Monday, August 28, 2006
I like this office. The way it sits there like a slab hanging out over the slope, drinking up the sun.
It's on the corner of Mann Street/Pacific Highway just up from the railway station. The hill in the background I can't find the name of. It's the one between the railway and the race course in West Gosford.
Beane Street, Faunce Street and Etna Street are full of nice old bungalows now doing time as doctor's surgeries.
I'm not loving the colours of this one, brown and yellow are a colour combination I'd happily banish from my universe, but the bungalow's nice enough in shape. I like that little bit of decoration along the fence. Simple but jaunty.
God, I'm buggered. There's a nice bit of wind in the trees to listen too and a soft warm quilt to lie under. I'm off back to bed.
Thursday, August 24, 2006
After only an hour of effort I got out of bed at nine. Made a nice hot cuppa tea and I'd drunk half of it before I realised 1) it was in a bowl instead of a cup.
Not terribly good walkies weather anyways. Overcast and rainy. Light's all wrong for photos.
I'm going to read a few blogs then totter off for a little lie-down before lunch.
Wednesday, August 23, 2006
This is what I was going to tell you yesterday. We've now got four sets of traffic lights on the Woy Woy peninsula. One more set and we'll be a throbbing metropolis.
Corner of Ocean Beach Road & McMasters Street Woy Woy. Looking down Ocean Beach Road in the direction of Umina and the beach.
Our fourth set of traffic lights pre-activiation. They were being tested yesterday. This intersection is a bastard for traffic and pedestrians. An accident waiting to happen.
Doing a right turn onto Ocean Beach Road here can take five minutes, there's an oval on the further side of the road (right side of picture) and various other kiddy leisure activites in the community centre on this side. Ocean Beach Road is a blind curve if you're coming out of McMasters Road and not much better if you're coming out of Dunban Road.
Blackwall Road Woy Woy. Sets two (red) and three (green) of Woy Woy's four sets of traffic lights. The oldest set of lights is at the station.
Looking in the direction of Woy Woy Station and Phegans Bay where the fires were on New Year's Day. The pool is on the left behind that ute.
Old 1950s service station (garage) on Blackwall Road Woy Woy, right next to the swimming pool. It was fenced off for about a year then last week I went down that way and it was being demolished.
This house and the one to the left of it are now gone. Demolished about a week ago. Went past yesterday and a grader was working on the empty site, flattening it and smoothing it out and making the footpath judder under my feet.
Tuesday, August 22, 2006
Quite warm today. 24 degrees (75.2 F). Walked from Punt Bridge to Bloody Erina (Erina Fair Shopping Centre) along The Entrance Road, got some stuff, came home. Bit noisy when a truck went past but a nice flat walk beside the creek.
'Stonehurst' George Street East Gosford. The 1880s home of one John Smith. Park on George Street just before the Punt Bridge at Erina Creek. The house is on the left (facing Erina) immediately before the bridge. If you're quick you can see pictures of the inside on the For Sale sign.
The blue plaque reads:
Built c. 1880s
GOSFORD CITY COUNCIL
HERITAGE ITEM No 57".
A family history researcher on Roots Web says: "John Smith of "Stonehurst" near the Punt Bridge, East Gosford.... became the licensee of the Union Hotel."
The Union is one of the main pubs in Gosford. It's on Mann Street, the main street, on the corner of Donnison Street. James Spears built it in 1885 (RootsWeb).
You can't see much from the street. Garden looks nice and lush.
I gather from the position of the house relative to Punt Bridge that it overlooks the creek there.
Look for the For Sale sign next to the wooden gate on the left just before Punt Bridge as you're going to Erina.
This end of the old Punt Bidge is just in front of 'Stonehurst'. Look down from the Punt Bridge footpath where George Street East Gosford becomes The Entrance Road Springfield and crosses Erina Creek.
The old Punt Bridge dates from 1885. In the water there you can see what might've been a bridge pylon. Can't tell what it's made of, it's covered in greebies.
Erina side of the old Punt Bridge. You can just see a round pylon-ish shaped bit of somehing in the water there too.
The middle section rolled back on rails to let bigger boats through. It was manually operated and "would take two men 15 minutes to open, with the sliding portion moving back towards the Gosford side. ... At the peak of Erina Creek timber traffic, the bridge was reportedly opened up to seven times a day. The last opening of the old bridge took place sometime around 1928 ... The bridge became a fixed bridge in 1930, reflecting the gradual decline in the local timber industry, the growth in road transport, and the siltation of Erina Creek."
The new bridge was built right next to the old one in 1962 and the old one demolished the next year.
(Gosford City Council, scroll down for photo)
Erina Creek lets onto a nameless bay. Nameless on every map in my possession anyways.
It's between Peeks Point and Ironbark Point, between East Gosford and Green Point. The bay is part of the Brisbane Water estuary which is the northern arm of Broken Bay, just above Sydney.
Walking along The Entrance Road beside the creek. A long flat easy walk with just the right amount of shade.
Letterbox made from an old firebox or summat. Opposite the heliport at Pateman Street.
Erina Creek Nursery, a few doors along from this letterbox, is for sale. But I'm sure just looking at it makes real estate agents weep. There's a couple of falling down houses, the fence patched together from bits and bobs, the overgrown yard full of odds and sods of rusting metal and broken PVC pipe and a "Beware of the dog" sign. Didn't see the dog but ten bob says it's either an hysterical barker or a silent mangy cur lurking in there waiting to take a chunk out of the unwary visitor.
Local army barracks. The red & blue sign says:
"7 Something Regiment"
Can't read the rest of it even at the highest magnification, bugger it. A quick Google brings up a "311 (City of Gosford) Squadron" at Erina.
The yellow & black sign says:
Royal Australian Infantry Corps
[under the insignia:]
The Royal New South Wales Regiment"
Their motto is Nulli Secundus - Facta Probant. Second to None - Deeds Prove. Very butch.
The old part of Bloody Erina (Erina Fair). I like the old photos round the dome.
The lettering above the windows blathers on about "sustainable design" and energy efficiency or summat.
The lettering on the obelisk thingy says [side nearest camera]:
"Distance to Gosford 5kms, Sydney 51kms
Canberra 294 kms (Parliment House Flagpole)".
"Latitude 33 degrees 26' 12" South
Longitude 151 degrees 23' 34" East".
Old photos round the dome of The Atrium. The one on the left might be The Blackett at Gosford. The third one from the left looks like Narara Creek in the 1860s - 1880s. A sign said the photos are available from the Gosford Library. I'll have to pop in for my copies.
That's it for today. Was going to tell you something but I'm buggered if I can remember what it was. I'm off to put me dinner on.
Monday, August 21, 2006
Peeks Point is the next point over from Point Frederick (AKA Longnose). The suburb at Peeks Point is officially called East Gosford but some of the residents call it Peeks Point. Sounds classier.
Friendship Path through the waterfront reserve off Russell Drysdale Street. Nice winding boardwalk through the pines and mangroves.
Drysdale was an Australian painter. Born in England in 1912, lived in Melbourne, painted some stuff, carked it in 1983. I like Man feeding his dogs.
Yes, but is it art?
Sculpture and/or bundle of stakes outside the Edogawa Gardens. Nice soft weathered greys.
Edogawa Gardens. It's got a wee artificial lake with koi fish (carp) and one of them raked stone gardens thingies.
Might poke my head in next autumn and see if they've got those miniature maple type trees that get red leaves in autumn.
Longnose from beside the Edogawa Gardens. Longnose in the middle distance and the point Clare ridge behind.
Ironbark Point from Wharf Street. Ironbark Point's just north of Green Point. Not a lot of public views available at Peeks Point. It's mainly built right down to the water, except the bit beside the Edogawa Gardens.
Peeks Point is not architecturally exciting. A dearth of nice old bungalows and cottage and a plentitude of seventies and eighties houses and flats plus some nineties and noughties mansions on the water. But there been and will be more exciting suburbs. I've got plenty of unexplored streets yet.
On Friday I said the 40th anniversary of the Battle of Long Tan was on Saturday. I was talking out of my arse. It was Sunday.
Friday, August 18, 2006
"[Today] marks the 40th anniversary of the single most significant battle for Australia in the Vietnam War.
One hundred and eight Australian soldiers were patrolling near the village of Long Tan when they encountered a Viet Cong and north Vietnamese force about 25 times their number, and a fierce battle ensued. Somehow, the Australians beat the odds and won the fight.
Long Tan is seen today not only as a notable moment in Australia's military history, but also as a time to publicly recognise all veterans from Australia's controversial decade-long involvement in Vietnam. Yet the Long Tan survivors say they're still fighting - this time against a bureaucracy they say has denied them full honours for their deeds in Australia's name."
In a world full of shitty news there was some good news for a change. Australia's Vietnam Vets yesterday got official recognition of their service in Vietnam. At fucking last. Going to war for your country is tough enough. Copping the sort of abuse heaped on the Vietnam vets when they got home is beyond the fucking pale.
"[In Parliment House a]n emotion-choked Opposition Leader Kim Beazley read a letter by Labor MP Graham Edwards, a double amputee from the war, forgiving those who abused him after his homecoming for serving in Vietnam.
[Prime Minister John] Howard stopped short of recommending upgraded bravery medals for Long Tan veterans but formally acknowledged what he described as their sense of grievance and injustice. ...
Mr Beazley read a letter by Mr Edwards, parliament's only Vietnam veteran. He was forced to pause several times as he read the highly charged account of Mr Edwards's hostile homecoming to Perth and his subsequent discovery of a letter written to his mother by an anti-war protester who wished he had died from his wounds."
There's a thingy with pictures here, an article about this morning's commemoration ceremony at the memorial in Canberra here, diaries and stuff written by the people who were there, and commemorative badges from the Vets themselves here.
Congratulations, guys. Official recognition at last.
Thursday, August 17, 2006
Late winter is full of flowers here. Couple of weeks ago it was the golden wattle and now it's a couple of dozen plants.
Some sort of daisy. Possibly a marigold. Your guess is as good as mine.
No idea what this one's called either. It's a common plant in the bush and some people use it in their gardens. Tiny pink flowers on a low bush.
These are definitely daisies. Navy blue centres they've got. When they're purple and white they mainly stay short like this lot. When they're all white they grow in a metre-high bush.
God, I love the pink Magnolia denudata. Beautiful. Rush out and see them. They'll go in the first wind of Spring.
The buds are quite dark.
Then they open up a bit and you can see the insides are white.
Fully open and already faded a little by the sun. They fade to quite a pale pink sometimes. But mostly they've fallen from the tree before that. They shed their petals as soon as there's a bit of wind.
And wind there will be. Spring is almost upon us and Spring means wind and storms and rain. Beautiful.
Wednesday, August 16, 2006
Bradys Gully is a park on Henry Parry Drive in North Gosford. It was a cemetery before it was a park and there's a couple of dozen of the old gravestones still standing.
Taken a few yards from the road. You can see a few of the old graves in the garden at the bottom left and on the lawn near the closer seat.
A few of the gravestones among the trees. You can see which way the old rows ran. The gravestones face down into the gully.
The plaque near the Bradys Gully Road entrance:
"BRADYS GULLY PARK
This park has been developed as a joint
project between Gosford City Council, the Rotary
Club of Gosford, a Federal Government L.E.A.P.
program for the unemployed, supervised by
Employment Transaction Australia and citizens
of our local community.
The works commenced in September 1996 and this
park was officially opened on
Sunday, 1st of June, 1997.
[Gosford City Council logo] [Rotary Club logo]
Councillor Tony Sansom Peter M. Turnbull
Mayor: Gosford City Council President: Rotary Club of Gosford"
Some of the stones are still in good nick.
"In Loving Memory Of
MY DEAR HUSBAND
WHO DIED 1st May 1914
THROUGH THE RESULT OF AN ACCIDENT
AGED 58 YEARS
GONE BUT NOT FORGOTTEN".
A few are not in good nick. This one was completely illegible, not a letter remaining.
I like this book style of headstone. I'm tossing up between cremation + sprinkling and cremation + a wee book headstone.
Top line, all the way across:
"In Loving Memory of"
"OUR DEAR MOTHER
DIED 17TH mAY 1925
AGED 68 YEARS
ALSO HER GRANDSON EDWARD
DIED 12TH AUG. 1913
AGED 7 WEEKS
Love's Lost Taken"
"ALSO SARAH JANE
BELOVED WIFE OF
DIED 18th OCT 1949
AGED 68 YEARS".
This is a fancy one. Very pricey with all that fine work on it. He must've done alright.
Fond Memory of
beloved Husband of
DIED 26th FEB'y 1908
AGED 58 YEARS"
On the bottom:
"NOT DEAD TO ME, I LOVED HIM DEAR
NOT LOST BUT GONE BEFORE -
HE [illegible] IN MEMORY STILL
[illegible] FOR EVER MORE".
Down in the gully. You can see about half the cemetery in this photo. It wasn't huge. I can't tell where the old gates were but with the headstones all facing downhill towards Jarrett Street I'm guessing the gates where round about where Jarrett Street is now, near the corner with Bradys Gully Road.
The big headstone is for James Henry Spears who died on the 30th of September 1900 aged 49. This is the only headstone that stayed in the cemetery when the other stones were removed (below).
Got a book on Bradys Gully. They say the land was approved for a "General Cemetery ... 1 December 1881 and the cemetery was dedicated on the 24 October 1882. There were however a number of burials shortly before this date."
A bushfire went through it in 1916 and damaged some of the headstones and the fence and livestock wandered through in search of lunch. By the 1960s it was overgrown and neglected and the headstones were stored at the Erina Council Depot for years.
It was turned into a park in 1996 and the headstones were put back. They did a lovely job.
Henry Parry Drive is one of the main connector roads in Gosford. It goes from York Street in East Gosford, up and over through Gosford town centre, behind Kibble Park, across the north-west corner of the Rumbalara Reserve, down into North Gosford past the private hospital, Bradys Gully and the fire station and joins up with the Pacific Highway at the Reptile Park. It's one of the Central Coast's busiest roads.
I walked it from Kibble Park to Bradys Gully and back. It goes up steeply from Erina Street. There's no path there, just the scruffy grass on the curb.
On the crest of the hill, on the downhill side of the road, there was a Council crew making a short stretch of concrete footpath. Cars and trucks were coming up the hill full bore. Across the road on the uphill side there's a narrow bit of ground between the traffic and the rock. I trudged along there behind an anorexic teenager. She had a hacking cough and runners the size of small boats. Every time she coughed I thought she was going to yack up a lung.
From there it's just a short swoop down past Etna Street then along a block past the private hospital and some more flats. The cemetery has a beige painted metal fence and two entrances with arches over them.
There's a "Reptile Park" marked on my street directory, between Pemmel Street and Kinarra Avenue, just a few blocks past Bradys Gully. But I don't think it's the same place as this crowd in Somersby. I remember after the fire in the Reptile Park in 2000 there was a thing in the local paper asking Central Coast residents to donate their snakes and spiders. Must pop along there one day and have a gander at their creepy crawlies.
Tuesday, August 15, 2006
Now we've all got that trashy eighty song stuck in our heads, let's look at some more rock carvings.
These are not far from yesterday's Bulgandry Man.
From the Bulgandry Man site on Woy Woy Road go a few hundred yards further towards Kariong and there's a gated track on the Gosford side of the road.
When the track ran out we went off downhill to the left, over a fallen tree, round a couple of big boulders and downhill again through some sandy patches full of ants and lizard holes and a flat spilt rock.
The carvings are in a passage between two huge boulders, well-protected from the weather but easy to miss.
Some of them look like they were done in the last 10 years with a power tool. This guy says they were begun around 1975, in 1984 a park ranger sprung someone adding to them with a chisel and "NPWS Rangers regularly confiscate tools and hammers left at the site."
Mystery hole in the cleft where the hieroglyphs are. Someone's been digging for Christ knows what.
There's a few more photos of the hieroglyphs here. Scroll down near end.
Scribbly gum (Eucalyptus rossii or racemosa). They're pretty common in NSW. Have a gander at the big photo.
Bit a history stuff from the NPWS on the Bulgandry Man site from yesterday.
I might totter off and have a little lie down. Haven't been feeling crash hot over the last few weeks. The guts playing up again.
Fell asleep on the sofa last night and woke up near the end of an old episode of Spooks, just before the cute intense guy is about to shoot two mutineers in an end-of-the-world scenario but then his boss says "okay, stop, this was a drill". Sat there bewildered for several minutes trying to work out whether the world had ended or not.
Monday, August 14, 2006
Aboriginal rock carvings up at Kariong. Couple of kays past Staples Lookout on Woy Woy Road. The site not well protected from the weather. A few of them are quite faint now (conservation problems) but you can still see half a dozen carvings clearly, including Bulgandry Man.
The drawing is Bulgandry Man. Check out that tackle. Hangs down to his knee!
"Bulgandry Aboriginal Site protects a special landscape, rich in Aboriginal art.
The name Bulgandry was given to a large engraving of a man thought to represent an ancestral hero. He wears an elaborate headdress. In one hand he holds a club or small boomerang and in the other an oval object of unknown purpose. A decorated club is positioned horizontally across his waist.
Bulgandry is believed to be a community site and has many engravings of people and animals.
Wallabies feature in the engravings, some leaping and three feeding. The human figure nearby suggests that this is a hunting scene.
Fish, dolphins and what apears to be a bird are among some of the other engravings. Some stone tool sharpening grooves can also be seen nearby.
The engravings are located around 150 metres from this point. Please respect this special cultural area."
A fish. About a foot long.
The carvings are thought to have made by making small holes with a pointed stone along the drawn outlines of a figure. The bits of rock in between are then scraped away to make a continuous line.
Could be a dolphin or a large fish. If it's a dolphin it's life size.
Kangaroo or wallaby. Looks like it's leaping away.
Another man and the back end of a kangaroo or wallaby. Wallabies are like kangaroos only smaller.
Bulgandry Man. He's on his side in this photo, with his head on the right side of the photo, his arms outstretched and a club laying across his waist.
You can see his face and his hair better from this angle.
The carvings are on a big flat rock on a gentle slope overlooking a wide shallow valley. Probably the Mooney Mooney Creek valley. A lovely site.
It was cool enough this morning. Very nice for being out in the bush. Quite summery this afternoon though. The shape of things to come. I'm hoping to cram in some extra walking while the days are still cool enough.
Friday, August 11, 2006
Like the tree. There's what looks like a wizard's hat as well. Can't work out the business on the left though.
Keever Lane Gosford. Just up from Mann Street going from Faunce Street to Beane Street, behind the car place opposite the bus station.
Perhaps Wayne was the guy who did this. Whoever he was, it's a great portrait. Hoping to stumble across more from this artist.
Block of flats in the lane. Don't look very salubrious from this side but they've probably got a half-decent view.
Old quarry video
The one I promised yesterday. Panorama of the old quarry on John Whiteway Drive, Gosford. The one that's now got a construction site sign on the fence.
(Watch it at YouTube)
There's a pack of Australian videos on YouTube. Australia Now & Always. Haven't looked at any of them yet.
Lovely and sunny today. Might be able to get away for an afternoon walk.