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Mezze is widely served in the Greek and Middle eastern world. An assortment of little dishes and tasters which accompany a nice ouzo or a glass of wine. So when you read mezze moments you will have tasty snippets of life as I live it, India for four years and now Brisbane Australia, all served up with some Greek fervour and passion.

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Saturday, 18 August 2018

A baby ringtail possum in our garden.

He/ She was curled up in a little ball by our garden fence. We knew not all was well because, there it was in the daylight and sluggish in its movements, so as any animal lover would do we immediately identified the nearest vet, wrapped it up in a towel with history, and set off. Delivered it to the vet and now awaiting to hear its fate. Hera Senger could this be a Mouse II ? We have offered to have it back, if it is well enough.



Thursday, 16 August 2018

Crazy Chooks



I have just done a post about Ekka, the agricultural show that is on every year at this time in Brisbane. This year's highlight for me must be the crazy, mad, bad hair day- good hair day, fancy my feathers poultry group comprising backyard chickens, colloquially known here as "chooks", bantams, cocks, cockerels, turkeys and a variety of breeds, silkies, brahma chickens, polish chickens and lots more feathered friends, the varieties and species being quite expansive, which are all there competing for best of .... award. They were unlike anything I have ever seen.
The Poultry, Birds & Eggs Competition has been running for over 100 years, making it one of Ekka's longest running competitions.











I spent time trying to take some half decent photos as poultry can be skittish, peck- ish, preen- ish, What adjectives would use to describe them ? 

Tuesday, 14 August 2018

EKKA TIME

This is a time in the year which I enjoy a lot, not only because the temperatures are cool and the skies a deep blue but because this is when country comes to town. So much of what makes Australia is because of all the farmers out there, be they beef farmers or vegetable and fruit farmers who tend to the animals and grow the fruit and vegetables on the land, sometimes in very remote areas.  Recently a lot of the farming areas have been declared drought affected. This is not something which Australia is unfamiliar with but each time it happens there are devastating effects on the land and the animals and the farmers to whom they belong. The fact, that in spite of these hardships they come to Brisbane to put on a agricultural show which is unrivalled fills me with admiration and gratitude. So every year I volunteer and help out where I can, and this year was no exception. What gave me a kick this year is being asked to make a floral crown for Captain Cook who graced one of the sculpture parks. There are amazing sights that can be enjoyed at Ekka, starting with Captain Cook looking festive, displays of orchids and bromeliads, farm displays, the art and craft, the quilts, the steam engines and old tractors, the competitions for the best dogs, cats, cattle, horses and poultry, fashion shows, dance routines, wood chopping, drag racing, show jumping and fireworks every night to delight the thousands who flock there to enjoy the show with their families. 


















Saturday, 4 August 2018

History Alive.

The island is celebrating this month and a festival is being held near Point Lookout. 

I came across this blackfella, though he is largely white, he is a direct descendant of one of the most famous people born on Stradbroke island. Kath Walker who was a well known poet, activist and environmentalist.He told me all about the two sides of the family, the Aboriginal side and the Scottish side and their long history and association with the island. It was fascinating to hear this and to understand his own connection to the island. 

Kath Walker was born on Stradbroke Island in 1920. her father taught her to be proud of her Aboriginal roots but like a lot of Aboriginal people her opportunities were quite limited.She left school at 13 and went into domestic service and then into the army. She soon understood how difficult it was for Aboriginal people to achieve when they were not even recognised in the Constitution so she fought tirelessly for their rights all over Australia. She published her first collection of poems called "We are going",  the first aboriginal woman to be published. She wrote extensively about being Aboriginal but also about nature and human rights. She hoped for a better understanding between black and white Australians. She took on her tribal name Oodgeroo meaning "paperbark tree" and Noonuccal, her tribe's name and she lived on the island for many years promoting black culture and rights. She died in 1993. 

Understand Old One by Oodgeroo Noonuccal
What if you came back now
To our new world, the city roaring
There on the old peaceful camping place
Of your red fires along the quiet water,
How you would wonder
At towering stone gunyas high in air
Immense, incredible;
Planes in the sky over, swarms of cars
Like things frantic in flight.
Her work is recognised worldwide. The theme of many of her works is the hope for understanding and peace between black and white Australians. 
"But I'll tell instead of brave and fine 

when lives of black and white entwine. 

And men in brotherhood combine, 

this would I tell you, son of mine." 
As if this wasnt enough of a treat for me we then went to Frenchmens Beach where I saw this :


In the late 19th Century, four men sailed west from the French-speaking South Pacific islands. They landed on this beach, which was named after them. The four men, Jack Newfong, John Lifu, George Fenoch and Richard Martin, were taken to the Myora/Moongalba Mission, where they ended up settling. Descendants of these four men still live on North Stradbroke Island.

Monday, 30 July 2018

Spotted on Straddie

Seas teeming with fish and turtles, dolphin pods and whales coming up for air. They were more difficult to capture on camera other than as blips in the ocean but your eyes, thankfully, are never confined to one species or one area. So white bellied sea eagles floated by, as did some surfers on a deep green sea.
Pelicans shared fish with the sea gulls and a whole valley sang with the melodies of fig birds and wag tails. The cormorants and the curlews chose their shore lines and rocks to sunbathe and the silver gulls with their intense red legs and beaks bounded across the beach while the kookaburras were having a disagreement on the line. 











The surprise, because there always is one, is seeing a young woman collect beach worms of over a metre in length from the shore line. A question of what lurks beneath which thankfully we don't often have to see, an art in itself, for which apparently she can charge $5 a worm.

Entrepreneurship al fresco on a glorious winter's day. 

Sunday, 29 July 2018

Straddie Island's lines.

Off to the beautiful Stradbroke Island just a short distance from the mainland by ferry. Pristine beaches and bushland. Today I am taken by the lines I see on my lens. Grassy outcrop on a undulating ocean. The line of rock, grass, sea in full vision where every wave which towered up was full - and I mean full of mullet. Momentary sighting until the wave crested. A bounty for the keen fishermen. 


Just a little further inland on the rocks, another line, this time an inland teeming reef, hidden away, so I bend to see a small pool of water brimming with tiny fish, seaweed and little blue algae bubbles.  




On this beach, the lines contrasting sand, sea and sky disturbed only by a pelican floating in the shallows.


Lines vertical or horizontal that catch the eye.Barnacled poles reaching out of the ocean to touch the rust-sky.




Friday, 27 July 2018

Night Life



Photos from web to help you visualise. 

The winter day melds into the twilight. In that window of half light the bats are silhouetted against the sky, angular wide wings, searching and circling for their dinner. Most evenings one settles in the palm tree and noisily eats the fruit. Then with a whoosh and more rustling it pops over to peel mandarins off my mandarin tree. Darkness descends, the air is cool and I go back inside, shutting the door. Night life begins in earnest. I fall asleep in front of the television alongside the snakes and geckos and lizards who all feel sluggish in the cool temperatures. Time for the rats and mice to have a field day. Dougall, my neighbour's boxer has come outside to warn everyone he is in control and barks a hearty good night. As I snuggle down into bed bush stone curlews set off their whistling wail which culminates in a crescendo. I lie awake listening to them. They quieten as the gentle patter of possums is heard making their way over my tin roof. This is the the time they will scurry around, sometimes have races or fights just outside my bedroom window and in the hours of darkness feed on avocados and roses, everything the garden menu may have on offer. I fall into a fitful sleep only to be woken by a cacophony of kookaburras having a bawl in the poinsiania tree in the garden. I head out to the deck and find my butcher bird waiting for its breakfast.