Hedge trimmer

Ah, you don’t know what you’re missing out on unless you regularly make a trip to Bunnings to see what’s there.  We only get there occasionally, but on our most recent trip, we found they have battery-operated lightweight hedge trimmers, just right to trim some of the bushes in our garden!  Irresistible.



That “pop-up” park

It wasn’t until I went past it that I saw the powers-that-be have blocked off the southern end of Elizabeth Street to traffic that would otherwise turn into Flinders Street.  There’s a “pop-up park” there now.

There’s information about this on the City of Melbourne website.   It seems the council has decided that this part of the street is to be closed permanently, but the work to do this has been postponed while construction activity occurs in the area.    The website states that the park was only to be there until last Sunday, but it was still there the following day when I went past.



The wind (2)

Well, I don’t what it is, but we’ve had another big branch fall from a local tree in our area.  Last time, it was a tree in the railway reserve;   this time, it was a branch from one of the plane trees in the street.

Sure, it was a bit breezy for a while, but there didn’t seem to be any particularly strong gusts.   Perhaps these things “just happen”.    Anyway, it took the Council a while to get around to cleaning up what after all is their problem.  Fortunately, there didn’t seem to be any damage, apart from the inconvenience of the blocked footpath.

A party in the park

A family member was getting engaged, and we were all invited to a party in St Vincent Gardens.   It was a lovely day, and it was a big gathering.

All the food (and there was a lot of it) had been pre-prepared in special boxes.  It was obvious that a lot of thought and effort had been put into the arrangements.


Obviously there were a lot of family members present, so it was a good opportunity to catch up.   But there were friends of the couple as well, and members of W’s family, so we certainly didn’t know everyone present.


I think everyone had an excellent time!

However, there’s a note to self:   when invited to a function in  park, BYO chair!   Fortunately, even though we didn’t bring any, others did and were generous enough to allow us to borrow them!

The Barossa

We spent a busy day in the Barossa.    It started with scones and coffee (yes, scones at 10.15 am!) at Lyndoch Hill followed by a tour of the impressive  collection of porcelain and related objects assembled by Hermann Thumm.   This is still privately owned, and is housed at Barossa Chateau, which is part of the Lyndoch Hill complex.

Lavender farm

We then moved on to the lavender farm, followed by some tastings at Keller Meister.   A light lunch in town at Tanunda (and some supermarket shopping), then more tastings (and purchases) at Chateau Tanunda and Tscharke’s (quite a buy up here).   There are more than 70 cellar doors listed in the tourist directory, so there are plenty more to do next time we’re here!

Back to our accommodation to freshen up then a great dégustation dinner at Lyndoch Hill, accompanied by a bottle of the estate’s Creed shiraz.    Hardly enough time in the day left to do  a  blog post!

Barossa vista
Many of the grapes appear nearly ready to be harvested

To Lyndoch Hill

The Saint’s Day festivities continued into Sunday, with a service in the Church, a concert by the children then a lunch.    The temperature was reported officially to have reached 40º, although apparently in some places it got as high as 42º.  However, the Church and adjoining hall were air-conditioned, so we avoided the worst of the heat.

Blessing the Slava bread

After the lunch, we headed to the Barossa.   Our accommodation is at Lyndoch Hill, almost exactly an hour from Adelaide.   The grounds are lovely – or at least they would be if it wasn’t mid summer.   There are lots and lots of roses (but now almost all of them are past their prime for this year), as well as other plantings.  The accommodation is motel-style, but it provides us with everything we need.

We had dinner in Lyndoch at The Lord Lyndoch:   good food in a “pub” atmosphere (actually, the only place that was open!).

Pleasant gardens at Lyndoch Hill with vineyards beyond
…but even the agapanthus are wilting in the heat!
The Lord Lyndoch

Balmain and all that

S was off investigating the retail therapy opportunities (with M) so I was left to my own devices.    In the interests of doing something that I’d never done before, I headed to Balmain, just to see where those basket-weavers come from.    A quick trip on the 442 bus from the QV Building, until slowing to a crawl through the traffic in Darling St – yes, caught up behind all the Beemers and SUVs.    And lots of Saturday morning latte drinking, too.

The Balmain market seemed very quiet indeed.   Perhaps everyone’s got enough of the up-market products on offer?

The total time required to tick Balmain off my “list” (including walking from the Balmain East wharf to the top of Darling St) was less than an hour, so I was back on the bus and coincidentally ran into S and M and enjoyed an opportunistic coffee.

Balmain East Wharf from Barangaroo Reserve

So, what next?     It ended up being the new Barangaroo Reserve (next to the construction site for the new casino).   Yeah, nice (hard to believe that it was once a container terminal) but it will probably be better when the trees have had a chance to grow.  And then, just because it was there, a walk across the Bridge (windy and cage-like), a train back from Milson’s Point (only to Wynyard, because of track maintenance), followed by a rest and a decision-making process about dinner!

Daring St, quieter down at the Balmain East wharf end
Old Watch house, Darling St, Balmain
Balmiain – a decision between 4 bins for your garbage!
Humour in Balmain
Barangaroo Reserve
Circular Quay from Harbour Bridge footpath
Bridge footpath is certainly “enclosed”, and very visible security, too