Critical: Let’s Get Critical

via Daily Prompt: Critical

As I grow older I find myself critical of many more things than I used  to. I’ve never been a great fan of change unless it is a change that I have chosen to make myself but now there are so many things that I don’t like that people would probably say I’m a grumpy old lady. Well I don’t really care. I think one of the advantages of getting older is that I don’t feel that I have to apologise for my beliefs all the time but I try not to be rude so I often find myself biting my tongue when I want to say something.

So what am I critical of? Here are just a few items on my rant list.

    • Governments  and businesses who put profits ahead of people and punish you just for being poor.
    • Most modern architecture, and I am not shy about sharing my dislike of ugly buildings with anyone.
    • Greedy developers demolishing lovely old homes and building multi storey apartments or filling our waterfront spaces with ugly buildings where there used to be public spaces.
    • Films that are all action and no plot. Especially remakes that don’t get the point of the original film. eg “The Italian Job” .
    • Bad remakes of TV shows I used to like.
    • TV reality shows. You know I hate them, that’s not a secret.
    •  So called fitness shows where the participants are made to do ridiculous things like hauling planes and are humiliated in front of others. See above.

Steve Willis, Michelle Bridges (17599676481)

  • Pop music made after about 1995, but that is probably a generational thing. Mum didn’t like our generation’s music either.
  • People who can’t speak a sentence without a four letter word in it. I’m not saying I never swear but it’s so much more common now and it is ugly.
  • Barbie dolls that are all coloured plastic and no proper clothing. Barbie is a fashion doll! She’s supposed to have clothes.
  • Making Doctor Who a woman. We already know that Time Lords can be women why does The Doctor have to be one?
  •  The idea of making James Bond a woman. I never liked the franchise anyway as I don’t like the character but I don’t want to see a female version of him. That’s just silly and Fleming would be spinning in his  grave.
  • People who let their children run around and pull things of shelves in shops  and then don’t tidy up after them.
  • Restaurants that serve you a gigantic plate with practically no food on it. I like food to look attractive but I want to eat it not exhibit it.
  • People who ignore their companions in favour of their phones. A phone won’t cry over you when you are dead people.

Bangalore Wikipedian on phone 5 closeup

I could  go on but I won’t. There are lots of terrible things happening in the world that I am angry about and critical of the people who let them happen or make them happen. These are some of life’s lesser annoyances compared to those.

image carousel

Daily Prompt: The Gallopers

The Gallopers

Riding “The Gallopers”

via Daily Prompt: Carousel

Mum first took me on a merry-go-round on Clacton Pier when I was just a little girl. We always went to Clacton to visit my grandparents during the summer holidays and we usually had a visit to the pier while we were there.

We never went on a lot of rides, we were probably too young for some of them and probably mum did not have enough money for us to ride on everything but we always did the merry-go-round and I have liked them ever since.

Technically a carousel is a ride that only features horses while the ones with other types of animals or vehicles are Merry-Go-Rounds but I have not heard anyone use the term Merry-Go-Round in years.

The traditional fairground rides like carousels are not around as much these days. Not exciting enough for Millennials I suppose but there are several still operating in Australia.

We used to have a nice one in Hobart, it is called “The Gallopers” and was built in 1882. During the summer it would be brought to Hobart and erected on the waterfront for a few days after Christmas. I’d usually go for a ride and take some photos when I came to Hobart to photograph the Sydney Hobart race yachts. It hasn’t appeared for a couple of years and I had heard it was to be set up in the Botanical Gardens however, that scheme did not go ahead.

Late last year I heard that the carousel was to be sold at auction and now I have no idea where it is.

I think it a great shame it was not retained to be enjoyed by the people of Hobart and visitors.

You can read a post I wrote about carousels a couple of years ago here

The Gallopers

History of The Gallopers

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http://www.themercury.com.au/news/tasmania/historic-steampowered-carousel-could-find-new-home/news-story/e857bdab482d1869367c4ddbdf8d2d60

 

 

 

 

 

The Tasman Bridge from Rosny Hill Lookout

Weekly Photo Challenge: Bridge

via Photo Challenge: Bridge

The Tasman Bridge spans the Derwent and connects Hobart’s eastern and western shores. It was opened in 1964 and replaced an earlier floating bridge which could no longer cope with the volume of traffic it had to carry.

Australians will remember how on 5 January 1975 the bulk ore carrier “Lake Illawarra” collided with the bridge  taking down two piers and over a hundred metres of roadway.  Twelve people died in the tragedy, five were travelling in the four cars that plunged into the Derwent and seven were crew members on the Lake Illawarra. Others miraculously escaped as their cars teetered on the edge of the gap.

I did not live in Tasmania then but I remember seeing the pictures on the news. It was only when I moved here that I came to understand how much the tragedy affected everyone. Not just the loss of life but the loss of the bridge itself changed the lives of many people.  Most Hobart people over fifty could tell you where they were the night the bridge went down.

At that time the next closest bridge was at Bridgewater approximately 20km away. This meant that residents on the eastern shore of the river were largely cut off from the shops and services in the Hobart CBD on the other side of the river. People I’ve talked to about it told me that in some cases family members were forced to relocate to the other side of the river for work or school. In the short-term the transport problem was partially solved by a hastily arranged ferry service and later by the Bailey Bridge, a temporary structure which was used until the Tasman Bridge was finally reopened in October 1977.

One of the consequences of the disaster was that Hobart got a third bridge over the Derwent which was built between the Bridgewater and Tasman bridges, another was that the development of roads and services on the eastern shore became a priority.

The Lake Illawarra still lies in the deep waters of the Derwent over forty years later. If you look at the photos you will see that the distance between the piers on the eastern side of the bridge is different from those on the western side. This is the area where the disaster occurred.

 

Further Reading:

http://www.abc.net.au/local/stories/2008/04/28/2228948.htm

http://guides.naa.gov.au/records-about-tasmania/part2/chapter3/tasman-bridge-collapse.aspx

http://www.themercury.com.au/news/tasmania/historic-monaro-out-from-under-wraps-for-anniversary-of-tasman-bridge-disaster/news-story/67a6e13d49e2e23187e687d776debcca

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Daily Prompt: Always the Passenger

via Daily Prompt: Passenger

I don’t drive so I’ve always been a passenger either on public transport or someone’s car.

The best thing about being a passenger in a car is there is always time to look at the scenery.  Of course that means that when we are enjoying a scenic drive I have to try to refrain from saying “Look at that!” and “Isn’t that fantastic.” or anything that might distract the driver from the road.

There is a down side of course.Some people might say navigating is one but I don’t really mind being the map reader.

I don’t like being in a car with someone who smokes or talks on a mobile phone while driving, takes both hands off the wheel at the same time or yells at other drivers so sometimes car journeys can be nerve-wracking but on those occasions I grit my teeth and keep quiet. Luckily most of the people I regularly travel with are good drivers and don’t have bad habits.

I always catch the bus when I go to Hobart. The 60 kilometre journey is very scenic and I never get tired of it. If I had to drive I’d have to think about  the weather and traffic and the idiotic things that some people do on the roads. On the bus I can let the driver worry about that and enjoy the scenery.

Morning Mist 1

Huon River at Franklin from the bus.

Of course I don’t mind being a passenger on a train or a tram . These are my favourite ways to travel in the city and I have been known to catch a train or tram “just for the ride”.

The old Glenelg tram line has been extended.

Sydney Interurban railcar set -December 2012.

Trains at Southern Cross Station

Trains at Southern Cross Station (formerly Spencer St) Melbourne 2014.

I enjoy being a passenger on a commuter ferry, lucky people in Sydney who get to do that every day.

Sydney Ferry 2012

Rivercat ferry at Rose Bay, Sydney 2012

Rivercat ferry at Watson’s Bay, Sydney 2012

 

For me the biggest downside of being a passenger is the lack of control. When you are the passenger the choice of when to go, where to go and how to get there is not entirely yours. I have to admit that sometimes I’d like to be able to jump in a car and go somewhere by myself but not being able to is something I can live with.

 

Daily Prompt: Blossom

via Daily Prompt: Blossom

nectarine blossom

nectarine blossom

Whenever  I see blossoms in spring I think how pretty they are but I also remember my mum who would say “Never bring blossoms in the house. It’s bad luck.”

I have no idea why it is bad luck. Some superstitions make some kind of sense. Don’t walk under a ladder. Well, that could get you into an accident.  Peacock feathers in the house are unlucky, well they might look like they have the evil eye to some people.

I ended up doing some reading about plant related superstitions and wrote a post about it entitled “Superstition – Unlucky Plants”  . 

To my surprise it turned out to be my most popular post ever. Who knew so many people were interested in why blossoms shouldn’t be brought into the house or why you should not have red and white flowers in the same vase ? That was a new one on me too when I read about it. If you want to know why read my post.

 

 

 

 

 

Daily Prompt: Natty

via Daily Prompt: Natty

Natty. Does anyone even say that any more? I think of this word as being used in the context of men’s fashion. I suppose there are still natty dressers about but these days  men and women too, seem to dress down rather than dress up to go out.

When I was young you wore your “good clothes” to go shopping in the city, out to lunch or dinner or to the theatre. Nowadays anything goes it seems.

I admit that I too prefer comfort to fashion but if I am going out I don’t wear the old jeans or dog hair covered track suit pants that I would wear at home. I make an effort.

There are fashions for all ages, shapes and sizes, not all of them appeal to me but everyone can look natty if they really want to.

1901 Sartorial Arts Journal Fashion Plate Men's Patch Pocket Suit

Daily Prompt: Lifestyle Choices

via Daily Prompt: Lifestyle

Lifestyle is a very modern day concept. We are all searching for the perfect way to live our lives. We envy the lifestyles of some and disapprove of others. Perhaps, after religion, lifestyle choices may be one of the most contentious issues on the planet.

The choices of whom to marry, whether to have children, where to live, what work you will do and what faith you choose to follow can all be lifestyle choices that may upset others.

Even in the relatively wealthy western world we may not be allowed to make those choices ourselves.

Nobody would choose to live in poverty. Who chooses hunger and homelessness as a lifestyle?

Tributes left for Wayne “Mouse” Perry who was murdered near this spot earlier this year.

Unemployment is not a lifestyle that most people would choose. The world is changing, jobs that existed fifty, even twenty years ago are gone forever.  Research suggests that in the next fifty years even more jobs will be lost because of changes in industry. That is going to change the lifestyles of many and we need to start thinking about how it is to be managed.

War is not a lifestyle that anyone would choose either. One day you are going about your business with a home, a family and a job and the next it is all gone and you are fleeing for your life possibly to end up spending your days in a camp denied the chance to start again. How I would love the politicians responsible to experience that lifestyle and see how they like it.

Lifestyle choices; sounds a bit of a joke now doesn’t it?