Another Country Diary
After about a week of these diary entries,
they go to the
Monday 1 November '04
haven't attended the meetings for the local bank initiative, not because I
don't want to see it happen, just that I'm not sure it could offer me the
range of services I need (I did some research on the Bendigo Bank site).
There's been a lot of information in the Mirror (and there's more online
bungendore.info site). The town needs to get about $1/2 a million in
share pledges to make it possible to start. It's something perhaps I
should do out of community spirit, I remember how hard it was in town when
we arrived nine years ago, with no EFTPOS, no local bank branches and well
before online banking. You had to have an account at all the local stores
or you went into Queanbeyan to get cash, and often did your shopping when
you were there. Things have changed now with EFT in most shops, and it's
more the community aspect that is the motivation.
Sunday 31 October '04 - Halloween
Hallows Eve. There was a big crowd at the oval to the event run by the
Bradley Van Heythuysen committee for the local 'youth'. There was a
jumping castle, a sausage sizzle, stalls and face painting. I drove past
and didn't return with the camera, but I was working in my front room
and watched the kids walk past (followed at a discreet distance by
parents keeping an eye on them). I kept the dogs at the back of the
house (they bark at the sound of the front door knocker). When the kids
arrived I swapped some lollies for a photograph of them (is that a trick
or a treat?)
year, there were only a few front door visitors and the costumes were a
whole lot more homemade and endearing. I can't say Halloween has
become commercial and is not like it was because it such a new phenomena
here I don't know. It's just the old man in me, happy to adopt an old
tradition but not wanting the American trappings.
there were the big 'kids' out to scam some goodies, no attempt at
costumes, one had a mask, another a couple of painted fangs and all brash
enough to grab a second handful of treats before I could say , "hang on,
leave some for the little kids". Next year I'll be ready and apply the
techniques I've been reading from the US, giving the teens packets of
sultanas and health foods. They don't like it (erggh too healthy!) but
can't say no. At least they were brazen enough not to come in costume.
There's a website
with Halloween origins and customs and short bits about the various
around the world associated with the last night before Christian All
Saints day and the following All Souls day, November 2. I also liked these
vintage Halloween cards
Saturday 29 October '04
past I've watched as the fence wobbled its way into position, then
received patchy first coats of paint. Today, when I asked the owner if she
couldn't make it seem so exciting to paint that the neighbourhood kids
would all want to do it, like
Sawyer, the reply was "There's NOTHING exciting about this fence".
rain approaches. That's the old railway shed beneath the storm clouds. It
housed the Military Hospital museum, a brief moment of initiative in town
that I always meant to visit. I didn't have much interest in the subject
matter but should have at least shown some local interest. I guess that's
why it closed.
Friday 28 October '04
blue wrens that we see outside our kitchen window must have a nest in the
Banksia Rose hedge. They have brought out their babies. There were two
sitting side by side and I went for the camera, then saw a third. They
were too elusive to get a picture, small balls of fluffy feathers but I've
got the telephoto lens attached and the camera standing by the window.
spring garden growth continues, the first of the red and white currants
are forming. I took some good photos of them ripe last year in a
diary entry here.
sage flowers are so delicate that they get smashed around in the wind,
they only last a few days anyway before they fall off but they look pretty
in the herb garden. The bright green leaves here are oregano.
The bees like the sage flowers, somewhere there's some sage honey being
Thursday 28 October '04
few days ago I included a close-up photo of the clematis on the fence. I
realised it was a bit 'so what?'. This image shows the side of the house
and maybe gives you an idea why I rave. That's clematis in the
foreground, Banksia Rose behind and the apricot tree sticks up at the
back. The wind knocked down a lot of fruit from the exposed top of the
tree. It's a shame but that's how it happens. Optimistically, it means the
lower fruit will be easier to pick, and if I cover them with bird nets,
we'll at least get more of those that are left.
already had a few meals of the asparagus. I was slack in keeping the beds
free from weeds and a few of the crowns had withered and died. It's time
to replace them from what I've read. Like most things, the asparagus
tastes so much better fresh, even the market bought ones are a week old by
the time we get them, and kept in cold storage there's some flavour loss.
been buying a bunch or two anyway, to supplement our garden ones, and you
can really taste the difference when they're mixed on a plate. There's a
handful like this every couple of days, so you have to make sure you've
got the knife with you, when you 'check out' the garden.