Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Winter Floraland

(Random walkies in Woy Woy)

Two posts today. This walkies one and one about the Paperbark Forest.

Golden dildo in full bloom

Golden dildo bloom

Golden dildo in full bloom. Don't know if this is a Banksia or a Hakea. I think you said hakea last time, Erica.

Golden dildo hakeaGolden dildo flower in full bloomGolden dildo flower, all passion spent

....Erect and ready......in full blooming glory............all passion spent

Casuarina in flower

These seem to be the flowers of the Casuarina tree. I've seen a few of them around the peninsula this winter. The trees look brown and like they're dying until you have a closer look. The needles are still green and there's this extra bit on the ends.

Casuarina tree Veron Road Umina

Cauarina tree in Veron Road Umina. The brown bits are it.

Pink kangaroo paw close-up

Pink kangaroo paws in someone's garden on Veron Road. Don't know if they naturally come pink or if they're one of the new cultivars.

Woy Woy Road still fucking closed

Woy Woy Road closure

This is the road yesterday's sign was all about. That fenced bit at the top edge of the road is the collapse. Sandstone blocks on the right, presumably to re-build the bit of hillside under the road that fell away.

The road goes from the station in Bustling Downtown Woy Woy along the railway line, over it, along Correa Bay (Deadmans Bay as was), up over Bulls Hill and past The Bays and up to the F3 motorway, the intercity freeway connecting Sydney to Newcastle.

The collapse is playing havoc with local traffic and causing blood pressure to rise all through The Bays.

Random local photo

Lion Island by Gramarye

Paperbark Forest

Paperbark Forest Kerrawah Blvd Woy Woy

Over beside the golf course is a beautiful wee park I've blogged about before. I call it the Paperbark Forest. Its real name is the Everglades Lagoon Wetlands.

There's a local bushcare crowd who look after it. Looking after places like the Paperbark Forest consist partly (and in some cases mostly) of ripping out the blasted lantana and other exotic species that jump over from people's gardens and invade the natural bushland.

There will be a survey about the wetlands and talks and stuff in August some time and the bushcare crowd are looking for more willing types to look after the wetlands. Details below the aerial photo

"For more information telephone 4348 4327, or email wetlands@cccen.org.au."

Everglades Lagoon Wetlands

Everglades Lagoon Wetlands outlined in red.

The whole article from the Local Rag:

"Wetlands project for Everglades

A project aimed at increasing public awareness of the value of wetlands and to encourage active community participation in wetland monitoring and rehabilitation is being run in Woy Woy.

"It has an ultimate goal of encouraging volunteers to join the community bushcare group in its rehabilitation work at the Everglades Lagoon Wetland," according to project officer Ms Narelle Leite.

The Community Environment Network will conduct a community survey in Woy Woy to increase public awareness of the Everglades Lagoon Wetland, Ms Leite said.

"The survey is designed to increase public awareness of the wetland and to gain an insight into current community perceptions about wetlands and their importance in our local environment.

"The Wetland Education Project is a two-year project funded by the NSW Government through its Environmental Trust with the support of Gosford Council, the Hawkesbury Nepean Catchment Management Authority and local businesses."

A "field day" will be held at the Everglades Lagoon Wetland in August to "give the community the opportunity to become familiar with the wetland and the bush regeneration work being conducted by the local bushcare group".

"There will also be talks from local experts such as Dr Cameron Webb, a clinical lecturer at the Faculty of Medicine, University of Sydney, who has recently been working on projects to assess the change in mosquito populations following rehabilitation of degraded estuarine wetlands.

There will also be water quality monitoring and a presentation about the NSW Land for Wildlife Program.

"A series of educational factsheets will be available to the public at the Field Day on topics such as wetland types, wetland plants, wetland animals, wetland weeds, wetland protection and mosquitoes."

For more information telephone 4348 4327, or email wetlands@cccen.org.au.

Press release, 27 Jun 2008 Narelle Leite, Community Environment Network".

Monday, July 28, 2008

Snow & disgruntlement

Woy Woy Road still fucking closed

"Woy Woy Road is still fucking closed" the sign reads. One for frustrated locals.

Sent in by Steve of woy-woy.com. Ta mate.

In other news

It snowed in Sydney. Well, sorta. There was "soft hail" on the North Shore.

Sydney 'snow' just hail: weather bureau

Flickr photo

Saturday, July 26, 2008


Theroy's Brisbane Water Drive Point Clare

Theroy's is gone. It was one of my favourite buildings in the area. It was up at Point Clare on Brisbane Water Drive, just across from the Pt Clare railway station. It was an old chemist.

Built circa 1920, fibro with a fifties facade added onto the front of it and a shopkeeper's residence attached to the side (right). It had been empty for yonks and a new chemist built beside it, a brick job with a long switchback ramp, instead of steps, for the Dear Old Things to get up to the door.

55 Brisbane Water Drive Point Clare

The wee old shop is gone as well. It was between Theroy's and the corner of Talinga Avenue. It wasn't number 5. It had a couple more numbers but they kept dropping off. It might've been number 155 but don't quote me on that.

Can't be sure of the shop's date but I'm willing to say around 1900. As for the style, I'll go with Plain Old Shopfront. Which is not an official style but a well-known one.

Notice the window on this end of the shopfront is longer. The door used to be there. Or rather, the wee ramp up to the door used to be there. The door itself ws set back about eight feet from the front of the shop, in the old way, and the wee ramp led up to it. There's a similar style here in Ettalong, minus the ramp.

Cnr Brisbane Water Drive & Talinga Avenue Point Clare

Between Theroy's and the wee old shop was a fibro house of uncertain age, which squatted silently behind a hedge. On the other side, on the corner of Talinga Avenue was a front yard of trees with another old fibro house lurking rustily behind them. I liked that corner. I liked the trees and the wee old house and I liked Theroy's. I don't care that they were mostly derelict, I liked them.

The fish shop is still there on the other corner.

Map showing the demolition/building site
Map showing Point Clare & Woy Woy

New blogging schedule

I'm still up to my eyeballs in work and likely to be for a wee while. So the new posting days are Wednesday and Saturday. Or Wednesday and Monday for all you buggers reading at work.

To get reminders to your inbox, stick yer email in the slot. The Feedblitz slot in the sidebar, just about the Babel Fish thingy.

Links un-bunged

Sorry. All this time I've had the link for the PM's Apology and all the Sorry posts empty and I never noticed. Might be time to see an optometrist. Anyways, they're fixed now.

And here's the link to the Canadian PM's Apology. Onya, Canada.

Links new

Skippys List, 213 things Skippy can't do in the army, is olden but golden.

A mate has gun pronz on his blog, Terminal Ballistics. (Do take the bullets out before you make the sex with your firearm, gun fans.)


Babel Fish is a translator bot. It's named after a small wet fish invented by Douglas Adams. There is a link to it on my sidebar for the convenience of non-English speakers who read this blog.

BabelFish the bot translates from one language to another automatically. You just bung a slab of text into the bot and it translates it into your language.

It works on picking the most likely meaning of a word so you can get some very entertaining translations.

You can also get some weird and disturbing translations. F'rinstance, when I write 'a wee bit of rain' Babel Fish translates it to 'a urine part of rain' in some languages. This may cause alarm and dismay amongst innocent readers.

So, in the spirit of clearing things up, I've made another translation thingy, a Spiketionary.

(And I've added chook strangler to the Ducktionary by the way, Ron.)


(Babelfish users, this glossary is aimed at sorting out some of the confusion caused by Babelfish translations of Scottish English words and the more idiosyncratic words I use. Australian English idiom I use is translated at the Ducktionary. Both the Spiketionary and the Ducktionary are updated ocassionally.)

(Those getting email delivery of this blog (see sidebar) will get this post in their inbox every time I update it.)


Dear Old Thing
elderly person, often frail in mind and/or body

Dear Old Thing

film, movie

the little thrill you get from reading cool stats or finding out you belong in a cool offline demographic

1. small size, small amount
Usage example: 'wee boy', small boy, 'wee bit', small amount, 'a wee while', a short time

2. urine

Monday, July 21, 2008

Running late and out of timetable order

(If you have never stood on a platform waiting for a Sydney train, you won't get the joke in the title.)

I am up to my fucking eyeballs in work at the moment. Plus I'm off on holiday at the end of the week and won't be back until the 2nd of August or something. Should get time to bung something up before i go on holiday but I ain't promising. You can always look at pictures of boats and Freo.

(Keep scrolling down for How to blog

How to blog

Distilled wisdom from yours truly and the interwebs.

What is a blog anyways?
What to blog about
Words or pictures?
What to do & not do
What the hell am I going to call it?
Why isn’t anyone looking at my blog?

What is a blog anyways?

This is a blog. This website, with its new lot of words and pictures I put on it two or three times a week, is a blog. The Clapham Ambulance and Izzlepfaff are blogs, with their new lot of words once or twice a month. Posts as chapters making a completed story or book that may never be updated ever is a blog. This dictionary is a blog, even though I don’t make new posts but instead just add to the existing ones. A Flickr account regularly updated with new photos is a phlog (photo blog). A blog that's mostly audiofiles or podcast is a plog (podcast blog). A YouTube account regularly updated is a vlog (video blog).

So a blog is what you want it to be. If you want to update it twice a week or once a month, it’s a blog. If you want to put up a dozen posts to make it complete then never touch it again, it’s a blog. If you want to write fiction and put one chapter in each post, it’s a blog. If you want to write non-fiction and put one experience in each post, it’s a blog. If you want to put up a photo each Friday and never any words, it's a blog.

What to blog about

Only professional comedians and columnists can regularly come up with something interesting to write about random stuff. If you fancy yourself as one of these or your mates reckon you can do it, go for it. If you fall on your face, hardly anyone will notice.

Have a focus. That is, pick a subject to blog about. The subject of this blog is my walkies in the Woy Woy area. Most bloggers who run out of steam have no focus. Most bloggers who keep blogging have a focus.

Focus examples:

Your hobby
Unless your hobby is watching paint dry, people will be interested in it. Trainspotters have proved this.

Train-spotters have blogs consisting of photographs of trains, a few words about where they were photographed, complaints about the lack of steam trains and accounts of train rides. They link their blogs to other train-spotters’ blogs. Train-spotters all over the world look at other train-spotters’ blogs and every day there’s a new train-spotter blog somewhere in the world because train-spotters are interested in spotted trains.

Yachties have yachting blogs consisting of pictures of yachts, words about yachts and yachting, maps of yachting routes, complaints about other harbour users and links to other yachting blogs.

Walkers have walking blogs consisting of pictures and words about things seen on walks, maps of where they’ve walked, complaints about shoes and links to other walkers’ blogs.

You get the picture. Whatever your hobby is, somewhere out there in the world are thousands of people doing the same hobby. Put up your pictures and words and link to others and be happy.

Your job
People want to know about other people’s jobs. The late Simon Lindsay, known to his blog readers as Doddery Old Fart, told us things like why massive road works are planned for just before the Christmas rush, how to get a 16-wheeler out of a ravine after it’s run off the road and about the subtle forms of revenge a team of road-workers can wreak on their tormentors. He was the world's only blogging road-worker and had a worldwide readership.

There are a lot of work blogs. There’s even a guy who studies work blogs as his work and lists them on his work blog about work blogs.

Think carefully before you start a work blog. Bloggers have been sacked for writing a work blog, even if when they haven’t named the company or slagged off the boss.

Your town
Armchair travel is the most popular form of travel in the world. People like to go somewhere else without leaving home.

This blog, which is about walks around a small town in Australia, gets readers from Canada, the UK, America, New Zealand, China, Japan, Indonesia, Russia, and more, as well as from all over Australia.

Other blogs about other towns get readers from all over the world and from their own town.

I heartily recommend your town as a focus for your blog. It is not hard to find something to blog about every week and you will find out more about your town than most people learn in a lifetime.

Words or pictures?


If you are a good writer, words. If you are an okay writer and a decent photographer, words and pictures. If you think you have nothing to say or no writing skills, pictures.

(If you think you are a crap photographer, there's nothing like taking more photos for learning photography.)

If you write stuff between the pictures and no-one reads it, that’s their loss not yours. Most people will read the bit about where or how the picture was taken.

You can’t go wrong with pictures. And you can start with pictures and slowly add a few more words each week.

How to take decent photos

What to do & not do

Put up pictures.
Turn on the comments.
Don’t feed the trolls. "Never wrestle with a pig. You both get dirty, but the pig likes it."
What, when, who, where, why and how.
Use blogger.com.
Don’t try to please all the people all the time.
Swear your fucking head off.
Don't swear if you hope to be linked by your local newspaper.
Try not to whinge (whine) too much.
Name your town.
Use a fake name. Your future boss doesn’t need to know you like getting your bottom spanked.
Don’t name your mates, your workplace, your family.
Link, link and link again. Linking makes the web exist.
Write like you talk.
Use the fcuking spell-checker.
Write about something you know.
Make a regular time for blogging.
Have a spare post for when you're too busy to blog.
Don't worry if you obsess about your reader stats for a while.
Use black text on a white background, unless you’re a vampire.
Say what you think not what you think you should think.
Don’t try to be cool.
Back up your blog. When the internet has a fit, you still got your posts.
Don’t expect to make money from your blog.

What the hell am I going to call it?

Write some stuff for your blog, or put together a few dozen pictures, and a name will suggest itself. You can change it later. No-one will be terribly upset.

If your blog is about yachting on Pittwater, call it Yachting on Pittwater.

Why isn’t anyone looking at my blog?
They are. You just don’t know it yet. Get sitemeter.com.

Or maybe nobody knows about your blog yet. Send your mates your blog’s address. If your blog is secret and you’re using blogger.com, you’ll get your first visitor after you show up on Google in a month.

Or your blog lacks focus. Make it about something. Random rants and raves are not focus. Pick a subject and write about that.

If you’ve been blogging for six months and you’ve only got two readers, you’re normal. Unless you’re posting photos of your naughty bits, it takes a year to get a dozen readers.

How to blog by Tony Pierce
Squirrel Some Blog Nuts Away To Use Later


How to take decent photos

Thursday, July 17, 2008

How to take decent photos

(I am very busy and can't blog. This is one I made earlier.)

Spike’s tricks
Putting your old film photos on the internet
Putting your digital photos on the internet
Putting your photos on a blog

I've have a fair few comments about how good my photos and how I must have a great camera. It's nice to hear but it's all an illusion. I take all my photos with a pissy 4 megapixel 4x optical zoom $200 point-and-click camera. That’s all I’ve got. No fancy gear, no training. I am a rank amateur with just a couple of tricks up my sleeve. This is them.

Trick #1
Digital camera

Digital cameras are a fucking godsend. You take all the photos you like then you pick the best. Then you just plug the bastard into your computer and upload the photos onto your hard drive.

Mine is 4 megapixels. It’s a Kodak DX6440. It has half a dozen settings. I use landscape and the one with a symbol of a flower for close-up. On landscape I use the zoom when I need to.

Trick #2
Look through the view-finder.

Yeah, I know the little screen on the back is handy and you don’t need to look through the view-finder. Looking through the view-finder shuts out the rest of the surroundings. You see what will be in the photo and nothing else. This is how you find the right bit of the landscape/whatever to make a nice photo.

Trick #3
Take a lot of photos

Don't take one photo of each thing and hope it's a good one. Take half a dozen photos of thesame thing. Make each photo a bit different.

Different lighting - cloud over sun/not, flash on/off, etc
Different angle - head on, bit to the side, side on
Different distance - zoom in/out/stand closer/back off
Different camera setting - flash on/off, landscape/landscape + zoom/close-up

Trick #4
Crop the bastards

Cropping just means cutting off the bits you don't want.

Foreshore at Leonora Avenue Davistown
The original photo, uncropped, showing the house against the background of its own trees and nearby trees, park and houses.

Cropped to bring the focus in to the house within its immediate surroundings.

Cropped tight to bring the focus right in on the house and the details of its design, construction and condition.

See these photos as slideshow

When the photos are on your computer, open them up in your photo software or in Paintbox and crop them until you’re happy.

(Cropping has a great side effect. It teaches you what to look for when you look through the view-finder. Cropping leads to better photos that don't need cropping.)

That’s it. Seriously. That’s the whole of what I do to make the photos on this blog.

Putting your old film photos on the internet

Some of you have got an old shoebox full of photos taken with a film camera. This is how to turn them into digital photos and show them off without breaking the budget.

$100-200 scanner. Works like a photocopier except the copy is a picture on your computer instead of on a sheet of paper.

Get a free account on Flickr.com. It takes about 3 clicks. Seriously. Click on the ‘Upload’ link.

Send your mates an email with the webpage address for your photos.

Putting your digital photos on the internet

Show them to the world.

Do steps 2 and 3 just above.

Putting your photos on a blog
Do Putting your digital photos on a blog on the internet

Make a free blog like this one. It takes 2 minutes. Seriously.

Log in to Flickr. Click ‘All Sizes’ just above your photo on Flickr and copy the alphabet soup in the box under the photo. Log out of Flickr.

(To copy: Click once in the box, press the ‘CTRL’ and ‘C’ keys on your keyboard, both at once.)

Log in to your blog. Click ‘Create Post’ or ‘New Post’.

Paste the alphabet soup into the posting box. Type something under the alphabet soup to tell us about the photo.

(To paste: Press the ‘CTRL’ and ‘V’ keys on your keyboard both at once.)

Click the ‘Publish’ button. Log out (‘Sign Out’).

You are now a blogger. Come back in a few days and do it again.

Now you've got no excuse. Start putting them photos on the internet, people. We wanna see them.

Monday, July 14, 2008

All about Olive

I hoped I would not have to write this post this year but unfortunately it has happened. Olive Riley, the world's oldest blogger, has died.

She was 108 year old and a Woy Woy resident. She was born in Broken Hill in 1899. She died at 6am yesterday in the nursing home in which she has lived for some years. Her blog, All About Olive is maxed out at the moment and can't be accessed. But the news sites are full of the news and it is on the TV tonight.

From the ABC article below:
"Documentary maker Mike Rubbo says the idea for blogging came from another older friend who had taken it up.

"He suggested that Ollie could blog so we put it to her and explained what a blog was and then I undertook to do all the sort of leg work, it was great fun and it was great too to probe her memory more deeply and you get evermore stories about her past, many of which of course were set in Broken Hill," he said."

From the SMH:
"She will be mourned by family and an international readership in the thousands.

"She had people communicating with her from as far away as Russia and America on a continual basis, not just once in a while."

Olive had posted more than 70 entries on her blog, or as she jokingly labelled it, her "blob", since February last year.
Olive's funeral will be held at Palmdale Cemetery, on the NSW Central Coast, late this week."

Her main site, All About Olive, is inaccessible at the moment due to traffic no doubt. You can say goodbye to her World's Oldest Blogger, run by Eric Shackle while her usual blob typist Mike Rubbo was on holiday.

Goodbye, Olive. We will miss you.

'World's oldest blogger' dies at 108 (ABC) - includes videos of Olive & map of Broken Hill.

World's oldest blogger makes final post (SMH)

Someone peed on the fish - Olive singing & talking on YouTube, posted by Mike Rubbo

Film Broken Hill - photos of Broken Hill

Update, 17th July 2008

World farewells its oldest blogger in the other local rag, the Express Advocate.

Olive's main blob, All About Olive, is accessible again after the massive spike of traffic following the news of her death.

Mike Rubbo, Olive's typist, photographer and video-er, made it possible for her to be the world's oldest blobber. He also went above and beyond in emailing readers when she flagged, asking them to comment again to help perk her up.

Mike has written on the post of 13th July: "She was on the Sydney Harbour bridge when Simon De Groote cut the ribbon, pre empting the opening of that famous bridge, but she took no part". (See the Bridge's 75th for de Groot)

She was born before Queen Victoria died and before Australia became officially Australia at Federation (both 1901) and lived through both World Wars and the Great Depression.

May we all be Olive when we're old.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

A little house by the water

For long-winded and boring reasons, I can't yet upload the photos I took while I was offline. So we'll look at a few of my favourite wee old houses around Woy Woy and Brisbane Water.

Mulhall Street Wagstaffe

#1 (Map reference)
We'll start with this lovely old place overlooking the water from Mulhall Street Wagstaffe. Its owner, Geoff, tells us it was built in 1907 and the bargeboards (those curly white boards on the edge of the roof) are original.

Geoff on the house's history

Foreshore at Leonora Avenue Davistown

On the water at Leonora Avenue Davistown. Just a few steps from the Lintern Street ferry stop and there you are. Bloody nice spot for a house.

Henderson Road Saratoga

A home among the gum trees. Just like the song says. Henderson Road Saratoga, looking across the Lintern Channel to Woy Woy.

Sorrento House Sorrento Road Empire Bay

Sorrento House Sorrento Road Empire Bay. One street back from the water and 30 seconds from the Empire Bay ferry stop. Must be 18 months now since this one was bulldozed.

Albany Street Point Frederick

Albany Street Point Frederick (Longnose), looking down into Caroline Bay and across at Peeks Point.

Croke Cottage at St Joseph's Orphanage Kincumber South

Croke Cottage, in the grounds of the old orphanage at Kincumber South. Out the back door and twenty yards down to the water. The old orphanage ferry stop is about 60 yards away. A very quiet spot at the mouth of the Kincumber Broadwater.

Twin houses Parks Bay

Twin houses at Parks Bay, just across the water (and the railway tracks) from Woy Woy.

Meena Street Woy Woy Bay

Meena Street Woy Woy Bay, circa 1908, just across the water from Woy Woy. Sharp-eyed persons will have noticed this lovely old place in the background of interviews with Belinda "Anger Management Issues" Neal, of Iguana-gate fame.

Ocean View Road Ettalong

Lovely old house on Ocean View Road Ettalong. This is its back view. It looks across Lance Webb Reserve to Wagstaffe and, further, to Barrenjoey Head.

Cedar Crescent Woy Woy

Cedar Crescent Woy Woy, looking over the tops of the houses opposite across the water to St Huberts Island and Davistown. That glassed-in veranda is the perfect spot to settle down on a cold winter morning with the sun coming in and a nice hot cuppa tea and a bacon sarnie.

Match the # numbers on the photos to the map.

(Thepurple dots are the route of the ferry Saratoga, the other dots are the route of the Cockatoo ferry Codock II.)


Is it just me or does everyone hear that line "I had an uncle who once played for red star belgrade" in Sexuality as 'I had an uncle who once laid a red star brigade'?

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Aaaand we're back

Right then. Catch-up post.
Fagans Bay & Phegans Bay

(Road collapse site at the bottom left just under Phegans Bay, detour from Woy Woy to Phegans & other bays is via Kariong, up the top left between Fagans Bay & Gosford. Bit of a hike.)

Nice big picture on the front page last week of a 50 metre crack in Woy Woy Road near Staples Lookout on the Kariong road. If it gets much wider everyone in The Bays will be cut off by road and have to stay home for 6 months or buy a sea-plane.

The same road collapsed further down a month ago and residents of The Bays have to go via Kariong to get home. From Woy Woy to The Bays used to be a 5 minute trip. Now it's 30 - 90 minutes, depending on the traffic, not to mention heaps more petrol. And petrol prices are about $1.77 a litre (85p a litre, $US1.68) at the moment and still going up.

Phegan's Bay & Woy Woy

(So close, so close and yet so far. Woy Woy on the left, the Bays on the right.)

The consultant bloke the council got in said they have to wait until the weather's been good and dry for a bit before they can patch it up. So, months then.

Now the F3 is looking shaky

'Urgent' repairs to fix crack

I am loving this Iguanagate business. It's hilarious. Pollies behaving badly caught on camera.

For overseas readers, Iguana-gate is named after Iguana Joe's, the Gosford waterfront nightclub in which two local politicians went feral (bananas) a few weeks ago. They are Belinda Neal, Federal Member for Robertson, and John Della Bosca, State Member for Education. (Roughly equivalent to a US senator and US state politician.) They live in a lovely old place in The Bays.

Della Bosca drove as they left Iguana's that night and he's been done for drink driving or cautioned or something. Neal went feral and abused staff and threatened to close the place down. Anger management issues apparently.

The other day Della Bosca hid in the loo (toilet) then they both finally agreed to be interviewed by the cops. The soap opera continues. This is way better than Big Bother.


The Bouddi needs you
This wee notice appeared in the SMH a couple of weeks ago:

"World War II Gosford Radar Station: Bouddi Peninsula History Project seeks
RAAF, WAAF and army personnel who served at Bombi Point Radar Station or
nearby. Hoping to reconstruct war years in the area from oral history, documents, field trips and photos. Contact David Dufty, duftys@ozemail.com.au or 4360 1650."

That makes three WWII installations I know about in the area. The old emergency airstrip under Trafalgar Avenue, the Nissen huts up at Ourimbah station, now used as factories and stuff, and the Bombi Point radar. And that's without my even trying to find WWII info on the area.

Run fox run
We got a lot of foreign beasties in Australia. When the Poms settled here in 1788 they started bringing over domesticated animals like cows and chooks (chickens) and stuff and rabbits then foxes to control the rabbits and so on.

These foreign beasties bugger up the local environment, eating too many of the native beasties or eating what they eat and so they starve and so on.

I still haven't seen a fox on my walkies, though not for want of trying. They are shy buggers. But there's always notices about fox baiting up in Rambalara Reserve and other parts of the bush.

Anyways, National Parks is doing baiting over on Pelican Island and Rileys Island now.

"The fox control program," says the Advocate, "aims to protect native animals including threatened species such as the bush-stone curlew, eastern pygmy possum and yellow-bellied gliders. [NPWS regional manager] Ms Farrell said foxes carried diseases which could be spread to domestic animals."

Found out my family knows about this blog and is reading it. This makes me squirm frankly. I love my family but I am suddenly conscious of them looking over my shoulder at what I write, all the effing and blinding and whinging and (gulp) stuff about my sex life.

Sometimes when I whinge about things on here it's hard to get across in words only exactly how bad or not bad it is. Usually I'm just whinging to let off steam about it which is what blogging is for) and you end up thinking I'm worse than I am. Sometimes I say stuff about family that is not the whole story because bloggers rarely put the whole story about their family on the world-wide internet. So readers who are family end up getting a skewed picture.

That's not getting things across very well either but it's 6am and I have been up half the night talking to God on the big white phone. See? Now I have to email you and tell you I'm not at death's door and I haven't talked to God for yonks and I'm fine, seriously.

I'll do you a deal. You stop reading the blog and stick to looking at the photos on Flickr and I'll ring more often so you can hear how fine I am.

Onya Jase
Jason van Genderen got a gong. A third gong in fact, from the Shoot Out Film Festival for a film he made on his mobile (cell phone). He's a local bloke, lives up at Kincumber (see map above) and his fillum was about Gosford. Read the rest of the article at the Advocate.

Volunteer walkies
Gosford Walkers is "looking for more volunteers and walkers" to take vision-impaired peeps walkies "along the Gosford waterfront for about an hour. It usually ends up with a cup of coffee and a chat back at the club...Gosford Walkers meets every Saturday at 8.45am. Inquiries: 4325 3686."