Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Love This Swansea 

Megan called today. She's expecting Tim Freedman from The Whitlams to stay in the accommodation she (and Macka) manage in Tasmania tomorrow night. The support acts and the sound people are staying too. If you live anywhere close (and you're not Megan and you read this before tomorrow night), the show's at the Swansea Bark Mill Tavern.
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Sunday, May 28, 2006

Vanity Mirror 

I need a bathroom mirror. I thought I didn't look at myself that much but it turns out I do. I don't brush my hair, to be sure, but I do like to smile at myself. Very reassuring. I'm therefore a bit lost with a screw in the wall where a mirror should be hanging.

So, I caught a train to Bunnings in Subi this arvo but they didn't have any mirrors small enough that would hang. Then I went into town to Myer, Target and Oxfam. Oxfam offered a fun mirror that cost more than I wanted to spend, and a few discounted mirrors with defects/damage. Myer offered only cosmetic mirrors, about as useful as the crazy mirrors Boans had in their toy department and Target didn't have what I wanted either. Then I remembered Crazy Clark's and thought Erin would be impressed if I went the discount road.

Unfortunately, when mirror shopping, the only way to check if my hair fits in the frame is to look at myself. I'm not a quick looker, either. Sometimes I even space out and forget I'm doing it - in a shop - with other people around (mirror shopping's not all that exciting, it's very easy to imagine you're somewhere else). Coming round and looking up my own nose brought me back pretty quick.

Anyway, I found some cheap mirrors in Crazy Clark's, they looked okay, I decided to buy one. The shop was about to close in one minute. Then I thought, maybe the mirror will clash with the lighter timber of my drawers, my clothes hamper - my toilet seat? Maybe it looks as cheap as it is. What if people come round and decide I'm not really what they're looking for in a friend/whatever because my mirror frame sucks? Then I considered that this could work in my favour - the mirror could test the superficiality of potential friends/whatevers and help me decide if I like them much.

So, in the end, I didn't buy my mirror. But there's still tomorrow.

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Friday, May 26, 2006


Cardboard boxes, cheap clothes horse, plastic storage containers

Just when I thought order could be attained, we spent Tuesday assembling furniture. Most of the cardboard is now in the recycling bins and the clothes horse is back in the bathroom. Most of the containers are still at the foot of my bed. But guess what? I can watch telly from there! I watched the end of Forensic Investigators the other night. And that's about it. If I'm in bed early enough though, I'll have somewhere to hide during All Saints' medical scenes, other than near the kettle.

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Book Stores Galore 

There's a book cafe called Bookcaffe in Swanbourne. There's a pizza parlour (called the pizza lounge, so maybe it's a pizza lounge), a bottlo, a fish 'n' chip shop, a hardware and a Supa Valu too. Lucky I don't check timetables and give myself unexpected opportunities to explore around train stations.

Bookcaffe specialises in book groups but I'm not sure I'm ready for another one. My list of books purchased but not yet read includes Joe Cinque's Consolation by Helen Garner, Kayang and Me by Kim Scott and Hazel Brown, and The Nimrod Flip-out by Etgar Keret. Doesn't sound too bad until you consider that I've been halfway through Jonathan Franzen's The Corrections for years now, even though I like the characters. If that doesn't convince you I'm not ready, I bought James Joyce's Ulysses too, because I thought it should be on the list of Books To Read Before I Go Blind. At this rate, it'll have to be the only book on the list.

All this means there's really no reason for me to check out the new Borders book store (where Lincraft used to be, which I lamented only the other day with the woman at Bed Bath and Kitchen, even though I have no use for fabric/cotton/haberdashery that isn't already made into clothes). Skribe's blog entry on Borders includes pics but I bet I'm there soon to see for myself.

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Perth Writer Surveys Bloggers and Journal Keepers 

Perth freelancer Pamela Weatherill is researching a book on the ways people journal, whether they write privately in a notebook, blog photos online or record their thoughts Agent Cooper-style on tape. If you record your thoughts and ideas and don't mind sharing how you go about it, visit the New Century Notebook Project Survey.

While reading Pamela's blog, I came across A Creative Journal, which is written by another Perth blogger, Heather Goldsmith. Then I came across Sonshine FM announcer Rodney Olsen's blog The Journey. Every man and his God has a blog! At least half of Perth.

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Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Only The Beginning 

The caravan should have rolled into Busselton tonight, to Nanna and Pop's. Mum and Dad are taking a trip back to Augusta and will leave for Esperance on Saturday. Then it's across the Nullabor, to the Flinders Ranges and then to Melbourne, and across Bass Strait to their new home in Tassie. I waved goodbye with a smile on my face, totally unexpected after falling to pieces yesterday. See you in September, we said, for Shannon's wedding.
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Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Relax, Don't Do It 

The Relaxation Station at Garden City caught my attention this morning. The station consists of three massage machines parked in the middle of an arcade. Shoppers wander past while people lie fully-clothed in the machines and have dry hydrotherapy massages. Twelve dollars will get you five minutes - that's the 'Shoppers Retreat' option. The brochure says there'll be no disrobing and no messy oils: 'The full benefits of masage without getting undressed and without personal contact.'
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Sunday, May 21, 2006

The Mysteries of Car Ownership 

We took the new car out to Wangara today to the Wanneroo Markets. Dad noted the first 1000kms ticking over and he and Mum made 'how does this happen to us so fast?' noises. The car's a little dusty and Mum kept noticing. This must be what happens when you drive your car from Perth to Gero and back the weekend you pick it up.

Boot's taken the Volvo back to Nannup, waving all the way after I made him a coffee with two sugars and 'four coffees.'

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Transperth Timetable Feedback 

I live near four different public transport routes. Sometimes I like to go somewhere without consulting almost as many timetables or connecting to the net. Hence me finding myself in a different suburb, on foot, and suffering vertigo while waiting for a bus yesterday.

The stop nearest to me has a sign with a timetable, which is really very handy. What would be even more handy, is if that timetable (preferably without the perspex casing) was in my flat. I can kind of get a paper version by going to the Transperth Web Site but it doesn't include all of the services listed on the sign.

In Melbourne you can pick up timetables for just one train station. So, for example, the Bentleigh timetable will have all of the times that the trains to and from Melbourne will stop at Bentleigh. The timetables are small too, so they can fit in a pocket instead of a big handbag or a backpack. This is good for regular passengers who already know how long it takes to get to the city (or Frankston, if they're keen) and a rough idea of the useful stops on the way.

Anyway, I was thinking about this when I noticed Transperth's timetable redevelopment questionnaire. The survey asks for feedback on their paper timetables. I filled it in but I didn't mention that I'd like to hack off their sign and erect it just inside my front door.

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There's a horseshoe-shaped footbridge not far from here. As the bridge rises up on each side of Stirling Highway, the road slopes down, so the bridge isn't as long or steep as you might expect it would need to be. With a few minutes to wait for a bus today, I decided I'd walk over the bridge. The railing isn't very high, and for some reason this worried me. At the first curve I started getting edgy and by the time I reached the middle I wanted to sit down so that I didn't spontaneously fall over the inside railing (which seemed somehow lower than the outside railing). I decided I didn't need to cross this particular bridge just because I'd come to it, so I didn't. Maybe another time.
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Friday, May 19, 2006

Keys to the Volvo 

Mum and Dad dropped in today and left me the keys to the Volvo, which they've parked in my car bay. I'm thrilled, a car is mine for the weekend. A fuel efficient car, manufactured in 1986 with a long body, a reputation for safety and a cassette player.

So I walked down to the beach this arvo, and then to IGA to buy a mop and some mushrooms. I took a photo of a bus stop instead of the sunset because I had my mobile round the wrong way. Later, at home, I picked my mobile up to turn off the telly. I'm trying to drink more green tea.

I hope Mum and Dad take it easy in Geraldton, where they're saying goodbye to Erin and Rod. Boot's there and Andrew's in Nannup with Ripper, who's cut his foot and who is not allowed in the new car. I can't mention the new car's make because it's a secret, Megan, lol.

But it's the old new car that's taken my imagination. I'm not imagining driving it, just owning it. Keeping stuff in the glove box, shifting stuff in the boot, tossing the keys in the air as I walk out the door. Maybe even catching them. Inviting friends to come for a drive up West Coast Hwy at dusk.

No wonder Mum thought they might be back to Perth tomorrow.

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Creative Juices 

The Fellowship of Australian Writers (WA) have their base in a cottage on a nature reserve not too far from here. Current opening hours are 10am-1pm on Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, so I wandered over yesterday to join. I arrived just as bulky, ugly carrots with the occasional extra prong were being juiced. Sweet carrot juice, not bitter or woody and very filling. You never know what's around the corner.
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Bloggers of the Future 

I'm sorry I missed chat but I'm glad I went to the Perth Weblogger Meet Up (my first meet up as an actual Perth blogger). I've never attended a meet up with this many people (fourteen), with this many couples (three) or with this many babies (one).

Toxic purity and skribe from one dog said to another brought five-week-old JOOB along. JOOB didn't stir (that I noticed) until after the fight between Green and Mundine finished screening downstairs and they amped the music up. Rachel and Clay from Minti, an online community for parents came too. Children, technology - we're a group looking to the future, one way or another.

We also said goodbye to Not The West, with at least two of us admitting to sometimes reading Not The West and not The West. I'm belatedly blogging the 'Luxury feel of a Bali resort' post because Gill and I laughed out loud reading it. Bret's still blogging marketing type stuff at Free Beer but mostly he's blogging about Second Life, a virtual world where people are represented by avatars (sexy as you like) and float about shopping, protesting, chatting and doing business. Wot the biscuit sez is a blog by Bret's SL character.

Richard from Clique Communications is another meet up regular looking into the business potential of owning 'land' in SL. The chance to see how social networks, politics and the economy develop in Second Life appeals but at least four of us present had reservations because of the timesink factor. Other potential pitfalls? Read 'You are SO Lucky I didn't take photos. Good for a laugh, at the very least.

After discussing the strange lives of characters in SL, it was refreshing to meet Kay and hear about the real life goat she once kept in Mt Lawley. Enter the goat lady. Thanks to Kay, I (and now you) will know to celebrate INTERNational Day of Slayer on the 6th of the 6th - 06. Cue acoustic version of 'Angel of Death'. So far the day is a National Day of Slayer in the US but that could change. Also thanks to Kay, I know about OneWebDay on 22 September. Janet, if I have money but no job come September (is Peter crossing his fingers?), we can celebrate in Canberra, or maybe in Yenda? Lol, we'll have forgotten by then, I know.

CW and M came along for the first time and CW sounded stoked to meet people who don't find her enthusiasm for blogging a bit peculiar. She offers Ruminations with an emphasis on libraries. I love reading about libraries, especially when I'm some place away from them where I can make noise.

Brown Wren is a WA News Hound and reports interesting tidbits about our state. For example, did you know that so many Perth people search for 'science fiction' at Google that Perth ranks third after Seattle and Portland (Oregon) for that search? The info came from James at Big Dumb Object, blogging Google Trends. I just checked and Perth's no longer in the top ten. That's a trend for you.

Ron Larson is a Californian blogger living in Perth and who's attracted some international attention. After a bit of sleuthing into a Malibu car crash, he's earned blogger brownie points and a link from
Boing Boing ('The phony police business is alive and well')
to his 'Truth is stranger than fiction' posts. The story doesn't have much relevance to West Australia but I think it's for the best that Ron's not living too close to the action. He's not hiding though, his other popular posts deal with using Google Maps Within Google's Blogger.

Last but not least is our one non-blogger old enough to sit up (oops, forgot Lisa - Hi!). Jon makes up for this by maintaining AustralianBlogs.com.au. The site asks bloggers to submit their blog, a description of their blog and some tags. I forgot to tag mine with 'Perth' or 'Western Australia' (der). I recommend reading the huge amount of tags to the right of the main page (I have tunnel vision, okay?) for an idea or two before heading off to submit. Add your Australian blog now!

Jon's site is just for fun and he says he's going to keep it simple. I like that. If you're looking for something more sophisticated (potentially), Melburnian Ben Barren is creating an Australian blog search called gnoos. If you're interested in checking it out, or acting as a beta tester, visit the gnoos blog. Bloggers can submit their urls now.

Whew, and that's just about everything. I hope I haven't blabbed too much about the conversations and I hope you have an idea of what goes on at a meet up. We didn't all chat about everything all at once, it's very informal and most people try to move about and at least say hello to everyone else. Thanks for a decent night out!

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Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Stuff and More Stuff 

I hope to go to blogger meet up tonight, so I'll have to miss chat. One of my chat friends doesn't have e-mail (IRC, yes... e-mail, no - so non-conformist) so here's a quick update:

  • My geranium has three flowers and two buds on it.

  • The china animals that double as kitchenware are too depressing to blog, although I did take a pic. The sheep has a Teddy Ruxpin smile about him that I just don't like.

  • Yesterday I noticed that one of my front door keys is heavier than the other and decided I could differentiate between them by weight. Then I noticed that they're different colours.

  • I now have higher wattage globes and I can see much better.

  • I have a mobile phone!

  • I have no kettle or toaster just yet but I do have three water bottles/jugs in the fridge. If you're passing past my place and you feel like a cold drink of water, drop in. Andrew left a few beers too.

  • My Thai green curry worked - I think coconut milk is the go.

Every time I step out I have a little list of stuff to buy, but only as much stuff as I can carry. I feel like I'm a hunter-gatherer type, spending all of my day collecting what I need and hauling it home to eat. I think that's why my update list includes a lot of what I have and don't have. I also have a big mess of unpacked clothes on my bed, a big pile of books on the floor and a microwave by my desk. What I am is a bit scatty.

Catchya soon!

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Monday, May 15, 2006

Jolly Family 

Megan and Mum both think it's funny that I accidentally browsed in a stall at the Subiaco Markets only to be told 'actually, this is a photographic studio.' 'Oh really? Right.' Lol, if that's not funny I'm a very strange lady.

Nobody thinks it's funny that last night I walked a k to the shops for a few groceries and then discovered I'd left my purse at home. I walked home in the dark, grabbed my purse, walked back in the dark and paid before heading home again with mymilk and a roll of clingwrap. Lucky I'm cooking enough for two of me, I need the energy. Lucky I like walking at night.

Almost a lonely day today. I bought a mobile phone so I don't miss any attempts at contact and I joined the local library. I called Dad and all their stuff is packed ready to go tomorrow. Dad said Andrew would be up Wednesday and that Andrew reckons he knows where I live, he'll meet me at the pub. I'd chopped a single clove of garlic and peeled half an onion ready for tea when Megan called. We chatted for two hours before I chopped the onion. Then Mum called and we chatted for another little while. She says Andrew will be up tomorrow sometime with his swag.

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Saturday, May 13, 2006

Double Double 

Despite Mum's warnings I cooked too much pasta tonight. I thought it'd be no worries, cooking pasta for one and not for three or four of five, but I'll have to practice. I bought a broom today too. If only I could have flown it home from the shops.
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Friday, May 12, 2006

Dig This All Day 

The bell on the bus along Scarborough Beach Road tonight didn't work and this gave a woman sitting close to the front of the bus an idea. Seeing as how the bell is very annoying over the duration of a trip, why not replace it with a flashing light - like her deaf friend's telephone? The driver explained that it might distract him from looking where he's going. The woman still thought it a good idea, or maybe 'something that dug yourself in the leg or something' instead. Great for driver-passenger relations. Dig, dig.
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Thursday, May 11, 2006

A Glimpse 

Dark street, pine trees silhouetted against pink sky and ocean

Coming home from the shops tonight I happened to glance over my shoulder. I could see the Rottnest Island lighthouse winking in the distance. I'm taking it as a good sign.

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Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Under Cover of a Starry, Foggy Morning One Last Time 

I snuck out of town at 4.30 this morning through a mist. Yesterday I went for a walk to Flat Rock and the yacht club, a bit teary, and tonight I'm a city girl. Damn, and teary again.

Ate a yummy home-made steak and mushroom pie from a deli and florist called Daisies this morning and this afternoon I drank a flat white at Caffissimo, where they've just stocked fruit liqueurs from The Grove Winery on Wildwood Road. Down south won't be far away.

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Monday, May 08, 2006

Flower Bed 

Barrow made from pine, with metal wheel

How many fathers have wanted to do this to their daughter's futon? Dad likes to make stuff for the garden with whatever he finds in the shed. I think he took particular satisfaction in re-using the pine from my futon base to make this wheelbarrow. Tomorrow will be my last night in Augusta and I'll have to sleep on the floor. The barrow looks better with flowers in it but I think Nanna's taken them for her garden.

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Saturday, May 06, 2006

Long Way, Baby 

Stuffed Pink Panther sitting on couch and wearing headphones

My last weekend in Augusta, I've just realised. I should be off walking in the bush tomorrow, or... what? Campbell stayed last night, that was a good start. We set him up with the Walkman, and set up Pink Panther with some headphones too. Pink panther isn't listening to anything at all but Campbell listened to FatBoy Slim. I finished reading Nick Earls' Perfect Skin for my last book group meeting too. The book's main character gets himself into some embarrassing situations, so it didn't surprise me when I pulled the book out to test a magnifier at the optometrist's and magnified the words George's projectile vomiting stories. That's on page 161, if you're wondering. I don't think I'm quite ready for a magnifier just yet.

I promised Janet I'd blog some pics of my flat but the light wasn't good when we went up on Thursday. Can't say it looks all that brilliant without any furniture. My farmyard-themed kitchenware isn't likely to improve the view much either. On the upside, my geranium and violets are already positioned outside my door, I just hope they aren't cleared away in tomorrow's garden busy bee.

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