The Time Has Come (the Walrus said) Archives

London – but where?

Wandering around London, this scene leapt out and grabbed me. It looks like something out of a fairy-tale, or a kids picture book. This is in the middle of central London. Who woulda’ thought it?

The small version loses a bit in the crunching down, so click to enlarge.

Given up guessing where?

The view is through St James’s Park, looking from Buckingham Palace toward the government offices in Whitehall!

Water (again… arrrggghhh)

There was an interesting article on the news this morning.

The Victorian Government is setting a lower target for Melbourne household water consumption: reducing from 180 litres per person per day, to 155 litres.

There was a slightly snide remark that the South Australian Government has not set a similar household target for Adelaide, relying instead on whole-of-city targets. Boo Hoo. They went on to say that if such targets were adopted in South Australia they would have to be higher, because there is a naturally higher rainfall in Melbourne.

This set me wondering: what is our water consumption. I dug out the last meter readings: our total consumption in the last 12 months is 248,000 litres. (248 kl). A quick calculation yields 679 litres per day. But there are 4 of us, so on the same basis as the Victorian targets, thats 169 litres per person per day.


We are not just 4 people, we also have a large lawn (which gets the outfall of the washing machine, and a limited amount of legal watering using a drip system), there is also 1/2 an acre of fruit trees which are watered, legally, using micro-irrigation. And there are is about a kilometre of black dripper pipe here which I turn on once in a blue moon.

So we’ve been saving water agressively for a long, long time (I hate paying money out). With a block of land about 6 times that of a normal moden block, our consumption for all of that is below the current Victorian target and only moderately above their new target.

Which leads to two results:

- What on earth do people on normal size plots of land do with all the water they consume?

- I should feel pretty chuffed, we’re not doing too badly here in outer-bogansville!

B-B-B-Brass M-M-M-Monkeys

Saturday mornings are cricket mornings.

The chaps are both mad keen criketers (chap #1 more so than chap #2), which means that for the last umpteen years, starting sometime around when dinosaurs roamed the earth, we’ve been up EARLIER THAN NORMAL WEEKDAYS to head out for the school cricket match.

This morning the radio announced at 7am that it was 8 degrees in little old Adelaide. This on the 22nd November when it’s supposed to be warmer weather.

I took a few precations and threw in a big scarf thing to wrap around the neck, and thank goodness I did.

I’ve just come back from spending 3 hours sitting in  the wind and getting rained on. When we got home it was 9.5 degrees.

I was rugged up in the usual shirt + jeans, then a jumper, my very-warm explorers jacket, a scarf, and then I found a picnic blanket in the car and wrapped that around myself as well. And was still very very cold.

On getting home I just happened to accidentally eat a piece of chocolate that was sitting in the kitchen. I was so !@#$ cold it wouldn’t melt in my mouth! The only time a piece has ever lasted 15 minutes. Ever.

At least I was better prepared for the cold than this guy, who tried to repeat his experience of Mount  Wellington last year, the day before Christmas. Today he had on only shorts and a T-shirt. At least it didn’t snow.


The view from our kitchen sink. Who can complain about washing up when you can look at this?


Through the big European cities there are lots and lots of Smart Cars.

Here they might be derided as liddle toys for the kiddies to play with, but in a big city they make a lot of sense for just getting around.

Not sure though if the owners of this one in Berlin really understand what lady-luck delivered with their number plate.

Paris and Poo

The French and their dogs are inseperable, and especially in Paris.

Which is fine, but there are a few things you notice that are different to home.

Firstly, the poo. People in central Paris live in apartments, and their dogs live with them. Whilst there are parks where doggies can be taken, the dogs are taken any and everywhere, and on the roads and footpaths they can crap where and when they like. When walking around in Paris, watch where you stick your feet (aaaarrrgghhhh – that’s a pun!!). Generally the day-old turds are not a problem, but this is simply because somebody else has already done the honour of spreading the shite around. Thin layers tend not to be picked up so easily. And it rains so much that after a few days it’s all gone anyway. But watch the hell out for the fresh ones!

And secondly, the dogs go into restaurants, cafes, supermarkets. You stop noticing it after a while. One of notable times though, was in Grenoble. We didn’t eat out a great deal, perhaps that helped to make it the more noticable. That and being the table next to us. A couple came in with their dog and were seated. The owner / waiter came and fussed around, handed out menus and such like. He then enquired of the dog – was it a male or female? Would it like water? Shortly after he was back bearing a large bowl of appropriate colour which was placed formally in front of the dog, who was addressed as “Monsieur”. The dog was extremely well behaved throughout, through obviously hungry. Never mind, the owners fed him bits from the table.

Hygene Laws!?! Pfft!

Wherever I Wish

This one came from Ken at work. Worth passing on.


A Department of Water Resources representative stops at a Longreach farm and talks with an old farmer. 

He tells the farmer, ‘I need to inspect your farm for your water allocation.’

The old farmer says, ‘Okay, but don’t go in that field over there.’

The Water representative says, ‘Mister, I have the authority of the Federal Government with me. See this card? This card means I am allowed to go WHEREVER I WISH on any agricultural land. No questions asked or answered. Have I made myself clear? Do you understand?’ 

The old farmer nods politely and goes about his work. 

Later, the old farmer hears loud screams and spies the Water Rep running for his life and close behind is the farmer’s bull. The bull is gaining with every step. The Rep is clearly terrified, so the old farmer immediately throws down his tools, runs to the fence and yells at the top of his lungs….. 

‘Your card! Show him Your card!

Oh dear, oh dear

I really, seriously hope that John McCain (aka Robot Man) does not win the US Presidential Election.

The though of him dropping dead in office and leaving Sarah Palin as the rootin’, tootin, gun-shootin, Moose huntin’ pres of the USA is just too terrible to contemplate.

Ve Germans like our chokolade, ja!

Not the sweets-and-candy-crap aisle.

This is the bar-of-chocolate aisle in the local supermarket in Berlin, under the Zoo S-Bahn station. Choice!? Ve Haf Plenty off choice, ja !

Nyah nyah!!

While we were away travelling, I received another summons for Jury Duty.

Seeing as I last did my community service in late 2006, and you can be excused if you did it within the last 3 years, I wrote to the Sheriff asking for such excuse.

She Who Must Be Obeyed looked at all the paperwork, found an enclosed statutory declaration and tore strips off me: “You are supposed to fill out this and send it back”.

I quietly told her that the booklet says “write to the Sheriff” not “send stat dec to Sheriff”, so write to the sherrif I done. Besides, a stat dec is a pain – you have to find a Justice of the Peace to witness it, yada yada.

A few days later, a letter came back from the Sheriff to say I was excused.

Nyah nyah nyaaaa nyah nyah!!!!!

Me? Childish? Never!

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