Friday, April 29, 2016


Here in Western Australia we are still in Autumn.  It is cool and we, in the metropolitan areas, have had some welcome rain.  Another welcome event around this time is the dearth of flies.  In warmer times I have a problem with blowflies getting down my kitchen exhaust system, negotiating the exhaust fan and coming in for an inspection of my curry cooking.   The exhaust system goes through the ceiling, through the roof cavity and out to fresh air through a ‘Chinaman’s Hat’ vent.  Previously I had surrounded the vent with fly wire to keep the blowies out and recently had to venture up on the roof to repair gaps in the wire screen.   
Click to enlarge

          Someone, please remind me what flies are here for.  

The cooler weather has brought on a small plague of moths who make every effort to lay eggs in all my pantry leftovers. Time to buy some sticky moth baits.

 I guess moths have a place in this world too??

Another question: Is it sensible for a 76 year old bloke to be up on a roof?

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Creepers and the Corpse Flower

At 76 I have seen lots of interesting plants especially creepers.  When we worked in Papua New Guinea, one plant was not common, but usually found by following a scent which was described as smelling like a rotting corpse.  I saw only one of these plants, by smelling it and wandering off into the bush to find a strange looking plant which was not one you would cultivate in your garden.  Read about it here.

Here, at my  house, I grow a number of Passionfruit vines and am always fascinated to see how quickly they form support structures to enable them to bridge a gap.  Where are their brains?
Having a look for the sun

Almost there!

Saturday, April 16, 2016

A most welcome gift

Yesterday we had our weekly gathering of 6 oldies.   One of the group, Ralph, was chief photographer for Telecom in Perth, Western Australia for ten years until his retirement. Prior to that he was in the RAAF (Royal Australian Air Force) for 20+ years as a photographer and served in Vietnam during that conflict; Malaysia and Woomera rocket range and as Ralph says....’also at the local pub at Werribee’.  Plenty of stories from Ralph about his life adventures.

Ralph yesterday gifted his collection of cameras to me. Some nice gear in that lot and even if they are all from the time of film, I think I might source some film and shoot some photos through the medium format Zenza Bronica.  At our old house, I built a darkroom and processed film and printed photos.  I taught photography for some 12 years and have gone completely digital in cameras and photoshopping images.

The new acquisition will join my camera collection.  Click images to enlarge

Friday, April 8, 2016

A little sucker

Doing a bit of pre-winter gardening I found a little sucker (literally) sucking on my Tahitan Lime Tree buds   Don't know its entomological name and being a nice day and feeling well I didn't punish it.   Drink up kid!
Click image to view.

I can't drink upside down.

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

A good deal!

I was doing some grocery shopping in an IGA store and noticed a large stack of coffee machines.  When I asked about the price I was told they were free with the purchase of 6 packets of coffee pods.  I went for the deal and for A$39 I have 6 packets of 12 pods of different tastes and a nice coffee machine.    Best deal I have had in many a year.

I already have a coffee machine but have not used it much as I didn’t enjoy the coffee I had ground.  It is also a bit messy compared to the pod machine.  I'll sell it or give it away to someone.

Click images to enlarge
In with the new
out with the old

Friday, April 1, 2016

Winners and losers

And I definitely lost today.  My microwave oven light had died so I sourced one from a parts supplier.  It is not a standard low wattage bulb and it cost $38+.    The salesperson told me it was expensive because of the microwave rays it would be exposed to.   BS!  The bulb isn’t in contact with any dangerous rays. 

  PS; if you are attempting to replace such a light bulb in a microwave oven, be careful of any residual high-power zaps from touching the wrong bits.

I have a microwave leak meter to detect leaks from poor door seals. Inexpensive, and well worth owning when many microwave ovens are operated at eye level.