Sunday, 27 November 2011

Crappy Weather

It is.......and I am being polite!

Now 10pm, temperature is 31C and apparent temperature is close to 36C. This "apparent temperature' combines temperature, humidity and breeze to arrive at a different figure - more akin to what people feel the temperature is.

There is little breeze......apart from the wind flow out of the air conditioner!!

Maximum temperature today was a smidgen under 36C, although the humidity was down a little, and the apparent temperature close to 38C. The skies are clear, the sun is blasting down, and the radiant heat from the ground, concrete paths and driveways and the like is quite phenomenonal. And that is by 0900, getting worse s the morning goes on as there is little breeze in the mornings, with the maximum discomfort mostly around midday before the sea breeze kicks in, at least a little.

A single mm of rain overnight, but that cooled nothing! There has been a little rain, with 10mm two days ago, and several overnight falls of just 1mm each time. Some cloud cover would be nice, so would a breeze.

But it is that period...........the doldrums, when breezes are few.

One thing, though..... the solar hot water sure is VERY hot!!!

Thursday, 17 November 2011

President Obama Comes to Darwin

It is brief, but significant.

The President of the USA - Barack Obama - came to Darwin today.

He placed a wreath on the USS Peary Memorial near the Cenotaph, and then addressed Australian military personnel at the RAAF Base.

While in Canberra earlier today, he formally announced the the US will deploy 250 marines to Darwin starting in 2012, on a 6 month rotation, building to about 2500 over 5 years, as well as pre positioning of military assets. There is also further integration with Australian forces, particularly the air force, through more training exercises, use of local airfield facilities and bombing ranges as well as the vast military exercise areas both east and south of Darwin.

Some locals do not like that......and the Chinese have had a bit to say as well.

But today was about the visit by the President. I did not get an invitation to anything special so had to resort to side of the road photos. It is a once in a lifetime event, for a resident of Darwin.

Unfortunately, the President would mostly see that nobody was around, yet about 100,000 people live here.

I can say...........I WAS THERE.

Gurrumul and Jessica Mauboy performed for the President .......and the NT goverment gave him a great looking piece of aboriginal art from the Tiwi Islands. Oh, and a crocodile attack insurance policy [which he referrred to in his speech at the RAAF Base]!

Monday, 14 November 2011

Yuendumu Doors - Great Historical Aboriginal Art

Yuendumu Doors - now in the SA Museum Adelaide in the aboriginal cultural display. These were created to encourage kids to go to school [ still an issue] by some of the traditional artists at Yuendumu, directly onto the doors themselves. Some were wood, many were metal covered wood.

From about 1983, some of the original large scale "permanent" art. Yes, they actually were the school classroom doors, at Yuendumu school. A bit battered and used.......but they are still some first class aboriginal art. Total approx 30, about 10 on permanent display. Considered to be among the original art from Yuendumu.

The doors were acquired by the SA Museum many years ago and some restoration work has been done, however, they do have the origianl art work. To celebrate the new aboriginal cultural gallery many of the doors are displayed until the end of 2011, in a large display upstairs with several downstairs in the entrance area.

They are full size doors - approx 2m x 800mm, complete with door hardware in some cases!

There is also a series of limited edition art prints [ quite small in contrast to the doors] .........worth having at least one, but the whole series is expensive!

Friday, 11 November 2011

Lightning - Sears the Eyeballs

Storms, fierce storms - are common across the Top End in the rainy season.

Having been away for a little while one can forget they occur.

First morning home, around 0400 it eyesearing blast that was like fierce sunshine that penetrated the eyelids, definitely waking you up, followed immediately by a levitating thunderball. Yes, one thinks, we are home - welcome to the Top End!!

Quite a storm, even by local standards with about 35mm of rain in 20 minutes or so, and some very fierce lightning and thunder following the early blast, and all without much wind. And it only happened in a fairly narrow strip along the coast with only a few millimetres of rain at the airport which is about 3 kilometres from the ocean.

There have been a few storms around Darwin while away, but this was special it seems and made the front page of the local newspaper.

Sunday, 6 November 2011

Omelette - Forty Years in the Making

One must continue to learn in life. Even if over a long period of time.

There was a discussion with my wife yesterday over breakfast - along the lines of what there might be for breakfast.

The topic I ventured was - how about an omelette?

She appeared somewhat incredulous when I offered to make omelettes for us both. It was not about the offer to do that for us both, but more along the lines of stunned awe about the cooking of an omelette itself. She had never seen me cook omelettes. Not to mention some trepidation as to the outcome.

When one has been married for over 40 years there are not many [still some it seems] secrets.

Forthwith, two omelettes were produced.

To somewhat stunned incredulity. "I did not know you could cook omelettes" was the call, and the obvious answer - "I can".

We had omelettes for breakfast again today. The whole shebang - cheese, ham, onion etc.

Maybe I have incurred a rod for my own back, but really they are so easy and simple. Who can't cook a decent omelette?

You will have to speculate on their quality........without photographic proof!

Wednesday, 2 November 2011

Live Your Dreams

It has been said before, and indeed repeated a few times since his death, but it does bear repeating over again.

This time the memory was jogged by a story of a young man, already a registered architect - 5 years uni plus accreditation for registration, being unable to decide whether to practise his acquired profession. Living on odd jobs for friends and a very small part time odd job house maintenance business [ essentially providing the $$ for uni courses]. It seems as if scared to take on a real job and establish or even try his hand at his profession, of which most said he had some real talent. Fear? Or a realisation that architecture was not for him?

"Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking.

Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice.

And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary."

Steve Jobs 1955-2011Commencement address at Stanford University on June 12, 2005