Sunday, 20 February 2011

True Perspective

"To withdraw for a brief moment from the hurly-burly and distractions of everyday affairs will afford both relief and fresh incentive; it will enable us to determine whether we are on the right road; it will give us the true perspective" - J.C.W.R. 



We went out for dinner last night with fellow business associates, business owners and friends.   Although the meal was scrumptious (antipasto, followed by rib eye, reduced red wine gravy, baked garlic, baked potato and then onto panna cotta), it was secondary to the company we kept.  We spoke of other countries, childhood days, family, music, health and well being.  And we laughed.  We laughed a lot.

Throughout the conversations there was a 'knowing'.  A knowing that we each understood the other's lifestyle, sacrifices and responsibilities.  We all 'got it'.

On the way home, the Machinist had the windows open, driving down the main street of the city.  The streets were filled with Youth, - deciding on their next move or destination.  Mostly, -  mere girls, looking beautiful with high heels and mini skirts that would make their mothers cringe (surely?).  Here and there - a few groups of boys - well - they looked like boys -  dressed very casually in T's and jeans or T's and shorts, seemingly no match, appearance wise for the girls.

Cars passed us, filled again with Youth holding beer cans or Maccas burgers, windows wound down and a 'doof, doof, doof' coming from their costly fully-sick sub woofas.  And then, out of nowhere at the traffic lights (the Machinist still calls them 'Robots' from his South African days) a car full of Asian boys pulled up beside us.  I watched them, wondering about their life and family and whether they were born here, and if they were happy and whether they called Australia 'home'. Instead of the beer bottles and cans and general junk food passed around, the front passenger passed around an amply filled plastic bag.  Each of the back seat passengers took from the bag.

"Look, Doll... look what they're eating...."

Then, laughter.

In tune with their intrinsic culture, the young Asian boys were passing around a variety of fruits.


It truly was so refreshing to withdraw from every day affairs....

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Melbourne Day 4

We happened upon this beautifully laid out nursery on a main street in Brunswick. 


We enjoyed the variety of metal art the owner had on display.  I felt like Inspector Cluso with my camera taking these pics. I tried to snap them when the staff weren't around.  Otherwise, they could have thought i was one of those secret shoppers....


More sneaky product pics...


Aaah... customers.  Now I can take a few more shots


I have a 'thing' for this kind of gravel on garden paths. I love how neat it looks and the crunching sound it makes when you walk on it.

The Machinist is a poser.  When the girls saw this pic of him, they declared that all he needed was a little white collar and he could pass as a Catholic priest.  Naturally, the Machinist couldn't see it...

Melbourne Day 3

This is Brunswick street.


It's an extremely LONG street by small country village standards and we walked the length of it several times. There were so many boutique / alternative (as they say) shops in this area of Melbourne and we LOVED them. Clothes shops, factory outlets, perfumery, coffee, boots, art, coffee, junk, goth, coffee... You catcha ma drift....

After shopping, we ventured back to South Wharf, hoping to see the movie "Hereafter".  The girls went to buy the tickets, but were told that the whole cinema was booked out privately.  And so - a dash for a tram, then another, then a train and we stepped off the station at South Yarra.  The streets were packed full of people, bustling down narrow pavements. After a (very) brisk walk, we arrived at The Jam Factory (a mall) and on entering couldn't fail to see a Stan Laurel look alike figure hanging from the big hand of the massive suspended clock.


I could do with this skylight at home.  I'd need a mansion to house it, though.


The city is beautiful at night.  Full of lights and stained glass windows  and solid stone decorative buildings like this one on Collins Street:

And this one, too....


And finally, bronze statues offering the European flair (and Atlas)


Melbourne Room With A View

View from our hotel room, early morning, City of Melbourne:








Wednesday, 16 February 2011

Melbourne Trip Day 2 (Part c)

 In which we - yes - we talked to the (stuffed) animals.... Hey, let's sing it now:
"We are the world"

 "We are the children"


"We are the ones who make a brighter day"


"So let's start giving"


"There's a choice we're making"


"We're (not) saving our own lives"


"It's true - we'll make a better day"


"Just you and me"


"la la la la la la......."


"Just you and meeee........"


Melbourne Trip Day 2 (Part b)

Just inside the museum's doors stands this early 1920's van.  I couldn't help but think of my mam, as she had to drive a laundry van at the young age of 14.  She always knew that she could run much faster than the van, but felt priviledged to drive it anyway. 


Through into the science section, we passed through a series of dinosaurs.  Like this party animal overhead:


...And this well-grounded bro down below.  Either way, they creep me out and it's a good job they don't roam the earth today. 


The Machinist took my camera and snapped this shot of me.  Need I say more?


Up close to one of the specimins.  Even though they were behind glass, and most were dead, it would still be "Goodnight" for me if one was to fall on me, or take a stroll over my foot or land in my hair.  I can't even begin to imagine one landing in my hair.  I've got goosies just thinking about it.


Now these crawlies I don't mind watching.  They were alive and well and eating their nom noms. They are the good guys, munching away at dead tissue and thereby cleaning the bones.  Friends of the Curator dot com.


When their bellies are truly full and feasting comes to an end, this is the type of finish they end up with.  Oh and by the way - this is the skeleton of a magpie. (I just can't imagine this guy swooping me)

Melbourne Trip Day 2 (Part a)

We knew we wanted to visit the museum, but didn't know that it resided right next door to the Imax Cinema.  Not sure what the girls are engrossed in, but would you look at the Machinist?  He's checking out the general fabrication.  Again.


The huge Rubik's cube in front of Imax cinema


We actually thought that this building was the museum.  It's not.  It's Australia's first Parliament House.  For your information and interest, of course.


Check out Parliament's dome.  These old buildings never cease to amaze me.  They had less, worked harder, and the buildings were greater by FAR.


Alas, we came for the museum, and here it is.  Excitement! (I'm such a nerd)

Melbourne Trip Day 1

We recently flew to Melbourne on an overdue, longed for and promised mini getaway.  Arriving early in the morning, we dropped off our bags at the hotel and took a tram over to Queen Victoria Market, housed under a massive awning type structure.  The Machinist just HAD to check out the welds, angles, ID and OD thicknesses, as well as comment on the magnificent radiuses used 'back in those days...."



I was there for the food, especially the cherries at $3.99 per kg.  We pay around $15 per kg in our neck o' the woods. (I sound like my mother).


While the girls were enthralled by artists and handsome thickset Kiwi men, the Machinist and I had a coffee here:

 
Later in the day, we took a taxi over to South Wharf and the Crown Casino, DFO shopping, dinner and movies (The Next Three Days)