Neither Here nor There.

With apologies to Bill Bryson…

Perth has, I admit, been more interesting and attractive than my preconceived notions. It is, like many world cities, saved from its’ suffocating skyscrapers by a wide clean river surrounded by ample green spaces and thoughtful walks and bikeways which separate cyclist from Commodore – although I think that the better alliteration for Perth is “separate bike from BMW”

The distinctive melaleuca species is known colloquially as the paperbark tree for obvious reason.


Its a nesting water fowl


Epilepsy conference

The conference on epilepsy is being held at the Pan Pacific Hotel. Unfortunately any edifice, development or creation – real or virtual- which bears the name “Pan Pacific” immediately brings to mind that unique cartoonish Australian movie “Strictly Ballroom”. If I have lost you, rent the movie! It’s a feast of primary colours and colourful characters. “The Dressmaker “ had similar resonances more recently.

The hotel some 20 storeys high, is however not all that modern. The bathroom always ages the structure, in my experience, specifically the fact that one showers in the bath. There is an obligatory rubber mat with suction cups to prevent the ungainly naked sway as one attempts to lather up , down below. I have a kinky voyeuristic impression that our hordes of Japanese and Chinese tourists, place their mat, suction cups up!

The gym and steam rooms in the basement were discordant as the gym was modern, well equipped yet the steam room spluttered like an ancient asthmatic kettle. The change room shower when turning on the taps, created a whining crescendo which in decibels and quality surpassed the Rolls Royce Trent 900 jet engine test bed.


Aquatic Nostalgia

Another year, another summer, The Payneham pool is 60 years old whilst the Norwood Pool is well passed that ! To celebrate the 60th anniversary, our squad swam 60 laps , on the minute ! My Apple Watch does not lie!

I was allowed myself a post swim latte and toast – justified by my caloric energy burnt!


This is not fake news

There is an epidemic of obesity – adult and alarmingly- in children. A modern catastrophe, the consequences of my favourite “3M syndrome”:

  1. Microsoft
  2. McDonalds
  3. Motor Car

These basically contribute to a sedentary lifestyle with too much caloric intake. This picture from the 1950 tells it all! Pick the obese kid?


These two photographs are now on display in the entrance of the Norwood Pool.  Both are taken in the late 1950s. I remember those times well. I grew up in rural  NSW  a country town, Temora and in summer, before and after school and on weekends, virtually lived at the local Olympic swimming pool. Boy did I play games under water, in fact all those activities illustrated -the underwater duels were achingly enjoyable. Who cares about the coloured rag, I just lunged for the belt and pulled … so perchance to glimpse a pert natal cleft… and as for undressing underwater, it was as natural as butterfly, although breaststroke was completely foreign, one could in fact say, unnatural, for me.

Swimmers take your mark 

Bloody European Wasps…everywhere. Worse than the Australian bush fly.

It’s 7:30 Monday morning. After a briefing last night and a group dinner, we are organised for breakfast in an hour then off to the boat. Today we are observed in the water and grouped into 3 according to skill. As well we are to be video recorder as we demonstrate our natal prowess and later analysed. I have a sense I will be able to cope. There is a delightful guy from the states who has an unusual disabling arthritis that has frozen his elbows in permanent flexion. In other words bent! He can do nothing else but breaststroke… Or lie on his back. It sounds horrific and daunting but amazingly he swims breaststroke 1.8km ( a mile to him) twice a week. People who know me would immediately know that if Kathy our coach was the Lord High Executioner then an appropriate punishment to fit the crime for me would be to breaststroke a mile.!

Again a few pics of our base for the next week….by the way we are all going on a bike ride tonight upon our return.
 

view from the bedroom windows

  

path from my unit to pool and dining room area

  

dawn scross the bay .