Alas Poor Buster! I Knew Him, Horatio

So poor Buster,  a cat of  infinite jest, of most excellent fancy; I  have borne him on my back a thousand times, has gone to the happy hunting grounds. He lived in London with Ian and Ann.

Upside down Buster.

Upside down Buster.

Well,  I now have a pet whom I have named Buster in honor of er Buster. She is a baby kangaroo. I got her in Perth. I am a bit disappointed as I thought she was a real baby kangaroo. Apparently not. She certainly hasn’t eaten anything for nearly a week but is still alive so I suppose she can’t be real.

Here is a video of Buster.

http://youtu.be/dtJd-1g79QE

Hello everybody, my name is Buster.

Hello everybody, my name is Buster.

We had a very good concert at the university yesterday. There were ballerinas and everything.

Nut crackers

Nut crackers

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Fish Supper

After 2 days of meetings, one in an underground bunker with no windows. I break out into the suburbs of Perth again. I take the number 37 bus to Belmont where there is a session of Irish music at Belvideres. http://www.belvideres.com.au/

I get off the bus just in front of a Fish and Chip shop. Yum.

“Fish and Chips, please.”

“What kind of fish would you like?”

“Er”

“We’ve got, Dhufish, Barramundi, Groper, Snapper, Morwong, Wirrah.”

“No Cod, no Haddock?”

“Where you from, mate?”

“Japan”

” No, we don’t have Jap fish here.”

Fresh Morwong and chips. Truly delicious.

Fresh Barramundi and chips.
Truly delicious.

I then go and play tunes with an excellent fiddler called Maureen. She is about 20 and wears jeans that have more holes than fabric. We play; Five Mile Chase, Traveller, Star of Munster, Foxhunters, Flogging, Rainy Day, Bag of Spuds, Humours of Tulla, Mountain Road, Congress, Wise Maid, Toss the Feathers, Slieve Russell, Blarney Pilgrim, Mug of Brown Ale, Mist Covered Mountain, Glendaruel Highlanders, Cliffs of Moher, Wailing Banshee,  Off to California, Rights of Man and loads more. Very good. I also drink Guinness.

This about sums up my ambition in life.

This about sums up my ambition in life.

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Misprint

So for weeks I have been trembling with anticipation. Part of the program for Perth was a sailing trip on the Swan River organized by the Royal Perth Sailing Club.  When the great day came I am told that there had been a change of plan. We would no longer be going out because the wind was too high. I am devastated. I had been wearing the sailing gloves that Ian gave me  24 hours a day for the last week.

Instead there was to be an excursion on the Duyfken.

http://www.duyfken.com/

The literature said that the Duyfken had been to West Australia in 1606 – 164 years before the arrival of Captain James Cook. It also said that the boat was Dutch.  Clearly misprints.

This is she under full sail.

This is she under nearly full sail.

So off we go on a perfect replica of a 17th century sailing boat. It is wonderful! The crew let me help with setting sails and stuff and in a typically ” No worries” way allow me to run around the boat with no restriction. The wind is strong, so we motor down the river towards Fremantle and then turn so the wind is behind us.

First we raise the foresail.

Complex business

Complex business

I try to engage the skipper, who has spent his life on huge oil tankers, in sailing strategy discussion. Strangely he seems to ignore my advice. We then raise the much bigger foretopsail. This a brand new sail and there is some delay as various sheets and halyards have to be adjusted.

So much fun

So much fun

I have never enjoyed myself so much. So interesting – I realize that raising sail on these boats was a time consuming business. So what, if you were  miles out at sea with thousands of miles to go? Take all day if you want.

Even with just the two sails set, Duyfken swoops towards Perth at around 4-5 knots.

All good

All good

I used to have a 14.6 sailing dinghy, you know.

I used to have a 14.6 sailing dinghy, you know.

Once back on shore, there was a BBQ at the Royal Perth Yacht Club, which due to the wind,was a bit of a blow out. No worries! The trip on Duyfken was unforgettable. Thanks Perth.

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The Sandaled Assassin

You may remember my joy when Cobb swam into view. http://quietripple.wordpress.com/2012/10/31/cobb/

Well, moth and rust doth corrupt and after 2 years of Okinawan heat, salt, exposure and constant use, I need another. They are unbuyable in Japan. I am very excited about going to Perth for there I am sure, the Australians having a BBQ culture, I will be able to track one down. The Perthites are very welcoming and ask if they can help with anything. “Where can I buy a Cobb?” I reply.

This not what they were expecting but in no time I have instructions of how to get to Getaway Outdoors in some lost suburb.

Home of Cobb

Home of Cobb

I take the train out into Perth’s wide suburbs. I get out at a lonesome station and hike off towards civilization.

Never tire of the road.

Never tire of the road. A lot of Perth is like this, I think.

After a couple of miles I hit a mall. Perth seems a lot like California.

God bless you Australia.

God bless you Australia. Moan ,moan, moan all we ever hear.

Finally I track down Getaway Outdoors and the genial Pete says, ” Cobb? No worries.” If you substitute Cobb for any other word then you have the Perth reply to any question. I like this.

No worries

No worries

I trek back to the station and thence back to downtown Perth to start the supposed real activity of my visit.

Cobb with Jacaranda

Cobb with Jacaranda. Waiting for a train.

I think you learn more about places through this sort of stuff than by sightseeing.

New lamps for old

New lamps for old

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A Finger in My Ear

Time of arrival in a new city is important. Normally you cannot check into a hotel until 2:00 so if you arrive at 5:00 am, as I did in Perth, you have to find somewhere to lie down for nine hours. I head for King’s Park and find a nice clean bench in a secluded glade in the Botanical Gardens. This is just near the Anzac War Memorial don’t you know.

None bolder

None bolder

It is 6:30 when I snuggle up on my bench and fall asleep. At 9:00 I feel something in my ear, a coastal crocodile?  No, a little boy called Sebastian who was sticking his finger in my ear. I get up and look at birds.

Taken from my park bench. Beautiful city of Perth, magnificent to be seen, With your grand statues and Inches green, And your lovely maidens fair and gay, Which, in conclusion, I will venture to say, You cannot be surpassed at the present day.

Taken from my park bench.
Beautiful city of Perth, magnificent to be seen,
With your grand statues and Inches green,
And your lovely maidens fair and gay,
Which, in conclusion, I will venture to say,
You cannot be surpassed at the present day.

The Billabong Gosse

The Billabong Goose

Australian Magpie

Australian Magpie

The Goolagong Duck

The Goolagong Duck

DSC_1034

Wattle Bird

Galah

Galah

A lovely morning in King’s Park. But it is only 10:30. What can I do until 2:00?  Don’t miss the next thrilling installment of The Quiet Ripple Defines The Pond. Very hush, hush.

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3

So today we celebrated our 3rd birthday as a real Graduate University. A lot has been achieved and rightly we celebrate with food and acts.

A good omen. These are big - 2 feet across.

A good omen. These are big – 20 feet across.

600 people came to have fun. It poured all morning but just as we were about to start the sun got his hat on. Thanks Naoko.

Born to be wild

Born to be wild. Many thanks to Atsuko, Hyoko and Taisuke.

Under the Bridge

Under the Bridge

Tales of Brave Ulysses

Tales of Brave Ulysses

Tancha Bay I wish you were sake

Tancha Bay I wish you were sake. Thanks Charlie for the photos.

Tancha Bay I Wish You Were Sake

 

Now Tancha Bay is a beautiful place,
But the price of the sake is grim;
How nice it would be if the sake was free,
And the Bay was filled up to the brim.

Chorus:
———-
Tancha Bay I wish you were sake,
Tancha Bay och-aye!
Tancha Bay I wish you were sake,
I would drink you dry.

I’d buy a yacht with the money I’ve got,
And I’d anchor it out in the bay,
If I wanted a sip I’d go in for a dip,
I’d be swimmin’ by night and by day.

Okinawans all gather there,
They’ve come from low and high
You can see them grin as they’re wading in,
And shouting out “Kampai!”
But what if the boat should overturn,
And drowned in the Bay was I?
You’d hear me shout, you’d hear me call out,
“What a wonderful way to die !”

But what’s this I see, och comin’ for me,
It’s a vision to make your blood freeze;
It’s the police afloat in a dirty great boat;
And they’re shouting: “Time, gentlemen, please!”

Last night

Last night

 

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Jeremy

So Jeremy has been here for the last 2 weeks and it has been great.

Just what I want to do on my holiday

Just what I want to do on my holiday

He has been the key influence in the resurrection of Dileas. He moved tons of sand and provided huge doses of muscle.

We go diving. This is my Dugong persona.

We go diving. This is my Dugong persona.

He prowls the reef

He prowls the reef

These are happy Okinawan fish welcoming Jeremy to their part of town.

These are happy Okinawan fish welcoming Jeremy to their part of town.

Anyway his flight leaves at 18:30 on Saturday. We hurtle down in the truckette, as the pig liver car is in repair mode. The truckette on a freeway is like flying a Sopwith Camel, lots of  noise, shaking, groaning and vibration. All good, I drop Jeremy off in good time and camel it back home. As soon as I arrive I get a call from Jeremy saying that the time on his ticket was wrong and the flight left at 13:30. I put on the flying suit and goggles and thunder back to the airport. Sure enough the time on his ticket is 18:30. Someone has messed up big time. We rattle and roll home to drown our sorrows. Next morning it is back down the freeway again. The truckette loves this. Air China are very nice and Jeremy  is booked Naha, Shanghai,Beijing Frankfurter, Geneva. I know he got to Frankfurter but haven’t heard if he has got home.

Jeremy is admirably stoical about this inconvenience. Most people I know er like me, would complain, whine, and go on and on and on and on at some poor airline rep. Good show Jeremy – thanks for all the help. Come back soon.

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