Thursday, October 24, 2019

Everything has an end

I hate unfinished business.  When I was a little girl, I learned piano for many years, got within a year or two of getting my piano letters, and when I was in my mid 50s I found a teacher who was happy to take mature aged students.  I went back and started again, and ended up with my letters from Trinity College London.

My health has deteriorated recently in a number of areas.  The end result is that I can no longer manage in my house, so I'm about to go to a care facility.  I'm happy with the place I'm going to, it has beautiful grounds, and the birds are encouraged to visit.

I have enjoyed reading so many of your blogs, commenting on some, and have appreciated your comments on mine.  I'm not sure of the future, so this is my chance to end this blog on my terms.

I'd love to stay here, and go out on the kayak on the bay.  But it's not possible.  Life moves on.

Monday, May 27, 2019

Early Winter

...In Queensland it is not really winter at all!! The biggest difference in the season is that the excessive heat has gone. It is very pleasant and I actually have a light blanket on my bed.
While much of the country is still very dry we have been having more than average rain for this time of year. None of it has been very heavy but most days we have had short sharp showers. Most days have stated out bright and beautiful - blue sky and fluffy white clouds.  However, it has not taken long for those clouds to turn very dark and bring showers. Fortunately they often sail off just as fast.
The other day I had an unexpected bird visit the yard. The Pheasant Coucal is a large long-tailed cuckoo. It is a shy bird and this is only the second time I have seen one around here. It can fly but prefers to run across open ground when it has to  The brown color is a non-breeding adult or a juvenile. This bird moved across the lawn so fast I almost missed it and only just managed a rather dark photo as it went to hide under the hedge.

For more photos from around the world visit Our World Tuesday.

Monday, April 22, 2019

Distant Vistas

I had a problem - I had not been able to get out and see or photograph anything new and interesting around here. BUT then I remembered I did have a stack of photos saved up that put a smile on my face whenever I looked at them. They were not my photos but when I checked with my brother he told me to go ahead and use them if I wanted to! So these are not taken anywhere near here and are not my story either - but they are Australian
My brother lives down in Victoria and he loves the water and the sea as much as I do and possibly more! Where I am content with slowly puttering around on a kayak and close in-shore he likes a big fast boat that will take him out on the ocean where there are lots of fish! At present he has a Kevlacat. He (and his son who enjoys the sea and boats just as much) usually put the boat in at Port Welshpool in SE Victoria.

Of course, the very best time to get out on the water is very early. Before the wind starts to blow or the seas start to get up.
Even after that it is still very beautiful. I think what I like the most are the colors of the ocean and the wide open spaces.
I get told lots of lovely "fishie' stories but in those moments no-one thinks to take photos! I was told a week or so ago they were catching some nice eating fish when a VERY BIG fish unexpectedly took a hook and bait and got unhappy. The first they realized there was something wrong the big fish was jumping towards a motor looking as if it would take a big bite out of it with its big mouth full of teeth! At the last moment it snapped the line and took off in another direction."Of course we didn't leave! The other fish were biting too well and we wanted a few more!"
This was a few days ago - They stopped the boat in behind a little island called Rabbit Island where it was a bit more sheltered while they waited for the tide to turn and the fishing to get better again. Fresh fish are good for breakfast especially when cooked immediately - "but I forgot the bread and butter, Sister!!"

For more photos from around the world visit Our World Tuesday

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Birds - Up Close

In reality - up too close! Plus I am getting slow and the camera was not even close!  I was sitting reading next to my glass doors when I saw movement and looked up to see three White Ibis calmly stalking past right on my back patio. My house has become one of those I used to write about - no children and no pets!! The birds must know!
N.B. Keep the camera closer and ready to go!!

For more pics from around our world go to Our World Tuesday.

Monday, April 1, 2019

Worth waiting for!

I moved up here to live here just over 15 years ago,  One of the first things I started to do was plant a garden. I wanted lots of greenery around my house.  Some of the first things I planted were strelitzia - commonly called Bird of Paradise.  The first one I planted was the orange flowered one - strelitzia reginae - but the plant I put in did not do so well so I got another couple of plants and put them in a different part of the garden  I also bought the blue flowered one - strelitzia nicolai. This is a very tall plant and it has done well but I seldom get to enjoy the flowers because some of the honey-eating birds such as the Blue-faced Honeyeaters - love it and tear the flowers apart. It must have lots of nectar! All the strelitzia reginae have kept growing but never a sign of a flower. I admit I am not a great gardener - once a plant is growing I just leave it alone! As I drove down my driveway the other day I noticed a splash of orange. After nearly 15 years there was a flower. I took photos that first day but thought it was not as good as I expected. A couple of days later it had opened up further .  Definitely worth waiting for!!

For more pics from around our world go to Our World Tuesday.

Monday, March 11, 2019

Early Morning

You know your days are not going to be very pleasant when the BOM (Bureau of Meteorology -the official weather place) puts out warnings that the whole of SE Queensland is going to have extremely hot weather for the next week. GET READY!!!
Very early mornings are the only really comfortable times and I like to sit just inside the glass doors in my family room and watch the morning slowly brighten.

Over the last few  weeks there have been big flocks of Rainbow Lorikeets flying around. Even before it is properly light they start arriving and like most of their parrot 'cousins' they are noisy.

To give an adequate idea of the size and noise of the flocks I need to really work on my camera skills! Until then - please use some imagination  with these still pics.  Rainbow Lorikeets always seem to want to do things as groups. I especially like to see them catching hold of unopened palm fronds and lining along the extent of the frond until one too many tries to join in and then it sways down and they all fly off again with much squawking. Also,being parrots they don't seem to mind if they hang upside down - or right way up.

For more pics from around the world go to Our World Tuesday

Monday, February 25, 2019

Very High Tide

When it gets excessively hot - as it has been recently - I retreat inside, turn on the air con, and hibernate! Fortunately I have good friends that keep me up-to-date on what is happening outside! Early last week I got an email and some photos reminding me that it was one of the highest tides of the year. As well there was a tropical cyclone coming towards us which was pushing tides even higher. These are a couple of photos Sarah sent me showing the height of the tide along the shoreline towards the Mullens bird roost. I always appreciate Sarah's photos as she captures angles and details that I often miss!
The next day I went out in the car to at least record where the tide had got to in the parking lot.  In previous years I have seen the tide completely fill up this area and even surround cars that had been left parked by owners that had not realized what can sometimes happen down here.This photo shows the parking lot towards the south and also the track usually used to get down to the boat ramp on the creek.
This photo is the opposite end of the parking lot and when the tide is lower this is a favorite place to park where you are not likely to be boxed in!
After seeing the height of the tide here I decided it would be worth it to check Tin Can Bay at the Crab Creek end.  There was a lot of water lying around on lower parts,
I have used  the amount of water over the path as a guide to just how high the tide really is but this year the path was new concrete and I think it was moved slightly as well - so it was a bit hard to guess the height.
I should also tell a bit more about that cyclone. They are notoriously hard to predict and this time the worst that happened was higher than average tides and big seas - which made the surfers happy but caused life savers lots of trouble when people went out to try the waves for themselves without enough experience to manage the waves or to get themselves back safely to the beach!!!

For more scenery from around the world visit Our World Tuesday,