Ruminations and recipes from a small kitchen in a big city.

21.3.06

Gardens, gates, games, etc.

The young camellia - the one I put in the ground in September - suffered through the heatwaves of summer but survived. Some leaves turned brown. Now it's flowering in early autumn. Aren't they supposed to flower in winter?

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Three quotes to rebuild the back fence: $1300, $1100 and $450. The $450 guy did a great job. Moral: always get several quotes.

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The weekend before last saw temperatures creep into the high thirties but it was far hotter in the house than at the height of summer, because the sun is lower and hits the two north-facing windows. Given that it appears the previous owners of the house seem never to have opened their windows, I don't know how they coped with the heat. I have ordered exterior awnings. They'll be installed within weeks. I will also put two trees in the front yard, something deciduous and with a good canopy. The local nursery has a good selection. The guy mentioned Manchurian Pear and some kind of a maple. I don't know my tree varieties but I know what I like. I might take a trip to the Botanic Gardens and check out some trees.

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The Commonwealth Games are in full swing and it seems warnings of congestion may have actually scared people off from coming into the city. Monday was a glorious golden autumn day, so we decided at the last minute to go and see the men's 20 kilometre walk. An easy drive into town, plenty of vacant two hour meters in William Street next to the Flagstaff Gardens, a pleasant stroll down La Trobe Street for a block or two and there we were in Docklands. We sat in the shade of a palm tree right next to the course and ate lunch - mashed chicken and vegetables for William and chicken and lettuce sandwiches for us - while we watched Nathan Deakes crack eighty minutes for 20 kilometres.

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It is reported New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark has snubbed Melbourne by knocking back an official invitation. Maybe she just doesn't like flying into Melbourne.

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