Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Day 182 - Here's an irrelevant photo

It's a case of the photo being irrelevant to the day. Would you have preferred a photo of me taking my sons to have their hair cut (and one of them emerging looking like Jerry did in an episode of Seinfeld, which curiously centred on a barber called Enzo - same name as our hairdresser). Or a photo of me silently cursing when I scored a very, very, very slow person at the supermarket checkout? Or me getting wet on the way to the car with my shopping? The laundry perhaps? I think not. This photo will do for today.

Day 181 - Orange cake

I just realised how incredibly boring this photo is, especially with the colour of the table blending with the cake, but oh well. Just the day for baking - cold, incredibly windy, short periods of lashing rain. Orange cake has always been one of my favourites. Mmmmm... can't wait for a big slice with coffee.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Day 180 - Late in the day

Cold, late-afternoon sky. I'm not out in the backyard much these days, but when I am, I love checking out the changing backdrop to the trees. Winter has its own colours. I've been thinking how much less interesting Summer-blue skies are, with the hot sun bleaching out the tones with its shimmering heat. I love the depth and contrast of Winter colours.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Day 179 - Bennett's Lane

Sunday night we went to Bennett's Lane for jazz. Jamie Oehlers was on saxophone and the other guys I don't know. They were playing music by Thelonius Monk. Very enjoyable, only the girl who was serving drinks was a little strange walking around on her knees collecting glasses.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Day 178 - Federation Square

Federation Square in Melbourne is always a bustle of activity - what a change from the olden days when this corner was the Gas and Fuel building. Currently there's some kind of sound and light exhibition. I didn't actually go and stand in it, I just observed from a nearby cafe.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Day 177 - Old photos

Obviously I didn't take this photo but it's one of the many old photos I've been scanning. This one is me at Luna Park - some of you may have similar photos. Pity the moon is no longer there. Some of the photos are of my great-grandparents and their lives. I wanted to preserve these in electronic form before they disintegrated. I've also been scanning old postcards of places which may or may not exist. I know there's a website which is a collection of photos of places around the world. It would be interesting to compare the cities in these pre-war photos to present-day photos.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Day 176 - Sunset in the corridor

What could be happening here? Some sort of existentialist crisis as the sun goes down. The end of adolescence? Angst in monochrome? Or contrived artsy photograph?

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Day 175 - Taps

Our bathroom taps have been the subject of discussion by guests at times. Unfortunate really. Why did we buy them? They were on sale.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Day 174 - Morning Winter sun

Managed to catch the golden sun projected on trees against an intense grey sky this morning. Lovely morning on my day off - quiet, warm inside, no need to rush. Everyone should have a day off a week. I recommend it; good for your wellbeing.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Day 173 - Old clock

I remember my parents' clock from my childhood. It used to resonate with a cold, steely echo which sounded desolate during the night. When I look at the clock I remember the laminex table and sideboard, the glass coffee table with the bowl of plastic fruit, the macrame decorative wall hanging, and the dried flower arrangement on brass scales. Takes me back.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Day 172 - Baby's first communion

Today was little Sophie's first communion. Godfather, Sasha, managed not to drop her, and Sophie managed not to throw up on him when he was feeding her. All in all a good day.

Day 171 - City day

City day again, as on most Saturdays. Today's weather was not so much grey as neutral, a cold kind of neutral that soaks up all colours in the landscape, rendering everything colourless. I love these days in the city because the greyness is a good backdrop for the coloured lights, making cafes cosy, and glowing in the Atrium of Federation Square, as pictured.

Day 170 - Time flies

Lately time has been racing. Have you noticed? It seems that only recently the year had begun. Time is elusive, it has many faces. Sometimes it drags, other times you realise it's slipped past without you noticing. Having boys aged 15 and 18 has intensified this for me. The transition from boyhood to manhood happens before your eyes, and you have to adjust your perception of them to keep up. I think I've reflected on time before; it's a leitmotif, perhaps.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Day 169 - What makes you happy?

What makes you happy? Discovering unexpected treasures, crisp mornings and lit up cafes, innovative ideas, and the company of special people.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Day 168 - Chiaroscuro

Chiaroscuro is the Italian word for light-dark. Wikipedia says chiaroscuro 'is a term in art for a contrast between light and dark. The term is usually applied to bold contrasts affecting a whole composition, but is also more technically used by artists and art historians for the use of effects representing contrasts of light, not necessarily strong, to achieve a sense of volume in modeling three-dimensional objects such as the human body'.
The concept or theme of light/dark is dominant throughout history in areas of religion, morality, ethics, and science, just to mention a few. I think that the comparison between light and dark, or good and evil, or happy and sad, is an inexhaustible area of study. And don't we always experience one in comparison to the other? Isn't our happiness felt in contrast to sadness that we have previously felt? Don't we treasure wellbeing moreso after a period of illness? Don't we feel fortunate when comparing ourselves to others' hardship? In some instances, we yearn to experience the opposite - we tire of Winter and yearn for Summer, or we tire of the heat and wish for cooler weather. I think there is always a tension between these two polar states.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Day 167 - In search of a gift

In search of a small gift for my mother today on my day off, I visited a favourite nursery, The Greenery, in Heidelberg. Winter doesn't have to be boring with these colourful blooms.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Day 166 - Coffee

Sometimes it's just me and my cup of coffee.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Day 165 - Christening

Today my 18 year old son became godfather for the first time. His goddaughter is a gorgeous, happy and inquisitive little 6 month old girl. He was relieved after the service that he didn't drop her, and that she didn't throw up on him. I was relieved that he didn't drop her. And now he can call himself 'da Godfadda'.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Day 164 - Royal Arcade

Stopped at an ATM for market money this morning, very cold air. I love Melbourne city in the winter, with its darkish laneways and cosy cafes. Here's the entrance to Royal Arcade. Funny, I don't usually notice the gold ornament above the entrance.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Day 163 - Mobiles save the gorillas

Our school is involved in the national mobile phone recycling campaign to help save gorillas. They're Calling on You, a campaign supported by Australian zoos, aims to reduce the need for coltan, a metallic ore used in mobile manufacture, divert phones from landfill, and raise money for primate conservation. Read about it here: http://www.zoo.org.au/News/Zoos_Save_Gorillas

Day 162 - Another day in the kitchen

Wake up in the dark, get dressed, have breakfast, drive to school, work, talk to people, gnash teeth, drive home, make dinner, do the washing, talk to people, laugh, gnash teeth, go to bed, sleep, wake up, start again....
Annoying or strangely comforting?

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Day 161 - study (in)sanity

Today was a very cold day (top 11 degrees Celcius) and my older son (18 yo) stayed home from Uni to study for exams. I returned home from school to be greeted at the door with a plate of scones with jam and cream. He had to Google how to whip cream!

His first home-made scones, borne out of study boredom! But wait! There's more! Insanity had struck. When I came into the living room, I was greeted by familiar faces from my son's childhood. Must say, I've missed these guys...

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Day 160 - Dumplings

My friend, Dawn, recently posted a mouth-watering photo of her golden syrup dumplings.

Too good to pass up, I took the opportunity of requesting the recipe, and decided that Monday of the long weekend was a perfect time to make these for dessert. Only I didn't have golden syrup, so I substituted maple syrup.

Hmmm.... I don't think the maple syrup was a good idea. Do you think we ate this formless mass?

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Day 159 - Long weekend breakfast

The exquisite pleasure of an extra day in the weekend, a slow morning, and grilled cheese on toast for breakfast instead of cereal. The simple pleasures of life.

Day 158 - Evening with friends

Good friends from our 13 years in Sydney visited last night, and we spent the night laughing and sharing stories. My friend and her daugher travel to the craft and similar shows to sell jewellery. They were generous with their gifts to us. Check me out wearing the biggest and heaviest bling ever! I have these in 4 colours!

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Day 157 - Block Place

Most Saturdays I walk through this lane off Little Collins Street and towards Block Arcade. No matter what the weather, the cafes are always full. There's a lovely little jewellery shop, a good music shop (Basement Discs) and once you're in Block Arcade you can enjoy Haigh's chocolate. Today I bought chocolate peppermint frogs.

Day 156 - Cirque du Soleil

My 18 yo son surprised me with a generous gift for Mother's Day - tickets for me and my husband to go to Cirque du Soleil- something we've always wanted to go to. A brilliant performance, displaying incredible skill, choreography, music, costumes and humour. We loved every minute of it. Our tickets included parking on site, and we enjoyed hors d'oeuvres and drinks in the tent, Tapis Rouge (pictured here) before the performance, and decadent desserts during the interval. A day we'll remember.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Day 155 - Left-over cake

Left-over cake on the second day is often even better than the first day. How so? Well, the second day you already know how delicious it is, and you anticipate the cake. The first day you might have it at the end of a long and overindulgent meal, and therefore you don't appreciate it in the same way you do when you're eating it after an ordinary meal. It might improve in flavour, becoming more saturated.

The second day in general is, I think, highly underrated. On the second day, with the cake as with anything else, you know what to expect and are ready to appreciate whatever it is. You're in control of the experience whereas the first time may take you by surprise. I sometimes think I would have enjoyed my wedding day more on the second day. It was too new an experience, and I wasn't prepared emotionally or mentally - too many conflicting feelings overwhelming me. The second day I would be confident, and would be able to savour the moment.

This post is an experiment following a conversation with a fellow photo-blogger about the difficulty of writing something worthwhile to accompany a photo when nothing much happens. How did I do?

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Day 154 - My sister's Namesday

My sister Lena's Namesday today. We celebrated by going out to a Chinese restaurant in Smith Street, Collingwood. The restaurant is called 'Bamboo Room', and is fairly new. I would recommend you rush there as soon as you can, before they gather a larger clientele and raise their prices. We shared various entrees and mains and paid less than $20 a head. You could even BYO which is becoming almost impossible. The food is nothing like the standard Chinese in traditional restaurants that cater for non-Chinese. It was delicious and spicy. Can't remember the number for those in Melbourne but it's opposite Vibe (where my sister's studio is upstairs), closer to Gertrude Street.
The boys are seriously considering the menu. You can see we don't take our food lightly.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Day 153 - Led Zeppelin

Tshirt boy convinced me that the tshirt theme had to last for a week because the webcomics feature things for a week. Not sure about that... Still, I don't have to think of a photo for 7 days. You should probably tune out for a few days (if anyone is reading this; or I could be talking to myself). Meanwhile, I used to love Led Zeppelin in the 70s.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Day 152 - Gomez

The tshirt was bought at the Byron Bay Blues Festival 2007. Gomez is a folk- and blues-inspired Band. I think I've stumbled across a whole new range of photo possibilities. Together with - let's see.... hairstyles, odd pen lids, toilet paper designs....