Sunny Sundays

This morning we head out to Trentham Falls for a look around. It was such a beautiful day. The falls are pretty cool you’re not officially supposed to go down to the floor of the falls, but some folks were. We were considering it, but then too many people showed up and those who were already on the floor would have been in our shots anyway, so we abandoned that idea.

Trentham Falls

After a quick walk around the shops in Trentham we head home. Sausage sandwiches were on the cards for lunch followed by a relaxing lay in the hammocks out back in our awesome yard, with some special guests.

Lazy Sunday Afternoon
Lazy Sunday Afternoon
Lazy Sunday Afternoon

The day was rounded out watching Doctor Who while having dinner.

I’m really liking the new Doctor, his manner is very different from the early incarnations of these latest seasons. Looking forward to future episodes as he finds his feet, I’m not even minding the Clara character as much as I did during the last season with Matt Smith as the Doctor.

Bianca Del Rio

Bianca Del Rio at the GH

First up let me say, the photos in this post were made with my iPhone and the Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ30. The Lumix is not the best camera, in fact it’s one of the worst I’ve ever had. We had a previous model of the Lumix that we bought in the States a few years back and it was great, beautiful camera, great shots and on the back of that we bought this one. Such a disappointment. So with that behind me, let’s go on.

Last night we went to see Bianca Del Rio at the Greyhound in St Kilda. She was great, but I’m getting ahead of myself.

A few months ago David found out Bianca was coming, the winner of the 2014 season of RuPaul’s Drag Race, Bianca is a powerhouse with the mouth to go with her spirit. We had to go, nothing was going to keep us away. We reached out to our circle to see who else may want to go. We found some folks who wanted to come and we bought tickets.

At the last minute we found out that Bianca wasn’t going to go on until 11pm and we let the fellow attendees know, seems like within minutes all three pulled out and we were left with three spare tickets and out $75 for the tickets.

Thankfully Sue, Lana and Denise came to the rescue, Sue right away, Denise a bit later and Lana in the final minutes. We had a great night.

Started out with dinner in the dining area of the Greyhound Hotel. “The Dinner Ladies” put on a wonderful show. Miss Candy, now reportedly in her 60s, powered through wonderful renditions of the drag queen classics from Whitney Houston, Cher et al. Taylor Made was brought in to round out the troop as one of the regulars was away.

The Dinner Ladies at the Greyhound
The Dinner Ladies at the Greyhound
The Dinner Ladies at the Greyhound
The Dinner Ladies at the Greyhound

After dinner was the main event, we went into the main room of the Greyhound Hotel where Bianca Del Rio was due to perform. But we were a little early, getting in there around 9pm for a performance that wasn’t due to start until 11pm and for a bunch of people who aren’t regular club goers, it was a strange environment to be in. We made the most of it taking photos of each other while a drag queen spun the tunes from on high in the DJ Box and we checked out the particularly good-looking well-built guy that seemed out of place with his non dancing and his equally non-dancing boyfriend.

There was almost fisticuffs between the good lookers and another guy who seemed to be under the influence of more than alcohol. Said drug-addled boy was dancing into good looking boy and everyone else around and at one point groped good-looking boy who’s boyfriend had stern words with drug-addled boy. He was later shoved quite forcefully by good looking boy and seemed to calm down after that, for a time.

Not long after that dancing drug-addled boy was back, being cautious of the other two, he was dancing into Lana who was equally annoyed and let the guy know, instead of calming down, he tried to teach Lana his dance moves… he very quickly gave up.

Seeing Bianca Del Rio at the Greyhound
Seeing Bianca Del Rio at the Greyhound
Seeing Bianca Del Rio at the Greyhound
Seeing Bianca Del Rio at the Greyhound

Bianca came to the stage following a montage of her time on RuPaul’s Drag Race. Her mouth was as potty as one would expect, no word was taboo, no race or sexuality was safe. She was brilliant, I’d see her again and again and again.

Bianca called on the Asians in the crowd to move forward, because “I know you can’t see me from back there with eyes like that”. She picked on the drunk straight girl for claiming she had gay friends, “not with shoes and a dress like that you don’t, or they really, really hate you”. She slung mud all over her fellow contestants; “but we’re sisters”. Her dislike of Laganga from the season was shared by the crowd.

Seeing Bianca Del Rio at the Greyhound
Seeing Bianca Del Rio at the Greyhound
Seeing Bianca Del Rio at the Greyhound
Seeing Bianca Del Rio at the Greyhound
Seeing Bianca Del Rio at the Greyhound
Seeing Bianca Del Rio at the Greyhound

The photos above are from my dodgy Panasonic Lumix, it’s a crappy camera, but good enough to make sure we remember the night we had. Should have bit the bullet and taken the DSLR along.

ballarat_botanical_gardens

Let the Sunshine In

Our big day today started, as they often do, with the idea we were going to do something small. Just like last week we jumped in the car and head out looking for a good photo opportunity. But all we could see was fog, it was thick. And you know what you shouldn’t do, fly Elroy in the misty fog, he’s apt to end up quite moist. You should also remember to actually start your GoPro so it captures the footage to make the flying through the mist worthwhile.

So the hope of getting a nice foggy photo was ruined by the fact there was too much of it.

Overlooking Bacchus Marsh - Morning Fog
Elroy in the fog

Given how foggy it was here in Bacchus Marsh, I thought we should head up to Ballarat, in the hope that the lake there might have a little of the fog, or at least a light mist, it would give it quite the ethereal look. As we were leaving the Marsh and heading up the highway it kind of became apparent that our little valley town was alone in it’s fog-filled haze. The sun was beaming and bright.

When we got to Ballarat, which was indeed fog-free, we stopped in at the Ballarat Botanical Gardens to see what was happening. Last time we were there they had a begonia festival on, this time it seemed to be daisy and poppy heaven. Of course I could be wrong, these may well be other flowers, feel free to correct me in the comments.

Robert Clark Conservatory
Ballarat Botanical Gardens
Ballarat Botanical Gardens
Ballarat Botanical Gardens
Ballarat Botanical Gardens
Ballarat Botanical Gardens
Ballarat Botanical Gardens

After this I wanted to go and check out the wind turbines generating clean energy on the outskirts of Ballarat, well they are a little further away than that. We ended up near Lake Burrumbeet and found our way to the massive wind farm at Waubra. There are a whole mass of turbines spinning away in the wind, creating power from the wind.

To say I love these things is an understatement. They are beautiful to look at and when you’re close the steady “whoomp, whoomp, whoomp” is, to me, a calming sound. Others apparently find it noise pollution. There have been many complaints about this wind farm affecting the health of people in nearby regions but I call BS on that. Seems the “Waubra Foundation” who’s was fighting this farm is representing no one who lives anywhere near the town or the wind farm. Seems a cash grab and a tax haven.

Wind Turbine
Clean Energy in the making in Victoria

I launched Elroy and sent him up for a closer look, but didn’t get too close. I didn’t have the smoothest landing earlier in the day with the fog and I damaged one of his rotor blades and well, even a small nick causes him to become less responsive, not to mention the wind farm is, of course, in a windy area so he was harder to control than usual. So he really just went up and then back down. Next month I’ve getting a POV kit for him so I can see what he is seeing and guide him better, can’t wait to make some nice videos then, it’s a little hard when you’re basically flying blind.


Clean Energy in the making in Victoria
Clean Energy in the making in Victoria
Clean Energy in the making in Victoria

After this quick sojourn we head back to Ballarat to catch some of the local footy. They are in first weeks of finals and this was a qualifying finals game. Our local team the Bacchus Marsh Cobras were playing Ballarat Swans in the 2014 B&M Truck Parts Reserves competition, and I’m happy to announce we trounced them. 104 to 52. Looks like they’ll be rematching again next week, but if this week was any indication it seems Bacchus Marsh are headed for the Grand Final.

I’ve decided I need better lenses to capture footy. My 70-200 even with the 1.4 converter just isn’t doing it for me. We were on the wrong side of the ground, all the action was happening on the other side. That is until I went to the other side then all the play went to the other side… seems it’s always the way. We actually left the game at half time and caught up on the scores later. There was so much more to do with the day.

Ballarat v Bacchus Marsh
Ballarat v Bacchus Marsh
Ballarat v Bacchus Marsh
Ballarat v Bacchus Marsh
Ballarat v Bacchus Marsh
Ballarat v Bacchus Marsh

Our next stop was Mount Buninyong. We’ve been here before but wanted to check it out on this beautiful day. At the top of the mountain (more a hill) there is a lookout tower used during the fire season to keep an eye on the surrounding areas, but it also has a public viewing platform. There are a LOT of steps up and I’m not going to lie it almost kills me walking up them, but maybe I should make it a regular thing to improve the fitness.

You can see the view from the top below. It’s quite nice. Though the weather was great, I would have preferred a less foggy/misty day. I guess the view is worth the stairs. Both the photos below were taken with my iPhone 5S.

Lookout from Mount Buninyong's Observation Tower
Mount Buninyong - iPhone Panorama

After Buninyong we head home via Lal Lal Falls. Again we’d been there before but there is water there now. Only problem with this visit is we went at the wrong time. The afternoon is not a good time to visit these falls during winter, the sun is in the wrong spot and it’s nothing but shadows in the falls. I present the photo below more as a record of the stop and to show why we should have gone there in the morning.

Lal Lal Falls

On the way home from there we came to a massive “dip” in the road. I say that because just before you drive down into what feels like a ravine there is a little “dip” sign. At the bottom of the dip was a beautiful sight: a lush green field with cows and a solitary tree. Because of the dip there weren’t any safe places to stop so we had to do a U-Turn and come back through. It was worth the trouble I reckon.

Cow and Tree on a Hill

And finally, our last stop, was back where the day began at the top of the hill in Bacchus Marsh to show just how fogged in we were in the morning, with a photo showing the view from the same location after the fog and mist had burnt off.

Overlooking Bacchus Marsh - Afternoon - No Fog

The day ended with a mow of the back lawn, it’s nice to have this job to do after so many years of no grass in the yard at our old house, and some TV while eating reheated Pizza for dinner.

It was a full day and a fun day. I got plenty of sun, which should make my doctor happy (I’m low on Vitamin D). Another nice day is on the cards for tomorrow, not sure what we’re going to do with it, it may involve some hammock time with a good book.

A Human Equivalent