Author: frankeeg

574. Sunday 22nd October 2017. Gold Coast 600, Rock and Roll singers, Rock and Roll dancing and a walk along The Broadwater…

Thursday 19th October

I have been listening to some old rock and roll songs by Dion and Rick Nelson. Gee they take me back in time. I can almost recall where I was and who I was with when those songs first aired on the radio.

Sadly Rick Nelson was killed in a plane crash on 31 December 1986.

Happily Dion (DiMucci) is still rockin and playing to packed houses in the USA. I read recently that it is a recent phenomena that some artists – Madonna, Pink etc – are known by their first name only. Actually it is not new. Cher was known only by her first name long before Madonna and Pink. However long long before her, Dion was known only as Dion since the late 50’s.

Dion has released a number of tribute albums for fellow musicians and I have been enjoying listening to those tracks. Dion – Heroes of Early Guitar Rock. You can hear it on You Tube.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SM0k3iowlnY&list=RDSM0k3iowlnY&t=5

This particular page contains more than 50 tribute tracks.

http://edition.cnn.com/2008/SHOWBIZ/Music/10/23/dion.heroes/index.html

Somewhere around the late 60’s Rock and Roll morphed into Rock which is a totally different musical genre and mostly not suitable for dancing. Rock also morphed into hard rock, acid rock and all types of rock.

Sigh!

Friday 20th October

Today the Gold Coast 600 began to sort out starting positions.

First appearing on the Australian motorsport calendar in 1991, the Gold Coast street circuit is a high speed, concrete-lined, thrill ride that was shortened for the new look event in 2010. The temporary street track has proven to create carnage in the past, particularly when drivers don’t show the patience required for victory.

The Vodafone Gold Coast 600 circuit sees the track cover 2.96km. The layout allows for better spectacle, providing fans with great on-track action and entertainment value. The track layout and design means is designed to reduce disruption to the local traffic and residents.

The RAAF sent an F 18A Super Hornet to fly between high rise buildings and along the beach as an opener to the event. We could hear the Super Hornet but it was too fast to see.

Some heavy duty helicopters could be heard in the distance but we could not see them either.

The social committee team got together this morning and we set up the clubhouse with tables and chairs for 90 people. Wayne, Marie and Lynn met in the afternoon to make 300 sandwiches, sausage rolls and start the party pies and LBD’s ready for tonight. The Old Time Rock and Roll Band arrived and set up.

By 7pm the band started and the clubhouse was a rockin’ and a rollin’. How it works is this. We book and pay the band, do the catering and set up the clubhouse. We charge $5 a head for the band and supper. That is incredible value. A small raffle with several prizes means we just about come out even on the night. No loss or a tiny profit. Around 40 or so Gold Coast Rockers arrive, about 40 or so of our village residents arrive and the night rocks from there. We bring our own drinks. Some of our residents are in their 80’s and even 90’s and come along just to listen and watch the top notch dancers from GCR. The rest of us get up on the dance floor and do what we can. We also have some good dancers and many of us get involved in the line dancing. The GCR arrive in their Rock n Roll clothes and sparkling shoes and really put on a show.

201017 dance
I apologise for the quality. This was taken as a “quick snap” on my phone as I had forgotten my good camera. Most of the night the dance floor was packed.

Lots of fun.

By 10pm the band (who have only taken two breaks) finally call it a night and after lots of goodbyes and hugs and thank you and comments such as “we will be here for the next night”, and suddenly the clubhouse looks empty.

These Rock n Roll nights have now become a twice a year event at the clubhouse which has an intimate atmosphere with everybody being close to the dance floor, the band, and facilities.

Some residents are asking if we can have a rock n roll night every month! They suggest we can do it with recorded music and bring a plate. Hmmm! It’s a lot of work but perhaps we can try one night and see how it goes.

My big regret is I never learned or even wanted to learn to Rock N Roll when I was younger. I realise now all the fun I missed out on all these years. At least we are doing line dancing and the social committee will ask if a couple from the GCR will give us rock n roll dance lessons.

Saturday 21st October

At 8am some of us committee members were at the clubhouse cleaning and tidying after last night.

Heavy rain began to fall and continued all day including a chilling southerly buster.

Mid- morning we heard the roar of the Gold Coast 600 racing begin.

Sunday 22nd October

What the???

The rain cleared overnight and today was brilliant sunshine but that southerly kicked in around midday. The racing continued today along with the RAAF fly past in the afternoon.

We stayed away from the crowds at Surfers Paradise but spent some time at the Broadwater Lagoon and a walk along the beach.

221017 ducks
For some reason only known to these ducks they flocked on The Broadwater and were being followed by seemingly militant seagulls. Strange really as seagulls are Omnivores, eating just about anything but they particularly like deep fried potato chips whereas the ducks are herbivores and generally eat in shallow water where they can eat the vegetation just below the surface.

At the lagoon the Pelicans and seagulls were arriving for their lunch of fish scraps from the Charis Seafood Market   http://www.charisseafood.com.au/   on the beach. The Pelicans are quite happy to have people walk or swim with them. They just move far enough away so you cannot touch them.

221017 pelicans
These Pelicans are on a landing glide and are so graceful as they genntly touch down on the water.
221017 pelicans1
Walking through the massed Pelicans is a breeze although one did make a sound of protest and clack his beak at me.

Further along the beach we found a couple of Schiller S1 Water Bikes.  http://www.blueride.com.au/   as part of the Seaway Kayaking Tours.  http://www.seawaykayakingtours.com.au/category/water-bike-tours/

221017 bike1

Hmmm! One of these plus a battery outboard motor would be great for exploring The Broadwater.221017 bike

221017 bike2

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573. Sunday 15th October 2017. Packing, a visitor and rain, real rain arrives…

Tuesday 10th October

At last at last at last. All the packing at Peters house is complete. The removalists arrived. They saw.

They conquered.

Everything was packed into a container and taken away to their depot for storage. We completed the vacuuming, sweeping, cleaning and mopping.

All done.

Phew!

Wednesday 11th October

I collected daughter Averyl from Brisbane airport and drove home to the Gold Coast. We joined her for an inspection of a few units in the new tower beside us. This was followed by a drive around Surfers Paradise, Broadbeach, Miami Beach, Burleigh Heads and Palm Beach. We had dinner at Palm Beach Surf Life Saving Club and came home via a different route.

Perhaps my memory is not so good these days. We had a meal here within the last 12 months and the prices were not this high. Donnis agrees so maybe my memory is still OK.

Thursday 12th October

Averyl went for an early morning walk and invited us to join her for breakfast. I chose Café 4 U in the Aqua Building on Marine Parade Labrador. The reason for my choice? Have a look at this review on Trip Advisor.

Cheap does not always mean bad – and in this case, it is bloody awesome
$7 buys you 2 eggs, bacon, slice of buttered toast, hash brown, sausage and a serve of baked beans- really what’s not to love????
With a coffee-$10 in total – good quality, cheap and an excellent coffee all for $10 and that view is beautiful
Staff service is friendly and professional
Definitely coming back here again
https://www.tripadvisor.com.au/ShowUserReviews-g659071-d5801523-r372447819-Cafe_4_U-Labrador_Gold_Coast_Queensland.html#

 

I could not have said it better myself.

Lets put that in perspective.

A McDonalds Bacon and Egg McMuffin plus a hash brown and a coffee will cost you about the same. Without the personalised service.

The only pity is that more places do not put out a simple cheap menu like this. We see breakfasts at towns and cities and suburbs in our travels. Generally the bacon and eggs will cost about $16 to $20 extra for tea or coffee.

Another exception is the Star Coffee Co at Harbourtown Biggera Waters. The same breakfast as Cafe 4 u is only $5.90.

Hmmm! That is about almost as cheap as I can do it at home.

After that it was a lazy sort of day except Donnis and Averyl spent the afternoon shopping at Harbourtown.

Sigh!

Friday 13th October

Oooooohhh! Friday 13th!!!

Apart from a silly movie a few years back and a couple of forgettable sequels, the day was much like any normal day. Averyls friend Justine arrived and they were both on their way to Dracula’s House at Broadbeach for the dinner and the show.

https://www.draculas.com.au/gold-coast/

Saturday 14th October

So begins the rain.

Sunday 15th October

The rain continues.

Heavy and accompanied by strong southerly winds.

Wot the? It feels like winter.

 

 

572. Sunday 8th October 2017. Packing Pete’s house, a visitor and doorways to…

Sunday 8th October

We spent three days this week driving to Mt Cotton to pack up Pete’s house ready for the removalist to collect and put into storage next week.

Iain who has been staying with us left this morning to return to Armidale.

Apart from that it has been a quiet week so I thought I would open a few doors.

Gotham City Hall. Need I say anything more?gotham

Ray White Real Estate Kiama062 ray white kiama

In fact the entire external walls and internal walls had been painted up in bright Ray White Real Estate colours.

Inverell Pioneer Village067 village inverell

Interesting displays of old buildings, artifacts, tools and especially old machinery

Onboard Bundeena Ferry operating since 1939072 bundeena boat

Just love the old timber coated with so many coats of paint built up over time whereas the   brass fittings have been polished so often they are becoming thinner.

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Notice how even the screw head slot has been worn thin with constant cleaning over 80 years.

Lightning Ridge Lockup

Interesting on the day of court sittings to men (well mostly men sometimes women) are held in this tin box awaiting trial. Lightning Ridge is hot most of the time but temperatures of 45 degrees and above are common during summer. The only shade if from a tree beside the lockup.073 lockup lightning ridge

Watchtower La Perouse

Built in 1821 and staffed by soldiers it was used as a lookout for people trying to arrive in the Colony by what was known as “the back door” at Botany Bay. Later it was used as a watchtower for a perceived invasion by Russia. No such invasion was ever planned. It was pure isolationist unconfirmed rumour.075 watchtower la perouse

Mudbrick Lightning Ridge

This old mud brick building (with a new door and windows) can be found in the main street of Lightning Ridge.mud brick lightning ridge

The Rocks

These old terrace houses in Playfair St The Rocks, Sydney were built between 1875 to 1877. They are NSW Heritage listed. It ssems strange to have doors so close together. One door for a street level residence and the other door for upstairs.066 the rocks

There is  quite a long history about these terrace houses which can be found here   http://www.shfa.nsw.gov.au/sydney-About_us-Our_heritage_role-Heritage_and_Conservation_Register.htm&objectid=138

 

571. Sunday 1st October 2017. A long drive home, Kombis and moving…

Monday 25th September.

While in Sydney we took the opportunity to visit Aunt Gwen at her flat in Redfern. She still looks so young and her mind is sharp. She has now completed a self- imposed project of converting all her collection of 500 DVD’s to her computer hard drive. I do not know too many people who could even contemplate such a task let alone somebody approaching her 94th birthday.

After morning tea we headed to La Perouse to visit friends Geoff and Margaret. Geoff is never still, always working on a new project around the house. Either that or he does lots of internet research. As usually is the case we swap ideas and discuss new computer projects we are exploring.

After leaving La Perouse (Noting it was now peak hour traffic time and pondering how we let a window of time slip away) we struggled with the Sydney traffic all wanting to be somewhere in the general direction we wanted to be. By the time we reached Gymea it was almost time for dinner. We all chose grilled Barramundi at Miranda RSL.

Tuesday 26th September

We started the long journey home and managed to get away at what is usually a safe time to avoid Sydney peak hour traffic. By and large that was mostly true. We picked up the Sydney Harbour Tunnel which joined the Lane Cove River tunnel which became the M2. We exited at Beeecroft and joined Pennant Hills Road. For some reason the traffic (mostly trucks) was still in peak hour mode here and we inched our way towards the M1 at Wahroonga. For those not familiar with the Sydney M1, it begins at Wahroonga on the north side of Sydney and runs all the way through to Beresfield, near Newcastle, 127 Klms away. The speed limit is mostly 110 KPH except for one stretch up a steep hill leaving the Hawksbury River. Here the speed is reduced to 90 KPH and all those cars I passed at 110 KPH are now passing me as I drive at the speed limit.

Sigh!

To join the MI means travelling along either Pennant Hills road battling the 12 hours of peak hour traffic or the Pacific Highway with a similar traffic problem. I spoke with Sydney Roads Authority who confirmed they are building a tunnel from the Wahroonga exit to link up with the M2 at West Pennant Hills. This they believe will take 5,000 trucks, per day off Pennant Hills Road. The tunnel should be completed by July 2019.

After leaving the M1 and joining the Pacific Highway we travelled to Heatherbrae where we stopped for a traditional Heatherbrae Pies lunch.

We arrived at Forster in the early afternoon. We have not seen my brother Allan and his wife Rae for 12 months so this was an opportunity to catch up and ogle their new Avida Motorhome.

Drool!

Wednesday 27th September.

After breakfast at the Barefoot Café on Fosters main beach we were away again. Foster has a 2 minute peak hour problem on weekday mornings but we left late enough to avoid the quiet rush.

Hee Hee Hee!

We drove all the way through to Ulmarra and had lunch at the Ulmarra Hotel on the bank of the Clarence River.270917 hotel Parked in the streets around the pub were about a dozen VW Kombis in various stages of restoration, 270917 kombi3270917 kombi2270917 kombi1some immaculately so.270917 kombi Perhaps they were on their way to or from a Kombi Rally. Unfortunately their group was leaving just as we were arriving so never had a chance to ask.

We arrive home well after dark to find a family friend, Iain looking to stay with us a few days.

All tired.

Zzzzzzz!

Thursday 28th September

On the road again. This time to Brisbane to pack up house for Donnis son Peter. All the furniture, bedding, clothes, electronics, garage stuff, everything a normal household collects has to be sorted and packed and a removalist to quote.

Saturday 30th September

Today Iain joined us to continue packing and sorting. TV’s had to be taken down off the wall mountings. The sound system dismantled and speakers packed away. Then we began on the garage while Donnis sorted the bedroom and kitchen.

Still a lot to be done as the sale settles on 16th.

Sunday 1st October.

Today is a lay day with just “doin nuffin”,

Besides, the Rugby League Grand Final is being played tonight and the fairy tale team of the North Queensland Cowboys are playing the form team all season, the Melbourne Storm. I know the Cowboys have played with heart to reach this game but it is a forlorn hope they win. They are the crowds sentimental favourites and mine too. I just have a niggling doubt they can win.

Cowboys lost 34 – 6.

Boo Hoo.

570. Sunday 24th September 2017. Long drives, birthday party and Bi-Centennial Park…

Thursday 21st September

Hi Ho it’s on the road we go.

I had set a goal to get away from home, at the latest, by 10am.  Regular readers will know that usually my target times are never achieved. We somehow drag the chain and are late by an hour or so. Today, by some miracle we were on the road by 8.30.

Another miracle occurred when we arrived in Port Macquarie 7.5 hours later.

So we spent a pleasant night with Tony and Dawn, a great dinner and too much dessert.

Friday 22nd September

Away by 9.30 and arrived in Gymea, south of Sydney by 3pm.

Saturday 23rd September

Away by 8am and arrive at Corrimal to start packing and tidying and arranging the remaining furniture and boxes of household items for Errol and Nicole who have moved to Victoria. The removalist was scheduled to arrive at 12 noon. We called him, he said he was caught in traffic and would be here by 1pm.  We were due at a 60th Birthday party for Wayne M at 2.30. By 2.15 the removalist had not arrived and was no longer answering his phone. We arranged for a neighbour to supervise the loading and left for the party. Later we found the removalist did not arrive until sometime after 4pm.

The party was a nice mix of people, friends, family, and past work colleagues. New South Wales and Queensland were in the grip of an unseasonal heat wave with temps in the low 30’s.The party was held in Wayne’s 2 story “Man Cave”. I was able to catch up with old work colleagues from 30 plus years ago. A nice afternoon. Thanks for the invite Wayne.

Sunday 24th September

Back in Gymea we went to Homebush Bay and Sydney Olympic Park for a picnic. The area is a huge park area including the Olympic Stadium (now called ANZ Stadium), Sydney Olympic Park, Sydney Showgrounds and Bi-Centennial Park on the shore of Homebush Bay.

We took a walk around Brickpit Ring an 18.5m high 550m circular raised walkway above the old Sydney Brick quarry. During construction of Sydney Olympic precinct this abandoned site (filled with rain water) was earmarked for a 300 million dollar hotel. Before construction began it was found to be the habitat of the endangered Green and Golden Bell Frog. The hotel plans were cancelled and the Ring Walk was created above the brick pits. The loss of the hotel saved the habitat of the frogs.

250917 ring walk
This was the old brick pits destined to be the underground carpark for a M$300,000,000 hotel. Then an endangered frog species, the Green and Golden Bell Frog was found in the walls around the water. The hotel development was cancelled.
250917 ring walk1
The completed Ring Walk and the flooded brickpits. The frogs love it.

Next we walked to Homebush Bay to seek out more wrecks not found on our last visit in May this year.

250917 karangi wreck
Remains of the wreck of the SS KARANGI.

It is little realised that the Bay area was deemed contaminated with a range of dioxins, including Agent Orange when Union Carbide used the bay as a dumping ground. Fishing and even swimming is still prohibited. In fact at one stage Sydney Harbour itself was declared unsafe to take and eat fish. The bans stayed in place until around 2000 when just the area around Homebush Bay was declared still unsafe. Still it is a lovely bay with lots of bird and marine life including a healthy mangrove system.

Bi-Centennial Park, like Centennial Park before it, were both built on reclaimed and mostly drained swamp and is a popular place for family picnics and riding bicycles.

250917 boardwalk
Boardwalk through the remaining mangrove swamp.

 

569. Sunday 17th September 2017. Forgetfulness? Or Lazy? Or Nothing to report…!!!

Unbelievable!!! I have been doing this blog, religiously, every Sunday (or perhaps a few days later) every week since September 2010. Suddenly, twice in the space of a few weeks I have not posted at all. I start the week with all good intentions and plans go downhill from there.

Sigh!!!

Tuesday 5th September

Happy Birthday wishes came from all over then it was time to put Donnis on a jet plane bound for Sydney. She will be away for 10 days. Donnis is helping son Errol and his family move to Victoria. Nicole has been ill and needs a little help. Besides Donnis found it a good enough reason to see the grandchildre.

Perhaps I can finish the painting by myself.

Grrr! Moving furniture, drop clothes, rollers, brushes, stirring paint (I really hate that part especially with a new tin of paint. It slops everywhere) roller trays and all the cleaning associated with painting.

Am I glad I finally finished painting the rooms this week. Now all I have to do is paint the trim around windows and doors and then paint the doors.  Eleven window frames, 9 door frames and 9 doors to be painted with two coats of enamel paint.

Sigh!!!

Ok Ok! I must admit the rooms do look nice.

Sunday 10th September

Drove to Nundah on the north side of the Brisbane River to watch grandson Chris play in his grand final Under 13 Rugby League game. There was a lot of support from his mother Regelyn and father Peter, grandmother Evangeline, the other grandparents, Uncles and cousins and of course me! Chris team lost 28 – 26 in a close fought game. I say well done to have played the season and the team was good enough to get to the grand final.

Wednesday 13th September

Finally finished all the door and window frames. Now all we have to do is paint the doors.

Yahoo!

(Oops will have to wait until a couple more weeks before we begin the doors. We have too many plans)

Thursday 14th September

Donnis arrived home to Gold Coast Airport late this afternoon, just in time to repack a bag as we drive to Noosa tomorrow to celebrate Dave E 50th birthday.

Saturday 16th September.

Happy Birthday Dave.

A nice night at a B&B in the Noosa Valley with lots of loud music and dancing. Luckily there was a TV so we could zip in and out of the big room to watch the Rugby League game between Parramatta Eels and North Queensland Cowboys. The Cowboys were meant to be cannon fodder in the finals series but beat the Cronulla Sharks, last years premiers, last week. This week they were not expected to win but won 24 – 16 and have made it into the final four. Good work Cowboys and thanks for the exciting games.

Sunday 17th September.

On the drive home we stopped at Ikea Northlakes for a light lunch. Donnis usually loves the Swedish Meatballs but this time wanted Salmon. The meal was a little below average and in fact we both felt overful and a bit ill all afternoon. Ikea your meals are not as good as they once were.

We bought a giant photo and frame 2m x 1.4m.

Hmmm! That was an unplanned purchase.

No photos this week but I want to share some photos of a photo class I attended in 2014 when we had a photo excursion to a Japanese garden in the Brisbane Botanical gardens.bbgbbg1bbg2bbg3bbg4

Next week we will both go to Port Macquarie then to The Shire in Sydney, Avondale for another birthday and who knows where to after that?

568. Sunday 3rd September 2017. House painting and a long bush hike…

Friday 1st September (First day of Spring)

For the first time in a long, long, long time I did not post  last week.

Shame! Shame! Shame!

We started painting the house interior last week and it has continued all this week.

Today was a lay day.

Yahoo!

Saturday 2nd September

Met sister Enid and hubby Ken at Binna Burra a small parcel of private land within the Lamington National Park along the Scenic Rim Region in the McPherson Ranges. The car park is 800 metres above sea level. Today we took a hike along the Daves Creek Loop Trail which took us through some heavily wooded country, some open heathland and spectacular steep cliffs some 900 metres above sea level.

020917 fallen
One of the legacies of Cyclone Debbie earlier this year. Although the cyclone came nowhere near this region, it was hit by strong winds and heavy rains. We saw many fallen trees along the track.

In places we could look across deep valley floors within ancient volcanic caldera and see Mt Warning across the border in NSW. Todays 4 hour, 12 Klm up and down hike was a sort of warm up preparation for a more challenging hike/climb of Mt Warning…perhaps in October.

In places the track skirted steep cliff edges which made for a nervous bit of careful walking and to ensure there were no trips or slips on the downward slope.

020917 view
Our path follows that cliff line on the left. The track can be seenheading close to the edge. The high range in the distance is part of an ancient volcanic caldera and overlooks the Tweed Valley in NSW. Look carefully and you can see a Telstra Tower midway aling the ridge. further forward but unseen is whta is known as The Best of All Lookouts in Springbrook National park which I have written about before.

We stopped for lunch on a cliff edge overlooking the Numinbah Valley where we could see the ribbon of back road which travels over the range down into the Tweed Valley of NSW to Murwillumbah.

020917 lunch
Our precarious lunch spot.

I am nervous about heights so removing my camera, hat, walking pole and backpack was done very carefully. A playful bird flitted around us looking for a handout of small amounts of bread which it took and placed in the fork of several bushes nearby.

Somewhere along the track we crossed a small brook or creek, no more than a stride wide which had a small trickle of water struggling through the rocks. This was Daves Creek for which the track was named.

After lunch we started the climb on the return to the car park and were surprised by a sign which said Surprise Rock. It was indeed a surprise a large rock in the middle of otherwise rock free bush.

020917 surprise1
Looking across the heathland from Surprise Rock.

The rock had beautiful views across heathland to Mt Warning in the distance.

020917 surprise
Looking past Surprise Rock towards Mt Warning and the Tweed Valley of NSW.

Eventually we made it back to the car park where we stopped to finish our sandwiches but a busy cheeky unidentified bird made three passes snapping at my sandwich, taking a little bite each time. On the third pass he took what remained of my sandwich in one low flying sneaky attack. We never even saw him coming.

On the way home I stopped to watch Para Gliders take off from an impossibly high and steep hill. Now that’s what I would like to do. On second thoughts I am a little nervous about heights.

At least I can watch.

020917 para1
Preparing for a bit of time in the sky.
020917 para3
Quick take off. A few steps and this pilot was flying.
020917 para4
The carry bag doubles as a comfortable sitting harness.
020917 para2
Mt Warning is in the background.
020917 para
A gentle landing.

567. Sunday 20th August 2017. At home, painting, a dragon and a birthday boy…

Tuesday 15th August

Visited friends Ray & Lynne here in the village. They have built a Bali like garden, complete with a line of fruiting banana palms as a quiet place in their back yard. A number of bird species visits their retreat including the never still Sunbird who come into the yard looking for nectar and insects. Also constant visitors are a number of Australian Water Dragons.

150817 dragon
Australian Water Dragon is at home on the garden furniture.

Those dragons have a diet of small insects such as ants, spiders, crickets, snails and caterpillars. When they get bigger, so does their prey. An adult includes small rodents such as baby mice in their diet, although insects are still most commonly consumed.

150817 dragon2
An almost imperceptible breath or heartbeat shows these are alive and not a rubber copy.

The dragons also like being hand fed bacon or raw mince meat. They will sit for hours just for hours, looking like a carving while waiting for something to eat. Ray really does have them eating out of his hand. They are beautiful stately creatures and contrary to some beliefs they make ideal pets around the home…outside of course. Although, if you have an ant or spider problem inside, these guys will take care of it.

150817 dragon1
Getting upclose and personal. They are lovely to look at.
150817 dragon3
So close my camera beeped that I need to change to Macro and manual focus.

Saturday 19th August

It has been a quiet week apart from doing a bit of gardening, riding the bike and staying up to date with doctor, optometrist and audiologist appointments.

Today we drove to Brisbane for a 13th birthday party for grandson Chris. Chris had a couple of friend, two grandmothers and three aunts to help him celebrate.

Chris has been chosen to receive specialist Rugby League training clinics conducted by the Brisbane Broncos over a four week period in September. This is a programme set up by the Bronco’s to select potential young players. If he shows he has talent, ability and apptitude in the training session he will  then be invited to further training including social skills, money management and alcohol and drug avoidance guidlines. If he is chosen he then becomes a part of a young Broncos training scheme with assistance for schooling and further education. Chris is talented and I hope he has the focus to work with the talent.

190817 birthday
Happy birthday Chris. You look tired from all that celebrating and or football training.

Sunday 20th August.

At last, at last, at last. We started painting the interior of the house today. We bought paint from Masters Hardware a few days before they closed for good on 11th December last year. The paint has been sitting quietly waiting for us to get started. There have been a few times the pain cans have whispered to me but for the most part they have just sat in the corner while the lids have begun to show signs of early rust. Well today was the day we opened up a can of ceiling paint which goes on pink and dries white. Great stuff except I thought the pink colour would stay pink a while longer. Today we started painting the cornices in preparation to rolling out the ceiling. Tomorrow we tackle the lounge room, dining, kitchen and the master bedroom and all going well start rolling the ceiling.

That has been our week.

Cheers.

566. Sunday 13th August 2017. Donnis is home, Nuff said…

Monday 7th August

A big day starting with a 4.30am start.

I left for Brisbane Airport about 5.45 am and was not surprised by the volume of traffic on the M1. As I got closer to Beenleigh the traffic grew heavier and the speed limit if 110 Kph was down to 100 Kph. Crossing the Logan River where the official speed limit is 100 Kph.  I was soon jolted to a slow 90 then 80 and soon the traffic stopped and started until I was past the Springwood exit when suddenly the speed jumped to100 Kph and the numbers of cars reduced. Once joining the airport exit the stop start began again but soon it was back to a cruising 100 Kph. Despite the stop start and changing speeds I still managed to get to the airport at 7am and stopped for breakfast at McDonalds. I watched Donnis Air Canada plane arrive, on time, via my Samsung A3 with the FlightRadar24 App. Hmmm! The plane sat on the tarmac for 17 minutes before taxiing to the terminal. What was that all about?

Collected Donnis and she explained that 4 hours into the 17 hour flight the man in the seat behind Donnis projectile vomited at least 4 times during the flight. The plane sat in isolation on arrival while health officials boarded the plane and took the man for questioning. He claimed it must have been the tomato sauce on the past the airline served him. Nobody else got sick.

Next the cabin and passengers were sprayed with disinfectant, seat covers removed, toilet bowl was removed before the plane was allowed to taxi to the terminal and passengers could disembark. Donnis commented that the man was dry heaving during the flight and he could be heard throwing up in the bathroom. There was no sleep for passengers and it was a bad flight.

090817 crane
A big block of units were being built next door. They are finally dismantling the huge crane. The biggest crane in Oz was called in to take down the pieces.
090817 crane1
First job is to remove all the heavy concrete counterweights. These men are waiting for the hook to remove each weight, one by one. Firts they had to find a way to remove and relocate a huge eagles nest which was home for a family for the last four months.

Wednesday 9th August

Tonight we attended a Wine & Cheese night at our clubhouse where the dress was Black and White. Had a wonderful night of good company, cheeses and other accompaniments, wine and then we played some good ole Rock n Roll (and some Line Dancing) and the dance floor got crowded. A great night enjoyed by all.

 

The rest of the week has been quiet with Optometrist, Doctor and Hearing appointments as well as a walk along the beach getting back into a routine…of sorts..

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This Pelican was following a fisherman on the beach. The tourist with the camera kept getting in his way.

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Busloads of Asian tourists arrive at the beach daily. They take off their shoes here then run into the surf and get wet fully clothed. They have fun.

We we are planning another bush walk / climb in a couple of weeks.

 

565. Sunday 6th August 2017. Looking for a big rock…

Monday 31st July

Today we leave Coonabarabran and head back to Port Macquarie via a different route. As the route would take us through Gunnedah we thought we would catch up with Tony’s brother but he had appointments which could not be broken. We also planned to catch up with my nephew Grant but we could not reach him either.

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Sunrise and on our way from Coonabarabran to Gunnedah.

So the route was through, Quirindi then on to Wallabadah.

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Clear flowing water at Wallabadah Creek.

Tony wanted to explore Wallabadah Rock or as it is also known “Rocks”. It seems this “rock is classified as the second largest monolith in the southern hemisphere. A quick Google search reveals there are several locations with rocks claiming to be the biggest or second biggest monolith in Australia. Semantics on how monoliths were formed etc aside, Wallabadah Rocks does win the title of second largest despite grudging acceptance by other contenders. Wallabadah Rocks is located entirely on private property. There is no National Park boundary within cooee so entry is by invitation only. Once more, Google came to the rescue, this time via Google Maps.

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No sense stopping at this Chilcott Creek farmhouse for directions. The sign said Keep Out. Love the old fireplace chimney though. Corrugated iron chimneys were common in the early days of opening up of land and building a house.

It got us to within a few Klms of the location but once again we came up against private property. Tony was able to throw around a few names of people he knew when he lived in the area. The farmer gave us permission to enter his property and general directions on how to reach a nearby hill from where we could get a good view.

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Wallabadah Rock (or Rocks depending on your location.

The Prado got us as far as it was possible to go before new growth, fallen trees, rocks, creek crossings and thick bush told us we had reached the end of the line.

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Come on Tony just a little bit further. A little bit further is about all we could take the car. From here it was up up up, boulder strewn, fallen trees and gullies. The Prado took us as far as it was able

Even hiking as far as we could go would still only give us a view of the monolith. There would be no hiking on Wallabadah Rocks today. The rainforests that snake up Wallabadah’s weather-formed gullies have never been studied by biologists, and earth scientists have only recently dated the plug of the extinct volcano at 45.5 million years. The rock would have been formed from molten material that cooled in the throat of the volcano. Still it was fun 4 wheel driving through the cattle property.

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Wallabadah Rock. It looks like sheer cliffs.
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Zoom in for a closer look. Those rock faces are actually millions of barrel size rocks. Very similar to the rock faces we saw at Bundellah Lookout on Coolah Tops which I wrote about last week. Not surprising they look similar. Although they are about 150 Klms apart as they crow flys they are both part of a chain of ancient volcanoes.
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Volcanic Erruptions in this area was 33 – 45 million years ago, The volcanic structures in Coolah Tops last errupted in that same time period as they are both part of the multiple volcanoes in the Liverpool Range.

Leaving the farm we joined the New England Highway near Murrurundi after driving along a back road – Chilcotts Creek Road – serving farms in the area. We continued to Singleton where once again we struck out through back roads, joining the Pacific Highway near Taree and on to Port Macquarie. It was a long day of driving having left Coonabarabran at 8.30am and arriving at Port Macquarie by 8.30 pm.