Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Gingerbread Melbourne

Knowing how hard it is (for me at least) to create reasonably flat, well proportioned gingerbread shapes and stick them together so they don't slither and slide creating something more like a disaster zone than a stable building, I'm super impressed by this creative Gingerbread Village by Epicure in Melbourne this month.

Here's the real Melbourne Town Hall
and the gingerbread facsimile, complete with wreaths and snow. 
It'd be a bit of a shock to wake up and find snow in Melbourne, but you can always dream!
The Arts Centre from the back of Fed Square (Federation Square) looking across the Yarra River.
The gingerbread Arts Centre complete with spire - no seagulls wheeling above it thankfully! The MCG (Melbourne Cricket Ground) is in the background. The Christmas tree with star that you see at the bottom of the photo is in the next shot. 
without snow, thankfully!
and a close up of the MCG complete with the towering lights, spectators and players. 
A structural masterpiece!
I suspect this is Flinders Street Station, normally seen without the reindeer and Santa!
 Santa and an elf have come to life!  Taking a break to sample some gingerbread.
Playing hide and seek amongst the forest of plastic trees at Fed Square. It would have been a real challenge in gingerbread as it has fantastic angles. Flinders Street Station is the sandy coloured building with the dome in the background.
And for those dreaming of jingling bells, there's always the possibility of enjoying a horse and carriage ride. Just beware of the rhinoceros on a skateboard! (A clever advertising strategy reminding people that trams don't stop quickly or easily.)
Now, back to trying to make something presentable out of my own gingerbread disaster. The roof insists on slithering off...sigh.

I cheated this year, and bought a kit from the supermarket - Never again! Whilst the shapes are neat, it smells all wrong, it's sickly sweet and I suspect the flour is coloured rather than oozing ginger and cinnamon; it doesn't smell like Christmas. Smell is such an important sense, it seems a pity to shortchange it, don't you think? It's a bit like the plastic tree we resorted to a couple of years ago during the drought - ok, but not quite right.

Celebrations and smells. What does Christmas smell like to you?

Monday, December 5, 2011

what have we become?

We’ve pursued wealth and have become greedy with excess.
We’ve sought power and have become brutish and aggressive.

We’ve chosen to play with shifting goal posts on an uneven playing field.
To our advantage
of course.

Sold our country's soul to the highest bidders.
Ignored common sense in our quest for ‘growth at all costs’
And what a cost it is - living on borrowed time,
But the borrowing will need to be repaid … with interest … soon.

We’ve chosen to ignore wisdom and generosity of spirit.
But Christmas is coming, let’s be jolly and pretend all is well -

South Australia. Open cut coal mines.
photos: D. Abbott.

The Australian Government has voted to sell uranium to India - because we sell it to China. Neither country has signed the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty (saying they won't use the uranium for aggressive purposes). 

We're mining black and brown coal and shipping it (mainly to China) to help fill their increasing energy needs. Soon, some of this shipping will be through the fragile, stressed Great Barrier Reef, taking coal-seam gas to China. We don't invest enthusiastically in renewable energy to prepare for the time when the earth has nothing left to give. 

We watch with idle curiosity while some of our Island neighbours watch their homelands get consumed by the rising seas. IMHO we seem to be taking one step forward and many backward.

We used to call ourselves "The Lucky Country" - I wonder when our luck will run out.

What do you think?

A drabble is a story told in 100 words. No more, no less.

Thursday, December 1, 2011


I wonder if the owner of this nest thought it was strong and secure. The bird has woven in baling twine, very solid fencing wire and different coloured lengths of boating rope. There are twigs with gumnuts adding a rather whimsical tone, and it was well and solidly worked into the fork of the tree.

Unfortunately the tree needed to be lopped. My friend was pleased that the tree surgeon rescued it from the mulcher and it's been added to her artistic displays.