Posts Tagged ‘Parrot’

What flower is that?

November 7, 2018

Image-1unknown flower

On many of our daily walks Helvi comes home with a piece of greenery plucked from the gardens that we pass. She dips it in hormone powder puts it in water, and most time it will sprout roots. Our garden is full of those borrowed off-shoots. This one shown above is a result of her gardening exploits. But, what is it?

Image-1milo sniffing out a possum

We don’t have such worries about our dog ‘Milo’, and what he is after. We are again in the midst of possum mating. Milo get furious about that.  He must know what they are up to. He was castrated but must still get twinges. However, he tries to even the score when it comes to possum mating. He spends the nights outside thwarting the grunting cavorting by possums for romance. In the above photo he is picking up the scent of a possum.  He is fully alert.  The teapot on the table is a wedding present. Sadly the lid broke. We now use it to water some plants. It is an Arabia piece of ceramic art from Finland.

Image-1White cockatoo.jpg

A white silver crested cockatoo is waiting for his feed of parrot mix. He knows and trusts us now. He likes the corn best but he doesn’t mind sunflower seed either. Milo has learnt to tolerate the birds but makes an exception to the black crows. He might think they are part motor-bikes. They are just as noisy. He is sometimes difficult to figure out.

Image-1kitchen view

This is the view from the kitchen sink. It is the first part of our house I walk to after getting out of bed. The washing up is never resented. It gives great joy.  Where is the kitchen sink? And now the kettle for a coffee. Just perfect.

 

A vase

April 12, 2018

IMG_0027vase

Is this a vase or a work of ceramic art? Perhaps both. Please note that this old table has a white painted top as well. A pity our telephone book wasn’t taken away. It seems to spoil the photo by hiding the rest of this lovely woman’s top part of her body. I do like the composition of the photo though, but don’t ask me why. It’s rather unique.  I doubt there is a similar vase anywhere in the world. We bought it some decades ago while still living in the inner Sydney suburb of Balmain. All I remember is going to a ceramic art exhibition in North Sydney and really like this work. It reminded us of the Italian master Modigliani with its elongated neck and general posture. Look at the Modigliani painting below.

Image result for modigliani portraits

Amedeo Modigliani found little success during his short life but he would be happy to know he now is famous with his paintings and sculptures selling for millions. We went to an exhibition of some of his work many years ago when we were in Paris.

I am sure that the ceramic artist who made this vase could not but be an ardent admirer of Modigliani. It’s funny how we are all influenced by what our eyes take in. Or, would it be better put, we SHOULD be impressed by the visual world and what a blessing eyesight gives us? It begs the question though; if we are so influenced by what our eyes take in, why allow so much visual ugliness to surround us? The madness of materialism now evident everywhere. Those advertising hoarding first invented in the US and almost immediately and eagerly copied and accepted in Australia. Those endless car sales yards with yawning bonnets and happy happy balloons tied to the rear vision mirrors. Is the making of money so important allowing it to override everything?

It’s not everywhere like that though. There are havens of quiet and solitude if one looks carefully. We have a stretch of pure beauty near our house which we walk almost each day and never tire of it. A lovely walk along a small bubbling creek. There are ducks and old men who talk to each other in hushed calm voices. A parrot might fly overhead or we can find a dog scanning the reeds for hidden water fowl. We don’t have to go far to see beauty and that’s a blessing we should not take for granted.

It is lovely and makes it all worthwhile.

The culinary delights of the anchovy.

March 17, 2018

 

IMG_0013Anemones

When we went for our daily walk along the river’s edge I noticed a man sitting on a bench. Sitting on a bench in our neck of the woods is popular. Many of the Southern Highlands inhabitants are retired.  Shire’s planning department must have heeded some advice from a bright young person just out of the University having studied Social Comfort & Welfare. (SCW) She might well have suggested a liberal sprinkling of slatted bench seats throughout the municipality.

I don’t know who the sadist was who invented those concrete benches many years ago. Were the councils afraid of them getting stolen?  Soon after our arrival in 1956 my dad noticed bus stops with the concrete bench on which hardly anyone ever sat. Perhaps that was the aim. You know, the Anglo Saxon’s avoidance of too much comfort making you soft and girly-like! We, in Australia like to be seen as a nation of men and men.

This man looked sadly serious which seemed out of place. The morning was beautiful and the cockatoos gave it a helping hand by hanging upside down from the willow tree under which this serious solitary man was sitting on his wooden slatted bench. We are blessed with so many varieties of parrots. The orange, and green to yellow and even black and yellow feathered ones. They give the black crows a good lesson by chasing them as much as possible. I can never forgive crows for pecking out the eyes of just born lambs back on our days of farming. Why do they do that?

However, the man on the seat did not seem to care about the concert with acrobatics that the cockies were giving. Free of charge too. And if that was not enough, down at earth’s level there were the ducks. They too were in a good mood, just happily paddling about after surviving the night from the cruel red-beady eyed killer fox. Our neighbour lost his chickens for the third time. The foxes, like the crows, seem to take delight in senseless killing. Why chew off the heads of chickens and then just leave them flapping about on the laneway?

I wonder how many go through life without ever realising how much joy a simple anchovy can give. I don’t mean in an aquarium but more on a ceramic plate and cooked. We seem to cook more and more using those little fishes. For those that complain about their fishy pungency; what do you expect? A rose by any other name etc.? So, it is with oceanic life.  Each to their own identity and long live l’odeur l’anchvy.

Perhaps the man on the slatted bench has missed out on the anchovy. Perhaps he should have been told that when anchovies and garlic are chopped up with lots of fresh rosemary and then deep fried in blue smoky hot oil it makes fore one of the most tantalising sauces. Add and mix in some mustard and one is in heaven. Try it in a pasta. Flavour development in the ripening of anchovy (Engraulis encrasicholus) and used when mixed with other herbs is a bit like the art of winemaking.  There will be endless varieties and flavours. A truly amazing little fish.

I buy the little jars of anchovies from the local supermarket and might use about five or six of them with four of five cloves of juicy garlic and a heaped spoonful of fresh rosemary which grows in abundance in our garden. One can muck about with adding a little chilli and different mustards, fresh cream, coconut milk and much, much more.

Next time I see the sad man on the slatted seat I might introduce and give him an anchovy.

Do you think it would help?