Friday, February 26, 2010

Sidney Australia

Pine Mountain News

It has been another week of Winter at the
Pine Mountain ranch. ther4 have been col temperatures and on and off rain and snow. It has been windy but our wind turbines make the most of it.

The fish and plants are doing well in the heated greenhouse.
The roads and highways have been treacherous at times but you get used to it.

Rocket and Starburst have been staying close to the barn for shelter from the winter winds.

We have been making furniture in our wood shop so the economy is improving slightly.Last year this time our little shop was mostly idle.

Poem of the Week

The Other Side of the Bay

by emily d stine

It's February and sunny
and we're sliding across the bay
away from Frisco and onto Berkeley
explore the college town.

The sun's setting and we fly
like bandits, ribbon-roading up the
ridge, racing the sun.

We pull off at the top to see
sun slipping under the three
bridges that cross-stitch the bay.

Sounds of silence whistle under
our feet and the sky grows pink with haze.
And we left that place days ago
but I can't shift my gaze.

Story of the Week

Sydney Australia

by Justin Jordan

In virtually all of my trips to Australia,

I end up doing something fairly outdoorsy,

being it doing a walkabout or seeing the

Great Barrier Reef. Which is great, and I

love it, but there’s only so much outside

a man can take, or at least only so much

that this man can take.

So this time, I decided to go urban and

visit Sydney. Situated

on the southeast corner of the continent,

nestled around the

appropriately named Sydney Harbor,

it’s Australia’s largest

city, and in many respects its cultural center.

It’s very urban and very large, with about

five million people living there (out of about

twenty two million in the whole country)

and getting something like ten million visitors

a year. It’s a popular place to visit, and with

good reason.

Probably the most iconic image of Sydney

is the Opera House, the clamshell like

construction that can be seen in dozens of

movies. This was, quite frankly, why I

decided on a Sydney trip.

Almost as soon as construction was finished

in 1973,the Opera house was hailed as one

of the new Seven Wonders of the World.

Frankly, seeing it in person and getting a

sense of the scale and beauty of it,

I agree. It’s really something

worth seeing in person.

Of course, Sydney has more to offer than

just a funky beautiful opera house. There

are, for instance, the Royal Botanic

Gardens, which are open year round and

home to hundreds of different kinds of

plants, including some of the most beautiful

flowers in the world.

It also has glass pyramid,

which is the sort of thing that I always


If your tastes run towards the more

people oriented side of culture, then

I recommend you see The Rocks which

is not, you know, just a bunch of rocks.

The Rocks is one of the oldest

neighborhoods in Sydney, with a

spectacular view of another of Sydney’s

landmarks, the Sydney Harbor Bridge.

These days, The Rocks is home to any

number of craft and souvenir shops, as

well as a healthy number of pubs. If

you’re there on the weekend, you can

see The Rocks market where more than

a hundred stalls open up to sell, well,

just about everything. If you want to

get something that’s not junk to take

home with you, this is the place.

For those of a more historical bent,

Sydney is not short on museums either.

My particular favorite was the Powerhouse

Museum, which focuses on steam powered

machines. You can (and should) visit the

Australian National Maritime Museum, if for

no other reason than they have a ship named


Sydney Wildlife World was also a lot of fun.

This is a sort of massive zoo, where you can

walk in tunnels through animals in enclosures

that mimic their natural habitats. This is the

place to go if you’re in Sydney and hankering

to see koalas and kangaroos without leaving

the cool crispness of air conditioning.

Pine Mountain Evening

It is evening once more at the Pine Mountain

ranch. We have just finished dinner and are

relaxing in the family room by a warm fire in

the fireplace. Tonight my after dinner coffee

from is Chocolate Mint.

This American roast coffee is just the ticket

on a cold winter night.

The minty taste wakes up the senses. It

goes just right with a plate of

fresh baked sugar cookies.

Well my coffee and cookies are history.

The adventure movie we were all watching

is over and it is time for bed. Good night all.

See you in 2 weeks.