January 2021

Weird Summer in Southern Australia. We only had a few hot days. Still such a beautiful place to live.

We visited Wye River on the Great Ocean Road on Jan 9. So many koalas just hanging about.

I slept in the swag. Below was my view from bed

I got up for a leak just before dawn. This view was worth it, but straight back to bed.

Back to cold Summer the following week. I went for a walk up a local hill.

Back to warm weather for the last week. Off to a local Botanic gardens for a birthday party. Early settlers found Australian native plants distasteful, and missed their deciduous forests of Europe. Many of these plantations still exist despite the hot and dry conditions. This is an oak forest in Kyneton.

It has been six months. That’s pathetic.

I really enjoyed blogging when I started six years ago. I seem to have lost my way with it lately. I think my weakness for Facebook is to blame. It reminds me of when I was a smoker. I knew it was doing me harm but could not kick it. I am not dumping Facebook this time like I have before. I am going to try to become a watcher, and initially, a once a day poster. It is now 12:15 PM and I have already shared 2 things today. Oh well. One was plugging a CD by a local musician, the other a mariachi version of Gold and Brown. Hardly controversial. Maybe good shares like this are OK? Having said that, I still do not want to allow Facebook to continue to consume me. I gave up cigarettes by slowing weaning myself off over a few years, thirty years ago. I think I can discipline myself with Facebook, and get it down to a decent level of observance.

In early January 2020, large parts of Australia were on fire. Some of these fires had been burning since September 2019. An overseas observer would be forgiven for thinking that all of Australia was burning. This was most certainly not the case, however, no matter where you lived, except maybe the top end, there was ever present evidence of these fires burning; in all capital cities, bar Darwin. This is unprecedented. This was, and is still, a crisis for Australia. I have no photos from this period.

The weather turned later in January, as we prepared to go to our yearly sojourn to Rosebud, on the Mornington Peninsula, South of Melbourne.

The stars were amazing, and my phone could take pics of them

There was of course relaxation, entertainment, catching up with family and friends.

An there was plenty of beauty

We do not stay at the beach constantly, as we have two dogs that need caring for at home. While there, in February and prior to the covid lockdown, I started the process of baking sourdough. Here are some photos of my fun.

I like to take photos of plants, and this six month period has been no exception.

Some nice sunsets and Autumn scenes

Some covid lockdown activities

With Winter upon us now

Changing Seasons August to November 2019

I have stopped adding to these photos because I did not feel I was following of the spirit of the exercise. I was treating it a bit like a photo diary. I am hoping I can add some photos here from the 4 months that meet the requirements, at least in my mind. Excuses. I have been lazy and just been doing stuff I wanted to do

August 2019

Snow events such as this are rare indeed in our neck of the woods. We were so excited because it stayed on the ground for a few hours. This was on August 11 on the day we went to the first Pub Warble.

September

The flowers were eager to get their growing done.

October.

Mandatory sky pics taken a trip on the Bay, of which I paid for.

November

More flowers – first Roses. It has been a good year for the roses here in Victoria.

Callistemons

Finale to Spring. Here comes Summer

All added for Su’s Changing Seasons

The Changing Seasons June 2019

Bastille Day! A bit late for adding my June entry? Feels like yesterday to me so why not.

One thing I really enjoy about Winter is cold sunny days with the Sun low in the sky at Midday.

We had a little laundry flood. Some of the water seeped under the walls and under the floating timber floor. Cupping. Insurance job; should be fixed soon.

I partook in my last sampling/monitoring adventure of Port Phillip Bay. Was a nice Winter’s day. Notice the young ones on their phones. Out in the big wide world and they’re on their phones.

An good friend’s 60th birthday celebration at a pier restaurant in Geelong. After a while I realised that this was very much a girl’s day, so I spent most of the occasion talking to my old mate Mick (I’m Michael to most) and taking photos over the water. A lovely afternoon. Happy Birthday Pat!

And finally, a week before I retired, a curry day was held. I wanted everybody to be able to talk to each other and to come and go as they please. Below is a picture of my two of my best mates at EPA. Anne and Eamonn. I will be forever indebted to both of them and I already miss them. The three of us started working in the PS in 1980. It’s been a great career.
I made a heap of friends; there is too many to mention. More photos below.

Left to right. Me, Anne, Eamonn.

I’m sorry for the photos of people I missed. My real leaving day was July 5, so I may bore you then with more. Added for Su’s Changing Seasons

Rosebud 2019

Almost six months since I have written anything. Blogging is such a great way to relate, even if your audience is six or seven people. I was going to enter a May changing seasons when I realised I could not do that with putting up some Rosebud piccies. We stay there from late January to late April every year. We love it because our family is there, who we really don’t see much for the rest of the year, and we have some lovely neighbours, and it is within easy walking distance of a gentle clean beach. For most of time it is warm, I probably drink a little too much, and unfortunately it has some questionable locals, I emphasise some, as most are just like you and me. This year they stole Jo’s art folder and a larger folder of my printed songs, covers mainly, which can be recovered. Having not long moved to the ‘burbs, we found our 15 yo dog did not like being left at home and consequently made a lot of noise, at night. This displeased the neighbours and broke a lot of our stays.

I have been holidaying at Rosebud now for nearly 60 years. I love it’s beauty and simplicity. I prefer it when it is quiet, which is why we visit post season.¬†We don’t stay there for the whole 3 months; Jo and I live about 130 kms from it; we leave the van and set-up there. I work about 90 km from it.

The memorable leech and police incident

A few years back, possibly 2010, Jo and I and the dogs went for an adventurous walk on the top of Mount Macedon. It was late Autumn and I could sense some rain coming. The walk was relatively short and we figured we would make it. Mount Macedon is 1000 metres above sea level and is lovely place to visit all year round. There are some hidden dangers in the Australian bush.

About 100 metres into the walk I started feeling a little uneasy about the weather. The air had an iciness about it and with rain in late May it could be quite unpleasant if unprepared. I decided to retreat, with my dog Billie, and push back to the car. Jo wanted to push on. I told her, and little Rogan, I would meet them about 2 km down the track, where another larger forest track intersected the walk. That way she did not need to retrace her steps. 

I drove on to the the carpark nearest the intersecting point and with Billie, headed 100 m or so down the forest track to rendezvous with Jo and Rogie. They had not arrived yet so I waited a about 10 minutes and there they were. The weather had indeed worsened so we all scurried back to the car. 

Upon arriving at the car we noticed that all of us had quite a number of little leeches on our clothing. I had encountered this many times bushwalking and just systematically flicked them all off. Jo, who also knew how to deal with leeches, was wearing tracksuit pants and she had so many she decided to just remove them. There was no-one around and she was wearing underwear. The dogs had heaps of them too so we flicked all of them off and jumped in the car.

Safe in the car with Jo driving, we headed back down to home. The road was empty of traffic. A short distance down the road Jo was feeling a little uncomfortable, around the eye. She stopped, did not pull over, and screamed at me to check her eye. “Can you see anything? There’s salt in the glove-box. Quick!” “Ar yes there is; I’m getting the salt now” I said. Just at that moment, as Jo was applying the salt, a police car pulled to the right of us. Jo’s window was down and we both explained the situation, but not Jo’s attire – it seemed irrelevant. 

Thankfully they understood immediately, pulled up in front of us and handed me a bottle of water on the passenger side “Keep it” they said. Jo was able to stop the leech from crawling under her eyelid. 

Staying in the car this time

Added for The Changing Seasons December 2018 Thanks Su

The Changing Seasons. October and November 2018

Just because I don’t come here often does not mean I going to abandon blogging. It is a pretty special place here and I hope to hang on by a thread for a while yet. Been a crazy couple of months with Mum moving into a nursing home, industrial fire clean-ups and the continuation of the move into our lovely new house. It’s funny being in the ‘burbs again. Like, I’m not big on Halloween; it’s not really an Aussie thing. Yet. But boy did we get swamped by kids wanting lollies. We had been preparing for yearly Melbourne Cup weekend away from it at the Maldon Folk music festival. Jo bought a nice selection of sweets for the campers. Oh no. Spooky looking children in expensive ‘the scream’ masks moving from side to side wanting lollies from the new neighbours. And what is it with the pumpkins? Our pumpkins are good in May!! oh well. The whole event seemed harmless enough. Then there’s Thanksgiving. We don’t do it. But the following day there was all this crap about Black Friday. Grrrrr. To be honest, it didn’t really affect me that much. But surely you have to give thanks before you thanks give? Thanks Su

Clouds

Industrial fires

Domestic things

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