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Holiday to Adeliade

I have just come back from a lovely holiday driving 2000km round trip to Adelaide

I did the video in iphoto then screengrabbed in screenflow. Which was a bit of a pain but I generated it as an album in iphoto so I can send a physical photo album to my Gran (this is why a few pages look funny because iphoto does not created videos and I sort of bodged it)

We have been on holiday on a road trip round Australia. We started off in Melbourne and drove to Mildura. Then we drove to burmera. On the way we drove a 200km unsealed road where we saw some of the lake / salt marsh teaming with life, huge Murray river cod in the shallows with We also saw 6 emus. We then made our may along the Murray River to Adeliade and then on to the coorong and then onto Mt Gambia and then home.


Had a lovely time


Buying all major stuff online

We are getting screwed by retailers in Australia. Australia is a country full of duopolies and monopolies. I was recently sent this video which discusses our two largest retailers.

Due to the high cost of the AU dollar and the reasons above nowadays there are a large number of items that if you don’t buy them online your are being irresponsible with your money.  I have been able to save 50% on the shop price on these two items.

Item 1

ENGL Valve Amp (nice!)  60%  $1300   saving including shipping from Germany

bought from Thomman

Item 2
Protien Powder 50% $100 saving

bought from


Floods in Castlemaine

Australia has been devastated this last few months. The flooding has been on a massive scale affecting most of the east side of the country in one way or another. QLD has been most badly affected but NSW and VIC have also taken a pounding close to home Castlemaine has been affected. We spent last Sunday preserving fruits to donate to the guys that had their homes flooded in Castlemaine. Part of the growing ambundance project. Below is a video showing the the water. It is incredible after all the drought all the resiviors around castlemaine are now full. However the flooding has caused significant flooding and personal disasters.


Castlemaine Goldrush


Established during the gold rush of 1851
The Home of the Castlemaine XXXX beer

Hot Rod centre of Australia

Robert O’Hara Burke – leader of the Burke and Wills expedition, was stationed in Castlemaine as police superintendent from 1858 to 1859.

Frank McEncroe – creator of the Chiko Roll which is a sausage in batter on a stick


600 mm of rain a year (approx) which is similar to that of Cambridge (where I grew up) but less than Sheffield (1000mm per year). It is much warmer and sunnier than both though.

Videos about Castlemaine and the surrounding area

The easy gold is long gone but there is still goldmining going on in Maldon 12km away from castlemaine at the Maldon gold project

below is a video from a guy who has been doing a bit of gold mining on his property

Some brit has saved me the trouble of videoing the Castlemeain and Maldon

THeres also the Maldon Folk festival

Just down the Road is Newstead below is a video of race they had there in 2006 on lawn mowers


Guitar Lessons by Skype

To keep my music fresh I have been wanting to improve my guitar technique with some guitar lessons. My last guitar teacher moved further away which meant I found it too difficult to get to his new location. For this reason I started my search looking for lessons very close to my home or work . I couldn’t find any teachers that were really close that would have been suitable and it lead me to an innovative solution to my problem.

Lessons by Skype

I have found a new teacher from Sydney called EMZ who gives lessons worldwide Via Skype.

I have to admit I had my doubts about how effective using a webcam would be. The teacher did offer a free trial first and once I took up the trial it worked pretty well. I have now had 3 lessons and my teacher is great (I am currently learning “Play Misty for Me” theme to the film “Play Misty for Me” – I think I’m gonna have to hire it)

It is so convenient just skype him at the allotted time and pay him by payPal.

I think skype is going to revolutionize guitar lessons watch this space.

My teachers website is
Below is a video of him


Australia to Double Population

Politicians (both labour and opposition) have been talking about immigration policies that would see the Australian population to almost double from 22 to 36million by 2050. Australia currently has the fastest growing population in the world.

The Australian citizens have never been asked about this.

Yesterday I watched a video from Dick Smith that basically debunked most of the widely used reasons for a “Large Australia”. He is campaigning to have the politicians actually consult the the people about the population strategy and come up with a sensible plan.

Intro Video

Long Video

Dick Smith is one of Australia’s most recognised individuals. After a successful business career in retailing and publishing, Dick has become well known as a restless adventurer, making many pioneering and record breaking flights by helicopter, aeroplane and balloon.” More info and complete text on Dick Smiths full website here.

World Growth
Dick also broaches the subject of world population growth and the predicted increase in population from 6.7 to just over 9 billion by 2050. World food production over the last 9 years has remained flat and is looking likely to decrease as more soil becomes infertile. Concern about food availability in the future is one of the drivers that got me interested in permaculture. To see more about me and permaculture go to my permaculture page.

man to jump

Man to jump off building over from my office

We had someone threatening to throw themselves of the build over from us yesterday. We could see it all from our kitchen window. I watched it unfold for for a bit from our kitchen window on the 31st floor.There were 6 police officers and a negotiator trying to talk him down. Burke St outside our office was shut down. After about 5 mins of nothing really happening I decided that either nothing was going to happen for ages or he would jump. I decided I didn’t really want to see either so I stopped and went back to work. When I went out for lunch there was a huge crowd of onlookers on the street. Above is a picture of my office (its the big grey building on left). The “jumper” was on a building opposite.

Details below
UPDATE 2.25pm: ONLOOKERS cheered as man talked down from a building’s rooftop after CBD streets blocked for more than two hours.

Negotiators brought the incident to an end about 1.20pm today, after tense scenes on the rooftop of the seven-storey building today.

Emergency crews raced to the scene near the corner of Hardware lane just before 11am.

The incident brought traffic to a standstill between Hardware lane and Queen St in both directions, forcing trams, motor traffic and pedestrians to be diverted around the scene.

About five police officers, including negotiators, were seen on the roof of the building as they talked to the man.

At least four police cars blocked the streets at the height of the drama as hundreds of office workers watched the scene with bated breath.

Their relief was obvious as cheers erupted from neighbouring buildings as the man was taken into protective custody.

He is understood to have been treated by paramedics a short time later.

Social networks were buzzing with the incident this afternoon, with office workers taking pictures of the scene, and alerting their colleagues. Source the Herald Sun