Thursday, April 28, 2016


The SYDNEY HARBOUR BRIDGE (which is the same age as me) is a steel through arch bridge across Sydney Habour that carries rail, vehicular, bicycle and pedestrian traffic between the Sydney central business district and the North Shore.  The dramatic view of the bridge, the harbour and the nearby Sydney Opera house is an iconic image of Sydney, and Australia.  The bridge is nicknamed "the Coathanger" because of its arch-based design or is simply called "the Bridge". by Sydney residents.

Under the direction of Dr J.J.C. Bradfield of the NSW Department of Public works, the bridge was designed and built by British firm Dorman Long and Co Ltd of Middlesborough and was opened in 1932.  The bridge's design was influenced by the Hell Gate Bridge in New York City.  It is the sixth longest spanning-arch bridge in the world and the tallest steel arch bridge, measuring 134 metres (440 ft) from top to water level. It was also the world's widest long-span bridge. at 48.8 metres (160 ft) wide, until construction of the new Port Mann Bridge in Vancouver was completed in 2012.

At each end of the arch stands a pair of 89 metre (202ft) concrete pylons, faced with granite.  The pylons were designed by the Scottish architect Thomas S. Tall, a partner in the architectural fim John Burnet and Partners.  This pylon contains a public lookout tower.

Some 250 Australian Scottish and Italian stonemasons and their families relocated to a temporary settlement in Moruya, NSW, 300km (164 miles) south of Sydney, where they quarried around 635,664 cubic feet of granite for the bridge pylons.  The stonemasons cut, dressed and numbered the blocks, which were then transported to Sydney on three ships built specifically for this purpose.  The Moruya quarry was managed by John Gilmore, a Scottish stonemason who emigrated, with his young family to Australia in 1924, at the request of the project managers.  The concrete used was also Australian made.

There is so much more to learn about this bridge on Wikepedia if you are interested.

I only spent a few hours in Sydney in the 1980s en route home from New Zealand and we spent most of it on the harbour taking in the sights which were very beautiful.  I didn't much like the city itself as there were far too many people for my liking as back then Perth was still quite a sleepy hollow, unlike it is now.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016


There is so much truth in this.  It is always good to try and find the funny side if you possibly can.

Monday, April 25, 2016


Hope this brings a smile to your face that will stay with you through the week to come.

My dad always said the funniest thing was to see someone slip on a banana skin.  You would laugh first and then ask them if they were OK afterwards.  I think my dad had a weird sense of humour.  (*:*)

Sunday, April 24, 2016


I was sorting through some very old bits and pieces the other day and came across a couple of poems.  No author and I have no idea where I got them from.  I thought them both quite amusing and here is one I will share with you.  Hope you get a laugh out of it as I did.

A school bus driver stood at the Pearly Gates
His face was scarred and old.
He stood before the man of fate
For admission to the fold.

"What have you done" St Peter asked
"To gain admission here?.
"I've driven a school bus, sir" he said,
"For many and many a year".

The Pearly Gates swung open wide
As St Peter touched the bell.
"Come in" he said, "and choose your harp
You've had your share of hell!.

Saturday, April 23, 2016


I was scrolling through iPhoto and came across these two photos of my frangipani enjoying the wonderful rain we had during the week.  Nearly an inch fell and boy, was it welcome.  This is Cotton Candy:

This gives an idea of how large the individual flowers can be.  This is George Brown:

We only have the 8 potted plants but I am hoping to perhaps get another 4 by next season.  We can't plant them as we'd hate to leave them behind should we have to move but being potted plants, my daughter would take them as she is a frangipani fanatic as well.

Friday, April 22, 2016


I have always hearing Perry Como sing "And I Love You So" and this was going to be my offering today.  I then discovered, while scrolling through YouTube, that Elvis Presley also sings this lovely song so decided to offer you his rendition.   If you've heard Perry Como sing this song I wondered how you compared the two.  Would be interested to know your opinion.

Thursday, April 21, 2016


PETRA, originally known as Raqmu to the Nabataeans, is an historical and archaeological city in the southern Jordanian governorate of Ma'an that is famous for its rock-cut architecture and water conduit system.  Another name for Petra is the Rose City due to the colour of the stone out of which it is carved.

Established possibly as early as 312BC as the capital city of the Arab Nabataeans, it is a symbol of Jordan, as well as Jordan's most-visited tourist attraction.  It lies on the slope of Jebel al-Madhbah (identified by some as the biblical Mount Hor) in a basin among the mountains which form the eastern flank of Arabah (Wadi Araba), the large valley running from the Dead Sea to the Gulf of Aqaba.  Petra has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1986.

The site remained unknown to the western world until 1812, when it was introduced by Swiss explorer Johann William Burgon.  UNESCO has described it as "one of the most precious cultural properties of man's cultural heritage".  Petra was named amongst the New/Wonders of the World" in 2007 and was also chosen by the Smithsonian Magazine as one of the "28 Places to See Before You Die".

Pliny the Elder and other writers identify Petra as the capital of the Nabataeans and the centre of their caravan trade.  Enclosed by towering rocks and watered by a perennial stream, Petra not only possessed the advantages of a fortress, but controlled the main commercial routes which passed through it to Gaza in the west, to Bosra and Damascus in the north, to Aqaba and Leuce Come on the Red Sea, and across the desert to the Persian Gulf.

Excavations have demonstrated that it was the ability of the Nabataeans to control the water supply that led to the rise of the desert city, creating an artificial oasis.  The area is visited by flash floods and archaeological evidence demonstrates the Nabataens controlled these floods by the use of dams, cisterns and water conduits.  These innovations stored water by prolonged periods of drought and enabled the city to prosper from its sale. 

 I have seen several documentaries about Petra and have never failed to be amazed how the people built this city in rock and also controlled their water supply.   There is a lot more information on Wikipedia if you are interested, far too much for me to include here.   Petra at night:

Wednesday, April 20, 2016


I don't live in a country where we have wolves (only dingoes) but I am sure this would be very true.  Am I correct in saying there are areas in the U.S, where they are trying to reintroduce wolves?

Tuesday, April 19, 2016


As usual there is little to report from these oldies.   We are off to our GP to have our 'flu shots this afternoon.  I know some people say they get nasty side effects from these shots and, although my arm does come up in a sore lump for a few days, I feel I have been free of 'flu or colds for so long now that it is well and truly worthy having the vaccine.

Visit to physio yesterday and had her do some laser treatment on my hands as well as work on my pec muscles which had been causing pain in my chest all weekend.  I truly do feel he laser has done a little good and at least freed them up a tiny bit.  I need them to work for me so I can continue crocheting those rugs for Vinnys.  Have 6 rugs to go to them this week when Phil also pops up with some books and a few unwanted clothes.  I have just made one with small squares but I mainly (in cooler weather) make one large rug from go to whoa.  Saves yarn and they look quite pretty as well.

Our weekend was quiet as usual with a very small amount of rain; not nearly as much as we need but more promised today so one can only hope.   Not so keen on the talk of thunderstorms though.  After a 32C during the week when we thought summer was returning it has cooled down somewhat with quite warm nights still.

My daughter rang me yesterday afternoon on her way home from work (she has a hands free phone in her car) and we had a great chat.   She apologised for not being in touch for a while but I understand as Phil and I are not the only members of her family she has to think about and she and her hubby both work although she now works a 8 day fortnight which gives her a little more free time.

Had an email from a cousin in the US to say her hubby had died on Saturday.  (he had turned 81 on 11 April).   Carol emailed me several months back to let me know her John had been diagnosed with Alzheimers and then again a few weeks ago that he was deteriorating rapidly.  He was now in a wheelchair and was having trouble eating.  Last week he was admitted to hospital with an undiagnosed problem and then died on Saturday.  Carol's brother and sister (my other cousins) live in Vancouver Island and Vancouver (respectively) and at 83 and 85 I am not sure they will travel south for the funeral.  Fortunately Carol has family in Napa Valley.  I have not met any of them but have been in touch over several years now and feel I know them and I can feel Carol's sadness.

Monday, April 18, 2016


Another smile to begin your well week for you.

I can understand how this poor cat is feeling, quite remorseful and hoping to be forgiven.  Will Steve let the cat in?  I can only hope so.  

Sunday, April 17, 2016


Was looking through my Laurel and Gold poetry book the other day and I came across this delightful little poem.  I was born in Australia but some of my ancestors were English and, of course, Phil was born in England so I felt it quite appropriate that I share it with others.

LETTY'S GLOBE by Charles Tennyson Turner

 When Letty had scarce passed her third glad year,
And her young, artless words began to flow,
One day we gave the child a coloured sphere
Of the wide earth that she might mark and know,
By tint and outline all its seas and land.
She patted all the world; old empires peeped
Between her baby fingers; her soft hand
Was welcome at all frontiers. How she leaped,
And laughed, and prattled in her world-wide bliss;
On our own isle, she raised a joyous cry,
"Oh! yes, I see it; Letty's home is there!"
And, while she hid all England with a kiss,
Bright over Europe fell her golden hair.

Friday, April 15, 2016


I have noticed a recent ad on TV using the song "Over the Rainbow" as a backing and it reminded me of that wonderful movie "Wizard of Oz" and that beautiful song that Judy Garland sang.  I am not a fan of Judy Garland but I think she did a wonderful job with this great song.   I hope you will pause a couple of minutes and enjoy it with me.

Thursday, April 14, 2016


Cleopatra's Needle is the popular name for each of three Ancient Egyptian obelisks re-erected in London, Paris and New York City during the nineteen the century?  The obelisk in London and New York are a pair, and the one in Paris is also part of a pair originally from a different site in Luxor, where its twin remains.  Although all three needles are genuine Ancient Egyptian obelisks, their shared nickname is a misnomer, as they have no connection with Queen Cleopatra VII of Egypt, and were already over a thousand years old in her lifetime.  The London and New York 'needles' were originally made during the reign of 18th Dynasty Thutmose III.  The Paris 'needle' dates to the reign of 19th Dynasty Ramesses II and was the first to be moved and re-erected.  The New York "needle" was the first to acquire the nickname , "L'aiguille de Cleopatra" in French, where it stood in Alexandria.

The London and New York Pair are both made of red granite, stand about 21 metres (69ft) high, weigh about 224 tons and are inscribed with Egyptian hieroglyphs.  They were originally erected in the Egyptian cit of Heliopolis on the orders of Thutmose III, around 1450BC.  The granite from which they were cut was brought from the quarries of Aswan, near the first cataract of the Nile.  The inscriptions were added about 200 years later by Ramesses II to commemorate his military victories.  The obelisks were moved to Alexandria and set up in the Caesareum - a temple built by Cleopatra in honour of Mark Antony or Julius Caesar - by the Romans in 12BC during the reign of Augustus, but were toppled some time later.  This had the fortuitous effect of burying their faces and so preserving most of the hieroglyphs from the effects of weathering.

London needle showing hieroglyphs:

 New York's needle in Central Park

The Paris Needle is in the Place de la Concorde.  The centre of the Place is occupied by the giant Egyptian obelisk decorated with hieroglyphs exalting the reign of the pharaoh Ramesses II.  Along with its twin (still in situ), it once marked the entrance to the Luxor Temple.  The ruler of Egypt and Sudan, Mudammed Ali, presented the 3,300 year old Luxor Obelisk to France in 1826. King Louis-Phillipe had it placed in the centre of Place de la Concorde in 1833 near the spot where Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette had been guillotined in 1793.  Given the technical limitations of the day transporting it was difficult - on the pedestal are diagrams explaining the machinery used for its transportation.  The red granite column rises 23 metres high, including the base and weighs over 250 tonnes.  Missing its original cap, believed stoken in the 6th century BC, in 1998 the government of France added a goldleafed pyramid cap to the top of the obelisk.  The obelisk is flanked by two fountains constructed at the time of its erection on the Place.

 The Paris OIbelisk was described as "l'Aiguille de Cleopatre" by 1877, but the London obelisk was referred to as Cleopatra's Needle as early as 1821, suggesting the nickname came from the pair located in Alexandria.  However, the Paris obelisk is now more often referred to more formally as "the Luxor Obelisk".

There is lots more detail about the obelisks on Wikipedia if you are interested to learn more.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016


It would be great to be able to do this every day wouldn't it?  I must try and do that for Phil each day

Tuesday, April 12, 2016


Is it worth even doing a chat today I wondered and decided it was probably not but here goes anyway.

I have decided that where we live is destined to dry out before surrounding areas.   There has been rain in Perth but at our place, very little.   I checked the BOM website this morning and the 24 hour rainfall was widespread but would you believe that where we live was devoid of any rainfall?  We seem destined to keep watering out garden while others are complaining about too much rain!!  At least the days are cooling down at last so have to be thankful for small mercies, as my mum used to say.  My frangipani are still flowering and this is a picture of my Classic White, so lovely.

Speaking of mum, on 15th April it will be 119 years since she was born in London, England.  It is now 31 years since she departed this mortal coil but it seems it was only yesterday.  She is still so very much with me every day and I am sure I still do things of which she would disapprove.  She was just so much cleverer than I will ever be.

Youngest great-granddaughter will be celebrating her 4th birthday towards the end of April so I am hoping this will mean another family gathering.  We've not heard from or seen them since Easter and I do miss them so much.  I know how busy they all are and must not expect anything else from them but......sometimes you can't help it.

I know there is nothing much of interest here but I needed to write something just to keep in touch so forgive me if it is all a little jumbled, a little like my old brain at times.

Monday, April 11, 2016


You have to smile at this one and hopefully that smile will see you through the coming week.   I think occasionally in our lives we probably feel just like this.

Wednesday, April 6, 2016


I am sure there is much truth in this one:

Monday, April 4, 2016


Another on of those cat jokes.....hope this will put a smile on your face to last through the week.

Sunday, April 3, 2016


A little poem came to mind the other day that my mother used to recite to me when I was very young.   I could only remember the first 4 lines so checked out Google and there it was.  I don't think mum knew more than perhaps the first 12 lines as the rest of the poem sounds new to me now.  I have a love of cats and I think that is why this poem has stayed with me through all the years.  I wonder did you hear this poem years ago as well and, if not, do enjoy it with me now.  I found the picture of the gorgeous little cat on Google.


I love little Pussy.
Her coat is so warm,
And if I don't hurt her,
She'll do me no harm.
So I'll not pull her tail,
Or drive her away.
But Pussy and I
Very gently will play.
She will sit by my side,
And I'll give her her food,
And she'll like me because
I am gentle and good.

I'll stroke little Pussy,
And then she will purr,
And thus show her thanks
For my kindness to her;
I'll not pinch her ears,
No tread on her paws,
Lest I should provoke her
To use her sharp claws;
I never will vex her,
Nor make her displeased.
For Pussy can't bear
To be worried or teased.

Saturday, April 2, 2016


That the EIFFEL TOWER is a wrought iron lattice tower on the Champ de Mars in Paris?  It is named after the engineer Gustave Eiffel, whose company designed and built the tower.  Constructed in 1889 as the entrance to the 1889 World's Fair, it was initially criticised by some of France's leading artists and intellectuals for its design, but has become a global cultural icon of France and one of the most recognisable structures in the world.  The tower is the tallest structure in Paris and the most-visited paid monument in the world: 6.98 million people ascended it in 2011.  The tower received its 250 millionth visitor in 2010.

The tower is 324 metres (1,063 ft) tall, about the same height as an 81-storey building.  Its base is square, 126 metres (410 ft) on a side.  During its construction, the Eiffel Tower surpassed the Washington Monument to become the tallest man-made structure in the world, a title it held for 41 years until the Chrysler Building in New York City was build in 1930.  Due to the addition of the aerial at the top of the tower in 1957, it is now taller than the Chrysler Building by 5.2 metres (17 ft).  Not including broadcast aerials, it is the second-tallest structure in France after the Millau Viaduct.

The tower has three levels for visitors with restaurants on the first and second levels.  The top level's upper platform is 276 metres (906 ft) above the ground, the highest accessible to the public in the European Union   Tickets can be purchased to ascend by stairs or lift (elevator) to the first and second levels.  The climb from ground level to the first level is over 300 steps, as is the climb from the first level to the second.  Although these is a staircase to the top level, it is usually only accessible by lift.

There is much more to be learned about this magnificent edifice in Wikipedia should you wish to check it out.  Below are: 1)  20 March 1888 .. Completion of the first level,  2) 21 August 1888 .. Completion of the second level,  3) 26 December 1888 .. Construction of the upper stage and 4) 15 March 1889 Construction of the cupola.

I wonder has anyone of you ever visited Paris and been to the top of this mighty tower?