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Preview: Happy Antipodean

Happy Antipodean



A blog by Matthew da Silva since 2006



Updated: 2016-12-07T22:20:17.081+11:00

 



Boys dressed as girls

2016-12-06T12:38:26.245+11:00

When I was walking down to Darling Harbour I saw a group of boys dressed as girls. Well, in fact one of the boys was dressed as a box of beer, but that's just the way it turned out. In the main, the boys were dressed as girls. One of them was walking along in high heels and a skirt, waving at people on the opposite side of the road with his mouth fixed in a grin. It was funny, I suppose,



Black dog with blue eyes

2016-12-03T16:49:06.694+11:00

No this is not an oblique way of talking about depression, although with the way she has been treating me you wouldn't blame me for doing so. Today on my usual walk through Chinatown I really saw a black dog - which looked like a wolf - with bright blue eyes. It's eyes looked like lasers they were so bright. What kind of dog looks like this? I got home after buying a banh mi at the local



A new television

2016-12-02T16:39:17.869+11:00

Yesterday morning after extracting some cash from the ATM at the convenience store I headed up the hill to go on my usual walk around Chinatown but the thought of the diminishing sound quality on my TV brought me back home, where I measured the old TV with a tape measure. I left the building this time via the fourth floor, which has a door that lets you out onto the park at the back of the



A sick pigeon

2016-11-28T15:15:57.823+11:00

As I was walking down Dixon Street near Goulburn Street today I saw a sick pigeon sitting on he pavement. The poor creature looked bedraggled and wan, just sitting there on the grey pavement with its feathers sort of ruffled and not smooth. It's head was down pointing toward the pavement and its shoulders were hunched. Probably if I were a kinder and more decent human being I would have



Up on Manning River

2016-11-21T10:48:33.475+11:00

On Friday I got in the car about midday and drove north onto the Pacific Highway on the way to my cousin's place on the Manning River, which is located a couple of hours north of Newcastle. The trip up took four-and-a-half hours. I could feel the steering wheel start to vibrate at around 110km/hr but as usual I sat at around 90km/hr to 100km/hr for most of the trip even though the highway in



Reflections on my state of mind

2016-11-14T13:58:08.452+11:00

Over the past few days people have been contacting me about my blogposts asking if I was feeling suicidal, because I had said that I was happy with life and could end it without any qualms. But I think that the blogposts contain quite another message. In fact, I think that it is an extremely life-affirming stance to take. I was thinking about these things while I was taking my usual walk



Sitting inside on a November day

2016-11-13T18:16:40.030+11:00

Yesterday morning I went for a walk in company to Barangaroo instead of to Chinatown and ended up not in the park (it's such a tiny little park) but in a gelato bar having a flat white while my companion had a gelato milkshake (if there is such a thing). I caught a bit of sun, as you can see. It was a hot and sunny day and we were walking at the hottest time of the day. I got back home today



Demolition of IMAX

2016-11-13T14:46:23.576+11:00

Under the Western Distributor they've constructed hoardings to keep people away from the IMAX, which is currently being demolished. A big crusher on wheels is attacking the theatre's external parts each day, ripping pieces off and chomping into the wooden structure. The Darling Harbour managers constructed a walkway on the outside of the hoarding so that people can still get from the south



Major loony wins US election

2016-11-09T18:02:15.160+11:00

The Sydney Morning Herald is currently giving Donald Trump 264 electoral votes out of 270. It looks therefore as though the American people have done the unthinkable and elected a complete loon to their highest office. The signs were there from the beginning of the evening, when Hillary started to lose key states like Florida and Ohio. Now, Trump is even looking set to win traditionally



A windy Saturday

2016-11-06T15:09:56.106+11:00

I noticed on the way through John Street Square this morning that the light rail had been stopped and that they had put on buses to transport prospective passengers to their destinations both up and down the line. In the Haymarket I saw the reason for the stoppage: a fairly major exercise in repairing the tracks, or something possibly related to the introduction of a light rail line along



Still missing Japan

2016-11-02T19:20:30.253+11:00

Late this morning I went for my customary walk down to Chinatown and up Harris Street back home, stopping off at a Japanese place for a bowl of noodles for lunch. Once home I did the ironing and then had a short nap. I got up at about 4pm to step up to the computer. And then at some point in the late afternoon I contacted my daughter on Facebook Messenger. Messenger has changed its layout,



Taking a stroll on Melbourne Cup day

2016-11-02T15:32:35.833+11:00

This morning I got out on time - at about 10.15am - and made my way down to Darling Harbour. As I was going down the hill next to the entry to Pyrmont Bridge a guy on a bike riding the opposite way up the hill looked at me and told me to "smile, buddy". Which I thought was unfair so soon after getting out of bed. Maybe he had been up for hours, I don't know. But I had only been awake for about



First walk to Chinatown after trip to Japan

2016-10-30T17:18:52.284+11:00

You could see cars of this calibre in Tokyo squeezing through the crowds in Shibuya or roaring down the street in Roppongi, but this little monster I caught on camera just at my local up the street here in Pyrmont turning right out of John Street into Harris Street. These beasts tend to make a bit of noise as they toodle along. I turned the camera to landscape to quickly capture this image and



Adjusting to Sydney after two weeks in Japan

2016-10-29T13:53:29.970+11:00

Readjusting to the rhythms of life in Sydney after spending two weeks in Japan is proving to be problematic. I had a busy time there seeing family and friends and I came away feeling sort of at home. I felt welcome there, even a bit appreciated. The hotel in Shibuya turned out to be a real treat as on its second floor it has three restaurants - an Italian one, a Japanese one and a Chinese one



Day before the trip to Japan

2016-10-11T14:15:42.357+11:00

This morning as usual I went for a walk to Chinatown. Because the scaffolding is still up around my building I couldn't go outside on the balcony to test the air, so when I got to the street I found that it was quite cold. I went back inside to get a jacket to wear on my walk. In Darling Harbour there were few people - not unusual for a Tuesday - and I ambled along thinking about this and



Staying inside on an overcast Saturday

2016-10-11T14:16:05.121+11:00

When I first got up my first inclination was to do a longer-than-usual-walk up to Newtown to buy coffee but a quick look outside at the overcast sky determined me to stick to my usual route through Chinatown. Once I was outside, however, I could smell the moisture in the air and decided to call off the walk for today. The picture you can see here is one I took yesterday while entering Darling



Windy Saturday walk

2016-10-02T10:47:53.438+11:00

I entered Darling Harbour in the wake of an elderly man in a fawn-coloured jacket - he must have been 75 if he was a day - who was ambling along at just my rate of progress, so he stayed ahead of me for a while and then disappeared into the crowd. It's a Saturday and the crowds are thicker on these days. Suddenly he was gone, just like that. I simply continued ahead down the bay and underneath



Installing a new printer

2016-09-30T18:58:19.305+10:00

A couple of days ago I noticed that print jobs that had been sent to the printer were still in the queue even after a week and so I tried to clear them. Unfortunately, the control for this process in the software didn't work. I had also noticed that the printer was not printing dark enough and so I went out to buy some new cartridges from the stationery store. The new cartridges however made



A walk on a busy Sunday morning

2016-09-25T15:00:12.145+10:00

When I headed out for my walk this morning it was sunny and warm, and it had rained earlier in the morning. There were puddles on some of the pavements, and the corners of the buildings were damp. I went past the homeless man across the road from the casino, and he had little blocks of different-coloured glass near his collection hat; it was a cap that had just been turned upside down for



Flying seeds!

2016-09-23T15:51:08.717+10:00

When I was coming to the end of my walk today - a windy, warm day in spring - I could see thousands of seeds from the trees that line the street flying in the air. The seeds congregated on the dry footpaths, creating eddies and whorls as they slipped along on the torrents of air. Harris Street was replete with the moving currents of seeds shaped like little umbrellas. The seeds have a hairy



A rainy day out

2016-09-22T12:04:14.680+10:00

In a positive mood because I had finally decided that I would travel to Japan to see my kids, I went for a walk as usual, heading down through Darling Harbour. Under the Western Distributor there were three schoolgirls in uniform with packets of McDonald's chips in their hands, and they were starting to run because one of them had foolishly given a chip to a seagull. As a consequence, a dozen



Catching up with an acquaintance

2016-09-20T15:14:46.183+10:00

Last night I set the alarm for 8.30am because I had an appointment in Glebe this morning to meet with an acquaintance I had done business with back in 2013 and -14. It was at that time that I had visited Ecuador, where this friend was living at the time. I had also met his wife and another man, who was studying American Indians in their local areas. When I arrived at the cafe in Glebe there



A rainy Sunday at home

2016-09-18T14:50:24.231+10:00

When I awoke early this morning to a bad dream I got up and made myself a cup of coffee, planning to drink it then go back to bed and so miss out on the rest of the dream that was troubling me. Which is what I did. I eventually got up at around 10am and went out the back to the library to see outside (the scaffolding is still up out the front windows). I had an inkling that it was raining. It



A drive out to visit St Peter's in Watson's Bay

2016-09-16T16:16:16.586+10:00

This morning I went out to St Peter's Church in Watson's Bay to drop off mum's ashes for interment. As I have mentioned beforfe here, St Peter's has a columbarium - a reserved place for dead people's ashes with gardens built into it - where my grandmother was also interred in 1995. 21 years later I went back with mum's ashes. My brother and I had chosen a niche close to granny's as mum's final



Une journée du ciel gris

2016-09-16T12:55:27.981+10:00

I'm not sure of my French here but it looks accurate. Or is it "au ciel gris"? Can't be helped, but I was reminded of French when I thought back to those days after mum was diangnosed with Alzheimer's in 2014 when I was not reading at all because I was just so stressed. After I started reading again I took refuge in books by French people, or about France. I remember I wanted to find the