Posted by: jkirkby8712 | January 27, 2011

Tuesday, 25th January 2011 – gardens and songs and chats

With a public holiday tomorrow, and other staff taking time off later in the week, I decided to take today off, on official leave, and try and spend some time in the garden – well, I did manage the best part of half a day, after an earlier walk, but eventually, the volume of maintenance required in the backyard, wore this ‘ageing’ gardener down, as I decided that the task required more than one of us. However, there ‘is’ only one of us, lol, so this one will just keep plugging away, bit by bit, until the job is up to date. My main problem is a large patch of the dreaded blackberry bushes which seem to have taken over part of the rear garden area – I’m disinclined to use any kind of poison because of the affect on other plants, the birds in the area, and any potential danger to my daughter’s two cats! Digging the plants out is a difficult and tedious job, and unfortunately, poisoning the plants seems the only option. I did notice for the first time, that they are actually budding some actual blackberries!!!   Anyway, work stopped in the early afternoon, as the temperature outside started to rise!

Australia’s Womens’ cricket team doesn’t get a great deal of publicity, and most of their achievements probably go un-noticed unless you were a keen supporter. I take notice, as a broad supporter of any Australian sporting team. So in a summer punctuated by defeat and humiliation, Australia’s women’s side has restored some much needed pride to Australian cricket. In what one writer described as a potential  watershed moment for the women’s game in Australia, Alex Blackwell’s side succeeded where Ricky Ponting’s failed, by reclaiming the ‘Ashes’ on home soil. In response to Australia’s seven wicket win in the one-off Test match at Bankstown Oval in Sydney, Blackwell said that  “We have received some huge support from the men’s side and despite what happened with them this summer there were some efforts there that we took a lot of inspiration from,”  “It means a huge amount for us to win the Ashes back and I’m so proud of the girls. We take a lot of pride in wearing the Baggy Green.  “Winning the World Twenty20 championship in the Caribbean was a highlight for us and winning the Ashes now, we are on a real high at the moment.”  England have held the ‘Women’s’ Ashes since 2005. Meanwhile, my cricket loving friend over in England was pretty dismissive of that result – it meant nothing because there was only one test played!!!  But I’m happy to take whatever wins we can achieve, especially against England!@!!

Showtime, my Tuesday night regular show, tonight featured some songs by well known Australian folk singer John Williamson, from a 2002  album of his, called ‘Gunyah’ in which Williamson introduces each song with a little preview of how  the song originated. is an Australian country music singer-songwriter. Williamson has released over thirty-two albums, ten videos, five DVDs, and two lyric books. He has received more than twenty-three Golden Guitar Awards at the Country Music Awards of Australia and has won two A.R.I.A. Awards for Best Australian Country Record. John’s middle brother Robin died of cancer in 1999. Williamson’s 2002 album “Gunyah”, in particular the track Salisbury Street, was dedicated to Robin, and was one of the tracks I played tonight, the lyrics of which appear below. John wrote them, after he had taken his brother on one last boat cruise on his favourite river, the Murray

John Williamson Salisbury Street Lyrics:
Now’s not the time for wailin’
While there’s water in the river
We’ll all lay down and cry when it’s gone
I’ll be a jackass and laugh at every sunrise
Celebrate the day when it’s born

And we’ll cruise one more time down the river
While our hearts overflow-ow with joy
And we’ll reminisce our days down Salisbury Street
Salisbury Street, Salisbury Street
Yeah we’ll cruise one more time down the Murray
don’t wave the river gums goodbye
Just thank ’em for the shade and the stories 

The Late Session on SBS tonight – an interesting discussion about ‘families and their influence in our lives’ in tonight’s program – you could almost say, that I currently look forward to this program late every Tuesday evening, with much anticipation.  Many of the participants in these shows, while either famous or generally well known in their own fields of entertainment, the arts, etc, are quite often not familiar to myself, so I find the show a rather fascinating learning curve, which gives me the opportunity to learn more about the personalities that feature in our public areas of life in Australia. Because of the nature of the program, a casual chat show around a studio dinner table,  the ‘private’ lives of these guests, often to a certain extent become very public, but by personal choice, just by coming on the show. Tonight’s guests, for example, spoke about the influence of families and the kind of relationships they had experienced as part of their family life. One interesting little moment – one of the male guests was speaking about his partner, and when he suddenly referred to that person as ‘he’, one of the females at the table quite innocently off the cuff exclaimed ‘Are you gay? I never realised!!’.  Anyway, as usual, I found it an interesting hour of discussion, together with as couple of musical interludes, this time performed by a couple, who were not actually part of the chat group – a father and daughter ‘music hall’ style duo, whose names I didn’t catch, but were certainly good to listen to, and appropriate to the setting. Anyway, tonight’s guests were:

 Julie Catt –  a Counselling Psychologist, from Sydney, CBD, and  Paddington, specialising in  relationship and couples counselling and therapy, gay and lesbian counselling, anxiety, etc. She provides quality, confidential psychotherapy, coaching and counselling for individuals and couples needing support in making changes, finding direction, or negotiating a rocky period in their life.

 Virginia Hausseggar    – a journalist who has been the presenter of the 7pm ABC Canberra News since 2001. She was previously a reporter and presenter of the ABC’s “7:30 Report”, and was a senior reporter at Channel Nine and the Seven Network on flagship current affairs programs. In addition to broadcast, she is a columnist and leading commentator on a range of social and gender issues and is published across various Australian media. She was awarded the United Nations Association of Australia Media Peace Prize for her coverage of Indigenous Affairs in 1996. She is the author of “Wonder Woman: The Myth of Having it All”[1] which examines issues of feminism, fertility and female choice.

 Fiona O’:Loughlin –  is an Australian comedian, known primarily for her stand-up comedy; for her television performances, on ABC TV’s Spicks and Specks, and Channel Ten’s Rove Live and GNW; and a series of advertisements for Heinz soups.[1] She has performed as a headline act in the Melbourne International Comedy Festival and the Edinburgh Fringe festival.

 John L Simpson  – film producer, distributor and writer

 Christos Tsailkos  – is an Australian author of the novel ‘The Slap’




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