Adelaide, Home and a mini-reflection

Rundle Mall early evening

The drive to Adelaide was not too bad. The weather up in this little corner of the world was good, but  there was bands of rain and mist sweeping across from about Snowtown onward.  Annoying in that  you just switch on the wipers and then  within a minute switch them off again. Bright sun, then another band moves in and wipers on, then off, then….  until after Port Wakefield – about 100 klms. from Adelaide. I  spent much of Adelaide shopping and getting things for Annabell as well as  spending time in Bunnings for garden things and a new hammock. I also wanted to get  a  new canopy for the garden seat, but no luck there. I did buy one on line a while ago but Australian Garden seats  are smaller than a three seat and larger than a two seat – awkward – I may have to get one made. Friday is late night shopping in town and I like to wander through Rundle Mall. Surprisingly enough, it was not very busy although is was cold. From there I walked the half mile or so to the Central Market which was open until 9pm.  I didn’t do much at the market other than get some new cook books and a bag of mandarins,

Victoria Square, Adelaide

which I am fond of, but I did take what I thought was a  fairly reasonable shot of Victoria Square, which these days is well lit up. Before it was dull and dreary but in recent years Adelaide has started to look  much more interesting and welcoming at night – provided you don’t go wandering off the main areas. We still have a few problems in that regard and it’s still not a good idea to go wandering off on your own in less frequented areas – “safety in Numbers”still applies. One of the streets that was a major concern has mostly been “tamed” with most of the “nightclubs”having been moved on.

Built as a minesweeper and launched in 1942 HMAS Whyalla saw service mostly in the Pacific. She was one of 60 “Bathurst  Class” Minesweepers/ Corvettes and was awarded

HMAS Whyalla
Launched 1942

three Battle Honours for her service. She was decommissioned in 1947 and sold to the Victorian Government, renamed “Rip” and used as a Lighthouse supply ship  and various other civilian duties. In 1984 she was to be sold for scrap. HMAS Whyalla was the first ship built in the Whyalla Shipbuilding yard and rather then let it be scrapped and forgotten the Whyalla City Council negotiated with the Victorian Government to buy the ship. This was done and the ship was brought back to Whyalla with

a volunteer crew and under her own steam. She remained in the slipway until 1987 when she was -slowly- moved 2 kilms to her present landlocked position  as the centerpiece of the Whyalla Maritime Museum, which was opened in 1988. I have taken family and visitors to the Maritime Museum  but Annabell has stayed in the car or watched from the  ground – the stairs being too much for her. There are a number of seasonal things that attract people here not the least of which is the  diving to observe the giant cuttlefish. This has grown in size in the last few years and the RFDS (Whyalla) has been involved every year since it began. This year, this month, in fact,  it will be 40 years since Annabell and I, and the two boys moved to Australia. We had been married 10 years to the month when we left Scotland. Much has changed

Another View
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Beds, flowers and Kangaroos.

Daddy wasn’t using it so I was protecting it for him…

There have been a few days over the last two weeks when it has not been cold, wet and windy – always windy!  Yesterday was no exception with 70kph winds causing  concern with dust storms and damage to powerlines and trees in Adelaide. I had concern for two trees but they survived – again. They cause me concern every time the wind blows stronger than usual but they have always survived – for which I am most thankful. The few days I did get out and about we were able to get down to the wetlands and sample the coffee at the new Kiosk. I actually went back down to the wetlands recently but the kiosk was crowded but then it was a nice day with only a limited amount of wind i.e. it was not blowing a gale. The only blessing – if you can call it that – of the wind right at the moment is that it keeps the flies away.

I have been busy with RFDS things this last few weeks. The major thing being organising  the catering with the Model Railway Club. This year is their 50th Anniversary and they have organised a big  Model Railway Exhibition to celebrate,  with clubs and displays coming in from inter-state for the two days. Two funerals and  guests at a wedding and I have had myself removed from  the RFDS Social Media page.  Benji has not been neglected. We still go out for our walks. There is a bit of progress with Benji. I did mention some time ago that  for some reason being lifted on to a shoulder drove him crazy and he fought to get down, even to the extent of risking injury. I have never had a dog that didn’t like being carried on the shoulder at times. Annabell and I discussed this and since we really know nothing of his background before I adopted him, we surmised that perhaps he had been abused when in that  position. Anyway, I worked on it – and treats helped.

We catered for a function yesterday at Civic Park and I was called from the people working  that some forms had been handed to them by the Council and  could I come down and collect them. I decided to take Benji with me. This  Civic Park function is the culmination of a week in which we celebrate pride in our community and in the park all sorts of things happen with activities for the  children. Anyway, what I didn’t know was that this year there was to be a demonstration  by the Dog Obedience Group – lots of dogs. Benji was not a happy  boy. He gets on well with dogs that come into the house – dogs that I look after –  although where the WaWa was concerned that was a sort of armed neutrality. However, back to the park and he started

Early morning walk.
I have a flower – a Rose, no less.

getting anxious and he jumped up on me, and I bent down and lifted him up onto my shoulder and he stayed, quite happily. Definitely progress.

Yesterday the Pride in the Park function was  held in a warm and sunny 26c. I  took Benji down to the Wetlands and had a good walk round. I was going to have coffee at the kiosk, but it was crowded and busy – which is good, so I gave it a miss this time.   Today when I took him out at 6:16 am there was not a breeze and not a cloud in the sky, which wont last. The expected temperature for today is 34c with wind, -as I said in the first line – always with the wind.. I realise that I am probably a pain in the butt with this wind thing, but in all the years I have been here I have never known it to be like this. Yes we have had a bit of wild weather and high winds from time to time, but this constant wind  was never a feature of past years.

This coming weekend we are out again catering at the Model Railway Exhibition. his is over two days and I can help at one but not at the second since we have a Special Service at Church and  I will be there for much of the day – lunch afterwards for members and guests.

It’s all happening……….

The fall-out over the sudden collapse of the South Australian  Construction/ Engineering company,  York Civil, continues with sub-contractors owed hundreds of thousands of dollars and projects in Adelaide, Western Australia and New South Wales now under threat. I was not being facetious the other day when I said that staff arrived at work on Monday morning and by lunch had all their things in cardboard boxes and were heading out the door – that is exactly how it happened. By  Monday evening there was some hope – by Tuesday it was gone and the company ceased trading. In the last few months we have lost two Engineering Companies here – Stassi Engineering and Ottaway Engineering, which is not helping. However, York Civil was not involved in any projects here. I thought the big City Council / GFG Alliance Joint Announcement was yesterday but I was wrong -it is today (Wednesday) The reason for today is that the

My Almond Tree in Blossom

State Premier, Steven Marshall, will be here today.

During my Adelaide trip Yogi went home.  Jim’s son came and collected him. We don’t mind looking after Yogi – he is no trouble and he and Benji get on well.  Jim is not allowed to drive and Fay is looking after him, so I have become the taxi driver for the Coffee Ladies ( well,  three ) until further notice. Jim’s son will be going home to Western Australia to his own family  today.  I have spent the last two days organising people for the  RFDS Stand at the Show this weekend. We have one and a half days to be on duty and I have managed to get everyone organised and ready to go. I will be there on Saturday covering two shifts from 1pm to 8pm and close. It’s really an information only stand. We can have donation tins and we can run a raffle but we are not allowed to sell anything. Still it should be an interesting day and a half and I would like to think that we get to talk to a lot of interesting – and interested – people. I spoke to the chairman of the Men’s Shed and they were offered a stand at the show, but couldn’t get any volunteers to help run it — which I thought was sad.

1st Announcement: The Premier has just announced that the State Government will commit $100 million to the building of a new 7

Lovely Day

-12 High School to replace the three  current, and declining  High Schools. The Senior High School, was a 1960s style school and it showed it. The students did not like it, mainly because  it was quite depressing and its facilities were old and worn.  The labor government did an assessment of the school and suggested that it was too big for the number of students, so they wanted two wings closed down and classes merged – and – they would no longer pay for the cleaning of these areas. Three teachers refused to move because of the disruption it would cause their students. They were told by admin. that their classrooms would no longer be cleaned. Fine!! The three “rebels”bought a decent  Hoover between them and undertook to clean the classrooms themselves. Their students decided that they would help out so some came in early to help their teachers clean up. Recently the School has spent a lot of money trying to brighten up the place. It’s not too bad looking now, but it’s still tired.

2nd Announcement: British Billionaire owner of GFG Alliance has announced the launching of a $1Billion energy program, the first phase of which will begin outside of Whyalla in early 2019. This will be a 280 Megawatt Solar Power Station capable of powering 100,000 homes and the larger part of the needs of the GFG Alliance Steel Plant. Initial creation of 350 new jobs.  The company said the 600 gigawatt hours of generation per year was enough to power 96,000 average homes, with its 780,000 solar panels spread across 11 square kilometres, an area 550 times larger than Adelaide Oval. It would offset 492,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide each year.

Before the rain came today.

3rd Announcement: GFG Alliance will supply the steel for the construction of the  165 metre  Jetty. The Jetty was damaged in a storm surge over a year ago and has been out of commission since.  A public debate was held and suggestions made for the shape and size of the new jetty and the final plans will now go out for tender. Once approval is granted, the Council, State Government and GFG Alliance will each contribute to the funding of the project. Again, the creation of new employment

There were a few  minor announcements but these were the main three, so it is possible that things will start to look up and  I hope this will start to rebuild the confidence since it is now certain that the major players, the State Government and GFG Alliance have illustrated their commitment to the future of the area.