South Brisbane Railway Station

South Brisbane Railway Station was constructed in 1891, opening on 21 December. 

In 1930, South Brisbane also became the site of the South Brisbane Interstate Station, as it was the terminus of the standard gauge railway line from Sydney to Brisbane.

Workday view

Mowbray Park ferry terminal crowned by Story Bridge, Brisbane, Australia

Uber trips invariably deposit me in the city. As parking is restricted and in high demand I nip over the Story Bridge to take refuge in Mowbray Park, East Brisbane; to await the next call to action.

OPTO, 2011

This steel and carbon fibre sculpture (2011) by New Zealander artist, Phil Price is located on the Redcliffe, Queensland foreshore.

Further information about the sculpture and artist is taken from Visit Moreton Bay webpage:

“The concept around OPTO revolves around looking and changing. Looking promotes a sense of place – we can look out over the bay, from the land to the sea, and we can look back to the land, from the sea. Looking can also be interpreted as a metaphor – we can look into the future or back into the past. The form of the sculpture represents a portal – we look through it to a framed landscape, observing the natural and man-made world via the circular scope.

Designed to act as a metaphorical portal, the kinetic rings move in direct relationship to the environment, rotating and spinning in response to the breeze from Moreton Bay. Passing over one another, they appear to open and close, changing the framed landscape within the circular form.

OPTO serves as a celebration of this beautiful place: past, present and future.

About the Artist

Phil Price is best known for his kinetic sculptures with many located across New Zealand and Australia. Regarded as the foremost kinetic sculptor of his generation, Phil’s work is widely acknowledged for its breathtaking beauty and extraordinary design.

The main materials used in most of the sculptures are carbon fiber and glass fiber bonded with high temperature epoxy, stainless steel and precision bearings to allow the sculpture to move with the wind.”

Aerial roots

This magnificent Moreton Bay fig tree stands proudly in Mowbray Park, East Brisbane.

Images of faeries and forest spirits hiding deep within the densely packed aerial roots flood my mind.

A testament to the resilience of nature; seemingly oblivious to nearby park and ride commuters taking the ferry north, long term road works on Lytton Road, and construction work in the Park.

Greening suburbia

No-knead loaf with coffee grounds

A recent visit by friends from Sydney and a conversation about minimising food waste inspired me to save:

  • oil from marinated feta
  • egg shells
  • coffee grounds

I have reused the oil to make my own marinated feta. With the egg shells I made a tea to give succulents a boost. Also, combined banana skins, coffee grounds and eggshells in the food processor to make fertiliser.

How to make your own natural fertiliser using kitchen scraps

DIY fertiliser

Two of us drinking two to three coffees a day produces a lot of grounds! Not wanting to throw away the excess, I have been experimenting with what to do with them. This has successfully included grounds:

One of the friends from Sydney told me they had coffee bread at a restaurant. A quick search online yielded bread made with coffee liquid, not the grounds. Some discussion boards decried the idea, saying that the end product would be gritty.

Hey ho, throwing caution to the wind I added grounds to my latest batch of no knead bread. During fermentation the dough rose more than usual. Not knowing how well the loaf would retain its shape, I opted to use a loaf pan.

The loaf has been an overwhelming success. Being moist with an open texture and a slight espresso flavour, it is very dark brown in colour and grit free.

We have had it sliced with butter to accompany lunch and toasted for breakfast; avocado looked and tasted delicious on it.

A timely bath

How true the adage that you don’t know what you have until it is gone. Showering is convenient, quick, economical, eco-friendly, and healthy. It has been part of my daily routine for the last four decades.

After eight years we again live in a house with a bath. Yesterday, I took the ‘plunge’ in making use of the modern plastic tub. Lying on my back; knees bent, in water that was not deep enough to cover my ever expanding stomach and arms wedged against my sides, thoughts of childhood bath time drifted through my mind. Especially the rose tinted memory of my grandparent’s vintage 1920’s bathroom in Warley, West Midlands, UK.

The room had dark brown linoleum floor covering, cream painted walls and gleaming white fittings with chrome taps. These were no frills taps; tee shaped from the side, they were connected through the back of the square porcelain sink and the end of the claw foot iron bath. The water flowed from the bottoms, nothing as fancy as spouts. The horizontally mounted, cross headed taps with small white porcelain discs, indicating ‘hot’ and ‘cold’ resisted when they were turned, emitting satisfying grinding screeches followed by soft pops.

It seemed that water gushed with the force of fire hoses, even though it took forever to be deep enough before I could slowly lower myself into this gargantuan steaming vessel. Once inside, the bottom and sides would feel icy against my skin. Also, the enamel was a little rough from eons of scouring with Vim powder. Time scented with the fragrance from Radox salts drifted up towards the ceiling. Dreamily I would exit when my fingertips had puckered and the grey soapy liquid had become chilly.

Even with its shortcomings, the contemporary experience of fifteen or so minutes, spent splashing about in late afternoon resulted in a physical and psychological calm that lasted well into the evening.

Box mystery

A week last Sunday, we returned home from our travels. Since then our days have been filled with moving and unpacking boxes, stowing contents, hanging pictures and redecorating the guest bedroom. Somewhere along the journey we seem to have misplaced two cartons; one containing a hifi the other, precious porcelain things 😱.

Our first task after getting over the thirteen hours drive from Sydney to Brisbane, over two days, was to remove the thicket in the tiny back garden. A lack of attention over the last six years had resulted in three plants creating a bizarre intertwining twisting structure that threatened to engulf the neighbourhood.

For the past week it has rained every day. What was a couple of muddy puddles have become a quagmire; ideal housing for a colony of mosquitoes. Clearing the undergrowth has revealed a drain that sits aloft the lapping waters of ‘Lake Morningside’. The Body Corporate have let us know that as the issue is in a private courtyard it is our responsibility to fund remedial works. The joys of home ownership.

I suspect the missing caskets have been taken by a creature from below the brown sludgy waters of the swamp.