Category Archives: Australia

A ‘beautiful plague’: Australian outback town is invaded by swarm of colourful budgerigars

At first glance the dark haze above this field in Boulia, western Queensland, looks like a swarm of insects.

But a closer looks reveals they are actually hundreds of brightly-coloured budgerigars.

Image Source: http://www.dailymail.co.uk

Image Source: http://www.dailymail.co.uk

The mass of birds is a result of flooding earlier this year which has led to ideal breeding conditions and plentiful food supplies.

The Australian outback town where the phenomenon is taking place is attracting bird watchers who are eager to view what the residents are calling ‘a beautiful plague’.

The green and gold birds are around 18cm long and weigh between 30-40g.

Budgerigars are nomadic birds found in open habitats, primarily in Australian scrubland, open woodland and grassland. Drought can drive flocks into more wooded habitat or coastal areas.

The Most Elegant Event on Earth

The Brownlow Medal

If you’ve ever lamented the passing of Audrey Hepburn and with it the end of chic then do not despair. The Brownlow Medal is here to demonstrate that true elegance is not dead! The Emmy’s have NOTHING on these beauties!

So that you are not overcome with glamour I have divided the dresses into sections for your viewing pleasure.

All images are ripped-off directly from www.theage.com.au

We will start with the colour that best shows of the fake tan – White.  It’s also useful because you can re-use your deb dress.  See – economy!

WHITE

Pass the cake knife...

Pass the cake knife...

This reminds me of the Italian-Australian girl I used to go to school with you had a knockout body but wore the tackiest shit imaginable.

This reminds me of the Italian-Australian girl I used to go to school with you had a knockout body but wore the tackiest shit imaginable.

This lady with the enviable physique wins the award for the Most Frightening Fake Tan of the Evening.

This lady with the enviable physique wins the award for the Most Frightening Fake Tan of the Evening. But I'm glad she wore White to show it to its full glory!

A strange mixture of rock chic studs, grecian bodice and drop-waisted full skirt. Choose one style and stick to it.

A strange mixture of rock chic studs, Grecian bodice and drop-waisted full skirt. Ick!

The Post-Modern

I assume this dress is statement about the obsolescence of the media... my TV used to look like this right before it blew a tube.

I assume this dress is statement about the obsolescence of the media... my TV used to look like this right before it blew a tube.

Celebrity-Inspired

Very often the tabloids are the places where we get the ideas for our dress-up moments.  Tip: If you decide get inspired by a celebrity look – check to see if everyone thought it was rubbish the first time around.  Chances are you will not improve upon it.

If you're going to copy a celebrity look then don't copy the latest skanky ho.  Particularly when that ho is Megan Fox who is going to look WAYYY hotter than you are.

If you're going to copy a celebrity look then don't copy the latest skanky ho. Particularly when that ho is Megan Fox who is going to look WAYYY hotter than you are.

Megan Fox wearing the original.

Megan Fox wearing the original.

What in God's name? can someone please explain to me why some women think it is cute to dress up like Dakota Fanning before she hit puberty? Somehow this horror reminds me of a cross between the Oscar dresses worn by Lara Flynn-Boyle and Gwyneth Paltrow. We hated them too!

What in God's name? can someone please explain to me why some women think it is cute to dress up like Dakota Fanning before she hit puberty? Somehow this horror reminds me of a cross between the Oscar dresses worn by Lara Flynn-Boyle and Gwyneth Paltrow. We hated them too!

lara-flynn-boyle-ballerinaGwyneth-Paltrow_l

The Almosts and the Pretty Good

I can see what she's trying to do here. I really can.  There are too many tapes for a dress that is cut to the thigh.  Maybe it looked better when she let it hang down long?

I can see what she's trying to do here. I really can. There are too many tapes for a dress that is cut to the thigh. Maybe it looked better when she let it hang down long?

Apart from the 'Carry On' hair do - this look could have worked.  It's too shapeless for her though.  If she threw a belt on it wouldn't swamp her so much.

Apart from the 'Carry On' hair do - this look could have worked. It's too shapeless for her though. If she threw a belt on it wouldn't swamp her so much.

I think this woman looks great!  Perhaps a slightly less wide belt might have helped but this is definitely one of the evening's winners!

I think this woman looks great! Perhaps a slightly less wide belt might have helped but this is definitely one of the evening's winners!

Okay - a little too girly for my personal taste but this dress is cut to perfection and she wears it perfectly.

Okay - a little too girly for my personal taste but this dress is cut to perfection and she wears it perfectly.

EMBELLISHED

These flowers were copied from a Hallmark Card that she gave to her Gran for her 75th Birthday. Shame we can't see the back. I have high hopes for a poem!

These flowers were copied from a Hallmark Card that she gave to her Gran for her 75th Birthday. Shame we can't see the back. I have high hopes for a poem!

Image Source: www.theage.com.au

Black and White - you can't go wrong! Right?

Celebrity doctor Geoffrey Edelston and his fiance Brian.

Celebrity doctor Geoffrey Edelston and his fiance Brian.

Did her 80 year old catholic grandmother chose it?

Visitors

I was thinking it would be great if my Gran could come and spend a few months with us in Dubai but unfortunately the tourist visa only lasts for 30 days.  14.5 hours seems like an awfully long flight for 30 days.

Bummer.

Puppy Dog Pictures

Here is a picture of my Mum’s lovely dog who passed away in the last year.

She looks FAT in these pictures. I think my Gran was feeding her treatsat the time.

My Gran, my Mum, Ella and Mani.

My Gran, my Mum, Ella and Mani.

Oil Spill in Australia

My Dad is currently on a cruise somewhere in New Zealand but for most of the year he lives on a boat and explores the waters of Northern Australia.

He will no doubt be very concerned to learn of this.

Shot of the Hinchinbrook Channel I took years ago from Dad's boat.

Shot of the Hinchinbrook Channel I took years ago from Dad's boat.

Australia declares disaster over oil spill

From CNN http://edition.cnn.com/2009/WORLD/asiapcf/03/13/australia.oilslick/index.html

(CNN) — Australian authorities have declared several coastal areas near Brisbane disaster zones after a massive oil spill earlier this week, according to the Queensland government.

Large stretches of Queensland's coastline are being affected by the oil.

Large stretches of Queensland's coastline are being affected by the oil.

“This is a very serious situation,” Queensland Premier Anna Bligh said, according to a news release on Friday. “It appears the volume of oil involved is much greater than originally reported by the Pacific Adventurer. And the effect of the oil spill is more widespread.”

The Pacific Adventurer sustained damage early Wednesday when Cyclone Hamish struck the waters of eastern Australia with more than 125 kph (77 mph) winds. The cargo ship lost 30 of its 50 containers of ammonium nitrate about 13 kilometers (8 miles) off the coast of Cape Moreton. Those containers are still missing.

The damaged ship also spilled a large amount of oil that is covering at least 60 kilometers (37 miles) of beach in and around Brisbane, according to Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC).

The ship’s owner, Swire Shipping, initially said no more than 42,000 liters (11,100 U.S. gallons) of oil escaped from the ship, but now says that “substantially more oil was spilled,” ABC reported Friday.

The ship is currently in the custody of Australia’s Maritime Safety Authority in Brisbane, as the investigation into the spill continues.

A massive clean-up effort is also under way. So far, 13 oil-covered birds have been recovered, according to the Queensland government.

More stories from the fires – video

This has got to be one of the most incredible videos of the bushfire.

I was unable to really imagine the size and speed of it until I saw this.

Click on the Busfire Survival Video link that you find on this page.

http://www.theage.com.au/national/listen-to-that-roar-its-coming-20090215-87y8.html?page=8

You can also see a summation video at

http://www.theage.com.au/interactive/2009/national/darkestday/gmap_age.html

More stories from the fires – the aftermath

www.theage.com.au)

The Sign Survived (Image Source: http://www.theage.com.au)

‘I’ve never seen anything like it. The whole town ‘

Lindsay Murdoch, Buxton

February 15, 2009

From http://www.theage.com.au/national/ive-never-seen-anything-like-it-the-whole-town–20090214-87pi.html?page=-1

JENNY Pullen could not believe what she was seeing. “Marysville is far, far worse than I imagined … 100 times worse,” she says. “It really was hell.”

When Ms Pullen sat on a bus with other survivors from the mountain resort town north-east of Melbourne yesterday and looked at the ashes of her award-winning Allawah tourist cottages, she wanted to get out and take something — anything. “The statues in the garden are still there. The signs to the cottages are still there. That’s all,” she says.

But Marysville remains a police crime scene, with an unknown number of bodies still to be recovered, and none of the survivors could get off three buses that had a police escort to the town.

The survivors wept and hugged each other when they returned for the first time since the town became the centre of the worst of Black Saturday’s firestorms eight days ago.

They mostly sat in shocked silence on the buses, peering through windows and thick smoke at utter devastation. Simon Hudson, 42, wept as he told how a garden fountain he bought at the time of his wedding is the only recognisable thing that remains of his guesthouse.

“The town is wiped out. All the infrastructure is gone,” he says.

“It’s unbelievable. Of about 200 houses and other buildings, only 10 or 12 remain standing.

“I feel sick in the stomach and can’t eat or drink.”

Ashraf Doos, owner of Marysville’s Patisserie bakery, says no words can describe what has happened to one of Victoria’s most beautiful towns, which was nestled in a valley surrounded by waterfalls, creeks and tall mountain ash.

“I’ve never seen anything like it, not even in the movies,” Mr Doos says through tears.

“The whole town … there’s just miles and miles of black. It’s all gone. No more Marysville.”

Mr Doos says it will take a long time to clean up the piles of debris.

“What I saw in the papers and on television is only 10 per cent of the devastation,” he says. “I wish I could show pictures of it to the world.”

Mr Doos said it felt awful to go back to see the ruins of his two-storey business.

“This time last Saturday I was having lunch with my friends. Now they are gone. It’s a sad day to see that your life is gone.”

Mr Doos, who sat next to his sobbing wife, Christine, and two teenage sons on one of the buses, says he does not know what he will do next.

“I can’t think. I need help. My car is my office and our home. I don’t know where we will sleep tonight. I guess we’ll get there, but I just don’t know how at the moment.”

Yvonne Jones, 70, saw from her bus the ruins of a house where she believes the remains of a woman and her two teenage children still lie among the ashes.

“The husband is in contact with us,” Mrs Jones says.

“It’s very hard …”

Mrs Jones and her husband, Ivor, a retired Baptist pastor, lost their home and all their possessions.

“It’s terribly, terribly sad,” says Mr Jones, 74, who will preside over a memorial church service in nearby Buxton this morning. “But I believe as Christians that we can have hope.”

He says he prefers to think the victims are not dead but “promoted to glory”.

Many of the residents who went to Marysville yesterday were too upset to speak about what they saw.

Patricia Beggs, who is in a wheelchair, says residents needed to go back even though it was distressing.

“It makes you accept what has happened,” says Mrs Beggs, who watched her house burn before fleeing the inferno with her husband, John.

“It’s like burying the dead,” she says.

“There it is, it’s gone, it’s not there

any more. Now it can live in our memories.”

A 150-strong team of forensic police will take at least another week to

finish the gruesome search among the ruins.

Nobody knows the death toll, but it is believed to be more than 100 — one in five of the number of permanent residents.

“There’s still a lot of people missing,” Mr Doos says.

“I can’t find many of my friends.”