Wet and Aggressive Corella challenges Magpie

Wet and Aggressive Corella challenges Magpie

Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Floriade 2011

Floriade is Canberra's spring flower festival and is held for four weeks each year, starting  in mid September.  It is held close to the centre of Canberra by Lake Burley Griffin, and draws in big, big crowds.  Entry is free, though there is plenty to spend money on inside the festival.

The smaller portion and I went in yesterday as we do at least once every year.  This year I was disappointed.  It is very, very beautiful as mass plantings in a lovely spot cannot fail to be.  Just the same, I thought it was lacking in imagination, and didn't make nearly enough use of the water.  In one (amazing) year, Chihuly glass sculptures floated on the pond, surrounded by barges of flowers.  In other years plantings have gone right up to the waters' edge and were reflected in it.

We started a little way off, wandering through parkland.  I love this mural.  I haven't noticed it before, so either I am supremely unobservant (quite possible) or it is relatively new.

As we got closer, the first of the birds appeared.

I hadn't realised how big swan's nests are (clicking on this or any other photo should make them bigger). I appreciate a bit of quirkiness, and had to stop off and take photos of these birds too.  They are a permanent installation, but I take at least one photo of them every year.

Then into Floriade itself.

And a bit more quirkiness.

And some more flowers.   Lots more flowers.  Almost all tulips this year.  Whatever daffodils there were are gone (after the first week) as are most of the hyacinths.  There are still some dutch iris to come out.  There is usually a small section devoted to Australian native plants, but I missed it this year.  Tulips, tulips everywhere - with some annuals used as under plantings.  So, into the blaze of colours.

And a Ferris Wheel.  Not just a sop for bored children.  There is a lot of Floriade that cannot be appreciated without a high vantage point.  In years gone by ramps were built at strategic points.  For the last four or five years, the ramps have been phased out, and replaced by the Ferris Wheel, which gives a perspective you can no longer get any other way.  And of course the Ferris Wheel is not free.

From ground level these patterns were simply not evident.  There are many, many shops at Floriade too.  Selling everything from garden tools to pearl jewellery.  Multiple food outlets too.  After our ride on the Ferris Wheel we headed out, following these swans.  Literally, as the gate keeper had to open the gates wider for them.

And a slow amble along the edge of the lake, back to where we had left the car.  Was it beautiful?  Oh yes.  Was I disappointed?  Again, yes.  Will I go back again this season?   Probably not.  Will I be back next year?  Of course.

Sunday, 25 September 2011

Sunday Selections

Sunday Selections, brought to us by Kim, of Frogpondsrock, is an ongoing theme where participants post previously unused photos languishing in their files.

Anyone can join in, just post your photos under the Sunday Selections title, link back to Kim, then add your name to her Linky list at Frogpondsrock.

Though this week, just to be tricky, it is being hosted by Veronica from Sleepless Nights.

Earlier this week the sunset put a soft pink glow into the sky so I headed outside.  My hands were obviously shaking when I took the first shot - but I like the effect it created, so I have kept it.   Ampersand Duck commented on yesterday's post that for a wobbly person I took still pictures.  That she is not always right is proved by this next shot.  Clicking on any of the photos will make them larger.

Saturday, 24 September 2011

Wobbling around the garden

It was a grey day here today so, since I don't do heat well, I took the opportunity to go into the garden and weed.  And weed.  And weed a bit more.  Drizzle persuaded me to come inside.  I have done too much and my bones hurt.

Later the sun came out briefly so I went for a wobble round the garden camera in hand.

Tuesday, 20 September 2011

Odds and sods

Pain got me up shortly before 5 this morning.  So I thought I would improve the shining hour and go for a swim.  I bundled up my swim gear and headed out about 6.30, leaving the smaller portion fast asleep and the cats inside.  The rotten beasts let him sleep, until he woke of his own accord around 9.30.  I wish they would let me sleep like that.

Butter wouldn't melt in their mouths.

I managed 1.25 kilometres this morning, which I am pleased about.  However DJan mentioned that she had been to a swim class recently which had identified her stopping kicking while breathing as a problem.  Drat her, this is something I do too, and I spent this morning's swim trying (mostly unsuccessfully) to change it.  A work in progress.

I finished my swim in as much pain as when I started which is irritating.  And now the horror story begins.  I went in, had my shower, towelled my hair dry and while dying my face was assaulted with attar of cat piss.  Oh thank you Jazz.  I had brought the towel in nearly dry and hung it over the back of a chair where he had been unable to resist spraying.  Urk.  Hot water.  Disinfectant.  And worse, I was meeting a friend immediately after my swim so headed off convinced that I reeked of both chlorine and cat pee.  Oh joy, oh bliss.

And to add insult to injury said friend took one look at me and told me I looked like shit.  Why thank you.  Just what I wanted to hear.

Home again to a cat pee removing shower.  And yes, I resisted the temptation to kick the little so and so.  Despite him greeting me with ecstatic purrs while gnawing on my hand and arm.  On the consolation side, more things come out in the garden each time I turn around.

The crab apple is glorious every year.  The neighbour across the road from us (now deceased) apparently used to have morning tea parties so he and his friends could enjoy it.  His daughter told me that, and I wish I had known while he was still alive.

More garden joys include:

And there is much more to come.  The blood, sweat and tears which went into the planting are almost forgotten as I enjoy things in bloom.