Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Royal Flying Doctor Service

Broken Hill Airport is the largest port for the Royal Flying Doctor Service. These hard working people provide emergency and routine service for the people living where there is no other medical service.

Monday, January 30, 2017

Menindee Cemetery

We're learning that cemeteries in the outback have more than their share of children. Menindee Cemetery is no exception.

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Saturday, January 28, 2017

A Visit to the Miner's Memorial

At the top of a hill on the south side of Broken Hill is an old mine entrance and a memorial to all the miners who died during the operation of the mine. The large building with a memorial to most of the workers was closed today, but outside there is a separate monument to two miners who are still 500 feet below the spot marked.

Friday, January 27, 2017

The Albert Kersten Mining and Mineral Museum

Broken Hill is a mining town by origin although these days tourism seems to be the strong element of the economy now. There is mining and mineral museum here is gives a good explanation how the lode of ore got to where it is (was actually, most has been removed). Above is a pretty large silver nugget from the mine.  The caption you can't read says that there were nuggets over a ton in mass and so large they had to be broken up to be removed. Impressive.

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Headed Back to Broken Hill

On the way back from White Cliffs and Wilcannia, we saw that the sky was filling with clouds. A storm was a'comin'. Off in the distance was a small spot where it was raining and the sun streaming through a gap in the clouds illuminated it to give the appearance of a sword hanging from the heavens.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

White Cliffs

There just isn't much in White Cliffs and this time of year, we learned there is even less. There is opal mining here and lots of places that look like they were tossed together in haste and then ignored.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

In the Outback

After our night in Broken Hill, we headed east and north toward White Cliffs. This took us out the Barrier Highway into the emptiness that is the outback.

Broken Hill - 1st Try

As we drove north from Melbourne, the countryside went from green and lush to less green, then to brown and finally to red with spinifex scattered everywhere.

There is a feeling that a drive into the outback is to drive back in time. Back to a point in prehistory where the earth has not yet fully developed. Arriving in Broken Hill we find that we really on traveled back 50-100 years, mostly - not entire millenia.

Sunday, January 22, 2017


On the northern border of Victoria where the Murray river forms the border with New South Wales, is the town of Mildura.

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Sea Lake

Our first stop on the way north from Melbourne was Sea Lake. This small village is on the shore of Lake Tyrell. This is a lake with never more than a few inches of water, most of which had evaporated at the time the of our visit.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

On the Road Again...

We are in to Broken Hill in the New South Wales outback. Once we get settled in a little, I hope to have some new sorts of posts for you. After nearly two months in the Melbourne area, it is time for a change. If you go look for Broken Hill on Google Maps, from a certain distance all you see is a place where two roads cross. You have to zoom in pretty far to see that there a town there. It is a place with nearly 20,000 people. It just happens to be a place with nothing else around it. I try to show you some of this "nothing else" soon.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

St. Kilda

St. Kilda, just on the south side of Melbourne is a hip community on the shore of the bay. Along the esplanade are a series of kiosks for the Sunday market. In one of these we find a person even more rare than finding another person with my last name - a person with Elizabeth's last name. Meet Kirsten Haworth. The pronunciations vary across the Pacific, but the name is the same. We bought one of her prints to remember this meeting.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

South Melbourne Market

A visit to the South Melbourne Market reveals another place in Melbourne to find gastronomic delights as well as a wide range of stuff.

Monday, January 16, 2017

So Many Cemeteries, So Little Time

Our last visit to the Melbourne General Cemetery reveals a few more surprises aside from the Elvis memorial. Occasionally, there is a statue that happens to be in a good place for a photo and is photogenic. The one above does this very well.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

The King is Dead! Long Live the King!

Imagine my surprise when wandering the Melbourne General Cemetery and finding a gravestone for Elvis Presley! I took three pictures of this site to introduce you to the impressiveness of this memorial. While the one above is indeed impressive, stepping back a little way gets much more so.

Last Visit to the Western Treatment Plant

We've made our last trip out to Werribee to the Western treatment Plant to see the birds. At the end of this visit, we turned in the key and got our deposit back.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Puffin' Billy

Not far from Melbourne, is a steam train from the turn of the last century, Puffin' Billy. We signed on for the Steam and Cuisine lunch aboard.

Important Security Information for Everyone

Item 1:

I just learned about a web site called FamilyTreeNow that aims to help with genealogical research. But it does so much more. Using publicly available information (so it says), it also provides free information on the living, ie. you and me.

If you visit the web site, I can pretty much guarantee that you'll find the amount of information displayed about you to be more than a little creepy.

Here's what I suggest. Visit https://www.familytreenow.com/optout and follow the instructions and link there. The process goes like this:

  1. visit the web site
  2. find your record and see what it says
  3. get really creeped out
  4. hit the opt-out button
This seems to work for me. After opting out, a subsequent search does not find me.

Item 2:

We've reached the place where camera phone technology is threatening our security. Photos taken from up to 3 meters away have enough resolution that your finger prints could be stolen from the image. This means making the "peace sign", a thumbs-up, a hand wave,...in short anything where your fingers can be seen, a security risk. Since our phones new use fingerprints for access and some use the phone for banking and Apple Pay, this is potentially serious.

The article even warns that parents are at risk of having their fingerprints stolen by their children while they sleep. So you parents out, there...stay awake!

Item 3:

This is now new, but I include it for completeness. Be very careful using ATM's anywhere. The technology to steal your information when you go get money from the ATM is getting more common.

Stay safe.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Shrine of Remembrance

Just a few blocks south of the Flinders Street Station is the Botanical Garden. In this large park is the Shrine of Remembrance. This place is a tribute to many Australians who fought and died in the wars in which Australia has participated.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

The Bay of Martyrs

Our last stop on the Great Ocean Road was the Bay of Martyrs. Like at the other stops, we found amazing water, islands separated from the mainland by erosion, and a glorious beach. This one is not the empty, undisturbed place we found in other places, but it was still great.

Monday, January 09, 2017

Razorback and London Bridge

One the second day of our adventure along the Great Ocean Road, we visited points along the beach as we continued west toward Warrnambool.

Sunday, January 08, 2017

A Night on the Road

So, after a long day on the road and see wonderful sights, we arrived at our hotel. It was an interesting place but nice. What you see above is the garage. Our host met us to direct us into the garage. He noted that if we didn't close the door, the kangaroos would come sleep with the cars and they were worried about damage. Not clear what would happen if we just parked outside.

Saturday, January 07, 2017

The Twelve Apostles

After our long drive to the sprawling metropolis of Lavers Hill (two restaurants and a general store) to find our hotel, we headed out after a rest to see the 12 Apostles at sunset.

Friday, January 06, 2017

The Great Ocean Road

Between sitting engagements, we took a couple days to drive the Great Ocean Road (GOR). From Wikipedia:

The Great Ocean Road is an Australian National Heritage listed 243 kilometres (151 mi) stretch of road along the south-eastern coast of Australia between the Victorian cities of Torquay and Allansford. Built by returned soldiers between 1919 and 1932 and dedicated to soldiers killed during World War I, the road is the world's largest war memorial. Winding through varying terrain along the coast and providing access to several prominent landmarks, including the Twelve Apostles limestone stack formations, the road is an important tourist attraction in the region.
Here is the first installment about the trip.

Tuesday, January 03, 2017

On the road

We're off on the road for a day or two and will be at our next pet sitting gig. Stay tuned for for update by the weekend.

Monday, January 02, 2017

Boroondara General Cemetery at Kew

We visited an new cemetery and found some very interesting memorials. This one is in the Melbourne suburb of Kew. It is one of the oldest cemeteries in Victoria with the first burial in 1858.

Melbourne General Cemetery

You just can't keep us from cemetery browsing. We visited the Melbourne General Cemetery and discovered a really large place filled with interesting people and cemetery art.