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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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Monday, 19 March 2012

Parliament House Ozzie style

The Parliament Building in Brisbane
An old drawing of the Parliament Building
Parliament House was built at a time when the state had timber and sandstone and that was about it. It was started in the 1860s and built over a fairly long period of time as they kept running out of money but it has painted and stained glass windows with Queen Victoria and Parliament behind her, Minton tiles for the floor and elaborate chandeliers.
The Legislative Chamber itself is neat and impressive with four flags exhibited by the Speaker's chair.
The Queensland flag which incidentally was pretty much Queen Victoria's creation. The suggestion that the province be called Cooks land was quickly dismissed by Queen Victoria who said this was her land and so should be called Queensland. She was also keen to put her face on the flag but she was dissuaded from doing so and only the crown appears on it.
The other flags are the Australian flag with the stars representing the Southern Cross, the Aboriginal flag and the island flag of the Torres Straits.
What I found impressive about this lovely sandstone building which has been carefully and lovingly restored is the way the Australians use it.
Single house truly representative - they got rid of the upper house where money could lead to appointments and strife so they abolished it and have only one house and it is the only one house parliament in Australia.
The parliament building has a modern extension at the back where all MPS have accommodation, a recreational area and a BBQ as well as a well stocked library and media facilities. All there, organized and at their doorstep.
The library 's old majesty with Hansards and comfortable leather chairs.
The old parliament can be used by the public when the members are not sitting so it has been used for marriages and for celebrations as well as for shows and poetry readings thereby maximizing the use of the space but also connecting the people to it.
Tradition is upheld so a mace is taken into the Parliament when it is in session but when it is not then it sits in a glass cabinet next to a didgeridoo ( a musical intrument used by aboriginal groups )which has the most beautiful representations on it of how the land was owned by indigenous people,( represented by the black circle and footprints)  then the whites came and carried on as two distinct groups, then the indigenous and the whites mixed travelling along one path but perhaps taking different directions.  

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