The Weather

 

Where would we be , without the weather to talk about ? I mean , it is a great opener for a conversation anywhere , anytime . It doesn’t matter if you are talking to a neighbour , a tourist , someone at the local mall , or even if you are touring overseas , mentioning the weather , is sure to get the conversation started . These days of weather extremes can actually get people talking quite quickly about local events .

We are constantly bombarded on the media with vision of yet another major calamity , either in our own country or another , caused by changes in weather conditions . So you can see that if you would like to open a conversation with a total stranger , but you are unsure how to go about it , may I suggest a chat about the weather may be a good bet .

A lot has happened

A lot has happened since my last posting . Got married to my lovely Denise , and moved house , or should I say still moving house . Have you noticed the amount of stuff you collect after 30 plus years in the same residence ?, pretty unbelievable really .

Items that were once used frequently , have now fallen into disuse , but are too good to take to the tip . This is the quandary I find myself in at the moment . Aah well , back to it . Have plans for some Internet Marketing ideas soon . Stay tuned .

Barack Obama in Australia

 

Well the big fella and wife Michelle popped in for a visit recently . It had been on the cards for a while , however events in the USA and abroad , just kept delaying the visit . It was nice to have Barack and Michelle visit downunder and say hello .

Barack and Michelle Obama

Barack and Michelle Obama

One of the decisions made , in talks with our Prime Minister , Julia Gillard , was to have a detachment of US Marines stationed in the northern part of the country , on a permanent basis . US aircraft will also be stationed in a couple of our northern bases . Some countries to our north have shown some concern , however I think they should be pleased the boys and girls are there , as they can speed into action if humanitarian help is required after a volcano eruption , tsunami or earthquake etc . Under these conditions , the Australian forces and civilian helpers are really stretched .

Barack with Prime Minister Julia Gillard and schoolkids .

Barack with Prime Minister Julia Gillard and schoolkids .

I for one , am pleased the USA has a more permanent base in our country , I hope they enjoy their posting in our great country .

Long Nosed Bandicoot

 

On my recent week off work , my girlfriend Denise and I , hitched up the caravan and motored down to the northern part of New South Wales , our neighbour state . The beaches are large and uninhabited in non holiday times , so for a relaxing spell , this is where to go .

Pottsville Beach in far Distance

Pottsville Beach in far Distance

One night , we heard a crashing noise outside the van , and being the brave male I am , I ventured outside to have a look . I had left the light off , so all I could see was a small dark shape , nosing around in a container , in which we  had left some scraps of food . I went back inside , grabbed my camera , and took some shots . I didn’t have a clue what the creature was , until we returned home and consulted some books .

Long Nosed Bandicoot

Long Nosed Bandicoot

It was a long nosed bandicoot , common along the east coast of Australia . These creatures are harmless , usually only coming out at night . This is one of the joys of camping close to some bush land , as you don’t know what little critters are going to pay you a visit .

Map of Bandicoot Habitant

Map of Bandicoot Habitat

Turkey Time

 

When ensconced recently in a caravan in northern New South Wales , Denise and I were visited every day by a bush turkey , also known as a brush turkey . These girls and boys are very common on the east coast of Australia , even in Brisbane , where they make pests of themselves by scratching through peoples veggie gardens , looking for food .

Australian Scrub Turkey

Australian Scrub Turkey

We had two of them , Mr and Mrs , regularly patrolling the caravan park . I went into the scrub to find their nest , as I reasoned there had to be one . I found it not far into the bush . They basically build a large mound , bury the eggs , and wait until they hatch . The mound keeps the eggs at a constant temperature . If you visit any of the National Parks , or even small rest areas , you will usually find a scrub turkey or two wandering around the place .

Scrub Turkey Nest

Scrub Turkey Nest

They are quite harmless , just don’t leave any food unattended , as they may want a taste .

Hats can be Dangerous

 

Who would have thought , an innocent looking hat , could be dangerous ! I believe a hat was used in a James Bond film , that  inflicted life threatening injuries on people . In this case I am talking about my school hat .

School Hat

School Hat

When I attended High School , it was compulsory to wear your school hat , to and from school . No problem , I had no issues with that . One morning I was peddling my bike to school into a stiff head wind , so I had my head tilted slightly downward with my hat on my head . Next minute , “whack ” , I came to an abrupt stop and flew off the seat , into the air , and then back down again onto the frame of the bike , just missing crushing ” the boys ” .

Turns out , I ran into the back of a parked car . I bent the frame of the bike to an extent , I couldn’t turn the handlebars , but luckily was close to one of the school gates , so didn’t have far to walk the bike and park it . Mum was at school that day , a volunteer worker at the school Tuckshop , where us kids could buy salad rolls , cakes and other food . Worked out perfectly , as the bike was loaded into the car , and I walked home that afternoon .

And that is why hats are dangerous .

Snakebite Death

 

A local nurse has died ,  after being bitten several times on the leg , by a Eastern Brown snake. She was gardening on her farm property , and was apparently struck over six times by the snake .

Eastern Brown Snake

Eastern Brown Snake

I have written previously about snakes in this blog , mentioning a few of the different varieties of snakes we have in this country of ours . We have more poisonous snakes than any other country in the world , but in most cases , you don’t come across them that often . In some ways , you tend to forget about them , but as this tragic case shows , you must always be aware of the danger . Farm properties of any size , have old machinery stored in long grass , and often , overgrown gardens and yards . We have had a number of rain storms over the last few weeks , so the grass growth has been phenomenal .

Town yards can also be attractive to  snakes , so vigilance is required . Locals have been shattered by this news , so everyone is being most careful when checking their yards of piles of grass , or stacked timber etc . A tragic accident like this , hammers home to us all , not to treat snakes lightly . The Eastern Brown snake is not a timid snake , and in most cases will not get out of your way , as most other snakes will . There are from 400 to 500 snakebites in Australia each year , but only a couple of deaths , which makes this local news all the more sadder .

Snakes have a place in the animal kingdom , but keep your distance , treat them with respect if you see one , and all will be well .

Current Time

 

I notice in the press where daylight saving has ended in the USA . Did anyone have a problem getting to work an hour early ?

Two Timing Clock Face

Two Timing Clock Face

Denise and I have just tinkered with Oz daylight saving , as we skipped over the Queensland border into New South Wales for a week off work . We like the beach , not the swimming , so we went to a small hamlet called North Pottsville on the coast , and only 30 minutes drive from the Queensland border . It is a fabulous area for simply chilling out , no big shops within a bulls roar , which suits us retailer workers fine .

Denise and Set-Up

Denise and Set-Up

It is only a three and a bit hours drive from home , including towing the van , and the area has very wide uninhabited beaches . I will do some follow up stories , so to start things off a glimpse of the set-up at the caravan park , and a glimpse of a small portion of the very long beach .

North Pottsville Beach

North Pottsville Beach

Singer Andy Williams

 

Three voices that I have great respect for are, Andy Williams,Al Martino and Matt Munro . I listen to a reasonable range of music , jazz and complex classical music is my only no – no in my opinion . Andy Williams recently told one of his audiences , he is suffering from cancer , but hopes to beat it so he can continue on next year with his planned concerts .

Andy Williams

Andy Williams

Moon River is probably my favourite song from his songbook , and I believe it may have been my Dad , who burnt his singing into my memory bank , as he used to thrash his records on the the radiogram . I do remember watching shows on TV many years ago , where he hosted the show , and sung some great tunes .

I wish Andy the very best of luck .

Kim Kardashian arrives in Sydney

House Brick

House Brick

I think sometimes I must be as thick as a brick , ’cause I don’t know who this person is . I have seen the name appear a couple of times in my Alexa Toolbar , but I haven’t seen any other mention of her . I saw on TV at work , a huge media scrum at Sydney Airport , so obviously she must be one of these , famous for nothing at all , people who exist in the media these days . For once in my life , I can’t be bothered to even Google her name , just to see who she is . I reckon that if she is actually famous for something decent , I would know her name . Sorry , Kim Kardashian , but I don’t .