Saturday, November 26, 2005

I've got the world at my feet

I can hear you thinking.. here comes another sock post. But no, this post reveals one of my deep dark secrets. I have a weird fascination for manhole covers. Look down, everyone! Look at the world at your feet! Once you start, you realise how much variety there is, how much beauty. I started in Montreal, suddenly struck by the French words on the covers. I'd lurch into the middle of the road, camera pointed towards my feet, snapping happily. This was my first.

I soon discovered I was not alone. There are websites devoted to them. The wonderful site includes a huge range of manholes. A colleague sent me a wonderful site from Japan , not to be missed. The same colleague sent me this little gem, from Virginia, USA.
Look closely - made in India!

Some are so delightful in their simplicity. I can't resist including this one of a tree in Erskineville, the next suburb.

Worrk took me to Wellington, NZ, last week. It was a symposium on digital repositories run by the National Library of NZ. A free morning allowed a walk around Wellington, including one of my very favourite things to do - a ride up the cable car, with a walk down to the city through the wonderful botanic gardens and an historic cemetery. Naturally, my eyes are alert for manhole covers, and I was not disappointed. Several lovely examples have been added to my collection, and here they are:

Aren't they lovely? So next time you are walking around, look down and see for yourself these windows to the nether world. And remember, if you come to my house, you are likely to be treated to a slide show featuring manhole covers of the world. You have been warned.

Sunday, November 13, 2005


Yay! As you can see from my proud photos, I have finished my very first pair of socks. This was from the Classy Slip-Up pattern in the book my daughter lent me, Knit Socks! by Betsy Lee McCarthy. I thoroughly enjoyed knitting them, once I got used to using five fine bamboo double pointed needles. What fun! Now I am looking at all kinds of other patterns, including some for gloves.

No no no, you MUST get back to knitting your pink fuzzy jumper. I promise I will .... no more projects until it is finished.

Another first this last week was our attendance at the Sydney Sity Klickers group, which meets nearby. We had a most enjoyable afternoon looking at magazines, comparing knitting and stash sizes, confessing unfinished projects and horror stories about felted knitting. We'll definitely go again. Several of us have blogs, including this one, who had a link to the most fabulous shawl which is making me drool.

No no no. Step away from that pattern. Go towards your pink fuzzy jumper now....

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Our signature scent for summer

Spring is almost over, summer is coming on. The wisteria has bloomed, and the tree waratah is still in full glorious bloom in next door's garden. You can just see it behind the wisteria. The jasmine mingles with the wisteria, and the heat is rising.

My toes have emerged like white grubs from their winter sock cocoons (I'll spare you the pictures) begging for a shiny coat of pink nail polish.

Alex has been a bit strange(r) lately. He is always busy in his garden, and has been muttering things about a baby crocodile. He says if its mother appears, he'll be calling the cops! Alex likes height in his garden. I think it is to entertain his neighbours - he builds things up to fence height so we can all get the benefit of his artistry. So I really thought I ought to investigate this crocodile business, and got the camera out. This is what I saw:

If you look closely at the first picture you'll see a pink dinosaur up on a pedestal, along with a couple of other plastic dinosaurs. In the second picture, peeking out from behind one of the pots, there is another plastic dinosaur - the fabled crocodile.

Alex saw me taking the pictures from his kitchen window, so he knows it has been immortalised.

But I haven't addressed the question I posed - what is our signature scent for the summer? I came across this phrase years ago when someone told me what her signature scent was. Florine was her name, and her Signature Scent was Red Door, by Elizabeth Arden. I was quite taken with the idea, but really I have too many different kinds of perfume and am much too flighty to have a single scent that expresses the ME. Until this year. And you know what it is? It also comes in a red package, spray or roll on. It is RID. Yes, the insect repellent. Because with the summer comes the flies, and this year is no exception. Trendy? Sexy? Effective? I just won't leave the house without it.