Friday, January 31, 2014

Kung Hei Fat Choy!

Friday 31st January, 2014

The first month of 2014 is nearly over and we survived it.  The weatherman said it has been the 4th hottest January on record and the heat isn't over yet.  Today the temperature is expected to reach 40C, over the weekend it is expected to get to 43C, cool down Monday and Tuesday to the low 30C's and then steadily climb back up to the high 30/40C's.  

After all it is Summer and staying indoors with the airconditioning on, you don't notice how hot it really is outside until you go out there.

Tonight the Chinese celebrate their New Year.  This year it is the year of the wooden Horse. 

                                                 The art work is by Hu Ming

For those people who are born under the sign of the Horse, they are considered to be kind, clever, animated and energetic.  They are strong and stable and have a better ability at making decisions. Excellent at interacting with others and are very successful both personally and professionally.

Horse lucky gemstone.......Beryl

Horse lucky colour............Green

Horse lucky numbers.............3, 4, 9

Horse lucky flowers...........Giant Taro, Jasmine

Most compatible signs for the Horse..... Tiger, Sheep or Dog

Most incompatible signs for the Horse...... Rat, Ox, Rabbit Horse 

Tony and I should have a good year this year.  According to the Chinese New Year Zodiac signs I am a Tiger and Tony is a Dog.

Tomorrow afternoon/evening the Adelaide Chinese community are having a huge street party in the city.  They are expecting around 20,000 people.  I don't think we will go as the forecast is for temps to be around 42C.

Kung Hei Fat Choy!  Happy New Year!

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Happy Australia Day!!!

Sunday 26th January, 2014

Happy Australia Day!!!  

Well for some of us it will be but for our indigenous people they still think it's a day for remembering the invasion of their country and the genocide that followed.  If it wasn't the English who founded our country it would have been the Dutch or Spanish or some other European country and where would the aboriginal people be then.....maybe completely wiped out. 

It gets to be a tired argument each year.....why can't we all move forward?  They have had the apology for the Stolen Generation from the government, they are given billions of dollars each year from companies who mine on their land and from the government.  What do they want?

The true aboriginal is rarely seen.....they are happy to live in the central and remote areas of the country.  Those with the loudest voice are the ones who live in the cities, barely a gram of aboriginal blood in their bodies and yet still class themselves as aboriginals so that they can claim all the lurks and perks.

On any official form we have to fill out one of the questions asked is whether you are aboriginal or a Torres Strait islander.   I never answer the question as I believe that we are all Australian but one day I am going to tick the box 'yes' just to see what happens. 

I know I am sounding very un-Australian but I just wish we could all live in this country as one.  So many immigrants have come to this wonderful country and are so happy to accept it as their new home and we Australians embrace them.

This was seen tonight in the Australia Day parade.  Tony and I went into the city to watch the parade.  You could see that they were proud of their heritage but equally as proud to be called an Australian.   And the Australians in the crowd clapped and cheered for them.  It was great to see! 

As one English lady said to us when it was all over, "I just wish that they could do something like this back home in England".  She is now a resident of Australia but it was her first Australia Day parade and she was very impressed.

By the way, the Aboriginal community usually lead this parade and have done so in past years, but this year they were conspicuous by their absence.


Saturday, January 25, 2014

Oh! To Find A Decent Seafood Restaurant

Saturday 25th January, 2014

After an early morning appointment on Thursday I spent the rest of the day with Dianne having coffee and lunch.  We went to the Plaza and enjoyed browsing in the shops, Dianne bought some sandals that were on sale and I got some perfume.

Friday was spent catching up on housework.....the house needed it.

Today was a lazy day.  We watched the Tour Down Under on TV.  Cadel Evans was leading the race by 7 seconds over Simon Gerrans but after todays' stage Gerrans has a 1 second lead over Evans.  Tomorrow, being the final day, they race through the streets of Adelaide.  Neither Gerrans or Evans are street racers so it should make for an interesting finish.

                                                              Photos taken from Adelaide Now

This evening Bob took us all out for dinner.  For several years he has wanted to find a nice seafood restaurant here in Adelaide.  How hard do you think it would be seeing that we are renowned for catching seafood off our coast?  Nigh impossible I reckon.

He made several phone calls to various restaurants, Sammy's on the Marina, Cardones, Louca's on Hutt Street, the Revolving restaurant at Glenelg,  and to Pauls Fish Cafe on Gouger Street.  He was looking for one that would serve lobster.  Being the height of the lobster season NOT ONE place serves lobster (crayfish).

He settled for Pauls Fish Cafe and Grill and so we went there.  Full of high expectations we were a little disappointed with the look of the place.  It was just a glorified fish and chips shop.  I even got Tony to dress up (no jeans or shorts) thinking we would be dining in fine style.

Bob and Tony ordered Oysters Kilpatrick for starters while Robyn and I had Prawn Cocktails.  The guys said that their Oysters were very nice, but in our Prawn cocktails we only got 4 prawns, hardly any sauce and a bowl full of chopped lettuce, not finely shredded.

For mains Tony and I ordered King George Whiting, Robyn had crumbed prawns and Bob had a "Fruits of the Sea" platter that had prawns, calamari, scallops, and a garfish fillet. Each meal was accompanied by lettuce, 2 tiny pieces of onion half rounds, 1/8 of a tomato and 2 pieces of cucumber.  The chips were wedges which were small potatoes cut into fours.  Very ordinary!!!  We also ordered a meal of Moreton Bay Bug Tails which were skewered and we shared as Robyn had never tried them before.

Tony and I both loved our fish, Robyn's prawns were no nicer than what you get at a pub for half the price and Bob said his garfish was very nice, the prawns were too small, the calamari was tough and the scallops were soft.  Robyn and Bob had dessert, Nut sundae and a Banana Split.  Tony and I opted not to.  I felt that they didn't have a good selection of desserts and prices started at $8.90.

Bob paid nearly $300 for the total cost of the meal including drinks, the boys had 2 beers, Robyn and I had one glass of lemonade each.

Overall we were very disappointed.  We felt that we could have had as nice a meal at a hotel for a fraction of the price.  While walking back to the car we had to pass several other restaurants including Chinese.  On a board outside one of the Chinese restaurants was an advertisement for fresh lobster ($108/kilo).  Maybe we should have gone there!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Another Year Older But No Wiser

Wednesday 22nd January, 2014

This morning when I turned my computer on and went into Google I was greeted with this.....

Robyn made me this.........

We decided to go and watch the Tour down Under 'King of the Mountain" which is about 5 minutes up the road from us on Seaview Road.  Quite a few spectators had already gathered there.  

Tony was going to take me to the movies but we didn't know what session to go to.  We ended up going to the later session  and so after the bike riders passed we went and got some lunch, took it home and watched the race on TV.

When that was finished we went to the movies.  We went and saw "Saving Mr Banks".  It was a fantastic movie, absolutely loved it.  It's about Walt Disney wanting to make "Mary Poppins" and trying to get the author, PL Travers, give her permission for the movie to be made without destroying the story and making it 'disneyfied'.  Her real name was Helen Lyndon Goff, but she wrote under the name of PL Travers.

It also has an Australian connection.  PL Travers was born in Australia, grew up here and as a young woman, travelled to England where she lived for the rest of her life.  She died at the age of 96 in 1996 and by all reports hated the movie "Mary Poppins".  She never gave her consent for other "Mary Poppins" movies to be made.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

I Think I'm In Love With The Lycra.....Or Is It The Sport?

Tuesday 21st January, 2014

With that really hot weather behind us, for the time being at least, it was great to be able to get out of the house and do things.

On Sunday we went up to Beerenberg and picked some more strawberries with Robyn and Bob.  They still had lots to be picked and the strawberries didn't seem to be affected by that heat.  Perhaps they weren't as huge as the first time we were up there but we still did get some beauties.

After our strawberry picking we went to Mount Barker to have some lunch.  Robyn and Bob had never been to Mount Barker before and were amazed as to how big it is.  We went to our usual cafe that we normally go to and lots of other people all had the same idea.......beautiful day, let's go out.  The cafe was crowded.

On Monday the kitchen man came and removed my kitchen cupboard doors and hung the new ones to see if they fitted.  He took them away as they have to be finished off.  He left the drawers as is.  I don't know if I like the look of a kitchen without doors, but hopefully in a couple of weeks it will be back to normal. 

When he left Tony and I decided to go and pay for the oven and arrange a day for it to be delivered and we also did some shopping.  

I need some storage solutions as to how to organise my pantry properly and so we took a look at Storage World.  It gave me some ideas.

Today was Stage 1 of the Tour down Under and with Tony no longer working it was a great opportunity for us to go and watch it.  It started at Nuriootpa and finished at Angaston in the Barossa Valley.  At first the organisers thought that they may have had to cancel this leg because the area near Angaston was where the Eden Valley fire came very close to last Friday, but thankfully they didn't.

We got up there early and picked our spot, we thought the area around Seppeltsfield would be nice to watch it from.  We had a straight up the road view and then could watch them go around the corner. 

The circuit they chose for the riders was to ride 3 laps and so we waited for them to come by each lap. A lap took them just over an hour.  It felt a bit like the Tour de France......hahahaha.

While waiting for the peloton to come back there were plenty of other cyclists out and about riding the course, some staged, like the Ride for Cancer, others were just cycling clubs so there was plenty to watch while waiting.

Tomorrow part of their ride is close to us and so we are going to go and just watch that part.  They have included a King of the Mountain there.

I thought maybe I was in love with the Lycra and after leaving the race we went onto Tanunda and had a coffee.  Plenty of the wannabe cyclists also had the same idea as they also stopped and after seeing some of them in their Lycra I may have changed my  Perhaps it's the sport that I'm in love with!

Friday, January 17, 2014

Our Worst Fears Realised

Friday 17th January, 2014

Well, the States worst fears were realised today.  With our extremely hot temperatures fires have broken out all over the State with the worst being the Eden Valley (Barossa Valley) where homes have been lost, Bangor (near Port Pirie) and reports of homes lost, Renmark (my old stomping ground) where the fire is burning towards Renmark West and also Cooltong but no reports of any homes lost and also a fire in the Murraylands that is burning farmland and 2 homes lost.

So far there have been reports of 12 homes lost but thankfully no lives.  The officials say that they will get a clearer picture of what is actually burnt once they can get in to have a good look.  

With our week of 40+ temperatures some 200 people have been hospitalised or needing hospital assistance with heat stress related illness.  Most of these have been the elderly.  There have been plenty of warnings given on radio and TV about what not to do in the heat but I feel they go unheeded.

Just like when we took Robyn to the doctor yesterday.  We dropped her off at the entrance and then Tony went and parked the car.  He was able to get a park a few doors down.  While walking back to the doctors office we passed a woman dressed in a black long sleeve fluffy jumper and track pants on. It was something that you would wear in the height of Winter.  You just shake your head in disbelief!

A cool change came in earlier this evening but with it came strong winds and thunder and lightning.  These conditions will only hamper the firefighters in their ability to control these fires.

As Tony and I had to go out and fill our water bottles we took a trip down to the beach to watch the lightning.  A lot of it was between the clouds but there were a few streaks.  Tony's camera wasn't working properly and mine wasn't much better.

These are from my camera........

A H-U-G-E thankyou must be given to all the firefighters, both professional and volunteers for the magnificent job they have done this week.  Some of them have been fighting fires since Tuesday when the first outbreak happened.  May God bless them all!!!

Billiatt, Murraylands - Currently travelling in a northerly direction towards Alawoona. The scrub fire has burned more than 15,000 hectares. Two homes were lost at the "Last Resort" property.
Calperum, Riverland - This blaze near Cooltong and Renmark West is still uncontrolled and has burned more than 38 000 hectares of scrubland. The fire is travelling in a northerly direction towards Wentworth Rd.
Bangor, southern Flinders Ranges - The blaze has reduced in intensity overnight but is continuing to burn in a northerly direction towards Wirrabara, Murraytown and Melrose. The scrub fire burned more than 22,000 hectares and had more than 100 firefighters working overnight. There have been three homes, three other structures and multiple stock lost. The fire is expected to burn for days in inaccessible terrain.
Eden Valley, edge of the Barossa - More than 27,0000 hectares has been burned by a huge fire front that tore through grassland. It is still travelling in a northerly direction towards Truro, Keyneton, Graetztown, Towitta, Moculta, Eden Valley, Sanderson and Angaston. Although the fire threat has reduced with a change in the weather, at least five homes have been lost in the fire.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Adelaide Is The Hottest City In The World Today

Thursday 16th January, 2014

It is Adelaide is the hottest city in the world.  We are expecting 46C (114.8F).  Adelaide has been in the news a lot lately, we were voted as one of the most liveable cities in the world, the Lonely Planet put us in the top ten places to visit, and now we are the hottest place in the world.  Why would people want to live here or visit lol?

We still have lots of fires burning around the State.  These were the ones started by the lightning on Tuesday.

Robyn has to go back to see the surgeon today to get her dressing off and so we offered to take her.  She said at the time, that would be good because it may be too hot.  For her to go on her own she would have to catch the train and get a taxi to the doctors.  Little did we realise that it was going to be this hot!

*Update..........Well the official temperature didn't get to was only 44.2C.   Robyn came to go to the doctor as Bob decided to stay home.  He was trying to keep his birds cool and had to sprinkle the cages every hour or so.  We took Robyn to the doctor and while in the car the temperature was showing 47C.  It did get to 48C but I was too slow in getting the camera out.

After coming back from the doctor Tony and I decided to go and do some shopping.  At 6.14pm it was still 45C.  Can't wait for Saturday when they say we will have a cool change and the temp should be around 28C.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

This Weather Is Bizarre!!

Tuesday 14th January, 2014

The weather is B-I-Z-A-R-R-E!!!  It is so H-O-T even the wildlife are coming into people's backyards looking for water so that they can cool down too.

They have now upped the forecast and we are going to get temperatures of 44C - 46C (111F- 115F).  We've got another 3 days of this.......ugh!!!  If Thursday's temperature of 46C+ becomes a reality it will be our hottest day since 12th January, 1939.  Today we got to 45.1C  just after 2.00pm.

Looking at the sky it looks like a thunderstorm is brewing....there are reports of lightning strikes.  With the lightning also comes the risk of bushfires.

We've just had a thunderstorm pass overhead, lots of lightning and thunder and a few spots of rain.  There are fires burning in several parts of the state caused by the lightning. At least we have cooler temperatures for the time being.....the temp has dropped to 36C.