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Showing posts from 2019

Taste and smell

Here's a good read, all about taste and flavour, from the womb to old age and through sickness and medication. Explains a lot, especially about weird food desires.

Read the story

KWRoad paving mixed design

I went for a walk along King William Road. Not many people shopping; saw about 20 people. Perhaps Wednesday is a quiet day. But good to see some people making the effort. Joybird (the new chicken shop) was busy; compared with the rest of the street. The mottled white pavers are being laid on the footpath and a mix of black and white pavers are being laid on the up-ramp parking places. Each brick is being laid by hand so I can understand why the finishing touches are scheduled for February 2020; after a pause during Dec-Jan. The white footpaths will look good, but the same can't be said about the mix of black and white in the parking sections. There is no order to the pattern; in fact there is no pattern. It's almost like the workers are placing them where they like; like which brick comes first off the pallet. Then, moving south near the newsagent, the black and white mix is gone and it becomes a swirly brown brick which looks terrible. I would recommend that this section be re-la…

Goers on Unley

It was sheer agony last night listening to Peter Goers interview Unley Councillor Mike Hudson and Mayor Mike Hewitson about the road works on King William Road. Peter Goers from start to finish was hell bent on describing the road works as a disaster. The 2 Mikes did their best to survive the onslaught by Goers. Hudson did well and conceded that he shouldn't have supported the cost blow out project. Hewitson banged on about reusing the old road pavers (to fix our footpaths) and the issue of door mats to traders. Goers was just negative for the agonising 10-15 minutes.
My scores for the interview: Peter Goers, score -1/10 Mike Hudson, score 7/10 Mike Hewitson, score 3/10
ps there are some interviews you shouldn't do 😉

Unley Life

I have a gripe about the delivery of Unley Council's quarterly magazine 'Unley Life'. It arrived rolled with a pile of junk mail. I very nearly threw the lot into the recycle bin, but thought I'd have a flick through ... maybe Stratco had a super bargain 😉 Given this method of delivery those 40% of residents with 'no junk mail' signs would not get the 'Unley Life'. Add a high % of others who often just toss the junk mail into the bin. So probably ~ 30% of residents are receiving the magazine. At best, readership probably doesn't exceed 50%. Maybe it's time for Unley Council to cut the 4 issues per year to 2 issues and use the money saved to pay for reliable distribution and personalised delivery. That's my thought that I would like Unley Council to consider.
Oh BTW, a few days prior to accidentally getting the 'Unley Life', I also found the 'Mitcham Community News' amongst the junk mail in my letterbox. Proves my point about the un…

Autumn harvest 🌶

Before leaving for the UK, it was sad to see the mass of ripening quinces, olives, pomegranates and chillies in the home garden. Six weeks later, arriving home, it was a busy week picking and processing the fruit. Olives now in brine, chillies 🌶 picked and 'sun' dried and chopped, pomegranates squeezed and juice in the freezer and quinces being slow cooked today.

Tip: a splash of pomegranate juice in a gin is superb 🍸

Feast in Looe, Cornwall

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Staying in Looe, Cornwall UK was definitely a highlight. One of our best destinations. Made more special because of our fantastic BnB hosts. Four great nights (and days). On the last night we enjoyed a home cooked feast. Our host is a well known celebrity chef in Cornwall. Early in the day we went to the fish market; starts at 4:30am. What a catch! So much choice. We headed home with 2 dozen scallops and 16 fillets of John Dory. A feast for 5 people. Simply cooked. The scallops in garlic butter and the fish pan fried in oil. Side dishes of boiled baby Cornish potatoes and a green salad. The wine was a fresh NZ Sauvignon Blanc (none of that European muck). A long and slow feast of local seafood 🐠 With little room left, we slowly managed pots of chocolate mousse with Cornish cream. A great way to finish our stay in Looe.
@ the best place to stay in Looe 😀

Tram Stop 5 tree axed 😡

This morning ... just so sad to see a magnificent big tree cut down in Unley - next to the tram line, corner of Norman Terrace and Fourth Avenue in Everard Park. A gathering of residents protested the removal. I asked the tree feller (the guy with the chainsaw) why it was being removed. His reply was that it was dead. 'Just dead branches Mate'. Yet around the stump there was healthy green growth and shoots. And it was healthy last year. This tree does lose its leaves. None of the nearby residents knew of the planned removal. They just came out at the sound of a chainsaw. On whose land was it? DPTI or Unley Council - always hard to tell around rail corridors. A loss of another big Unley tree, probably to be replaced by a shrub. Surely residents must be informed and consulted prior to tree removals. I suspect that it was a DPTI removal.
Just sad.

Secret Unley 🤐

I was staggered to read in the newspaper (EC 15 May) that the cost for rebuilding King William Road had blown out by 250%, up from $6m to $15.5m. What on earth has happened?  Why didn't Council decide to scale back the work to a more modest upgrade, similar to what was done on Goodwood Road. That's what I advocated back in 2018. A bitumen road would have saved 20-30% and has lower ongoing maintenance costs. That was the first shock.
The second shock was the newspaper report that all road contract details and project discussions will remain confidential for at least 12 months. Why? The contract has been awarded and work is about to start. Surely we have a right to be informed. We're simply told that the work will be complete in February 2020. There's no mention of the fact (according to a source) that work will stop during the period of December to January to help traders with Christmas trade and to host another $250k Tour Down Under street party.

I'm surprised that Unle…

New Labor Leader

Given Bill Shorten's resignation as leader it will probably take 4-6 weeks for Labor to elect a new leader. Given the size of the defeat and the broad (and perhaps overly ambitious) platform it pursued, I reckon it will take Labor at least 6 years before it can win an election. Just being realistic. Any sooner would be a lack of preparedness. The target should strategically be 6 years; not 3 years. It will take 6 years to be ready and re-gain the trust of the people. So choosing the right leader is important; not just for now but for readiness in 6 years. It's time for a generational change; now. Choosing someone more likeable (like Anthony Alabanese) won't cut the mustard in 6 years. By then he will be a better fit for elder spokesman. It's time to choose someone younger and someone without 'history'. This is not a time to recycle; not past leader aspirants. Anthony Alabanese is the top contender. Tanya Plibersek has withdrawn (saying now is not the time). Chris Bow…

Promise of Australia

What a fantastic 6 weeks holiday in the UK. Nice, but very expensive. The Poms are doing it tough, but don't really know it. Petrol and diesel is exactly twice as much (as in Australia). Food in the supermarkets is a bit more expensive. On the positive side, there's a huge choice of food from across Europe and beyond. Everything is available during all seasons. We bought some raspberries to have with Cornish clotted cream. The raspberries were from Morocco! Wine (sold in the shops) is somewhat expensive and compared with the choice in Australia it is absolutely woeful. Even the Aussie wine available is very average stuff. Much of the wine has foreign language labels so it was pot luck as to what you picked. Even buying by price (paying a bit more) didn't help. Mostly muck! Eating out at restaurants and cafes is expensive; costing twice as much. And I'm not talking about high end restaurants.

It was a fantastic experience, but after 6 weeks it was time to come home to 'the…

King William Road $$$$$$$ 😡

I was staggered to read in the media that the cost of the rebuild of King William Road has more than doubled to ~ $15m! Absolutely staggered! When I was on Unley Council in 2018 the forecast maximum was ~$7m with lots of extra (and unnecessary) options added. I opposed this and suggested that the road be bitumen (not bricks) and the quality be on par with what was done during the rebuild of Goodwood Road. So what has gone so horribly wrong? How could the cost have more than doubled? The new Mayor, Michael Hewitson must be held responsible for this.
The buck has to stop with him.

French fee to remember

What an incredible revelation about Australia paying the French to remember the sacrifices of Aussie diggers in WW1. And there I was genuinely believing the French propaganda. And it looks like #Unley Council was also hoodwinked.
What's the French word for shame? Because that's what it is!

Read the story

Aussie Unicorn found 🦄

The Unicorn had been thought to be extinct. I haven't seen one for years. Now, one has been found in the South Australian town of Burra. His name is Gary. He was saved and given a home for the cost of 2 slabs of beer, ~ $100.
Now all we need to do is find a female Unicorn. Does a female Unicorn have a horn? If no, then we could probably just use a sheep.

Read the story

Sourdough pizza ❤️

Just how far will you travel for that perfect pizza; or whatever that takes your fancy? I didn't go in search of the best pizza in the world; but I did find it in Earl's Court, London; at a restaurant called 'Franco Manca Sourdough Pizza'. The sourdough pizzas are cooked in a wood fired oven at 500 degree C. That's hotter than the conventional method. It's all over in a flash and the pizza is cooked in 15-20 seconds. The origin of using sourdough for pizza is Naples, Italy. The Manca family brought the method from Naples and then created their Italian pizza joint in the Australian enclave of Earl's Court, London.
Anyway, it was the best pizza I had tasted; simple with a very thin layer of topping and a fantastic sourdough base.

Secret Unley meeting

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According to Cr Mike Hudson's blog ...
tonight #Unley Council is meeting in secret (ie. behind closed doors) to discuss matters related to the 2019/2020 budget.

It just makes you wonder what will be discussed.
Why should the public be denied access to budget discussions?
Perhaps its to do with the actual cost and/or timeframe for the rebuild of King William Road (will it actually be ready for Christmas trade) or legal matters about rate cuts to developers to retain significant trees or rate rebates to encourage highrise development or the actual cost of installing 350 drink fountains across Unley ...
We can only guess and speculate; and never be told.

In my opinion, if it is worthy for discussion about the budget, then the matter should be open for the public. We need to know what is going on; what is being considered.

Besides, with these secret workshops, there can be no decision made (just 'guidance' given to the staff).

RAA sneezer

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I was heading into the CBD by tram for lunch.
I like a bit of light reading on the tram, so I packed the latest copy of RAA's SA Motor magazine. Folded, it fits nicely into my small man bag.
I thought I would do the road rules tests; multiple scenarios to test your road skills.

Then I spotted an article by Charles Mountain, RAA's Road Safety Expert.
Charles was responding to a Dorothy Dixer question from a reader. The reader asked 'what should I do if I sneeze while I'm driving?'.
It's a question I'm sure that we often ask ourselves.
Anyway, Charles went into considerable detail about the danger of sneezing whilst we drive. We're told that we shut our eyes for about 3 seconds (during a sneeze) and at 60kph travel about 8 car lengths.
Charles says that ideally we should pull over if we feel a sneeze coming on; but he does concede that it is not always possible.
So, to be prepared for a sneeze, we are advised to keep a sensible distance behind the car in …

Unley pics

I'm not easily impressed; or go WOW!
But, what a good looking new Unley Council!

I've just received the Council's magazine Unley Life and it features photographs of the newly elected Councillors. I must say that they are the best photos of elected members that I've ever seen.
Normally, like any Council, one or two stand out as dills; but not this time.
It's a good looking bunch.
The photographer needs to be congratulated.
Not a hair out of place; almost has that air-brush touch.

I spoke to Councillor Mike Hudson and he sang praise for his photo.
He said "Mate, I've never looked so good. I look 20 years younger. Maybe more."
... and Mike is right; he does look 20 years younger.
In fact, of those that I know, they all look so much younger (and perhaps more handsome).

I want the name of the photographer.

Stay cyber safe 💰

It's getting harder and harder to stay cyber safe.
There are so many ways the cyber criminals are out to get you.
So it's important to stay abreast of the threats and risks.
It's amazing how much money is lost (stolen) every day.
Just be vigilant; and stay vigilant.

Read these 17 tips

What your dog hates

Here's an interesting article on what your dog hates (and likes).
Next time you pat a dog on the head, understand its discomfort; especially if I try isn't your dog.

🐕

Have a read

Driving tips for Scotland

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I happened upon a fantastic video with tips for driving in Scotland, UK.
It is very well done with practical tips and a good measure of humour.

Check it out ...
https://youtu.be/ABFnk3rJBXE
Even if you're not planning on a drive through Scotland, it is worth a watch.
A pity that Australia doesn't create information like this for the tourists. In fact, it would be handy for many of our residents.

Have you tartled?

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Have you ever tartled?
I'm sure you have.
I've been known to tartle; from time to time.

Tartle is a Scottish word, used extensively by the Scots: to apologetically say that they've forgotten someone's name, especially when doing an introduction to another person.

Whereas in Australia we simply say 'hey, I forgot your name, Mate".

I think I will do the switch.
To tartle sounds nicer (and kinder).

for more info, click on this link ...
https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-02-26/forgot-someones-name-youve-tartled/10849382

Unley Oval closed

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Fantastic news that an AFLW match will be played at Unley Oval: Adelaide Crows vs. GWS Giants on Sunday 10 March.
See you there!

However, I'm astounded that scheduling the AFL match has required Unley Council to close the oval for 7 days. The oval will be closed on Monday 04 March until 6pm Sunday 10 March.
There is to be no access to the oval (inside the picket fence) during this period.
No walking, no jogging, no ball play, no frisbees, no dogs; absolutely no activity.
Maybe drones flying over the oval will be allowed ;)

Such are the rules imposed by the AFL.

Here's a photo of a sign at the oval.

Watsacowie brewery

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I was delighted to be asked to join a beer tasting panel on a trip to the Yorke Peninsula.
Our destination was the Watsacowie brewery in Minlaton.
It's a relatively new brewery and the beers had to be tasted and rated.

Our host was brewer Andrew Coleman.
A huge range, from light coloured to dark; and some interesting experimental brews.
We put them all on the tasting bench and went at them.
A superb range.
One was infused with ginger. Absolutely wonderful (if you imagined it wasn't a beer).

By the end of the session we were all frothing at the mouth.

The big test was what to select to take home.
That's the best test to apply.
I chose 2 beers:
Watsacowie S.Y.P. Ale, Pale Ale, 5% alcohol
Watsacowie Jazzy Red Ale, Indian Red Ale, 6% alcohol
Both are drinking well at home; at the end of the day.

But what surprised me was their apple cider called 'Beached Apple Cider'.
I don't normally enjoy cider, but this was superb; the best ever.
It tasted like fresh apple juice…

Airport rip off

Went to Adelaide airport last night to collect someone from the UK. What a money machine is the airport; in fact, all airports. I checked out the shop next to the arrival gate. 1 litre of water in a plastic bottle cost $6.80. A 550ml Pepsi cost $5.50. What a rip off! And we know that most 'spring' water sold is just filtered tap water. A guy came along to buy a drink and I recommended to him that he should wait until he got home. My wife told me to not be such a Dad. He ignored me and bought a Pepsi.
The bonus was that the parking only cost me $5 for exactly 30 minutes. That was well planned.
We had parked for 10-15 minutes in that free park near the entrance and then driven into the $$$ car park later after the plane had landed. A popular temporary parking spot used by many; those in the know.

Unley Road 1909

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Back in the year 1909, Unley Road was dug up to remove the tram tracks that had been used by the horse drawn trams. New rails were laid for electric trams and this work took 2 years.
All of the rubble removed was carted to Unley Road to create the huge viewing mounds.
Check out the photo to see how many men were involved.
In 1911 electric trams started to run along Unley Road.
The tram service ceased in 1957.

Looking at the photo and so many labourers, it reminded me of the work done 30+ years to build the brick road along King William Road.

Soon, King William Road will be dug up and paved with bricks. Brick footpaths and a brick road.
I still say that the road should be bitumen to reduce costs and speed up the build time.
Work had better start soon to have it completed by Christmas in time for the retail trade.
It will be a great outcome, but there will be serious disruption to the local businesses; like what happened on Goodwood Road. Tough on the traders, but unavoidable.
Traders ha…

Citizenship ceremony @ Unley

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Unley Council always hosts a great citizenship ceremony on Australia Day.

It's hugely popular and regulars come for the free food and drinks, a day out and to mingle with the new citizens. I know a couple of residents who go to every one, to enjoy the ceremony (and the food).
This year one of the speakers was Shaun Osborn, the Liberal candidate for the Federal seat of Adelaide. He delivered a speech of welcome to the new citizens. In Unley, Shaun was in his element; he knows that in Unley he will get a swag of votes in the upcoming Federal election. It's further north in his electorate where Labor votes increase where he needs to be more active and hopeful.
Anyway, the opportunity to speak at Unley will boost his confidence as he travels north.

Whatever their political persuasion, it is good to see and hear politicians and wannabees deliver an Australia Day speech. Some are woeful (and tired after delivering the same speech the year before); some are just average; and some are…

A yellow burn

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Joy at picking my first chillies of the season. Picked just before the extreme heat.
My fav. Yellow and very hot - a nice intense burn ;)
Added some finely cut to a crab and prawn spaghetti marinara.
The other chilli bushes are coming on nicely.

Tip: when using chilli:

add dried and flake chilli when cookingadd fresh chilli to salads and on top of cooked food

Unley Councillor found in gutter

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Last night, in the early evening (@6:45pm) an Unley Councillor tripped on the footpath in Arthur Street and fell into the gutter. He was on the way home (at such an early hour?) from the Unley's TDU street party. He awoke in the gutter with many faces peering at him and people fussing about whilst awaiting the ambulance.
With flashing lights and and a siren, he was rushed to the RAH.
Fortunately he is ok, but very sore and bruised; and a severely bruised ego.
I have recommended rubbing Goanna Oil into the swollen arms and legs; twice a day.
Works a treat! I recommend it for most ailments.
This section of paving is not the best and it was on my to-do list to fix.
I am sure that given the fall of a councillor it will now be given prompt attention.
This footpath should probably be concreted (replacing the uneven brick paving) given the high volume of pedestrian traffic.


Unley Road trams ❌

The idea of trams on Unley Road has been proposed (again) by Federal Labor. I'm a keen advocate of extending the tram network, but Unley Road is too narrow; far too narrow and it carries a huge volume of commuter traffic. Commuter traffic would be slowed to a crawl, parking would be cut and local businesses would be impacted. I propose use of electric buses (aka. trackless trams; what really is the difference?) and a more frequent service. With a more efficient public transport service we can get more bums on seats and achieve less dependence on driving cars through Mitcham and Unley to the Adelaide CBD. It's time for the State Government to really overhaul our public transport.
As the Unley tram proposal gets on track (depending on the outcome of the Federal election) it will be interesting to see the stance of Unley Council. Will the mayor's publicly stated support for trams on Unley Road influence the decision of Council?
I say, push for electric buses aka. trackless trams.
It…

New Year Resolutions

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We all make New Year resolutions.
Don't we?
And how many do we achieve?
Do they last more than a week or two?
Real resolutions need hard work (and resolution) throughout the year and beyond.
The tip is to be careful about the resolutions we make.



Huawei risk

It’s just so sad that the Chinese made Huawei IT equipment is controlling so much of the critical and sensitive infrastructure across Australia (The Advertiser, 27 December). Our cyber security has potentially been compromised. Our data and Government data stored in the Cloud, our health records, transport and utility information and most telecommunication data are all potentially at risk. There should be a total ban on using Huawei equipment whilst the Chinese Government  has a right to access all data. We’ve had our head in the sand on this issue all for the sake of saving 10-15% by buying Chinese IT equipment. Given the growing power and presence of the Chinese Government in our region, we can’t afford to be offering weak links and ease of a cyber attack on Australia. It’s not a nightmarish scenario; it’s a reality. The risk must be addressed.