Saturday, August 30, 2008
Thursday, August 28, 2008
So why did we buy it? Well, we could afford it, for a start! It was a good area, quiet and close to the city but nicely suburban, with a good set of little shops at the corner (fruit & veg, corner store, pizza shop, chemist) and close to the bay walk. Also my brother lives in the next suburb, so it was good to be close to family.
It needed a bit of work when we bought it - in fact, my mother cried when she first saw it - coming from the country, I think when she heard what we paid for it she was expecting a mansion. Which it was not (and still isn't - see Tink's place if you want a mansion!!).
So when we moved in we painted, polished the floorboards and put a door on the outside laundry and glass into the window space (!!). We mowed the backyard and chopped down the very straggly mulberry tree. We also took out the hills hoist which, along with the mulberry tree, took up the whole backyard. We got the gas connected and put in gas heating and a repro art deco gas fireplace and surround in the formal lounge.
A few years later we put in a new kitchen (gosh I love my kitchen!) and then a new bathroom. And we planted out the front garden (which, when we bought it, was covered in pebbles and concrete pavers and not much else). Then a couple more years later we pulled down the garage and built the deck in it's place.
And if I've done a good sales pitch on my current house, and you'd like to buy it, my email is in the sidebar!!!). And for anyone who feels minded to share, I'd love to see where you live and why!
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
Sunday, August 24, 2008
Fortunately, I also did not compete in the Ravelympics, as I'm afraid I'd have a big DNF recorded against my name. But I've loved watching the 'lympics whenever I could - which, let's face it, has been every night of the week and as much of the days as well on the weeekend as well. Except for the travelling I've been doing for work, which has meant I've missed a few days here and there.
For me, what's really stood out this time is the achievements of the older 'lympians. I'm sure there have been just as many older athletes in previous olympics, but I've just really noticed them more this time. I guess that means I'm getting a bit older too...
It started with our opening ceremony flagbearer, rower James Tompkins, who at 42 is competing in his 5th (I think) olympics. And Dara Torres, the 41 yo American swimmer who beat an Australian swimmer young enough to be her daughter in the 50m freestyle (Dara got the silver, the Australian - aged 16 - the bronze). Then Jeannie Longo, the 49 yo French cyclist in the women's road race - amazing! And of course, Constantina Tomescu-Dite, the Romanian winner of the women's marathon, at 38 yo the oldest winner of any olympic marathon. And Oksana Chusovitina from Germany, who at 34 took silver in the women's vault in the gymnastics competition - again, competing with gymnasts less than half her age. Fantastic and inspiring and demonstrates the truth that youth is not necessarily all that!
And of course I can't forget the 67 yo Japanese rider in the dressage competition - Hiroshi Hoketsu - competing in his first olympics since 1964 in Tokyo. Our local broadcaster kept showing a highlight package of his ride - the horse was sweating, he was perspiring, and the horse spooked but Hiroshi got the horse under control to complete the course. And with his teammate, 58 yo Mieko Yagi, took Japan to a top 10 placing in the competition. I almost cry each time I see it, to watch his control and his concentration and his effort and to think about what must be going through his mind.
Of course, I did actually cry when watching the end of the men's marathon this morning - as I always do. I don't know what it is that makes me emotional but the marathon (both the men's and women's) always brings out the tears. I think it's partly the history associated with the marathon and the olympics and just the recognition of the sheer willpower (not to mention fitness) it must take to keep going for 42 km, and then to still be able to sprint to the line.
And for a final non-sporting highlight - how about those Chinese flagraiser dudes with the well-rehearsed flip of the flag. And the flagpoles with the little fan in them, to ensure those flags always flap in the breeze, even if there is no breeze. The Chinese miss nothing!
What were your highlights (those of you watching of course!)?
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
Also, it helps to have someone handy to take the pictures for you - which unfortunately I did not have!!
This is what it looks like from the back once half the pleat has been formed. So neat!
And from the front:
Then you repeat for the second half of the pleat and continue casting off the rest of the back. And then forget to take a photo of the completed piece!
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
Sunday, August 17, 2008
Saturday, August 16, 2008
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
Sunday, August 10, 2008
25% done - ideally I'd like to finish her so I can wear her this year before it gets too hot.
Thursday, August 07, 2008
Where you watch the torches being lit every evening at sunset: