27 November 2009

I need a good night's sleep!

For over a week, we've had a visitor. Once a year the 'Common Koel' a migratory bird visits us. This bird is very hard to spot as it is extremely good at hiding, but boy, do you hear it! Yesterday it was in a tree near us and singing it's little heart out, but no matter how hard we looked, we couldn't see it. It has a monotonous song that sounds something like a wolf-whistle directed at a pretty girl coming from a building site. Only this one won't stop, it goes on and on.

It did finally stop at around 7 pm. We watched a little TV, went to bed around 10.30pm and woke up at 3.45 by, you guessed it... our visitor. Both Diane and I dived for our ear plugs and tried to go back to sleep. Me, without success because I could still hear that annoying sound.

It did eventually stop at around 5 am and I haven't heard it today, so hopefully it went back to New Guinea or wherever it came from.

The Common Koel

Here is a short video to show you how annoying that sound is. Bad enough during the day but at 3.45 in the morning? Boy that plays havoc with your sanity.

25 November 2009

Redlands - This is your Life

Diane and I recently joined the camera club of the Redlands' U3A (University of the 3rd Age) and we attend the monthly meetings of like-minded amateur photographers. Well, word got out that I am also a videographer, so the 'Footlight' theatre company also part of U3A, asked me if I could video their annual musical, this year called 'Redlands, this is your Life'. I enlisted the help of Diane and another videographer also called Bill, and armed with 3 cameras, we decended upon their stage in Cleveland and filmed the production.

The two Bills are setting up the cameras

Filming the musical

The final song of the musical

The production was fabulous. The entire compamy is made up of senior citizens some over 80 years old, but boy, can they still belt out a tune.

23 November 2009

Sonya and Bernard in 'New Idea'

Our famous offspring (well Bernard, anyway) have been asked for an article in this week's 'New Idea' magazine. Sonya, our daughter was a little reluctant to have her picture in the mag but eventually relented. So walking past a news stand, I couldn't help myself to buy a copy.

Click on the pictures to enlarge

I'll probably get into trouble putting these on my blog but, hey... I'm her proud dad!

22 November 2009

More about the new Bear Park in Bern

After yesterday's post on the Bear Park, here is a video showing more about this new Swiss Attraction. The video is by Swissinfo, formerly Swiss Radio International.

The famous Bears of Bern have moved

If you have ever visited Switzerland's capitol, Bern, chances are you went to the famous Bear Pit, the 'Bärengraben'. For people growing up and living in Bern, this was just an acceptable fact that bears were living in a relatively small enclosure, but many overseas visitors were expressing doubt that this could be good for the bears. Diane included.
So now the two remaining bears, Finn and Björk have been relocated to a brand new park, adjacent to the old pit. They now live in a 6,000 square metre park along the banks of the River Aare. They can still access the large pit, now a historic monument. Two more bears will soon join them.
Not only do they have more space to roam, but they also have million dollar view over the old town of Bern.

Yesterday, a man climbed onto the fence of the new enclosure and fell into the bear area. He was then attacked by 4 year old Finn who felt threatened by the intruder. A policeman fired a shot at the bear and injured him. The man was taken to hospital with head and leg wounds and the bear was operated on to remove the bullet. It is not known why the man climbed onto the fence according to city police sources. The Bear Park announced that Finn is doing well.

For more information on the Bear park Bern, click HERE

21 November 2009

Are you hungry?

In Germany, there is a famous restaurant called Waldgeist-Hofheim, where they serve the most enormous meals...

Anyone for a Schnitzel?

Or is a sausage your thing?

Or just a plain Hamburger?

17 November 2009

MS Oasis of the Seas

Shall we all go cruising in the world's largest cruise ship?

10 November 2009

Bernard Curry is in the TV Magazines again

Our daughter Sonya's partner, Bernard Curry is on the front covers of the Television Magazines again this week, for the 3rd time this year.

Bernard plays dive master Hugo Austin, in the Channel 7 drama Home and Away and also hosts the hit show Beauty and the Geeks Australia, also on Channel 7. But it's his Home and Away part that gets him all the attention at the moment. You see, his character Hugo, who, until now has been seen as a nice chap, looking after his brothers, has dark secrets. It has just been revealed that Hugo is actually married. Shock, Horror! How about his relationship with Martha?

Bernard on the front page of TV Week

So, presently Hugo is the talk of the town. What will happen in Summer Bay? How will his relationship with Martha end up?

How will the relationship with Martha end?

Together with other cast members of Home and Away, Bernard was part of the Celebrity Line-up at the recent Melbourne Cup, for our overseas visitors, that is the horse race that stops the nation.

Bernard Curry and Esther Anderson share
a tipple with George.

So, as we went shopping this morning, we saw another TV mag, one we have never bought before, but when we saw Bernie on the cover, we had to buy that one as well.

Hugo and Martha on the other TV Magazine cover

Inside, the story of course - Hugo and Martha's relationship

Of course, the inside story revolved around the recent revelation that Hugo was already married. A lot of fun really but in the meantime, Bernard's popularity increases which can't do his career no harm.

09 November 2009


A new composition by composer/musician John Sokoloff. Some of you might remember the short movie 'Johnny' I posted in June. This is John's latest production. Tell me what you think.

06 November 2009

With motor-driven bicycles through South Australia

A Swiss couple is planning to travel for two months through South Australia on their Electro-bicycles. Beat and Petra Amacher who run the bicycle shop near Interlaken plan to fly to Adelaide in South Australia to begin their 2,000 km journey in the Australian summer heat.
Electro-bicycles are not known yet here in Australia. The bikes are manufactured by the 'Flyer' Company of Switzerland and have an electrical battery and motor to assist the cyclist traveling, even on hills. The bike can travel up to 50 km on the charge of a battery.
The electrical display shows not only the distance travelled and speed but also the condition of the battery that runs the motor.
The bicycle has 8 gears and weighs 45 kg and the Li-ion battery has 10Amp per hour capacity. The couple will charge the motor batteries every night at the place they spend the night.

Sounds like an adventurous trip. We wish them good luck in their endeavour.

01 November 2009

Simon's sister is visiting with her dog

By popular demand, here's another of Simon's cartoons, this time his sister is visiting with her dog and he is fed up...