When I was “growing up”, we’d never heard of an avocado.    I can remember when I was first introduced to them:  they were only available for a couple of months each year.    But now, they seem to be an integral part of our diet and are available year-round.  As I understand it, this is because they’re now grown in a number of different places.

But  recently, there was a shortage.  There was a sign in the supermarket saying that there weren’t as many coming from Western Australia (see also the news report).  This put matters to a test in our house.  My inclination was to forego them, but, for better or for worse, this didn’t happen and we still bought them, although we did cut down a little.

I now notice that prices, although still elevated,  are returning to be more in line with we regard as “reasonable”.



So, we didn’t go to the Moomba parade – yet again – this year.  Does that make me a grouch?   Or can I say that I’m merely accepting reality that it’s for a different generation?

To make things worse, we didn’t even think of turning on the TV to see what was happening until after the parade was all over!


The challenge of change

I admit that I sometimes go to Chadstone, mainly for a catch-up coffee with R.    One or two of my friends say that haven’t been there for years (and in a way I can relate to that).   And, yes, things are always changing at Chadstone.    But the current changes are occurring in the “old” food court area.

Now, that’s a challenge:  this is a part of the place that I’m familiar with!     There are hoardings erected, encroaching on the familiar layout.   How dare they muck around with it!

Ah well, first world problem (another one) I suppose.

Carpark discrimination

Perhaps you missed the article in last week’s Weekend Australian?   It may be behind a paywall, but in short, the writer apparently often uses the valet parking service at Westfield Sydney, but usually for very up-market vehicles.    But his off-sider had occasion to take a Ford BA ute there.   She was told “we don’t usually valet park trade vehicles”!

They relented, seemingly after the off-sider invoked the motoring writer’s name, but somewhat reluctantly.    The article commented, “this great country of ours has come to a pretty sorry state when shopping centres will only park cars they think fit the profile of up-market guests”.     He mused that maybe the non-discrimination laws need to be extended!

Ah, the problems that come when we live in a “first world” country!

A new credit card?

A letter with a new credit card arrived from the bank.   I wasn’t expecting this, so I looked at it a bit more closely.  No, the existing card still had over 2 years before reaching its expiry date.  The new card was to be an “upgrade” to a different “level”, and would replace the existing card.   Supposedly it would provide slightly “enhanced” rewards (although on closer inspection, these were at best marginal).  And I guess, for the “status-conscious”, it looked better.

The “downside” was that there would be a new card number and PIN, and although the blurb stated that the annual fee would remain unchanged, I wondered how long that might last.  The “nil” fee on my existing card has been in place for some years, and the “fine print” with the new card (in VERY fine print and hard to find) stated that there might be fees and charges on some of the award “Privileges” on the new card.

Call me suspicious if you will, but it sounded to me that the the end result of the “upgrade” might well be that somewhere along the line, sooner or later, there’d be an increase in some way of the fees or charges.   Hence, I haven’t “activated” the new card.


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.