day would have been really lovely if only Mother had let me slap the two idiots who spoiled it.

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    1. Jah Teh, yes the fire. Sorry, I did not think of your rels being there, and why should I really. Will we hear about the two idiots who spoilt Christmas Day?

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  10. I like the photos of the Christmas lights projections, very pretty.
    You seem to have had a busy Christmas.

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    1. Sami, thanks. There are better projections in Melbourne. Yes, busy, but kind of good with so many kiddies around.

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  11. Loved your post and photos. Feel as though I was with you this Christmas. Celebrating Christmas with a three year old was a real joy this year.

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    1. Thanks Marie, they were a really nice couple of days and it wasn't too hot, thankfully. Yes, your grandchild is the same age as Little M. They are at such an interesting age.

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    2. Three is a fabulous age. Semi independent, but still listening when Mum says "No" and about 99% reliably toilet trained.

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  12. That squid looks a little creepy to me they way it appears to be about to consume the building.

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    1. Victor, yes, I can't say I liked the squid, but I thought it worth showing.

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  13. Sounds like you had an enjoyable time. I've heard of other families who agree to draw names or buy only for the children, then one or two can't resist and break the rules and all is chaos. Ha. I did not see anyone on Christmas Day, just lounged around and did nothing for once. But today I think my brother is coming through, and says they'll stop for breakfast.

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    1. Strayer, that is very much like it was this year, chaos. That will be nice to see your brother. At our age, family is so important. I hope you busy tidying up.

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Democracy is all very well, but why give it to the people? - Audrey Forbes-Hamilton.