Brisbane, QLD

Friday, March 30, 2012


After our family holiday to Woolgoolga, where I met a nice young man (LB), we returned home to Sydney. He returned home to Newcastle some 167k north of Sydney. I still had quite a few weeks left of the summer holidays waiting for the results of our final high school exams to be published in the newspaper. Then I would know if I had qualified for Teacher's College where I wanted to become a PE (Physical Education) teacher. It was a nervous time.

My parents returned to work and I was invited to spend a week in Newcastle by LB's parents. Since our meeting LB had been writing one or two letters every week and I would reply almost as often. Email,  SMS, and Skype would have been handy then. With much excitement and a fluttering heart, I jumped onto the steam train for Newcastle. LB had his own car and we went to the beach, picnics, hiking, the movies and dancing. We were madly in love but soon it was time to climb aboard the puffing billy and return to Sydney. LB had to go back to work and to university but he had an invite to Sydney for the end of term holiday. In the mean time we wrote many letters. It is funny that I can't find any photos of this holiday.

Looking down the valley towards Canberra from Rules Point.
Christmas came and went and then I had another invitation to go for a few days to the Snowy Mts with a friend who was thinking of buying a guest house there. The mountains don't have any snow in summer but the high country is popular for hiking and fly fishing. I was keen to see it in summer and even though it was a full day's drive it was better than staying home alone nervously waiting for exam results.

The Rules Point Guest House was up for sale.
The view from the verandah. Cattle grazing pastures in the high country of NSW.
A craggy old stockman on his horse. 

Wednesday, March 28, 2012


Each morning whenI walk past this little lake, I always stop and drink in the beauty. Sometimes I take my little Sony Cyber Shot point and shoot, and other times I take my DSLR Canon 1000D. I wonder if you can tell which shot is from which camera. 

Dennis Lake, Daisy Hill, QLD.

 One morning I saw a Water Hen also called a Moor Hen sitting on her elaborate nest built in the branches of a fallen tree.

 Most days she had her back to me but this day I was lucky. She sat there for days and days until one day.........

 I could see three little orange beaks peeping out from under her. 

 The very caring male came and gave mother hen food to distribute to the three hungry mouths. Then he would busily swim off looking for more.

Mother is telling her babies dad will be back soon with more.

The Water Hen has other friends nearby. 

There were 8 seen sitting on this log one day.

(These photos were taken last November during Spring.)

Monday, March 26, 2012


We went to Wivenhoe Dam about 80k away from Brisbane to meet friends for lunch at the little restaurant there. (That's why) On the way we stopped for a coffee at the little town of Fernvale. We parked near this beautiful tree.
I think it is a Poinciana Tree but it could be a Flame Tree although it doesn't look the right shape for that.

 Taking a page out of Red Oz's blog we trotted into the local Bakery.

 Unlike Red we resisted the fattening goodies and......

.....wandered through to the back garden seating and settled for a coffee.

 We arrived at the lake ahead of time so we grabbed our cameras and walked around the parklands. We have had a wet year so there is plenty of water in the dam. Last year it got so full that engineers had to discharge water to avoid the wall being damaged. Unfortunately more torrential rain arrived and consequently Brisbane was flooded. Just recently there was a court case over the management of the dam and the engineers were found guilty of not following the rules.

 The 200 miles of shore line provides some nice picnic places and ......

 ...bird habitats.

 I loved the colour of the grass.

Many photographs later our friends arrived and we had a relaxing lunch in a cute little restaurant overlooking the lake.

Saturday, March 24, 2012


I was looking through some old photos and found some of my mother's school photos from 1929.

Class of 1929 Thornes House Girls Secondary School. Florrie Greenall (my mum) second from left sitting on the ground in front.

Thornes House Hockey Team 1929/30. (could be 1930 as her hair style has changed) Florrie Greenall first on right in front row.

Mum won the art prize . It was a prize of two Art Books. She cherished these books, brought them to Australia with her and gave them to me when she entered a retirement village here in Brisbane. This is one of the books and the certificate pasted inside. (F. Greenall, Art Prize 1930). I wondered if the school still existed so I searched with Google.

The school logo has remained almost the same.

Thornes House, a fine Georgian Mansion was built in 1779-82 for for the James Milnes family in Wakefield, Yorkshire. It was the most imposing building in Wakefield in 18th century. In 1921 it was sold and became Thornes House Secondary School. There was a  Girls School and a Boys School. In 1941 it became a mixed school and in 1944 it was called Thornes House Grammar School.

In 1951, fire gutted half of this beautiful building. After the fire of 1951 half of the building was demolished. Today 1930's block housing the Gym, Change Rooms, Metal Work, Woodwork shops, Dining Room and the bicycle shed are still in use today.

In 1967 it became a Comprehensive School and in 1993 it became part of Wakefield College called Thornes Park Campus. The original house was set in 112 acres, which became a park with playing fields and a lake.
The remains of the old house at rear.
The dining Room
The Gym

Friday, March 23, 2012


In Brisbane it is Autumn but we do not have many trees that drop their leaves and turn pretty autumn colours because we have a sub tropical climate. However, we do have some colourful flowering trees. Here are a few:

The Flame Tree, ( Brachichiton Acerifolous) native to Australia.

The Jacaranda Tree imported from South America.

The Tibouchina Tree native to Brazil

Tuesday, March 20, 2012


A few weeks ago I heard a commotion outside I looked out the window to see a gang of workmen making a footpath on the other side of  "the street where I live". You can burst into song if you like.
I grabbed my camera and trotted downstairs.

I got some weird looks as if to say, "What's that silly old woman doing taking pics of us working."

I think they may have been a bit suspicious of me. Maybe I was going to make a complaint???
 I didn't hang around long so as not to make them feel uncomfortable.

A week later we had a new footpath.

I enjoy walking down the path on the way back from the forest every morning instead of on the road like I used to. I am also happy that the path is on the other side of the street from where we live.

Sunday, March 18, 2012


It was December 1959, I had finished school, exams were over and my wonderful parents took me on a holiday to Woolgoolga Beach on the north coast of NSW. 

Dad slaps sun cream on mum.
We drove from Sydney in our beloved Ford Zephyr and hired an on site caravan and an ugly one at that but it was under cover which kept it cooler. 

 There was a lake or lagoon which emptied into the sea. So we had the best of two worlds;  the lake and the ocean. Back then it was a quiet secluded spot but now it is a crowded holiday destination.

 Dad and I fool around on the beach. We had lots of fun. 
 Mum and Dad having a deserved rest on the beach. My dad had a thing about not looking at the camera, he liked shots to look more candid. I think I got my love of photography from him.

 We walked up to a lookout where we could see the blue ocean and the golden sand beaches as far as we could see. 

Oh to be 17 again and to be so slim. However, I wouldn't like the stress
 of worrying if I had passed the Leaving Certificate and
if I would qualify for Teacher's College, which was my dream at this time.

Note the camera case slung over my shoulder with the faithful Brownie Box Camera inside.
 We visited a banana plantation and saw them harvesting and packing bananas. We came back to the caravan with a big bunch. 

We hired a boat and had a hilarious time trying to row straight. We went right to the beginning of the lagoon where it turned into a shallow creek so we had to take the oars out of the rowlocks and use them as paddles to avoid the rocks and fallen trees.

Mum was playing 'Lady Muck'. Don't you love those glasses? I think she looked pretty good at 47.

We were not a fishing family but we had a dabble when we were on holidays. Dad borrowed a rod from friends and he caught a few tiddlers that we had to throw back.

I rather fancied the handsome boy in the middle. 
 We made friends with other campers and enjoyed yarning together. I rather fancied a handsome boy I met. We spent a lot of time together, swimming and walking along the beach. I remember giving  him biology lessons about all the organisms we found in the warm rock pools. He used to sing to me. We used to sit on the beach and talk for hours. He was at university studying Chemical Engineering and he worked part time at BHP steel works in Newcastle. My parents liked him and his parents liked me. Could something come of this?

His younger brother took the boys for a row. The dads at the back look a bit heavy.