Monthly Archives: January 2012

The Barangaroo Kangaroo is Just a Short Hop or Two

A Kangaroo in Australia.

Image via Wikipedia

It was getting late,
and I didn’t want to wait,
but the others were deep,
in conversation of sleep,
so I had forty winks,
and fourteen thinks.

The Barangaroo Kangaroo 

I was awoken by the others,
who said a lady named Carruthers,
and her five brothers,
were heading to Bronte‘s Wuthers,
and we could go along,
if we didn’t take too long.

So I jumped up, leaving twelve intellectual thoughts behind, and taking two nonsense ones along.  We ran to the beach, and got picked up soon after by a ferry taxi.

The captain was a kangaroo
who said it lived in Barangaroo.
Down on Darling Harbour,
south of Goat Island’s ardour.
Above Sydney aquarium’s
somewhat fishy delirium.

I thought, how convenient; and said that it must be nice living just a short hop or two from so many interesting places.


Dr. Watson and the Case of a Greycliffe House Mouse

greycliff house, vaucluse, sydney, photo by Sa...

Image via Wikipedia

We didn’t like the sound of Hunters Bay, so we headed over to the Sydney Harbour National Park, where I really liked the name of the headquarters and visitor centre: Greycliffe House.

Dr. Watson of Watsons Bay

Arriving at Greycliffe House, I was surprised to see that it was neither particularly grey nor built on a cliff.

I introduced myself to a gentleman there, and he told me his name was Dr. Watson of Watsons Bay.

I asked him why the house was called Greycliffe when it wasn’t a very good description. He apologised for not knowing, and said a man who probably would know, called Holmes, was off visiting some other homes for another inquiry at the moment.

The Greycliffe House Mouse

Not long after I’d thanked Dr. Watson and turned away,
in a triangular hall containing a square ball,
I was accosted by a small mouse of my colour grey.

It said its name was Cliff and the house was named after him,
I replied it was built in 1852 so how could that be true,
It said it was on a special diet and low-fat cheese kept it quiet.

I thought, Now, that’s nonsense.

Spit the Dog Retired and Reserved in Sydney

Spit The Dog

Image by tim ellis via Flickr

We continued north to the Opera House, where we felt like proper tourists, and not bedraggled travellers from another dimension.  We found a Sydney map there, and one place stood out straight away: the Spit Reserve.  I was a big fan of Spit the Dog in Tiswas, and thought that must be where it now resided.

Crossing the Harbour Bridge to the Spit Reserve

So we made our way across Harbour Bridge to the north, with great views of starry Little Sirius Cove below. Pebbles glinted in the sunshine like stars on a clear night.

Mosman reminded me of that Mothman creature I met while one half of the Greenygrey on our epic ramble across North America.

Spit the Dog in the Spit Reserve

Spit Road led to the Spit Reserve, and I was very impressed with how respected Spit the Dog was here.

Entering the Spit Reserve was like every Spit the Dog fan’s dream, as there were dozens of its offspring all enjoying a lazy life.

They seemed very laid back compared to the original Spit the Dog, with not much spitting going on at all; I guess the passing of time in such comfortable surroundings had mellowed the spitline out.

Into the Lair of the Paddington Bear

Paddington Bear at Paddington Station

Image via Wikipedia

I wondered if a book of grey was a sign, and quickly flicked through it.  Although it was not literary nonsense, there did not seem much relevance to my life or predicament, so I did not investigate further, and donated it to the Bronte library Bronte section.

Whatever will be, will be,
and if Agnes Grey re-enters my story,
I will return to the Bronte area library,
and look it up under section Bronte.

Paddington Bear Gives us a Scare

We walked up through Bondi at quite a pace, and were just having five minutes in Paddington sitting against a wall, when a bear entered the street and headed straight towards us.

He looked quite harmless dressed in an old hat and coat; and carrying a suitcase, but you never know!

He came right up to us and asked us if he was heading in the right direction for Peru.  I’d seen a boat heading to Peru from Bondi Beach, so I informed the Paddington Bear.

He thanked me, and before leaving gave us a marmalade sandwich each.


Great photos Debra, thanks. I’ve been virtually travelling Oz through the Werewolf of Oz the last couple of years, and the big finale is set for Brisbane in the next month or so. Cheers, and Happy Australia Day!

Bagni di Lucca and Beyond


Australians celebrate Australia Day today, 26th January, the anniversary of the arrival of the First Fleet in Sydney Cove in 1788. It is a public holiday, and a time to celebrate all things Australian.

We have had heavy rain this week and several official parties have been cancelled, but people will no doubt be throwing a chop on the barbecue and having a cool drink.

Brisbane is a modern colourful city. Here is a little bit of Australia for those of you who live elsewhere.








I love the mix of the old and the new.












Have a great day!

Thank you WordPress for Freshly Pressing me. What fun!

Take a look at another great city in my new blog – Beautiful Helsinki.

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Arriving in Sydney, Booked by Bronte

Whales in a Sitka Sunset

Image by Sandy/Scarlett Images ♥ (catching up) via Flickr

Moon moves milky
waves washing whales
rising rolling roaming
entrancing ethereal eternal.

Sighting Sydney is a Sight for Sore Eyes 

Sea and shore had been serenely silent for seventeen hours, with only the appearance of moon wave whales worthy of recording here.

Then we saw Sydney on the horizon, and it looked open and peaceful, so we looked forward to landing and recovering after so many days at sea.

Just before reaching land I thought I saw a commotion out at sea, but the next moment it was gone.  None of the others seemed to have seen it, so I didn’t say anything.

There wasn’t time anyway, as we had to decide where to dock.

Docking at Sydney

Cronulla looked made of vanilla
Coogee appeared too easy
so we landed at Bronte
as it seemed to have something to say.

There was no time for wuthering
as the winds reached record heights.
We saw a woman by the name of Jane Eyre
fly head over heels all up in the air
dropping a book our way
by the name of Agnes Grey.

The book looked promising, and not at all  literary nonsense.

Wall and Gong in Wollongong Keeps us Moving On

Collection of The University of Wollongong, Wo...

Image via Wikipedia

We continued north up the east coast, thinking we’d overnight in Wollongong.  We stopped in Shell Cove to re-energise, and were served by a friendly snail called Michelle.

Her shell reminded me of lobsters, and I told her I hadn’t seen any around. Michelle replied with the Ode of Shell Cove:

There were 110 lobsters eating pears
contentedly up a crab-apple tree.
When along came a storm
and swept them out to sea.
They made themselves at home
and decided that’s where they’d be.

Warilla and Warrawong Before Wollongong

As we passed Warilla we saw gorillas warring on the beach. I was amazed to see this, as the gentle giants are usually very peaceful.

This was confirmed when we reached Warrawong, because the beach was full of gorillas holding a peace protest proclaiming war is wrong.

Wall and Gong Prevent Landing in Wollongong

We were still a little shaken by what we witnessed in Warilla as we approached Wollongong, and then we heard a deafening gong sound reach us from the north.

I wondered if we should land at Wollongong, as planned. The decision was made for us when we approached the city, because there was a massive wall all around it, just above the gong.

So we continued past it, hearing the gonging grow ever louder until reaching its zenith off Battery Park.

Somewhere between Wombarra and Scarborough we reached silence again.

Husky Son in Huskisson Hushes Us On

Deutsch: Ein Wolfspitz-Sibirian Husky Welpe En...

Image via Wikipedia

Elle took to the raft-pulling like a dolphin to water, and with the load lightened behind we reached similar speeds to the previous day.  The sea also seemed returned to normal, and it felt good to be lost in the waves, alternating time between the waterworld and skyspace.

Huskisson has some kind of Pull

We reached Jervis Bay in the evening, and thought about stopping somewhere for a meal.

As we circled the bay from the left, Vincentia did not attract us, but Huskisson seemed to be drawing us on; maybe it was because Elle and I had been doing a similar job to huskies with all the load-pulling.

Husky Son in Huskisson Hushes Us On

We were preparing to land near Elizabeth Drive, on the junction with Moona Moona Creek, when a car load of women stopped at a nearby junction.

The driver mooned at us twice. Her front-seat passenger berated her, shouting ‘Elizabeth, will you stop mooning or we’ll be up the Creek without a paddle; there’s a husky father and son just over there. Elizabeth, drive on now.’

The husky son just chuckled, and hushed us on.

Swan Lake must be a Tragedy, knew Barry

Beschreibung: Szene aus Ballett Schwanensee (3...

Image via Wikipedia

I returned to the others with a heavy heart, hardly believing what I had just witnessed.  Barry and his bottlenose family wiped out just like that.

Losing Friends and Family

I remembered our first meeting in Kalbarri, all those months ago, and over the other side of the continent.

I ploughed through an ocean that seemed suddenly against me; sending its arrow-sharp waves to batter my bonce, and impede my return to where I did not want to go.

It was in complete contrast to the morning, when the same sea had seemed to lift me through the waves with energy, love and vibrancy; but to what it must not have known.

Maybe it now shared my mourning, or blamed me as I blamed myself.

I did feel somehow responsible.  If we hadn’t met in Kalbarri, and again in Bingie, maybe Barry would still be making his way up the east coast with the rest of the family.

And then I’d been thinking grand thoughts more suited to Green than me; had I overstepped my boundaries?

Body, Mind and Spirit Rescue the Situation

My trepidation increased as I approached the others, still not knowing how I would tell them the terrible news.

When I had nearly reached the raft, Cathy jumped in the ocean, and swam to me.  I was about to tell her the news, when she said it was okay, they already knew that Barry and family had left us; she had also seen them rising into the air.

It lifted my spirits and lightened my load as I climbed up to join the others in the raft.  I told them what had happened and Angry said it was meant to be; Barry had told him in Cudmirrah that Swan Lake must be a tragedy.

Knowing that Barry had accepted the inevitability of the tragedy made my feel better, and I was thankful to Angry for a good use of his mind.

Then I asked them what we should do now, without Barry and family to pull us.  Elle said she was feeling strong, and would join me in the harness to pull the raft.  I thought it would be an incredibly helpful use of her body, and quickly thanked her.

Having decided our futures, we rested for a few hours and thought of our lost friends.

Swan Lake Dolphin Tale Tragedy

Bottlenose Dolphins

Image by Peter Nijenhuis via Flickr

We moored on the edge of Swan Lake, and I changed into human form to go into Cudmirrah with the other people.  Barry and family were happy to lounge in the lake.

Swan Lake Cudmirrah

On the edge of town a man approached us and said he was a royal, who was about to harpoon me when I was a dolphin, but then saw me change into a human, and now he’d fallen in love with me.

I had just read up on Swan Lake, and this  was beginning to mirror the plot a little too much for my liking.

Breaking the Swan Lake Spell

So I said I was just passing through, and although very flattered, wouldn’t be able to spend any time with him.  He seemed a little disappointed, but accepted it.

We continued into Cudmirrah, which is a lovely town in a beautiful setting, and stocked up on provisions for the onward journey.

We returned to the lake and set off.  We were about to leave the lake and head out to open sea when we saw the ‘royal’ dive into the far end of the lake.  An older woman was shouting ‘Prince Siegfried, no, don’t do it, come back.’

A Tragedy in Swan Lake

I was stunned, not believing my own eyes, and didn’t really want to get involved anyway.  But Barry said he had to do something.  So he untied his harness, and his wife and children said they wanted to go along too.

They swam back towards where Prince Siegfried had entered the water, but as they rose out of the water and into the air, half-way there, a cry of ‘Kill Kalbarri Barry’ preceded a salvo of harpoons landing all around our dolphin friends.

I broke free of my harness and set off to look for Barry and family, but half-way there I saw them ascending into the sky, clicking and smiling with love just the same as when they’d played in the water; it was a scene straight out of Swan Lake, literally and metaphorically.