30 June, 2011

Blast from the past: - Aalborg 9 June 2004 Sunset (11.25PM)

I thought I would go back into the archive of photos I have, and see what's in there... AND, as the WW yesterday was a 'sunset' theme, this photo I took in Aalborg, Denmark came to mind...

Aalborg Sunset 11-25pm.jpg

We were there for a conference, Aalborg +10 I think it was, and it was late into the evening... We had not long arrived, that day or the day before, I can't remember, but being the first time that far up into the polar cap, the days were long... VERY long! It was I think either the second or third night that we found that there was darkening curtains that blocked OUT the light, so after that we actually got some sleep!!!

I am now quite comfortable with the length of the days in Northern Europe, and I actually enjoy them! How times have changed...

Hoo roo for now... ------

29 June, 2011

WW No. 48 - Spotting Sunsets

Fishermen Coming Home

YSSY Evening Arrival

Afternoon Spotter

Hoo roo for now... ------

24 June, 2011

V Set Retirement Tour

On Saturday, early, I went on a train tour of the Sydney Metropolitan System, but it was an unusual trip in that the retiring interurban train was used and went on some lines that they do not use. The tour was being run by the Sydney Electric Train Society - SETS

HERE is a CityRail network map if it helps track our route!

I first drove from home to Granville, as there was trackwork on the line west from Granville, so there is a higher chance of getting a train from here; and lots of parking!

Anyways, I caught a train from here to Strathfield, which is where the tour was to start. I waited here for S and L, friends of my brothers up in the mountains who I have come to be friends with and we also all go to the footy together, which was later in the evening!

The crowd gathered on the platform, and from some sources, the train that was to be used had a good ‘spit ‘n’ polish’ from the sheds it was in over night. It was a 4 car, V Set!

V13 SETS Tour 25062011

From Strathfield, we headed west to Olympic Park. We were given a notice that there will be NO cab rides, photo stops will be plentiful and that times will be strictly adhered to as we were actually incorporated into the wider, more complex, CityRail timetable.

From here, we then headed out of Olympic Park and onto the Bankstown Line (Orange on map) stopping at Punchbowl and Erskineville along the way. It was hard for the organisers and station staff, as passengers at these stops often tried to board the train. After Erskineville, we headed into Central for a crew change (which is always the case for a train into/out of Central) before heading through the City Circle (Town Hall and Wynyard ONLY) and over the Harbour Bridge stopping at Milsons Point (red/yellow line), which had a great view back over the Bridge. Here, some of the passengers got out and headed down to a vantage point to get some pics of the train in the Lavender Bay rail yard (VERY rare) but we stayed on, as the route it takes to get down there was part of the journey not often taken! We headed up to Waverton (neck – siding) and then down to the Bay. This gave some great views back toward the Bridge overlooking Luna Park. We had a stop here, but were not allowed to get off the train due to OH&S.

Harbour Bridge Milsons Point
Harbour Bridge Lavender Bay

We made our way back up to the Waverton Neck and then doubled back to Nth Sydney and Milsons Point to pick up our wayward passengers before heading back over the Bridge and through the City Circle (Town Hall and Wynyard ONLY) again into Central (crew change) and heading out towards Cronulla (Blue line) for lunch. There were numerous stops along the way here and as the train was not allowed to stay in the platform (or in the rail yard there), it headed back to Hurstville to fill in time! Stephen caught up with a friend of his at Strathfield, and he sat with us on the trip, so we walked along the corso in Cronulla to get some fish ‘n’ chips for lunch. I mean, when at the beach, is there ANYTHING else to eat? Now Cronulla is a wonderful place, lots of cafes, restaurants and the like, L & I use to often go here for breakfast of a Sunday morning, but the consensus was for the fish.

Cronulla Rock Pool
Cronulla Beach Lookout
STOP Cronulla

Anyway, lunch was ok, company was great and that was the main thing! We walked back along the corso to be greeted with the train just pulling in. We were to now head back along the blue line into Central and around the city circle, this time, taking in Circular Quay, St James and Museum, where at Museum, we stopped for a photo opportunity, before heading back to Central, (yes, another Crew Change) and heading along the Airport East Hills Line (Green) all the way out to Campbelltown and Macarthur, which was the end of the line for electric trains. We were here for a little bit, the raffle was drawn (I didn’t win) and we were now on our way again through a mixture of lines… Green, blue and then purple and finally silver stopping at Rhodes! It was a complex trip here. Again, plenty of stops along the way, but at Rhodes, we had a group photo. As it was an association (which I am not a member of) I raced around the back of the guy taking the photo (President I think) and took some as well. I said to him that I will also get a photo of the group with HIM in it and took his camera. I also got some with mine as well. I will be forwarding it across to him as well… I think I will join...

V13 Museum
VSet Tour Party RHODES01

We left Rhodes back to Strathfield where we all said our goodbyes and exchanged details etc. S, L and I were going to the footy (ANZ Stadium is in at Olympic Park) so we caught a train to Lidcombe, where we went across to Dooleys Club for a quick drink and so as S could catch up with some friends. Again, we jumped on a train and headed into the stadium at Olympic Park. This was to be a game that was rumoured to be, a bit of a white wash for the Swans, and that we would lose convincingly. Collingwood are the team to beat, but, and the end of the second quarter, we had a 30 odd point deficit! However, the third quarter, we fought back and we actually got in front at one point, but Collingwood were just that little bit TOO good, winning by a goal (6 points). It was a fantastic game all the same… I eventually got home around 11pm… I didn’t do any processing of pics, and headed straight to bed after feeding both Macc and Jasmine!

Hoo roo for now... ------

15 June, 2011

WW No. 47 - Lunar Eclipse (Blood Moon)

Circa 28 August 2007, and as it is forecast RAIN tonight, I will not be able to get another shot of the Lunar Eclipse due tonight... So this is dedicated to it happening above us tonight!

Lunar Eclipse 28 ~ 08 ~ 2007 Sydney
Hoo roo for now... ------

10 June, 2011

Vivid Sydney - Sydney Opera House

Last night was spent with a trip into the city (well, actually, I STAYED in the city after work) for Vivid Sydney...

I met up with M at Central Station, and we walked (briskly; it was cold) over to World Square where we had Japanese for dinner before heading to the car for the drive down to the Rocks for Vivid. In Campbell's Cove next to us was a fire and music show, blah, and further around in Circular Quay was Customs House but it was just to bloody cold to stay out any longer... So I got a heap of pics of the Opera House and various stages and, well here it is...

Hoo roo for now...


30 May, 2011

Weekend Wrap Up...

Well, it all started (again) on Friday, another bust-up with the ANZ Bank!

You will recall that this is not the first time, Banks... ARGH! being the first, whilst on only Thursday, FML FML BANKS FML FML was the second. However, on Friday afternoon when I got home, another ltter addressed to L was sitting in the letterbox! This one though, was a DOOZY in that it was a final letter of demand for the letter I received the day before!!!

It ended up with a 2.5 hour long call to the ANZ Bank, and the resulting response was that I will get a call today (sometime). My reply was if I do not get a call by 5pm, then come 9am Tuesday, I will be on the phone to the Ombudsman... We'll see! In the end, I had a major headache so I took a couple of pills and had a drink (which was not a good combination by my own admission) but I slept from around 7pm through to 3.15 and then again to around 8am...

Saturday though, I spent driving here and there and back again it seemed trying to get some All Terrain (A/T) tyres for my car. This was proving to be a very difficult exercise as they do NOT have them in the major brands in my size (235 60R 16). The calls I made said that they can get them, but they also wanted a deposit to order. I was not prepared to put a deposit down IF it was not a tread pattern I wanted, so I looked elsewhere. I eventually, 3pm, found a place near home, that the guys across the road mentioned to me about! A LOT cheaper as well, and a pattern I was happy with!

After having them fitted, I got the car detailed at the local Crystal Carwash, they had a special for wash, interior and a polish for just $69! AND, as part of the deal, you get a Coffee AND the daily paper, so added bonus!!

Saturday night, I had dinner up with M, and we sort of watched the footy, Parra lost to the Knights, but that was OK as the Bronco's lost the night before, so we were even! We also looked at the possibility of a holiday later in the year, where to is the question though!

New A/T Tyres
Clean Car after it got detailed
Free Paper & Coffee

Sunday morning, a planned spotting outing was called off as it was dark and grey and rain forecast... So I headed up to the north past Dural to drop off some stuff at a mates place. On the way back, I stopped in at Hargraves Nurseryland as I wanted to get some Camellia's for the fence line behind the spa house. They didn't have the ones I wanted though, and I SHOULD have gotten another variety there, but that was an after thought... Next week though I will be back out there. They have a deal on, that any plant over $14 is 50% off. These are $30 pre-sale, so a bargain! I will need 10, so I will go out on Saturday and get 5, and then again on the Sunday, get the other 5. WHY? because on the bottom of the receipt you get a 10% discount of whats been purchased OFF your next visit! So if I get 5 Camellia's on Saturday at $30 each, that will reduce to 5 x $15 $75... On Sunday it will be $75 - $7.50 bringing it down to $67.50... BARGAIN!!!!!

BUT, I did almost buy this bit of garden sculpture... Maybe on the weekend...

Garden Art that makes me smile

BUT, I will NOT be buying this outdoor setting!

'Nice' Garden Furniture?

Hoo roo for now... ------

26 May, 2011


Ok, it’s no secret that I've been having issues with the ANZ Bank lately, which it is nothing financial, just the fact that they can’t organise a P... in a brewery!!!


The CC's were in L’s name and me as the secondary card holder; only because of the way the names were on the account (Ladies First)... On the day L died, the CC was cancelled, which is standard procedure, and processed an application on the spot issuing ME a CC...

Now at the ANZ we have a 'Break Free' account, (Professional Customers) and this was in both names.

NOW, in mid March, I called the bank as my cards were nearing the expiry date AND as I was going overseas, I did not want to get stuck without a CC. I was told that they were issued, they won’t be issued until I was away, they were issued two weeks ago... LIES LIES LIES!!! The ultimate part that Pee'd me off was the fact they cancelled them on the Thursday afternoon of the 5 day Easter weekend!!

Anyway, after numerous calls, meeting the Manager at Martin Place etc, I was told that the problem was that the computer (pft, yeah right) made the glitch as the accounts (DUAL names) conflicted with my sole name on the new CC! My response/argument to that was how as L was the sole name (there wording and methodology) on the CC that was cancelled 15/4/09 AND that this was a card that was already attached to the Break Free?!?!

ANYWAY, today was the penultimate stuff by them in that they sent L a Statement for a CC she'd applied (and granted) last month, and that it is already OVERDUE and needed to be paid IMMEDIATELY! When I called the number, I was shifted, and then shifted and finally got to a person that tried to answer the problem, the Deceased Members department... Oh, that’s right, this is the department that have YET to remove L's name OFF the accounts, as instructed by the Supreme Court of NSW Probate (November 2009) and by my Solicitor July 2010 and my ME March 2011!!!

Sorry that I have had this rant, but I am now SO over it... I have a letter of offer from a new bank to take over the Mortgage, I have a new CC that links to my Emirates FF...

Hoo roo for now... ------

19 May, 2011

Tonsillitis - PURE EVIL!

I've been a little, 'Down and Out' these last couple of days... It started last week, I started to feel a little 'weird' in that both my throat was a little sharp, but also I could tell my breath was not as fresh as it could be (no matter HOW many times I brushed...)! And, whilst in Melbourne, it really started to play a nice (sic) little song indeed!

So, when I got back from Bernie's funeral, I literally fell apart... Housework on Sunday was a very slow affair, I did get some done but no where NEAR the amount I wanted to get done! I went to work on Monday, as I had a meeting in the afternoon, but that got cancelled as the consultant I was meeting, was... well... SICK as well!! So I have been off work for the rest of the week... I have also had the flu on top of it as well and of course the trifecta is that the blood pressure is UP again (as with headaches)!!!

Hoo roo for now... ------

10 May, 2011

Remembering - Bernie John P, aged 94

I've JUST received some very sad news of the passing of a dear old friend, Bernard John P Snr in Richmond Melbourne aged 94. I only met Bernie a year ago, but it was one of those friendships that was such an 'instant' hit with both him and his wife Jessie. Both Jessie and Bernie have been in my thoughts over the past year and a bit, and recently, Jessie was the one whom I had heard was ill with the flu. And, from the message I received this morning, it was the flu that has won with sub-zero temps in Melbourne today.

Bernie P, Dennis W, & the Late Bernie P Snr

Jessie, you are in my thoughts and prayers over the coming days/weeks. See you on Friday...

Hoo roo for now... ------

05 May, 2011

Banks... ARGH!

I have JUST about had enough of my bank... Which bank, nah not them, but the ANZ...


You see, it all started when L and I took out our mortgage, we did like so many other couples, did all our banking in dual names in a single account. When L died in 2009, the bank had to cancell the Credit Card, as a result of L no longer being here, but SET UP a new one in MY NAME. We had whats called a 'Break Free' package, but I am now feeling as though its impossible to 'break free'!

You see, mid March before going overseas, I called the bank asking about my CC as they were about to expire, and I did not really want to get caught out overseas. i was told that they were sent out, and to give it a day or two as they should not be to far off... The day before I left, I again called the bank and was told that they would not get produced until two weeks before the end of the month that they expire... When I got back, and this is now the Thursday before the five day Easter/ANZAC weekend, I was told that they WERE sent out and as a result, the cards I have now would also be cancelled... I was furious and requested to be put through to the complaints department where 'A' would look into it further...

Wednesday after the long weekend, I again spoke to Amanda who said that she would issue NEW cards and that they would be at a local Branch on Friday. When I presented myself to the Branch on Friday, they were not there (furious) and two and half hours later I was leaving the Branch with the assurity that they would arrive on Monday and that the MANAGER would walk them across to work.

Needless to say, monday afternoon I still had NO cards, and again I was on the phone to Customer Relations Dept, where I wonce again raised the matter...

I cancelled my CC, I transferred as much as I could in a single EFT due to limits per day, with a view over the next three days transferring the remaining funds and close my everyday account. I also started to look for a new Mortgage providor.

In a follow up phone call on Tuesday, it was noted that the cause of these issues was the fact that the ANZ had not removed L's name off the accounts, EVEN THOUGH when Probate was issued, they were instructed (via court documents) to remove it... This has now been done TWICE! Apparently, the computer system does not recognise that a product (CC) in a different name to the other products within the 'Break Free' package, even though MY NAME is on both!!! All I can say is USELESS!

Needless to say, I am now in the middle of shopping for a new bank... A bank that can, actually, BANK! Its funny though, just how acurate the ANZ adds are in all of this, do you agree?

AND, then there's these...

NOW, this final one, I just found as funnily accurate... And I told the Managers of this as well...

Hoo roo for now...