A week after the storm —-Warning Photograph Heavy..

dsc01982 dsc01983 dsc01984 dsc01985Friday:

Was a near perfect spring day here. Bit of wind but 33c – warm and sunny. That being so I decided that it was time. Got into the car with the Benji and we drove out to the wetlands. I did a circuit of the main pond then did a half circuit and used the new bridge to cut back to the car. I pushed but I didn’t want to push too much. It was slow in places and I rested a little AND thank goodness for drinking fountains for humans and animals. I did not take the cane with me even although it was suggested by certain people that I should. As far as I am concerned, it has served its purpose and will now go quietly into a corner and stay there.

On Monday afternoon I have to go to the hospital for an Echocardiograph  Last time I had one of these done I had to travel down to Adelaide to the Flinders Medical Center. Yes we have all the equipment here – we just don’t have the professional people to operate it. Why am I having this done – well the simple answer is that it has been a year since it was last done and my Cardiologist likes his tests. I go see him in three weeks and one hour before the appointment, I go for an ECG – ho yes, he likes his tests  :o)

Saturday:

There were more things going on up in the grass so that’s where most people were at the time. The Whyalla Players are  rehearsing  “Mary Poppins” and they asked  people  to turn up today with an umbrella and they would take a series of photographs as a promoting thing. That’s why I was down there – no I am not from the players, just an interested citizen with an umbrella.

I didn’t have Benji with me. Only 29c but too warm to leave him in the car – even with the windows cracked open. Was different yesterday – we were out walking and driving with the A/c on.

 

From Hummock Hill.
From Hummock Hill.

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Nearly back to Normal.

Some of the blame game and the complaints have started already with truck drivers unhappy with the closure of Port Wakefield. Also the Port Wakefield service stations have lost a lot of

Just a little bit wet.
Just a little bit wet.

money this long weekend. Anyway, one of the complaints is that the authorities were too hasty in closing down access to Port Wakefield despite the fact that the water continues to rise. The weather cleared and there has been an aerial inspection of the damage to the power pylons. In this area alone there were six pylons bent and twisted like children’s toys and overall there were 23 destroyed or damaged pylons in the system.  And just to make life interesting – another storm is bearing down on us and should be here by late Monday / Tuesday with an estimated 100mm of rain – Oh Joy!! However, the bulk of the main storm has now moved into Victoria and New South Wales. On the subject of these two  States, South Australia is very, very thankful for the teams of  Emergency Workers that have crossed the Border to help us out, assist in the clean-up and  give our emergency crews some much needed rest. Considering there are state wide floods in both Victoria and New South Wales, the help  is more than appreciated.  There is to be an investigation into the State-wide blackout and why 1.7 million people were left without power – some for 25 hours and some still waiting for the restoration of full power – Arrium, Port Pirie, Port Lincoln and Roxby Downs  for instance. Arrium is just holding things together with limited power.   The way things are going in South Australia these days I think we will soon be singing the Depression Song:

Once I built a railroad and made it run

Made it race against time

Once I built a railroad, now it’s done

Brother, can you spare a dime

Chienne and her Thundershirt
Chienne and her Thundershirt

When Chienne died last year and it was decided that I would get another dog, I made it clear that I wanted a mature dog, not a puppy. I said about 5 or 6 years old would be good. I looked at this Diego (Now Benji) and he at five – going on six , seemed to fit the bill so I travelled to Mount Gambier to have a final  look at him and bring him home. Now I know I have gone through this before but bear with me – there is a point.  I adopted him and brought him home and Annabell decided that  she should give him his name and chose, Benji.  We decided that he should have a birthday, and since we had no idea (no papers-on way) when he was born the date of his adoption was chosen as his Birthday.  Last  Tuesday, the day before the storm,  his final papers came from Victoria and I learned that he was born on  the First Day of May 2013. In other words, he was a puppy, really. Not what I wanted at all. But although I didn’t really know the difference, my Vet never corrected me or said anything that would lead me to believe me I was wrong and that he was much younger than I believed. However, the rescue group is a small scale operation and funding is what they can raise, so they wouldn’t have the resources to do any investigation and probably accepted what they had been told.  What is for sure is that if his real age had been known, yes,  it is very possible I would have passed him over and looked for something else, but the universe has a way of arranging these things and I stopped, looked and having looked long enough, I knew he was for me. I did buy him a Birthday Present for tomorrow so I will still wrap it up and give it to him.

Me and some of my toys
Me and some of my toys

There was a very rare occurrence here during the week. A set of smaller  fingers got onto my computer – which I had foolishly left open – and wrote comments on several places. Then, having been found out attempted to delete everything as she had been shown in school. I have no idea where she went or what she did, but I will wait and see if there is  any fallout and correct and apologies where I can – if I can.

Sun is shining, birds are singing, trees are in blossom – it’s spring!! And – it be 33c in our little corner of the universe. Blue skies for the remainder of the week :o) This time next week – on the way to Adelaide – will probably rain!!

 

Rachel, Grandma, Cricket and Butterfly

jewish-new-year-clipart-1Rachel, I have enjoyed all your posts this year and I have learned a lot. I look forward to reading more of your posts in the coming year. I wish you and yours, Joy and Peace for this New Year – but not just you, to all of your family and friends and also to others who are part of the Jewish Community – wherever you are, Blessings.

 

Happy New Year to all our friends
Happy New Year to all our friends

Stormy Weather Continues.

Friday 30th September

Yesterday was an odd day in that I was able to post things and get most of the mail through. Today it is a different story. Today there is no mail, no internet and no telephone. I think the clean-up has started today in some areas. We still have 22 major electricity pylons down so that being so I  suppose that we should be considered fortunate that we have power for lighting and heating. The Broadband network and the mobile (Cell) phone network are both down. At the moment I am using MS Word and will transfer this to WordPress when the system becomes available again.

The storm may have eased in this area but it still continues in Adelaide and the South East . We  have TV and I just saw on the news that a man believed that warnings didn’t apply to him and he tried to drive through flood waters – and yes, he had to be rescued .   I think the amazing thing about all of this is the fact there has been no serious injuries or loss of life.

Port Pirie was saved in that the wind eased and the town was saved from flooding although just down the road in Port Broughton, they were not so fortunate and there was a lot of flooding in that little township. I also hear that the Barossa and the Clare areas are flooded. There is serious flooding in many parts of Adelaide – houses and properties inundated.

Optus went down on Wednesday and has still not come back on again. Telstra is on and off and on again, then off. I just wish they would make up their minds. At the moment, it’s off again so no internet and no telephone calls, either mobile (cell) or landline.

wakefield-river-3-hours-ago
wakefield-river-3-hours-ago

All afternoon the clouds have been dark and it has gotten progressively colder as the afternoon wore on. It’s just coming up to 5pm and it has now been raining for the best part of half an hour. It just refuses to give up. Even as little 20-25 mm will be enough, given all that has gone before, to send many small rivers and creeks into flood. There is concern about the flooding of the Port Wakefield river. Normally this is a creek that has very little water in it, but given this volume of rain it can quickly become fairly aggressive as it gathers water from the surrounding catchment areas. If this happens it can flood quite quickly and cut off the main highway at one end of the town.  (It’s happened!!)

In Port Augusta there was a fair amount of structural and environmental damage and the Joy Baluch Bridge – the main bridge across the Gulf was closed because of its height and the danger of the  high winds. There is another crossing further up the gulf but it is a serious detour to Yorkeys Crossing and round the top of the gulf and back to the main highway.

At the bottom of the Eyre Peninsula, the city of Port Lincoln is still without electricity – or any power. Most of the food has gone and there are now concerns about potable water and there is also concern regarding the sewage systems. A modern Australian city and food relief packages are being flown in – like a third world country in crisis – bread, some package food, baby formula, milk, water etc.

The Smelter at Port Pirie took a hit and will be out of action for repairs for about two weeks. Arrium also took a hit and was forced to close down, at a cost of about six million a day. Andrew, my son, was called out to the mines at Middleback and he and a team were working frantically to avert a mining “catastrophe” (his words) – although what that was I have no idea – he did not

pylons-down
pylons-down

elaborate.

The clean-up and restoration will take weeks, if not months and there will be the usual “Blame Game” My own view is I don’t care about the politicians and their point scoring off each other, but I believe there should be an investigation into why these pylons came down as they did. Trees in the area were unaffected yet these steel pylons,  22 of them,  were bent in half as if they were child’s toys and not major carriers of high voltage electrical power lines.  I would also like to know, whether it’s good or bad, who supplied the steel for these things. But I think that might be something that we never get to know, but a state-wide failure that put 1.7 million people in darkness is something we should get to know.

Latest: As of 7am this morning the main highway north at Port Wakefield has been closed due to the flooding of the Wakefield River. There are major diversions in place through Two Wells and Virginia for cars, buses and light trucks. Heavy trucks are stuck.