Saturday, 29 May 2010

Yellow Steps have GONE

I blogged some time back on the strange appearance of yellow steps on a cycle path close to home.

They have gone..........enveloped by a giant asphalt machine. While I may lament their passing...........and my curiousity about who did it remains, their loss is really a fantastic gain.

A brand spanking new, widened to four metres, covered in super smooth road grade asphalt hot-mix cycle path appeared this week. Has been some goings on and repair work for a few weeks, but it was thought it was just that......minor repairs. This is some bike path now!

I had originally been one of the "urgers" seeking the development of the bike path along Rapid Creek, urging the then local politician to seek funding to get it built. Our family has used it for many years, with the bike path the usual route to and from the pool for training, a daily event for us swimmers in the family. The path originally built was about 1.8m wide, and really too narrow - the game plan was to aim for 3.6m. It widened to about 2.5m a few years ago, but was still too narrow for the traffic. is now a great bike path. Sets a very good standard for other local cycle paths to upgrade.

Maybe the wags who created the yellow steps will be back.........hasta la vista!!!

Congratulations - Darwin City Council!

Friday, 28 May 2010

Art Installation by Trevor

Trevor Jenkins is a Darwin character. Many of you non - Darwinians would say - a complete nutter! We tend to let live here, and in many ways the town is richer in character.

Trevor is religious and honours his creator by collecting rubbish; he reads the bible too. Maybe that should be ordered the other way?

Anyway, been round town for quite a few years and is, in many ways quite respected. Even has won a "Pride of Darwin" award. He is homeless, but quite cogent and sensible to speak with, and even gets an occassional radio interview. He has also been co-opted by several volunteer groups to assist with anti-litter advertising.

He spends his evenings [usually, rather than day time which is a bit hot] collecting roadside rubbish...........the stuff left behind by commercial services. It is usually in neat, small piles and the local council does pick them up and remove them.

However, his recent art installation was something to behold. Complete with old chair, metal stanchion support and a fork in the tree branch angle. Right on the corner of a major intersection.

Artists get paid big bucks for art.............will Trevor be joining that elite soon?

Judge for yourself!

Wednesday, 26 May 2010

It's THEIR Turn

The pre wet season period in the monsoonal tropics [say 27N to 25S] can be appallingly trying.

It is hot, little cloud, high humidity, burning near direct overhead sun, and every time there is a shower of rain, the humidity goes up a few notches, breezes are low to non existent...........I could go on for some time.

In Darwin, this period is "madness month" or month of the falling mango, as it coincides with peak mango harvest - say October to mid December. Once rain is more regular, and clouds increase, it does cool somewhat, with the increased cloud cover an important factor.

At the moment while we still have residual humidity here in just will not go away this year, maybe this weekend.....I wondered how the recent troubles in Thailand have been influenced by THEIR pre wet season, hot weather?

Songkran [ Water Festival/ Buddhist New Year] is mid April........that is early in the build up.

It has been quite hot and steamy in Thailand since then, with not too much cooling rain so far.............surely this must be influencing [badly] decision making?

One has to remember that other parts of the world also cop crappy weather before the monsoon.

Tuesday, 18 May 2010

Cramped Vision

Oh dear................five long weeks [plus] without a new post.

Doesn't time fly if you are having fun......or busy? Several trips away to distant places, work [not done while away], and a bit of writers block do not aid the sensible scribbling on paper.

That in itself raises some issues. We all seem to use keyboards today, but the easy flow of pen or pencil on paper is quite inspiring.

I spent many months away from family working overseas in some pretty remote regions where letters were it! No phones, telegrams, faxes, let alone computers and e-mail [some of these places still exist you know]. Often letters were quite soliloqual [ except I guess technically a soliloquy is a spoken, not a written piece] conveying observations, events and miscellanea, getting my personal view to the readers in my family. But I actually enjoyed the flow of words across the page.

Keyboards are not quite the same. NEVER.

A hand written note is the exception today............and it is always nice to get one. Or send one too, as a short thank you, bereavement note, even as a card.

BUT.............back to the keyboard.

Darwin can be an odd is mid May, and it has been seriously raining and expected to continue. The local newspaper found an old news item today - May 18 1989, with a photo of heavy rain on that day - 89mm [that is quite a bit], so it is not necessarily rare. But unusual, well yes, if in volume! Especially since it has been about five weeks without much rain except for a few less than 1mm scuds.

However, good for the garden, lawns and will save irrigating.

Interesting conjunction between blog posts and rain.............maybe the recent irrigating rain has allowed the fingers to function again!