Thursday, December 28, 2006

Car No Go

am sitting waiting for roadside assistance. When leaving my brother's place last night (after a wonderful post-Xmas celebration) the car was hesitant to start, and this morning when we were about to set off to visit Sooz's Dad, it simply refused to go. Thank goodness for roadside assistance organisations - and keeping one's membership up to date.
The good news is that the expected 90 minute wait was about 20, and the wait while Vaughan (the previously unnamed patrol-man) procured a new battery for the car, was even shorter! The even better news is that the alternator is AOK, so it was just a dud battery - 3 years and 2 days after the last one - which tells you that their records are fairly wonderful because he was the one who told me!

Oversized and on the road

On the drive up, we came across a few oversized cargo loads - and it was amazing that they could actually get some of them over the bridges we traversed. Perhaps the biggest was the house - cut in two - making its way down the highway. It seemed that the bigger the load - the further ahead went the lead car - sometimes to block traffic coming in the other direction so the load could be taken onto the other side of the road - definitely making it easier in some places where the bridge on the road north was enclosed, but in the other direction was open.
And just so we can share the view from the vehicle, here's what it looked like in front of us. If you look at the bridge, you can see another wide load!


It may have been because people were more receptive to reading about drinks at the post-Christmas dinner table, but at one stage someone noticed this on the back of a beverage bottle. And to think there are people making a living out of doing this!

Titanic - The Musical

I read in one of the papers while I was in holiday (not sure which one, I was reading 4 a day at one stage there) that Titanic … The Musical has sunk. Maybe it will have a revival in a few years time for the 100th anniversary of the tragedy.

Christmas lights

While we were in Toowoomba, we took Mum and Dad for our annual pilgrimage of the Christmas lights. There were some spectacular ones this year - including one in Wagga Street with a carousel with the three wise men, television sets for raising awareness for donations to charity, lights depicting moving trains and Christmas puddings - and a fake chimney on the roof complete with man in Santa Claus suit. Truly wonderful. I would be able to provide more details but I was the one who was driving at the time - Dad was unable to get out of the vehicle and the streets weren't wide enough to stop - so we did a crawl by through vehicular and pedestrian traffic. In another part of town, where several houses in the same street had turned their hands to exterior illumination, there were children in Santa suits handing out candy canes - which were put to good use in decorating Mum and Dad's yukka cum Christmas tree.


We are on "the great trip north" … with stops to see family and friends. We are roughly half-way - ie almost on our way back - distance-wise at least. We have seen many things so far on our trip including cows, Christmas lights … and there were other things - like the huge bottle of Bundaberg Rum, and cows … and some calves.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Just the shot

We had a coffee in a little cafe in Grafton on Saturday afternoon (as part of the great trip north) and when I asked for my usual (a large flat white weak very hot), it came as a mug of hot milk with a small jug of coffee on the side. That way I could make it to the exact strength I required. What a good idea. I told them so and said that lot of people didn't like it that way - they'd rather just get their coffee pre-made.

Happy Birthday Lizzie!!!

We have been thinking of you ... and hope you had a wonderful day.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Bright idea

If I put my mind to it, I could probably be quite a naughty person. As I was parking the car across the road from Sydney University (we're going to Carolfest there tonight), I noticed I was quite near to the speed camera pointing along Parramatta Road. By quite near, I mean next to, and at roughly the same level (the street where I park is slightly elevated). It occurred to me in a moment of inspiration that I could probably set myself up near the camera with my own camera - and just "flash" passing drivers to make them think they had been "caught" speeding. After I stopped laughing, I realised that it would actually be a fairly terrible thing to do - and it wouldn't work during the daytime unless one had a pretty strong flash. Can't help wondering how effective it would be at night though. *Scratches chin thoughtfully*.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Lime on the line

I should have posted the photograph of this new Mercedes Benz maxi cab last week - when I caught it from Summer Hill to Marrickville. At that stage it was 8 days old ... and a magnificient ride to boot. It is part of Sydney's newest taxi fleet, which was officially launched this week by Macquarie Bank.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Real-life TV

What do Erik Estrada (remember him from CHiPs?), La Toya Jackson, son-of-Ozzy Jack Osbourne, pro wrestler Trish Stratus and Jackass star Jason Acuna have in common. If you suggested something to do with the police you might be right - depending on which side of the badge you thought they'd be on. They are the five "celebrities" who will be featured on the CBS reality series Armed and Famous, as they train to become police officers in Muncie, Ind., reports Variety. I'm not quite sure how this gets to be called "reality", or whether it will make good "television" but I think I'm glad that I'm not planning a visit to Indiana in the near future.

Please explain

No wonder some call it the Silly Season ... "Jesus is the rizzle for the sizzle" seems to lack all reason!

Christmas lights

This the season to be jolly ... and for exterior illumination and decoration! First up ... Deb and Paul's ... great showing - and a wonderful outing for the experiment dish Black Forest Trifle (mmmm).

And then ... the others - a house around the corner from theirs, then street decorations in Martin Plaza/Place (can never remember what it's called) and the illuminated facade of Sydney Town Hall.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Flying first

After dying on a British Airways flight from Heathrow to Boston recently, a business class passenger was strapped into a semi-reclining seat in first class for the rest of the flight. It's a hell of a way to get an upgrade.

Xmas tree pictures

The Christmas Tree at the QVB in Sydney is huge - and really quite difficult to get a picture of.