Saturday, May 27, 2006

Announcing - ta dah! - my retirement!

You may have noticed my new countdown banner near the top of the screen. Yes, after 30 years as a librarian, more than half of those years at La Trobe University Library, I am going to start on my next big adventure, retirement. There are a number of things I'd like to do, not the least of which is spending more time on bookbinding, getting 3 decades of photos in order, scrapbooking. They dovetail nicely, don't they?

And the graphic for my countdown banner was also chosen to reflect one of my more frivolous plans for spending my leisure time, and that is to gradually explore all the train and tram routes in Melbourne, right to the very end of the line. Armed with my $3 all-day seniors card travel ticket covering the entire metropolitan system, I will be able to sit in the comfort (!) of Melbourne's various modes of rail transport, gawking out the window, peering into people's back gardens, doing vicarious window shopping, and probably coming across a number of odd people, including those who think it's fun to sit on a tram or train gawking out the window.

Shown here are the rail lines radiating out from the city.

I've always been a fan of rail travel, starting from when I was a kid living on Long Island. A trip to New York City was so exciting: you'd start out on the Long Island Railroad, but approaching the city the train would then go underground, to become the wonderfully spooky subway.

Trams have always been an interest too, as I wrote about in another post.

Here's a map of the Melbourne tram system.

This project may take me some time, and of course I'll need to take photos and write about my adventures.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Heritage month in Castlemaine

May is Heritage Month in Castlemaine and there are always interesting walks and talks on local history. We try to get to at least one weekend's worth. This weekend we went for a 90 minute walk around the railway precinct of Castlemaine, led by a very knowledgeable local historian. It's great that there are people who are prepared to do the research, give up their free time, and be able to talk on their topic without ever having to refer to their notes.

Here's a photo of it maybe 100 years ago (buildings still standing):

Monday, May 15, 2006

Belated Mother's Day posting

Sonia over at Leaves of Grass has some lovely family photos (check out the Ricky Ricardo look-alike!). It gave me the idea of posting some of Mom and me:

Mom when she was 5 months pregnant with me, and then a couple of years later when I'm a bit more visible.

This last photo was taken in 1995. I surprised Mom by flying from Australia to California unannounced and arriving on her doorstep (my dad and brother were in on the surprise) on her 70th birthday. What fun that was! To explain my crazy getup, I dressed myself up to look like a present. Can't remember how Mom got to have that balloon headgear. She does tend to keep fun things around the place. I just spoke with her today and she told me about a cleanup she was having and the practical joke items she forgot she had. Now she is having fun leaving some of these items on people's cars for them to discover when they come out to their cars after class. Mom's always good for a laugh.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Phine graduates, with honours!

You'd think I was the parent, so happy am I for Phine and her achievement. But friends are allowed to be happy and celebrate too. Well done, Phine!

Saturday, May 06, 2006

You asked for it

Finally found the photo (where I'd been looking all the time). This was taken in about 1982, in the foyer of the Princess Theatre. I loved "frocking up" for the end of year ballet concerts, but even more than the costumes I really liked all the theatrical makeup.

By way of contrast, as a little kid I was a tomboy, and I still feel most comfortable in jeans.

Friday, May 05, 2006

Greek music and dancing!

In a previous incarnation I'm sure I was a dancer. Apart from doing ballet as an adult (until I was 38 - first pregnancy got in the way) I was also very keen on folk dancing when I was at university. Loved all that music from the Balkans and the Middle East, especially the haunting eastern scales they use, and the sounds of the bouzouki and the Greek bagpipes. Tonight we're going to dinner at a Greek restaurant which features Greek music and dancing. It'll be one time where the food will take second place.

I just tried to find a photo of myself in ballerina gear, saw it just recently and of course can't find it now when I wanted to scan it and post it. MUST get those photos into order!

Monday, May 01, 2006

Making books - what next?

Alice asked in a comment on yesterday's post, what I might do with the books I make. They do have pages in them so can be used as diaries, journals, even photograph albums. Some people use them to produce catalogues for their work (there were artists attending the weekend's workshop). Some people write poems in them, give them as gifts, blank or with photos/messages in them. I've thought of creating scrapbooks when I finally get around to doing that. The smaller easy and quick to make ones can be stationery, greeting/gift cards, and so on. They are also great for special events such as weddings. I've got a few projects in mind (no weddings though!). But it is scary to think of using the more elaborate ones that take a bit of work. They look so perfect, I'm thinking I'll just display them for now, especially the accordian book. That embossed paper has the look and feel of reptile skin.

This is another one we made, I still need to sew in the second and third sections of text pages. It's called a three signature hard cover book.