Betty Boob

I’m quite used to seeing beautiful flowers in our inbox from DavidinOz so this not-floral submission by him caught me by surprise and made me smile out loud.  Thanks, David.

In addition to roses, David Ruston also collected cars. Here are a couple of oddities.

The pink tractor, Betty Boobs, is used at functions / events raising money for breast cancer research and support.

The Yella Fella is a Lightburn Zeta, designed and build in Adelaide by a company best known for washing machines and cement mixers. Fewer than 400 were sold as it hist the market at the same time the Morris Mini arrived in Australia and mini mania took hold.

Cheers, David

©David Brindley, all rights reserved

©David Brindley, all rights reserved

©David Brindley, all rights reserved

©David Brindley, all rights reserved

Jack’s Walk


Jack is back, ©voyager, all rights reserved

There was a bit of bad news when Jack saw the vet yesterday. It turns out that Larry the Lump™ was not a lipoma (fatty cyst), but instead is something called a spindle cell tumor. It’s a benign type of tumor so there’s no chance it will spread, but it will regrow. How fast it will regrow is anyone’s guess. It took about 5 years to reach its removal size of 10 cm. so we may need to deal with it again in a few years. I hope not. Jack is 10 now and is already a young senior citizen even though he thinks he’s still a puppy.

There was good news too, though. The incision has healed perfectly and the Dr. removed exactly the right amount of skin to allow totally free movement of the joint and not sag. She says that Jack and I may resume our adventures. Hooray! Here is the boy blissfully scenting the air at our local park.

Soundtrack to your life: 2

Going out into the world.

Lets move to 1997. I’m nominally an adult and for the first time I travel “alone”, i.e. without my parents or teachers. To make it even more exciting, it’s literally the first time I travel by plane and leave Europe to participate in a festival in Cuba. As you can imagine this was an extremely exciting occasion and it gets 2 songs.

1: Ricky Martin: María

María was censored or banned in many Latin American countries, because it was thought to promote drugs. With lyrics claiming that she’s “white as the day” “the hot cold” “like poison” and that you would want her ” even if you were going to die” that idea isn’t exactly far fetched.

Anyway, it sounded up and down the streets of Havana and Pinar del Río and I fell in love with Cuba, and the Spanish language. Thanks, Ricky.

The second one is Meredith Brooks: Bitch

For some reason, the plane had a 45 minutes playlist for a 10 hours flight and one of the songs was this one. To me, it’s still an anthem. Back then I was of course progressive and pro women, but I was also 18 and had that “women can be everything” idea many young women have before reality hits them. But Meredith said it, I’m a Bitch and that’s ok and if you can’t take it that’s your problem.

Mushroom Hunting – Part 2

Yesterday we saw Part 1 of Nightjar’s quest to find mushrooms as a Tree Tuesday post. Today, the mushrooms have been found and Nightjar’s photos of them are so wonderfully evocative that I can almost smell that earthy forest scent.

... and here are the mushrooms! The yellow Tricholoma equestre were the ones we were searching for, and we did find enough for a meal. And then there were some pretty ones of unknown edibility (to us). There were more, but the mosquitoes make photography a very difficult task.

Thanks for braving the mosquitoes to get these photos, Nightjar, and thanks for sharing.


1. A mushroom-promising sight. © Nightjar, all rights reserved

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Jack’s Walk

I’m lichen you, ©voyager, all rights reserved

These big rocks form a breakwater protecting railway tracks that run alongside the beach for miles. It’s not the prettiest breakwater I’ve ever seen, but that bright orange lichen on the rocks makes it one of the most interesting.  It’s been there as long as my husband can remember and it never seems to change. That colour is fairly true if it looks like Cheetos on your screen and it stays that bright in all seasons and temperatures. I think it looks like paint splotches and it makes a great foil for all the blues that like to blend at the beach.

Tree Tuesday

Sent in by Nightjar, our trees this week tell a cautionary tale about the effects of climate change.

Mushroom Hunting Part 1...We went mushroom hunting last weekend and I decided to share some photos. I split them in two parts. The first doesn’t show mushrooms but rather our journey to find them. I knew that the wildfires last year had affected this area, but wasn’t sure if our favourite spot had burned or not. It did. I say green isn’t always hope because that green in the third photo is mostly acacias (Acacia longifolia) taking over the place. The future of these historical pine forests doesn’t look bright. We turned around and drove a bit south until we found a patch of forest that escaped the fires and didn’t look as dry and sterile. That’s when the mosquitoes attacked me, but there was also a lovely damselfly to make up for it.

Mushroom Hunting Part 2 will be posted tomorrow and it’s chock full of interesting photos of fungi found in the forest. Be sure to check it out. Thanks, Nightjar.

1. The road that no longer leads to mushrooms, ©Nightjar, all rights reserved

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Mornings at the Station

It’s getting dark. Once again, an impressionist shot. But I will say that this darkness is unusual – for one, crappy camera, but also today has been a particularly foggy day, and it’s only getting worse now that evening is upon us.

I’m enjoying the atmosphere of the second shot, though. I’m standing between the two tracks, and something about that light effect and the out-of-focus is very appealing to me.

The usual angle, as it were…
©rq, all rights reserved.

©rq, all rights reserved.

Incidentally, I am currently reading José Saramago’s Blindness (mixed feelings). Today’s weather is a lot like his characters describe their blindness: just a lot of white. Although the fog here is probably less luminescent; going home is going to be interesting. Oh yes, and we lost all our snow.

Speaking of keeping a lid on things, I travel next week to Macedonia again, returning on the 23rd. I have mixed feelings about this trip, but I guess it’s good to be recognized?

Soundtrack to your life: 1

Browsing through some music it struck me how certain songs are just the defining songs for certain times in our lives. You listen to them and they take you a to a place and time, they can evoke a certain mood like nothing else can, so I decided to share some of my “personal soundtrack” with you. Feel free to reply with your soundtrack in the comments.

Growing up and not knowing who you want to be: Innuendo by Queen

This was actually the first CD ever which I got together with the CD player. My English wasn’t quite good enough at that time to quite understand the lyrics, but the music just said enough. Just keep on trying, eh? Later I sat down and translated many of the songs, a much better exercise than anything we ever did in class and to this day some words are automatically said in Freddy’s voice in my head.

It was a time in my teenage years when I was trying to figure out who I wanted to be and what I actually liked.

Freddy died not much later and I was devastated, cut lose again after I thought I had found a place. Queen stayed with me through all these years. Although I like a great variety of music, I became a rock chick back then and have always stayed one at heart.


Flowering Money Tree

This is one of my most precious bonsai trees – Crassula ovata. My mother has got the plant before I was born and she tells me it was already relatively big at that time. It is therefore safe to assume the tree is at least circa 50 years old. I started converting it to bonsai about twenty years ago. It continues to grow succesfully each year after pruning, and in case you wish to start growing bonsai yourself, this species is ideal for a beginner. It responds well to pruning, it grows quickly but not too much so, insects do not infect it much, and if you forget to water it from time to time, nothing happens.

I want to share a picture this time around, because this year something special happened – the tree flowers. It has done it once already a few years ago, but not as much as this year.

©Charly, all rights reserved. Click for full size.

©Charly, all rights reserved. Click for full size.

©Charly, all rights reserved. Click for full size.

Jack’s Walk

The back side of the Perce Rock, ©voyager, all rights reserved

Jack has his stitches removed tomorrow afternoon and if he gets the “all clear” he can go back to normal activity. The incision is looking good and I’m fairly confident we should have no problems. In fact, Jack seems pretty happy to have the lump gone. He’s never once tried to pick at the wound and the past few days he’s been stretching out his arm and prancing around the house. It must feel like freedom to have that huge lump gone. Hopefully we can get back to our normal adventures on Wednesday, but that leaves 2 more days to reminisce about the Gaspe. This photo was taken on a foggy day from the highway near Barachois and in the distance you can see the back side of the Perce Rock on the left, Mt. Joli and the town of Perce in the center and Mt. St. Anne on the right. From this side the rock always reminds me of a horse bending to take a drink. The birds are mostly cormorants with one gull of exception.


Roses for Monday

Today we have one last look at Ruston’s Roses courtesy of DavidinOz. It’s been a real treat for me to see such fresh, lush roses at this time of year. Although this is the last post about Ruston’s, David has sent us a few more flower photos that we’ll be posting later in the week. I guarantee they’ll chase away the winter blues for at least a moment or two, so please check back.

Thanks David.

©David Brindley, all rights reserved

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