Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Golden Avenue - Pt Clare #5 - Brisbane Water Walk #8

Saw a 1940s retirement village today, on Sunnyside Avenue. You don't see many retirement villages that old round here. Mostly they're 1970s. This one was built by some crowd calling themselves the Loyal Orange Institution, which seems to be some sort of society for the preservation of secret handshakes.

But mostly today's streets were filled with dodgy seventies houses, a pre-forties house on the corner of Margaret Street with a very rusty roof and a nineties house with a peculiarly long lawn.

It was lovely and cool at dawn. Perfect walking weather. I went back to sleep. When I finally got going the sky was clearling and the cicadas were at it already. It was a bit steamy but there's a decent breeze now.

There were plenty of frangipanis today and most of them beautifully shaped. I spent so long standing lusting after one its owner twitched the curtains at me in a very meaning way. There was a garden shop round the corner and I wandered round in there for a bit. Their plants were a bit mingy but I did find out two very useful things. One, lemon trees are happy in pots as long as they get enough sun and they don't mind a bit of espalier either. Two, that jasmine bush I've been trying to look up to get the proper name and order the bloody thing from the nursery is not jasmine. It's orange jessamine (Murraya paniculata). It's the one that used to grow outside the Pizza Hut opposite the library. It's a feral (imported species gone wild) but there's a sterile one available.

(My balcony garden is coming along a bit faster now, by the way. Most of them have gained more than an inch over spring and they've got a few more months to grow during summer. The smaller daisy bushes are the exception. Looking very sad and dog-eared, poor things. But the biggest one is doing fine.)

Wandered down Golden Avenue. Beautiful name. Very evocative. I pictured a street in a North American town like those really lush ones in American movies. Lots of trees and a wee Carpenter Goth church with its white wooden spire and big old white wooden houses everywhere and happy dogs on big lawns. You know the sort of town. And an avenue of quivering aspen all golden and shiny in the cold crisp mornings of autumn. There's an avenue of them up at New England uni. It's cold enough for them up there. I love their papery shivery sound.

It even drowned out the sound of the cicadas for a few minutes. Round the corner at the bus-stop the bastards were deafening. They were in the trees along the drain beside the ambulance station and in the boggy reserve behind me. The reserve backs onto Fagan's Bay. The local Bushcare crowd must be sobbing into their beer since those bamboo shoots starting appearing in it. It's already got some blasted strangle vine climbing the trees and killing them as well as bloody asparagus fern swarming over everything at ground level.

The ambulance station at Point Clare is not an attractive building. It's got the late sixties dappled beige brick then it's got this weird green moulded something along the eaves. Completely unnecessary and just plain weird. But they've got an interesting vehicle in the window.

The garage has huge tinted windows along the road side of it and this yellow truck is parked in there. It's got two massive spotties on top of the cab and a ladder on top of the body. It's got the standard St. John's Ambulance logo on it then "St. George-Sutherland District" on the side. On the cab it says "Q Van". Had a quick Google and it looks like some sort of rescue thingy. A while back they had an old wooden cart that was an early ambulance by the look of it. Cool.

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