Monday, 9 March 2015

Aerials in the sky

The mp3 version of the blog can be found here: Soundcloud Aerials in the sky

As some of you may now be aware, I’m a music fan. I really do enjoy listening to the latest releases even though many of those same releases may challenge my musical palate! In fact, the title of this week’s blog is a nod to the alternative metal band – System of a Down. They rock.

Fortunately for me, down under the government runs the national youth music FM radio station Triple J. It is quite good because not only can you hear that radio station all over the continent, but it also happens to be commercial free, has always been a strong supporter of Australian music and they also stay right on the zeitgeist (and sometimes perhaps a few steps beyond).

Why are discussing radio stations? Well, the farm just happens to be on the one spot on the continent where the FM radio signal is a bit patchy. It is a bit hard keeping on the zeitgeist when it is full of static! So this week, I took the plunge and built a purpose built FM antenna.

A few decades ago, you could simply visit an electronics shop and purchase a specially designed antenna for FM radio reception. Well, try finding one nowadays and you’ll discover that down under these things are very hard to find. And the television antennas that could provide a reasonable substitute have so much plastic incorporated into their construction that I have serious doubts about the longevity of the things.

Well, it had never occurred to me to construct the antenna here from scratch. Fortunately, August Johnson from the Green wizards radio forum website helped me every step of the way. Who would have thought that you could turn a few scraps of aluminium tubing into a full on working antenna? It took a few hours work, but the antenna was soon proudly sailing off the side of the roof here:
homemade FM antenna proudly helping me to stay on the zeitgeist
For those that are technically inclined, the antenna is 2.1m (about 7 foot) in length and the widest span is about 1.3m (a bit under 4 foot). The antenna works well.

Now that autumn is here and the weather is cooler, excavations have begun for the new wood shed. It may be a bit ambitious but I’m hoping to have the shed built and full of firewood by sometime around the end of April…
A new rock wall has been placed so as to receive the excavated soil
All of that excavated clay has to go somewhere, so I built a new rock wall and will dump the soil against it. Observant readers will see in the photo above the process that I follow here to get a garden bed started from a mound of clay to a completed garden bed. As the garden beds get closer to the house you will see that they are much better established.

It is pretty hard work, so after about half a day’s excavations, the wood shed site is now progressing.

The editor’s birthday overlocker machine scored a makeover this week. The refurbishment involved cleaning, some more cleaning and then there was a little bit more cleaning. Seriously, that machine was one dirty machine (that sounds a bit dodgy doesn’t it?). We used a small 12V air compressor to blow the many years of unidentified rubbish out of all of the nooks and cranny’s inside the guts of the machine. Various nuts and bolts were replaced, whilst others were tightened. Crucial linking cables were replaced with stainless steel wires. The stand that holds the cotton reels and thread separators was also replaced. The mineral oil was topped up. Did I mention that after all that work I still found bits that needed further cleaning? Mate, even my dogs aren’t that dirty!
Overlocker before the refurbishment
Overlocker after the refurbishment
The machine purrs along now and as a bonus it is a little bit cleaner and sturdier!

Last week, I wrote about abandoning the original ideas for the strawberry beds in favour of the yet to be built strawberry beds above the wood shed. Well, that left a large garden area completely unplanted. That unplanted area had been previously covered with woody mulch 12 months ago just to keep invasive plants out. The woody mulch breaks down into soil, but really requires 2 years before it ends up looking like a black sandy / loamy soil mix.

This unplanted but mulched area is now going to form part of the garden beds, so today I brought in a cubic metre (about a cubic yard) of mushroom compost. The compost was spread around on top of the woody mulch and I planted cuttings and self-seeded plants directly into the mix. Autumn is the time to plant here because the soil is still warm and it gives cuttings time to get settled in before the winter hits.

Mushroom compost distributed around with cuttings planted directly into it
By this time next year, the area should probably look like this:

Garden after 12 months of growth
The main plants in the photo above are very hardy plants that establish the area before greater diversity is possible. Those plants include: mints, borage, comfrey, kangaroo apples (solanum family), geraniums, wormwoods, onions, potatoes and a Japanese maple.

After 2 years of growth the garden beds will have even more diversity and should look like this:

Garden after 24 months of growth
And I’m repeating that plant pattern over an ever larger area. Once the plants are established the garden beds require very little work to maintain and cuttings from those very established garden beds end up in new areas. There are edible herbs and vegetables spread throughout all of the garden beds too with the occasional fruit tree thrown in for good measure.

How did the house get here?

Towards the end of the year, just as I had all of the concrete stumps which keep the house off the ground installed, it started raining. Actually it rained a lot and the following year (2010) was the wettest in about 140 years of rainfall records. I’ve never seen so much water and over 12 months 1,437mm (56.6 inches) fell from the sky.

By the end of November, all of the stumps were installed and the timber bearers were mostly in place
 Then one day, all of the supporting timbers were installed. There is a real beauty to the symmetry and order in house construction when everything is (mostly) perfectly lined up just waiting for the next stage.

The bearers and joists were all installed
It may be of interest for readers to see what the garden originally looked like at that time – and it ain’t pretty! The photo below also shows the worm farm sewage system sitting out of the ground.

Lots of red/brown clay everywhere
By New Year’s Eve I’d built most of the external and internal wall frames. These were constructed on site and very observant readers will notice that all of the external walls have two wall frames. The reason for the two timber wall frames was so that I could add a thicker insulation batt into the wall cavity. The design for this dual timber wall was based on apartment party (i.e. joining) walls but I do not believe that anyone has used such a system for a household external wall. A standard wall cavity is 90mm (3.5 inches), whereas these walls have a 200mm (7.8 inches) cavity.

Wall frames completed by New Years Eve
To be continued…

The temperature outside here at about 6.30pm is 21.6 degrees Celsius (70.9’F). So far this year there has been 135.8mm (5.3 inches) of rainfall which is up from last week's total of 131.2mm (5.2 inches).


45 comments:

Damo said...

You are correct. System of a down does rock! Nice work on the FM antenna, did you cut the length based on the Triple J frequency in your area :p ?

I guess the diversified garden bed approach you describe is referred to as a 'food forest' in some permaculture books and blogs? Do you think this approach would still be ideal when scaled up (ie when intention is selling moderate quantities at markets/supplying restaurants etc)?

Cheers, keep the blog posts coming. Love them - dare I say it more than ADR, it can be a downer at times :-)

orchidwallis said...

Hello Chris

As usual, the work that you have done is stunning.

The overlocker looks ever more fearsome. I hope to see a photo of stitching done, some time.

A wild daffodil is in flower.

Anyone who wants to see what we have in the way of Roman villas here, can go to Wikipedia and look at: Brading Roman Villa and
Newport Roman Villa
This will also reveal that I live on an Island; another reason why everyone knows everyones business.

Inge

LewisLucanBooks said...

Yo, Chris; Can't say I consider myself to by a particularly musical kind of a guy, but, I do have my moments. Sometimes I drag out the radio and can usually find a moldy, goldie, oldie station. Somewhere along the way, I picked up a box full of classical cassettes. I've always though to work my way through them, and get a bit of a classic music education. Generally, I'd call my tastes pretty eclectic. Anything from Bach organ preludes to the Beatles :-).

I have a similar aerial (that came with the place) that provides a good support for hops, honeysuckle, and, the dreaded blackberries. :-) There is also the remains of an old satellite system. An ugly dish and a couple of poles. Lucily around the side of the house where I don't have to see them all the time. Maybe I'll run beans up them, or something.

Looks like a good start on the woodshed. I thought you were having problems with peak rocks? Where did all those nice rocks come from?

Uh, cleaning stuff. Doesn't seem to matter if it's a window or an old antique lamp, you clean and clean and always seem to miss a spot. Or two. Or three. Maddening.

Those are some pictures of you're house going up. It looks huge. Just out of curiosity, what's the length and the width?

I have a question about your plantings. Due to your influence, I'm doing more "scattering things about" instead of solid beds of ... whatever. But, what I wanted to ask about was, do you decide to put something, somewhere, with an eye to companion planting? Do you even "believe" in companion planting? Usually, I consult my companion planting book, just to get an idea of which varieties might not "play nice" together.

Of course, I know that I shouldn't plant different varieties or corn to close together. The cross pollination problem. Or, say, squash and pumpkin. I recently ran across a bit that said fennel and dill crosses could be a problem. So, I always take that into consideration.

And, I think about height. Taller plants go toward the back if I'm planting something up against, say a wall. Or, I take into account where the shadow is going to fall.

I guess what I'm asking is what you're thought process is, when siting a plant. Lew

John D. Wheeler said...

"These were constructed on site and very observant readers will notice that all of the external walls have two wall frames. The reason for the two timber wall frames was so that I could add a thicker insulation batt into the wall cavity. The design for this dual timber wall was based on apartment party (i.e. joining) walls but I do not believe that anyone has used such a system for a household external wall."

I hate to burst your bubble, but in my neck of the woods that is pretty much standard practice for "green" building. But it was smart of you to think of it on your own.

And, the real trick is to offset the studs, so the middle of the inner roll of insulation covers the studs of the outer wall, and vice versa. That makes for a toasty wall.

Cherokee Organics said...

Hi Lewis,

Had to go into the big smoke today to pick up a new modem. I reckon a lightning strike from the recent storms blew the old one up. Bit of a nuisance really. Actually, I barely managed to post yesterdays blog entry! Fortunately I keep a spare modem - which I have to pay for every month - just in case this happens because it happened about 3 years ago. They say lightning doesn't strike in the same place twice, but I beg to differ.

Thanks for the tip, if you reckon its any good, I'll try and check it out. He's had a huge career. What do you recommend?

What's everyone got against gingers? hehe! Too funny, the guy sounds like a nut. Sometimes you can't pick future behavior of flatmates based on past behavior! What do they say: Subject to change at short notice.

Yeah, identity theft is a tough one to deal with. That was a bit of a dog act stealing those carvings. It is a real trust thing having flatmates. Mostly it has worked out well, but there is always the odd horror story.

Run, Lewis, run! hehe! You are a very wise man to dodge that bullet.

They've had a couple of films about living with flatmates Down Under style: John Birmingham's classic book - He died with a falafel in his hands is well worth the read. At one point in the story, they were trying to burn one of the house mates who was tied to the clothes line whilst the rest of the people were having a drunken pagan ceremony. They turned it into a film too which was a lot of fun. There was also the very gritty Dogs in Space film. That film has one of my favourite film quotes: "Well, your not the father, but the kids gonna need a father!" - meanwhile in the background the young lady in question has two very huge and scary looking brothers...

No there isn't much old growth here either. Most of the area has been clear felled at least once. I have a tree that predates European settlement and my neighbour has one, but that is about it. There is not much old growth in the entire state...

Wow, did Chuck write about it or do it? I'd imagine that he'd be the sort of bloke to just do it...

Yeah, people get stressed out here over the holidays. They're always driving faster and more recklessly, and there are just people everywhere. I hide out here in the forest too and even avoid my favourite cafe... The push bikes are taking over the roads here regularly too now. They're just too aggressive for my liking. Fortunately, I'm on a dirt road off a dirt road so they don't come up here, but they're everywhere else...

Cheers

Chris

Cherokee Organics said...

Hi Damo,

Mate, I'm totally chuffed that someone here has heard and also appreciated the genius that is System of a Down. How good is
Chop Suey
? 264 million views can't be wrong... I saw them live at the Big Day Out many long years ago.

Yeah, the length and width is exactly tuned to the Triple J Melbourne frequency of 107.5MHz. Unfortunately the antenna picks up the Bendigo 90.3MHz signal better which is fine by me. August over at the Green Wizards radio forum walked me through the entire process: DIY Yagi for commerical FM radio band. Honestly, there was less than $40 of aluminium in the antenna.

That is a hard question to answer, because I'm scaling the production of plant material so that every year the entire system as a whole becomes more productive. I don't know the end point.

However, I have modified the food forest concept somewhat to reduce the understory plants below the fruit trees - at this point in time. The reason for this was to accelerate the growth of the fruit trees as I want them to put on more woody material so that they can withstand the actions of the wildlife - which are also part of the system. It is a fine balancing act and I'm sort of making it up as I go along and observing the results of the system.

Thanks man, that is high praise indeed! I'm sort of just getting on with the job at hand.

Cheers

Chris

Cherokee Organics said...

Hi Inge,

No stress, I'm pretty certain neither yourself or Lewis would enjoy System of a Down. hehe! Sorry, I'm just being cheeky!

Thanks. I've been going at this pace for about two and half decades now, so it is certainly sustainable. The recession in the early 1990's really put the fear in me. I saw that the world could drop away from beneath your feet at any moment and have never lost the importance of that lesson.

Haha! Well that is the editors business and as they say here: It may just remain secret women's business! Honestly, I had to rethread the overlocker too so I learned far more about it's inner workings than I realised. If you left me to mull the matter over for a hundred I would never have been able to come up with that machine design. It is very simple and hideously complex.

Great to hear that your wild daffodil is in flower. Spring has definitely sprung there!

Thanks for the link and I can tell you that a small mountain range is very much like an island - It has taken about 9 years just to be accepted as a bit of local colour. Thanks for sharing. Your island is a major holiday destination, and I believe that your location means that you would have a much nicer climate than the far north. They even had fig trees in the ruins!

Cheers

Chris

Cherokee Organics said...

Hi Lewis,

Yeah, well they have radio stations for that here too. Yeah, I respect the Beatles too and grew up on Abbey Road, Sgt Peppers, Simon and Garfunkle the concert in Central Park and Neil Diamond Hot August night. All classic stuff. My mother was very partial to Wagner and Vivaldi too so I've heard a lot of them too.

Simon and Garfunkle recently toured down under and one of the Triple J presenters went to see them and I believe the quote was something like: "The friction between the two was almost palpable, you could feel it in the air". Still, it would have been good to see.

Eclectic is an excellent descriptive!

A thoroughly good use for an antenna. hehe! Blackberries, of course. You know, just out of sheer respect for you I failed to mention that I harvested another couple of pounds of the fruit last week. hehe! I hope my order comes through for the bottles soon because I've run out of freezer space.

That dish, I reckon you may be able to use it as a sunlight focus for a solar oven?

Well part of the rocks came from the existing rock wall which had been re-shaped. But a week or so ago we were discussing rocks in strange locations because of Mt Rainier. Well, I found a source of rocks and it was like hitting Saudi-rocks for me! Seriously I have no idea how those rocks ended up in that spot, but it looks like an old ancient lava flow.

Exactly, the cleaning is never done and I hate to think about what I may have missed on the machine. Old lamps would be complex and as rare as hens teeth nowadays. Did they ever have the old pump kerosene ones up your way?

Yeah, companion planting is serious stuff. However, I must confess to a rather random strategy based on who plays well together here. For example, rhubarb will play well with geraniums, but not mints or salvias (sage) so I sort of just use a bit of hit and miss with all of it and somehow it all works out. I reckon it is about letting go more than anything...

I grow both fennel and dill and haven't had too many problems with them crossing. I was tied up in a long and boring discussion last night with the gardening group about the difficulty with brassicas and honestly it all sounds too hard to me. I grow wild cabbage here (canola) and what do you do - they'll cross breed with every other brassica here? I dunno, but just give it a go and see what happens.

Taller plants are also shading for more sensitive plants in hot drought conditions so it is very hard to tell how it will all end up.

My thought process is really quite random at first and then observe and learn. But whatever else you do, increase the diversity - or the genetic diversity of a species. Nothing else provides insurance against variable weather patterns.

Hope that makes sense. I always get the impression that other continents have more stable weather patterns than here as I never really know what next month will bring.

Cheers

Chris

Cherokee Organics said...

Hi John,

Many thanks. Glad to hear that such thick external insulated walls are used up your way. Respect. It is very rare here.

In fact I asked around before commencing design and construction and was slammed by many people in the alternative building scene because they predominantly thought that it was a waste of materials.

But it just works. I took my inspiration from an esky which is a down under unpowered heavily insulated cool box for storing perishable food items in.

Ahh, as you will see, there is a roll of insulation over one layer of the external wall, but the cavities themselves are chock full of glass batts. All will be revealed in time!

I'm really chuffed to read that other countries follow such rigorous building standards. The norm here is so poor...

Cheers

Chris

orchidwallis said...

Hello again

Back to some things from last week.

Mothers: I get on okay with my young and they are all arriving next month for my 80th birthday, 2 coming from Australia and 1 from the US.

I think that we have genetic wanderlust, though we have also survived by escaping i.e French Huguenot ancestors who fled east and my father was American from 100% potato famine Irish ancestors.

Actually he said that when he died, if he went to heaven and found his mother there, he would leave for hell. It so happened that he died before her.
You really got me thinking. There have been a number of disliked mothers in my family. But they were often women leading hard lives with somewhat feckless husbands or no husband. I am still thinking about it.

Oh, before I forget, Having ones identity taken is really ghastly. It would leave me feeling secretive and defensive.

Inge

LewisLucanBooks said...

@ Inge - Brading and Newport Roman Villas are fascinating! The speculation on the occupants of Brading are particularly interesting. Banishment to Britain, and all.

I don't know exactly when and how I picked up my interest in Roman Britain. Probably reading some young adult fiction book. Maybe "Eagle of the Ninth." But, it became clear to me that if the Romans could be in Britain for 300+ years, and then everything could go right in the bog, that the same thing could happen to us.

Yo, Chris; "He'shad a huge career. What do you recommend?" Bach or Chuck? Haven't got to Chuck's Portland book, yet. Will report back on if he negotiated the sewers on his own, or if it was "an as told to."

I will look into Birmingham's book. I'd heard the title, before. Sticks in one's mind :-). I was curious and checked this morning. There are no DVD rental stores in this area. So, it's either Safeway grocery or the library. I used to subscribe to Net Flicks by mail. But, it was just taking up too much time :-).

I think I had every Simon and Garfunkel album ever pressed. When they went their separate ways, it was as bad as the Beatles breaking up. I wanted to wear a black mourning arm band for a few weeks. I
idly contemplate replacing all those albums I used to listen too with CDs. Seems silly.

There are lamps stashed all around this place. Mostly old oil lamps. At least one Aladdin. Haven't seen a pump kerosene. I know you used to have to pump up the Coleman lamps.

Thanks for all the information on siting plants. I probably neurotically over think the whole thing.

It's official. My escape artist chook is now officially the Demon Chicken from Hell. She was out again, yesterday. Today I decided I'd hang about the chicken yard and try and figure where she was getting out. I ran the eggs in the house (a minute and a half, tops) and when I came back, she was out again! But, maybe I've figured out where she is getting under the fence. Maybe. Lew

Angus Wallace said...

Hi Chris,

Love the DIY ariel. Sensible to install it on the side of the roof too -- mine always has bird poo underneath it. I'm a big fan of FM too, and it's a bit underused these days, what with internet and digital radio.

Your beds look great too. I've managed to get a few truckloads of free mulch over the past 18 months (maybe 15 - 20 m^3 in total) which has been fantastic. Some of that is starting to break down nicely now. It's great stuff!

Your house looks great too. It is excellent to see the step-by-step photos. Love that you didn't go for a standard concrete slab. Big resource saving (less concrete), though I would think an unusual decision in your area (less thermal mass).

Your comment that "the world could drop away from beneath your feet at any moment" really resonates with me. I've spent the past 5 years (first a house in Bris, but we then moved to Adl), working at a decent pace to try and build some resilience. We're nearly debt-free too which is a great feeling.

Cheers, Angus

Cathy McGuire said...

Hi, Chris -
Another amazing post! It seems like there's nothing you can't turn your hand to! Sorry to hear about the modem - thunder/ lightning storms are more rare on the west coast of the US than east coast - I grew up with them, but there are folks around here who are terrified! And they didn't know about counting to see how far away the storm is. OTOH, I didn't grow up with earthquakes...

I'm glad August could help out with that antenna - it's yet another good job you've done! Too bad you can't be at our Pacific NW Green Wizards gathering but we'll lift a pint for you (or a french fry, if you prefer...)

Cherokee Organics said...

Hi Inge,

Well actions speak very loudly so I am very pleased for you that your children are making the journey for your 80th. A top effort.

I spoke to a local guy I occasionally bump into at the local cafe who told me that he'd just received an OBE. He used to be a pilot but other than that I don't know much about his history, so I looked at him and said: "no way!" hehe! The cheeky bloke then told me that he meant Over Blo**y Eighty (OBE)! So I guess that means that you too now have an OBE! Well done.

Yeah, a mate of mine who I haven't spoken to in a while claimed his family was of the descendants of the French Huguenot ancestors.

Plenty of Irish ended up down here too. That is going on now too as there is a bit of a diaspora after the economic woes of Ireland.

Apparently you're in there for a long time, so it may be a good call? I once went to a mormon wedding and there was a whole lot of talk about eternity - they're now divorced so I'm not sure I believe all that talk. Still I wish your father well! ;-)! PS: If I found myself in Hell with my father I'd run as far as I could. Perhaps that is what Hell is all about. It sounds very unpleasant.

Well, everyone here gets my brain working too, so you're in good company! There'll be a pattern in there somewhere for sure.

My mother was a single mother and whilst she had an appalling temper, with two daughters she had her hands full, so I just sort of skipped to my own beat and haven't really looked back. If I look for warm feelings in that area, it is just a big blank and the reality of her situation reflected very poorly on her decision making abilities - some people just lack impulse control.

Cheers

Chris

Cherokee Organics said...

Hi Lewis,

Mate, that was an absolute tea spitting bit of humour. Well done! hehe! I'm still laughing about that one.

I reckon I'm a bit more Chuck than Bach. A guide sounds like a good idea in such circumstances, but perhaps that is an overly cautious point of view? Would you brave the sewers on a kayak?

Yeah, it is a great title and was originally a novel, then a play and then a film. It is very amusing. Birmingham is a very sedate writer now, I personally find his recent stuff a bit pretentious but that is merely an opinion.

I used to live around the corner from the actual house that the book: Monkey Grip was based on. It was an exceptionally bohemian area and I felt very much at home, but over time it became more and more dominated by high stress, high income families and that demographic change was one of the reasons I left the city. It is strange to find yourself a stranger in an area that you knew quite well, whilst all around you changes. Demographic change can be a death of a thousand cuts.

Just before I left, the next neighbour proposed a monstrous extension to their small terrace house with 20+ foot walls on a narrow block of land. That behemoth would have overshadowed the entire house.

It was a brutal and vitriolic break up for sure. What made me laugh was that when they toured here - I think it was last year - they travelled under the banner: "Old friends tour". Were they taking the piss? Was it meant to be ironic?

Very talented musicians though. I love the Concert in Central Park - a truly stunning bit of work.

I think the pump just builds up pressure in the fuel chamber.

Haha! That sounds like a Wallace and Gromet film: Demon chicken from Hell. That has a great ring to it. How did you go finding the escape hole?

Cheers

Chris

Cherokee Organics said...

Hi Angus,

I hadn't thought about the bird poo side of things, thanks for mentioning it.

Have you got a DAB+ radio? I'm not sure it would be much good up here. The neighbours couldn't get any digital TV reception so I've never really bothered with digital radio.

Seriously the Kenwood FM tuner here is awesome despite being 30+ years old.

Thanks. House building is both complex in detail and simple in the big picture. It is hard work, but don't let anyone tell you it is impossible.

Concrete slabs don't really work up here because over winter the ground is soooo cold. Being 700m above sea level it is 7 degrees Celsius on average cooler than Melbourne. There really is no way to stop a concrete slab from radiating that cold from the ground into the house over winter. Brick walls would do exactly the same thing and some of my neighbours built double brick houses and they are freezing over winter.

That is why I lifetd the house off the ground and insulated it all the way around - the place is like a giant esky. And it just works cool in summer and toasty warm in winter.

Well done with the free mulch. Watch and wait and see how quickly it breaks down in your area. The Portuguese millipedes help break it down here as well as every other insect around the place.

Yes, that is exactly the strategy I follow too. I saw a documentary about really long term companies (200+ years and some even more than that). The common theme with them was that they avoided debt like the plague. Just sayin...

Really like your kitchen. Top work. It is great to see such a lived in space.

Cheers

Chris

Cherokee Organics said...

Hi Cathy,

Well, I'm officially nervous because tomorrow I'll start work on refurbishing the wood heater. If you don't see anything about it next blog, then, well, it wasn't good.

Yeah, Lewis was saying that too. They're great to watch on the veranda at night because it is usually at a warm time of year and they run along the valley. Unfortunately, that last one was a bit close. I keep a spare modem just in case that happens but it has not much bandwidth.

The new modem is on the 4G network and it is fast....

I'd really love to attend and meet you all in person. Thank you for the thought and I will lift a mead in your honour too!

Cheers

Chris

Cherokee Organics said...

Hi everyone,

If anyone is looking for the mp3, I'll have it up on the blog tomorrow - modem troubles have put a stomp on such activities, but they're now sorted.

Cheers

Chris

orchidwallis said...

@Lewis

I remember reading 'Eagle of the ninth'. The best Roman Villa is 'Fishbourne Roman Palace'. There is lots about it on the internet with many photos.

Inge

LewisLucanBooks said...

Yo, Chris; Oh, I don't know which Chuck book to suggest. I'll think about it. He can be a little (actually, a lot) raw. I mean, one of his books revolves around the members of a Sex Anonymous group. Well, you can just imagine ....

Think I'll skip the sewer kayaking. Never been much up for extreme sports. Now life risks are another thing.

Re: Birmingham - We've all rather grown sedate in our old age. At least we give the appearance of such. :-).

Yeah, city after city, here, is falling to gentrification. San Francisco, New York, etc.. Even Portland. What attracts the Yuppies with money is the vibrant, low-rent culture. Which they drive out.

Well, Demon Chicken From Hell was out for such a short time, she was pretty close to where she got through. Out again late yesterday afternoon. I haven't a clue.

Well, I was feeding Beau last night when I observed the Evil Step Son running around with a great sprayer of something. Glad I caught him as he was going to spray quit a bit of what I consider "my" property. I told him what I didn't want him to spray. Because I'm going to plant veg in those areas.

He tells me it's an enzyme spray and safe after ten days. I ask him if he really believes that. The look I got! He doesn't like to be crossed in any way. He's got some grandiose plan for solar panels and water catchment. Sound familiar? :-). I doubt it will ever come to fruition, but, of course, the easiest first step (to his way of thinking) is to spray the heck out of everything. Every time we have one of these little exchanges, I start looking at real estate ads. Another useless effort. He also asked after some of the wood off the pruning of the apple. Now, he doesn't have a wood stove, so, it's just cause he likes to burn stuff up.

I also talked to him about letting the chickens out and in when I go to Idaho in a month and a half. Everything else will pretty much take care of itself while I'm gone. I offered $100 and all the eggs he could eat as an inducement. But, it still makes me uneasy. Saw Don his stepfather, my neighbor / landlord / friend and talked to him about it. He said he'd keep an eye on him and make sure it goes according to plan.

Well, time to go out an loose the chickens. See if I can keep an eye on Escape Chicken. And, it's raining. :-). Lew

orchidwallis said...

Hello again

More primroses in bloom and son's geese are laying. There is one goose that he simply cannot get in at night. She vanished and he assumed that a fox had had her. But no, she has turned up again 4 days later! He would love to know where she goes.

Inge

Stacey Armstrong said...

Hi there Chris.

Many thanks for a more thorough description of your garden bed creation methods. I have now been fully trained on using the chipper....still not cleared for the chainsaw. I have been busily moving chips onto the slope and then scored thirteen yards of free topsoil. Yahoo. Swale and a foot path up next.

I am still quite curious as to how you keep the grasses from popping up around your rock borders....must be something only possible in the Southern Hemisphere!

Also a small aside. I saw Nirvana in concert in my twenties in a smallish venue. Even then there was a terrible sadness about Kurt Cobain. I felt bad for even being at the show, even though his work meant a great deal to me at the time.

Stacey

Cherokee Organics said...

Hi Lewis,

Chuck seems to really go places! It would be hard to keep up that level of "shock your mum" writing. I'd be pretty certain that it was more than a passing interest for him. Unfortunately for him, what you contemplate, you imitate so it would be difficult to stay as a dispassionate observer. What do you reckon?

Yeah, I hear you man. A very wise move. I'm not much for adrenalin junkies, life is complex enough without that. I once had a very stressful job and was a bit on edge all of the time. You can't really live that way for very long. I can see it in other people now.

hehe! Too true. I do hope you enjoy the book or film.

Exactly, it became the absolute antithesis of what it used to be, and whilst it gained things, it lost just as many - if not more. People don't tend to see it that way though. Sometimes I reckon that each gain came at the sacrifice of something else and I've always sort of wondered whether people understood this or whether they drove the changes through anyway because that is what suited them? Dunno. They used to manufacture stuff in those areas too, but property prices and noise complaints basically killed the businesses. Noise complaints about local live music venues killed them off too. What kind of person moves next to a pub and gets upset about drunk people making noise late at night. What do they expect?

Oh no, you have a chicken Houdini! Good luck. Someone told me that sheep are outstanding escape artists too.

Man, I feel for you. He'd do my head in and I'd probably have a very low tolerance for that sort of behaviour. Actually, I should ask if he is OK upstairs as he may not be? The old timers used to deal with that sort of mischief by keeping them constantly busy or out from underfoot.

You can only do your best under such circumstances. A neighbour who looked after my dogs once long ago, managed to lose one of them. It was an impressive effort.

Nice to see that you've had a mild winter and are now well into spring.

Cheers

Chris

Cherokee Organics said...

Hi Inge,

Really glad to hear that the primroses are in flower. I've tried growing the pink primroses, but the yellow ones seem much hardier.

They're setting seed here just now. They turn up everywhere, but the wildlife loves to eat them, so I reckon that makes them a good food plant.

Speaking of which, I thought this might interest you: the Jerusalem artichokes look as though they may flower. If they do, I'll grab a photo, but it may be a week or two away.

You have a poultry Houdini too. There must be something in the water? Nice to hear that the goose came back. It is a bit distressing to lose them to predation.

Cheers

Chris

Cherokee Organics said...

Hi Stacey,

Great to hear that you use the chipper. Just remember to always respect that machine and you'll be OK. You can remember that by thinking about how it always seems to be the locals up north that are the ones that get taken by crocodiles. Complacency has something to do with it? Who knows.

The editor doesn't use the chainsaw either so you're in good company.

What a great score. Well done.

Good question. The trick here is planting very closely and very thickly - otherwise the grasses do take over. Grasses don't like cottage gardens. The woody mulch also strips away the nitrogen from the surrounding soil and grasses hate that too. But 24 months later that nitrogen will be available again for the grasses and they'll appear again, so you have to outplant them.

Of course you get snow, so watch and observe the progression of plants appear as the snow melts. Many plants - particularly herbs - are described as annuals but they simply die off in winter only to reappear in spring from undisturbed root systems and they quickly reach to the sky.

You just have to outsmart the grass. I'm trialling borage in the orchard at the base of fruit trees, but it takes a little while to get established and honestly I don't have enough time with all of the other projects going on.

Cheers

Chris

orchidwallis said...

Hello again

I have just read your lyrical description on ADR. It reminded me of the most haunting birdsong that I used to hear out in the woods at night in winter, bearing in mind that I live by the shore. So I went on the internet to hear it again. A tremendous disappointment. None of the sites had what I remember: the song of the curlew. They had little bits of the haunt surrounded by other notes. What I used to hear was the long haunting wail with no other sound at all.

Pink primroses: I don't have them; very occasionally there will be one with a bit of pink edging. I was told that it is a mutation.

Inge

LewisLucanBooks said...

@ Inge - I'm familiar with Fishbourne and have red a bit about it. Wonder if it WAS a pro-Roman tribal chieftain that built it. Trying to out-Roman the Roans :-). There's nothing so zealous as a convert. I think it's really great that they re-created the gardens, looking at root cavities, pollen and such. They've done the same in Pompeii. There's a book "Gardens of the Roman World" by Bowie. Pretty pricey, but, my library had a copy. If I remember correctly, there are great lists of as many varieties that the Romans grew, that they can identify.

Yo, Chris; LOL. I've got to remember that. The "shock your Mum" school of writing. What I like about Chuck's writing is that he sometimes gets into this rhythm that's ... rata tat tat. A real verbal "drive." Have sat down and tried to figure out how he does it, a couple of times, and come up empty.

Much to my surprise, my local library doesn't have the book "He Died With a Falafel in His Hand." But, even more surprising, there are three copies of the DVD floating around out there in the hinterlands. A copy is winging it's way to me as I speak (write.)

We kind of get a version of gentrification even out in the boonies. Someone moves to the country and builds a McMansion. The next thing you know, there's letters to the editor of the local newspaper complaining about the smells, animals or "junk" people have in their yards. The responses from the locals can verge on blue. You moved to the country. This is what country is like and means. Deal with it or go back to where you came from.

My primroses, that sprang from no known source are purple. I've got Jerusalem artichoke tubers on order from a nursery and they're going to send them to me at the appropriate planting time.

Demon Chicken From Hell was out again when I went to feed my chooks some treats yesterday. I decided to just ignore her and see what happened. Well, she couldn't find her way back in and was pretty frantic as her mates whooped it up with sunflower seeds and rolled oats. On the outside looking in. When I went out to close up the coop at sunset, there she was, on her regular perch. A lesson learned? We'll see.

We've had a couple of days of rain here, but it may hit 70F tomorrow. Then, back to the atmospheric river for the foreseeable future. Night time lows are pushing 50F.

Is the Evil Step-son crazy? Well, he is anorexic, which is pretty rare in males. He wanted some of the prunings from the apple trees but I told him no. It later occurred to me that he doesn't even have a wood stove. He just likes to burn stuff down or blow stuff up. Which is why he doesn't live here in "the big house." Which he did. Until he almost burned it down. Had a chicken going on the barbie on the front porch and wandered off. So, at least, he's an anorexic pyro. Life is so interesting :-) . Lew

Angus Wallace said...

Hi Chris,

Do I have a DAB+ radio?
Short answer: no

long answer:
I've build a home music broadcast system out of an old laptop and an FM dongle, and can tune in all the FM radios in the house. I can stream internet radio using this system and broadcast it to FM to listen to on my ordinary FM radios ;-)
Details:
http://guesstimatedapproximations.blogspot.com/2015/03/the-just-so-society.html

Thanks for the prompt -- I'd been meaning to write this for a while!

Cheers, Angus

Cherokee Organics said...

Hi Inge,

Thanks. The curlew has a haunting song as night birds often do. Shore birds often have a melancholy note to their calls.

The Pied Currawong song is one of my favourites here. However, there is a family of Kookaburras that live here and they always call out when there is an animal lurking around - usually one of the dogs. They're good birds to have around as they'll attack a snake and eat it. They often follow me when I'm digging, and I'll reward them by throwing them the witchetty grubs that are inevitably found in the soil. Once, one of them had eaten so many grubs, I managed to sneak up behind it and grab it just to see whether I could only to then let it go. The magpies and Kookaburras are always having a turf war over the choicest grubs.

Cheers

Chris

Cherokee Organics said...

Hi Lewis,

Yeah, it is definitely trademark worthy, but I think I pinched the idea from JMG! Deconstructing other peoples writing is a tough school. You know, for all we know, he might just live that life and that is who he is.

It is funny because sometimes I have to really think about writing on a subject and other times, it'll just appear on screen (or on paper). I recently wrote an article on water tanks - which are really quite boring - and it took two whole months to come up with an idea. It then took 30 minutes to write the article. Someone at the recent festival told me how much they enjoyed the article, but it was hard to write. Other times like the recent ADR description of the mountains here turn up in 5 minutes flat out without any thought. I had to push the ADR description out because a lovely young lady came up to interview me about the garden. It was a mildly surreal experience.

Have you ever tried to play a musical instrument? They're weird things because the less you think about them, the better you are at them. Dunno.

Have you written much or read much? You are very well spoken, you know. Reading is a sadly dying art, I believe.

Haha! Well, you are in for a silly treat. The film stars Noah Taylor who has made many surprising big screen film support roles in his career.

Too funny. They're certainly in la la land if they think writing a letter to editor is going to achieve anything. I can't remember where I read or heard it but the people with the preponderance of power and wealth in our societies have actually very little in the way of common sense about how the actual real world works. What an excellent way to get everyone's noses out of joint. And people have such long memories too in rural areas...

What purple? Too cool. I've got yellow and pink here, but not purple. Great to hear that the tubers will turn up. If you were local, I would have just dug some up for you. They're very hardy. You'll have to let us know whether they produce flowers or not, but I suspect they will at your place.

Chickens like their patterns and I hope that she has learned her lessons!

Bronze neck died last night and was dead this morning here. She was a bit of a favourite of mine as she was both a gentle spirit and a bit of a fighter. Sad.

Haha! We are at the hand over stage and enjoying similar weather patterns. It is almost the exact same weather here minus the atmospheric river of course.

You know, I stuffed up this evening. I spotted the cage for the tea camellia and thought I'm sick of looking at that with a dead plant in there. So I removed the cage and pulled the plant out of the ground only to go: Are they new roots on the camellia? No! There was even a small green bud on the stem. So it is now sitting in a cup of water and I'll plant it out tomorrow morning into rich manure... Grrr! It did look dead.

Yes, that is life. Mate, people with mental health issues are like a black hole - you can put energy into them, and no matter how much energy you put into them it all disappears and they never get better. Redirect him onto other subjects is probably the way to go.

Cheers

Chris

Cherokee Organics said...

Hi Angus,

Yes, no DAB+ here either.

Glad to hear (sic) that you picked up so much of the stuff second hand. Some of the stuff out there in second hand world is amazing. The Kenwood tuner I picked up here for a song (sic) recently is rated as one of the finest ever made. Your NAD is no slouch either as they have a great reputation. Crazy stuff. Don't tell too many people as the price may just go up.

And don't laugh that actually happened with second hand water tanks which almost cost as much as new ones - which have a warranty. Go figure!

Cheers

Chris

LewisLucanBooks said...

Yo, Chris - As far as Chuck's writing goes, I think "Fight Club" was kind of a one off. He hit a "sweet spot" of popular appeal. The popularity of the book, the movie deal ... I think he's pretty set for life and can just write what he wants from there on out.

Sometimes it's hard to get a fix on author's lives. Sometimes, not. A couple of months ago I read a great door stop of a book on Dickens. it was pretty thorough on what made the man tick. Chuck? Well, he's done a few biographical things. His father was murdered by his (the father's) girlfriends ex. He's a friend / student of another author, Tom Spanbauer, who also writes things that are pretty out there. I think, these days, popular living authors have to run a constant rear guard action against a small group of rabid fans that can make your life miserable. Sometimes, dangerous.

Musical instruments - Was forced at gun point to take 7 years of accordion lessons when I was a wee lad. German, and all. At this point, I don't think I could stagger through the "Beer Barrel Polka." Took a stab at piano and trumpet. No patience.

Do I write. Well, I wrote a couple of articles for national magazines on antiques when I was 15. They didn't know :-). When I was working at the library and taking some on-line library classes I used to get a lot of "Oh, you should write!" Then, the library put out a call to employees to see if anyone wanted to do book reviews for the newspaper in the State capitol. I did the first one and the library person who was mediating between the submissions and the newspaper told me I had run long. I told her to just send it in, as is. If they wanted to do some cutting they would.

Well. They published it without a cut. And, the 50 or so more reviews I did after the first one. No pay, just seeing you're name in print. But, you're right about several things. Sometimes it comes easy, and sometimes it comes hard. And, I'll run across one of my old reviews and wonder "Did I write this?" I reviewed all kinds of stuff. Fiction, non fiction. I tried to keep it varied and not show favorites.

Do I read? Surely, you're joking? :-). I've often said that my motto is: "I read as I breathe." I don't have problems with an internet addiction, I have problems with a reading addiction :-). I try and work all day and keep the reading and dvd watching to 3 or 4 hours at night, when all else is done. Of course, when the new Stephen King comes in, all bets are off. Marathon until it's finished.

So sorry to hear about Bronze neck. I know when I lost Mama Brahma to the coyotes, it was tragic. I know I'll be sad when the only survivor of the coyote attack, Mrs. Barnevelder goes, I will be sad.
Speaking of chooks, I'm having some problems with cracked eggs. The hens scratch down through the straw and drop their eggs right on the wood floor of the nesting box. Rubber mats? Bubble wrap? Just cram more straw in?

Your tea plant. Hit it with some worm juice and talk to it. Worked on my bear ravaged apple tree and, a clematis vine that I thought was totally dead. Worth a try. Lew

Annette Simard said...

Hey Lew.

If you'd like, I would be most happy to bring you sinkhole (Jerusalem artichoke) tubers to the gathering in Portland next Friday. I have LOADS and can dig them up for you.

Annette Simard said...

Crumb. I'm hideously lax at proofing on my smartphone and miscommunicate as a consequence. I meant sunchokes.
sheesh.

Annette.

Annette Simard said...

Sawdust to cushion the eggs. Put it under the straw.

orchidwallis said...

@Annette

Thank you for enlightening me. I had always assumed that sunchokes were simply a vegetable that didn't grow in the UK. Now I know that they are Jerusalem artichokes, which I grow.

@Lewis

I am another book addict and had assumed that Chris was joking when he asked whether you read. I remember reading 'Gone with the wind', in my teens, and being thrilled that I had discovered a book which I didn't finish in one day. It took me three days. I admit that I skip when I read.

Back to you Chris.

I awoke to one of the coldest days this winter; fingerless gloves indoors even though I had had some heating on all night. No frost because it has been dry for a while.

I wonder why my Jerusalem artichokes never flower? Look forward to a photo if yours do.

The lady with the sniffer dog has decided that a caravan would be too hot for her 3 dogs when summer comes and she is out at work. So she is not coming.

Inge

Cherokee Organics said...

Hi Lewis, Annette and Inge,

Apologies, entertaining this evening so I am unable to reply to your lovely comments and will respond tomorrow afternoon.

Was working on the heater this afternoon starting the repairs. A very stressful activity as I hope not to break it...

Lewis: Yeah, maybe I am kidding. ;-)! hehe! I read a lot too.

Cheers

Chris

LewisLucanBooks said...

@ Annette - I can't make the gathering next week, but thanks for the offer of the sun chokes. I'm getting mine from Nichols Garden Nursery, down in Oregon. Judging from the catalog, they come with a long pedigree. I understand they can be a bit invasive, and may plant them in one of the big cedar half barrels that are sitting around the place.

I will try the sawdust. But, I bet they just scratch down through that, too. Darned chickens :-).

@ Inge - I am currently reading (among other things) "Roman Britain Through It's Objects" by Ferris. A little academic, but, interesting. Like you, I tend to skim and skip if the going gets a little to rough :-). He has some interesting things to say on consumerism, both ancient and modern.

One point I found really interesting. He taught, for several years, a post graduate archaeology class on finds analysis. He had an exercise that asked his students if they're house was burning (and all family members and pets were safely outside) what objects they would grab and save.

Years ago, students would come up with lists of things with little intrinsic worth. Inherited jewelry, things found on a beach, travel souvenirs, childhood toys, etc.. Now, he most often gets the response "my computer, or my phone." Which kind of killed the whole purpose of the exercise. Lew

Cherokee Organics said...

Hi Lewis,

Good for Chuck, it is a rare achievement and I suspect authors make less money these days than in the past... The amount I receive for paid articles is about half what it was before the GFC. They're no easier to write those paid articles, so the blog takes preference as it is more fun. You know, I reckon Chuck just likes doing all that stuff he writes about. I wonder whether he'd make an entertaining dinner guest? Dunno.

Chuck's background is a hard school. Well, probably the more "out there" they are, the more they will attract individuals of possibly more unusual persuasions? Who knows. I'm not entirely convinced that the communication over the Internet is an entirely positive thing - certainly the anonymity that some people cloak themselves with allows them to indulge the darker sides of their personalities. That larger conversation doesn't seem to be making much headway in our culture? It would be really tough for a big time author such as Chuck.

Fair enough, but the accordion! Ouch. Man, I feel for you. About a decade ago I had a guitar teacher (and I seriously lack talent on that front) who told me that when he was young he was sent off to learn to play piano. I'm not sure whether he was making this up, but he was a fair bit older than me, and he told me that his teacher used to beat him with a bamboo cane if he accidentally got any notes or chords wrong. Did I mention that he gave up on the piano and settled on the guitar instead?

Awesome, all that reading has given you a thorough command of the English language - it shows in your writing. Yeah, it is good fun to see your name in print too. Reviews are quite difficult as there is a tendency to repeat yourself and rely on specific phrases etc. Mostly, I simply donate the articles nowadays too.

hehe! Forgive my cheekiness! I guessed, but you had not specifically written about it before. A thoroughly good hobby too. I always take a book with me to the local cafe (or in Melbourne too). It is a pleasure of mine to sup on a good coffee, enjoy a well deserved cake (or other goodie) and bury my nose in a book for a good half hour or so. Plus you can peek over the binding from time to time and indulge in people watching - which is also fun as you try and guess their stories - or just make it up!

Thanks, she was a good chook. From time to time, I've had that trouble too, but put down a layer of plastic damp proof course which has the added bonus of reducing mites which can live in the timber. I also tried a few types of straw until I found one they wouldn't kick around too much - sugar cane mulch which has lots of fine materials so it is like a straw mixed with sawdust.

Yes, I've moved the tea plant into the full sun, gave it a very good food and also offered some soothing words to console it for my offensive behaviour in pulling it out of the ground. Hopefully it will live - it is not like there aren't a couple of other camellia's within a few strides of it. The lady at the local nursery laughed at me when I asked her about tea camellia's (said it was too cold here for them).

Cheers

Chris

Cherokee Organics said...

Hi Annette,

Thanks for the excellent suggestion.

Cheers

Chris

Cherokee Organics said...

Hi Inge,

Yeah, I was being a little bit silly with that question. I've never quite mastered the art of skipping (kudos to you) - I'm probably a bit old to learn now too ;-) - because I try and absorb every single word to get a feel for what the author was trying to say. It sort of helps build a picture in my mind of the ongoing narrative and scenes. Dunno.

Brrr. That is really cold! I hope you got a fire going? The firebox here is out of action (hoping to get it back up and running tomorrow) so there would be a few dramas here if it was that cold. Brrr!

Yeah, I was wondering about that too? You mentioned that you get tubers, but I was wondering that because there are no flowers, would the tubers be genetic clones? Dunno. The artichokes have just started producing a yellow flower today, so I'll see as the week goes on whether it looks photo-worthy or not? If you are interested I can get a good photo of the early stages of the flower buds and post that tomorrow?

Phew, the locals can breathe a sigh of relief and go back to whatever they were doing in the first place. New blood in an area is usually a good thing, but sometimes it can also be a bad thing and I have to confess that owning an ex-sniffer dog, and making it generally known to the locals that the dog is in fact an ex-sniffer dog is certainly in the latter "odd" category. The old chestnut is appropriate in these situations: If it seems odd, it may be that it actually is odd!

Cheers

Chris

orchidwallis said...

@Lewis

Not sure what you mean by skip if the going gets rough. What is 'rough'. I skip repetition and stuff that is plain boring. If you mean tough then the only thing that I have ever given up on completely was symbolic logic.

I am aware that I keep on calling you Lewis when you have said that friends call you Lew. I need to be able to verbalise a name in my head and don't know how you pronounce Lew i.e. as moo or mew?

Inge

orchidwallis said...

Hello Chris

Jerusalem artichokes: Yes I should love to see a photo of the flower buds. I guess that the original artichokes, that I first planted, were probably genetic clones so it will have continued the same. They are very prolific and I just leave some behind each year. I have read that they tend to deteriorate if you do this but they have been fine for years.

The fact that you read so carefully is in sync with the thoroughness of all your works. So I guess that it is an integral part of you.

Inge

LewisLucanBooks said...

Yo, Chris - I took a look at Chuck's entry in Wikipedia because I knew another of his books had made it to film. "Choke." Not as popular as fight club, but a romp with Sam Rockwell and Angelica Houston. Looks like he sold the film rights to quit a few of his other books. That's where the money is, for authors. Film rights.

Watched "He Died With a Falafel in His Hand" last night. Now, that was a romp. Take every bad room mate experience you've ever had or heard of, exaggerate it and voila! Book. Hell is other people and some of them are socio or psychopaths. Might have to watch it again before I take it back.

Odd that the library had three copies of it. But they don't have a couple I'd like to see again. "2012" and (dare I say with all the Star Trek bashing going on over at ADR) "Star Trek: First Contact." LOL. I noticed when I swallowed down an entire season of one of the series, or another, that whatever the problem was, 90% of the time it was due to a temporal rift or anomaly. You think they would have "got" it after awhile. "Oh, the bogs backed up. Must be a temporal anomaly." :-)

Yes. The accordion. Although, given the meteoric career of Weird Al Yankovic, maybe I should have stuck with it.

Yeah, it's rough to try an make a living (or, even get a little extra jingle) by writing, these days. The Internet gobbles up an incredible amount of "content", but no one wants to pay for it. Ditto newspapers and magazines. And, there are enough wanna be writers out there to provide it.

I've actually seen a few articles on anonymity and the internet. It's a two edged sword. Lack of anonymity keeps the trolls down. But it can also lead to very strange or dangerous people at your door.

Either the stars aligned or the Easter Bunny came early. 9 eggs this morning out of 11 hens. A record day for this year. Of course, tomorrow will probably be 2 or 3 :-). But, last weeks production was a half a dozen more over the previous week. The Ladies are on a gradual upswing.

Good luck with the tea. Some of the growing instructions I see say they should have partial shade. Yet, the pictures of tea plantations that I have seen appear to be sun blasted hill sides. Got me.

Raining kittens and puppies, here, yesterday and today. Quit windy. But warm. Haven't had to kick on any heat, this morning. Lew

LewisLucanBooks said...

PS: Reading in public is a subversive act. I usually drag a book along if I think I'm going to end up standing around for any period of time. A couple of times in my life, I've even had adverse reactions to doing that. Verbal, that is.

Interesting. My sunday morning guilty pleasure is reading Slate on-line. A throwback to the sunday morning newspaper, I guess. Today, there was a photo essay of people reading in public, in New York City.

http://www.slate.com/blogs/behold/2015/03/12/lawrence_schwarzwald_a_new_york_photographer_captures_candid_images_of_people.html

I had another couple of thoughts about "He Died With a Falafel in His Hand." It was really nifty getting a look at your part of the world. I spent a lot of time just looking at the backgrounds. The buildings, foliage, neighborhoods, skylines. I even could hear some of the unfamiliar bird calls.

The one thing that bothered me, as it does with so many films and tv series is that the actors aren't young enough. For the most part. But that's just nitpicking.

"No Cane Toads Were Harmed in The Making of This Picture." :-). Lew