It’s such a mad month for me. I am so looking forward to March. Friday is my last work day for 4 weeks. One small problem; I’m working Saturday! Duh how did that happen. Oh well, big relax on Saturday night and some extra time at the end of my leave. Here’s some pics of my February. Added for Su’s Changing Seasons
It’s been a while since I’ve blogged anything but on the changing seasons. Here’s a bunch of photos specially chosen for the Serene theme. Apologies as some have been previously published.
I am so lucky to have been asked to sample down at the Gippsland Lakes this August as I don’t think I would have too much to contribute. I’ve added these photos for Max’s Changing Seasons. Please visit the page and check out some nice views of the world at different times of the year.
August is Acacia flowering time here in Victoria. I grabbed a couple of close ups.
These are both Cootamundra Wattles, Acacia Baileyana. Wattles grow through the bush like weeds and indeed, these wattles, 10s of them, have popped up since the 2014 fire, all from the seeds of one tree. These wattles are not indigenous to the area and must be kept under control. I love their flowers.
Last week I visited the Gippsland Lakes for a sampling trip. The lakes are estuarine and are mostly surrounded by farmland. While they are very beautiful and still wild in parts, they are under threat from the many uses that surround them, such as farming, industry and tourism. We sample the lakes to monitor the chemical and biological quality of the water. From this we can detect gross changes, or gradual trending, in water quality. This in turn enables us to pinpoint the possible source and can initiate discussions to influence changes in industry practices. It becomes a win-win, because most locals do not want their lakes to change while at the same time do not want to be over-regulated.
On the 2nd day, before heading out again, my colleague and I got up well before sunrise to do a spot of fishing and photography near where we were staying. It is indeed a beautiful place.
Hi there! July in cold old Victoria it is. I have friends and family overseas and up north sunning themselves. I’m down here in the cold semi antarctic conditions. The sun is shining; it’s not snowing; it not -°; the fires roaring. There is really nothing to complain about. I maybe heading to Hobart next month. Now that will be a wintry experience for me. I’ve added these for Max’s changing seasons. Some not the best quality – apologies.
I have been seeing some very clear weather lately. The mountain – hill, in the distance in the first photograph is 120 km distant. One morning I thought saw a 160 km distant mountain but was not able to prove it.
I try to leave work early sometimes as I like to see the sunset and see my dogs in the daylight
A big part of blogging is not only posting, but reading, and commenting on, all of my favourite blogs. I apologise for not finding time for this. Work has been more hectic than ever and I admit to being a little addicted to Words with friends. I leave for work in the dark and get home the dark. It’s cold, I light the fire, we eat, we socialise, we watch the telly, we obsess with the internet.
Last week I travelled to Lakes Entrance for a course and managed to capture some pre-dawn photographs. It has been cold but very dry in Victoria this Winter. Some parts of Victoria need rain badly. I will add some of these pics for Max’s changing seasons.
Out on the Bay May 10
In the garden 21 May.
Added for Max’s changing seasons
As a child I was fascinated by the spread of freeways in my city and state. It was many years later that that I discovered they only solved problems for a short time. In Melbourne at the moment it appears every road is being worked on. By the time they all finish they’ll have to get going again. Until I was 11, there was a wonderful windy and relatively unpolluted creek that flowed near my house. We spent so much time down there. We called it the jungle. It was full of box thorn and thistles but it was all we knew. One day I spoke to a man ramming little wooden pegs in the ground. I asked what he was doing to which he replied ‘very soon there will be a big freeway coming through here’. I was amazed. That was end of the jungle.
About the same time, businesses in Melbourne’s western suburbs, the industrial, ugly side of town, were lobbying for a river crossing near the mouth of the Yarra River. Both sides were seen as an ugly wasteland; perfect for a big bridge. Work for the West Gate Bridge commenced in 1968. This only occurred after a series of dodgy money gatherings and bad tendering, as was found in hindsight. Well into construction, late in 1970, a section of the box girder bridge and a box pylon, collapsed killing 35 construction workers and injuring 18.
Of course there was an inquiry and their findings can be perused. Construction eventually resumed. The photograph below was taken by me in 1976
The bridge was completed in 1978. Tolls were introduced, but later scrapped because it could be avoided. It now carries 200000 vehicles per day and a 2nd lower Yarra crossing is close to commencing.
Some say this bridge competes somehow with the Sydney Harbour Bridge. No way; It’s a big ugly bridge that runs through a fairly ugly part of Melbourne. It has 10 car lanes, but no train. I drive over it about 20 times a year. I’ve walked over it too, to raise funds.
Like all bridges, the Westgate has attracted a lot of suiciders. They did not do anything about this until an imbecile threw his 4 year daughter to her death to get back his wife, in 2009, in front of her brother. This story makes me so emotional. That poor little girl and the poor brother, and mother. I can’t write about it. They installed a fence.
Back in 1962, when I was 4, another smaller bridge in the centre of Melbourne cracked due to dodgy engineering. I was a big fan of Zig and Zag, clowns on the telly. They thought they had cracked the bridge when they accidentally dropped a coconut on it. They were gonna get into big trouble. I believed this of course.
March is a glorious time in Southern Victoria. Beautiful warm days. Cooler nights. Dry, often too dry…..For some reason I have been struggling taking photographs. I have been loving making music; maybe that’s the reason. This evening sky at home I could not resist.
A gathering of old friends for a pot luck dinner. A great time had by all.Out on the job on the Gippsland Lakes between sites.
Back Down at the Bay with a G&T in hand
Another freakin sunset
All added for Max on his great monthly photo feature at Cardinal Guzman
As we approach the end of Summer we will be experiencing an unusual blast of Summer weather. It was only six months ago when I was in Rome experiencing a very similar end of Summer weather. February is not my favourite time to photograph. The light is too harsh except early in the morning and before sunset. Jo and I also spend a lot of time down at the beach to enjoy the mild to warm weather. Last weekend it snowed in our alps; a very very unusual event. Here’s some pics of the beach from a couple of weekends. For Max’s blog.
I have numerous photos of shadows over the years. All of varying quality, I have never been particularly fussed if they satisfy certain technical criteria, as long they have some significance with regards to when, where and why I took them. Having said that, when I look at these old pics, I know what I would do today to improve them. All well and good with today’s equipment, but I don’t think I’m any more patient. Lately I have been following Bird Photography Australia’s facebook page. The photographs are extraordinary, and they are welcome respite from the constant depressing political news and opinion mongering that social media indulges in. The patience and technical mastery of these photographers amaze me, but I have no wish to emulate them. I like what I do now, and I will continue to improve at a pace that is dictated by only me, as it should be.
I have added below a couple of pics I took around 1980; one of sheep on a sunny Winter solstice and another of me. Added for WordPress Shadow