Melbourne Daily Photo

Hello, I created this blog because Melbourne is my city and I want people to see what a beautiful place it is. So come with me on a journey of discovery as we traverse the dining precincts, the culture, the laneways and hidden gems that make Melbourne marvellous.

Waltzing Australia

Wednesday, 30 March 2011

Pigeon loft - Batman Park

Walking along the northern side of the Yarra towards Spencer Street, I came upon this interesting structure. On taking a closer look, it turns out it is a pigeon loft, created to entice the pigeons away from the CBD.

This pigeon loft was placed here in Batman Park as part of the City of Melbourne's pigeon management programe and is intended as an alternative home for the city's pigeons especially those around the Town Hall, City Square and Bourke Street Mall.

Pigeons in the city have been a nuisance for decades and their droppings cause uncleanliness generally and also damage to city's buildings. Sitting in Federation Square you're surrounded by them.

The loft is painted with light coloured corrosion resistant to reflect the heat and minimise internal over-heating. It houses two hundred nesting boxes for pigeon breeding. Eggs laid will be replaced with artificial eggs intended as a humane way to control and reduce pigeon numbers.

Bird feeding around the loft base is permitted to attract birds out of the CBD to this area. Bird feeding is not permitted in any other area around the CBD.

I wonder if people had a problem in the old days when pigeons were used to carry messages? Perhaps governments could re-introduce this practise - think of the savings you'd make not having to buy postage stamps!

Today's quote: I don't mind being a symbol but I don't want to become a monument. There are monuments all over the Parliament Buildings and I've seen what the pigeons do to them ~ Tommy Douglas.

Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Gents Dress Instructions - Ruby Tuesday

Gentlemen please...

Bistro signage
Gentlemen you have been warned! When attending please ensure that your dress is appropriate...'Twould be an interesting exercise to find out just what is considered appropriate attire for gents.

I love this sign don't you? It's in the bar of one of my favourite drinking places in the Melbourne CBD - the Mitre Tavern, which I posted about HERE.

Ladies Loo Limericks
And in the ladies loo, the walls are festooned with limericks. They have all been...laundered. Still, it's out of the ordinary, I mean to say - how many toilets do you know that have limericks written on the wall? And with pictures too!

Above: Ladies Loo

I love limericks, they're my favourite of all rhymes. Yes, I know they don't have the classiness of prose nor are they in the "blue-stocking" league, but limericks are short, easily remembered and most of all funny. Well, the "unlaundered" ones are!

Above: Limericks

Above: Limerick
As I said, the limericks on the walls have been "laundered"

The limerick packs laughs anatomical
In a spaced which is quite economical
But the good ones I've seen
So seldom are clean
And the clean ones so seldom are comical!

Click here to see all participants of My World Tuesday

This is my contribution for Ruby Tuesday

Today's quote: Laughter is the best medicine ~ old proverb.

Sunday, 27 March 2011

Space Lights

Metal in Motion
Above: "Space Lights"
I'm not too sure what this piece of metal artwork is supposed to represent, but to me it appears like something from an outer space or futuristic movie. The upturned sheets remind me of flower petals facing the sun. What do you think?

Above: The other side
This shot taken from around the other side. This artwork is near the RACV Club in Bourke Street in the Melbourne CBD.

Edit: I received a return phone call from David at the RACV Club who informed me this piece of sculpture is called "Shadow Form III" and was created by Western Australian artist Robert Juniper.

About the artist
Robert, born in Western Australia in the wheatbelt town of Merredin in 1929 studied industrial design and commercial art at the Beckenham School of Art in England before returning home to WA. He paints, teaches art and has held many exhibitions. In 1992, he designed the coat of arms for the Commonwealth Law Courts in Perth and his artwork is held in numerous collections including the Australian National Gallery, National Gallery of Victoria, Parliament House Canberra and art galleries in WA, Queensland and NSW.

In 2011, he was made a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) for services to the visual arts. You can find out more about Robert Juniper HERE.

Today's quote: At some point we’ve got to stop asking ourselves what is the meaning of everything, maybe it’s not so very important what it means. It’s probably more important what the sense of it is.. they are two very basic and different things ~ Tony Cragg

The Cup

Above: Self portrait?
It wasn't until afterwards thatI realised I could see myself reflected in the tea cup.

Click here to see reflections around the world.

Today's quote: O, happy the soul that saw its own faults ~ Mevlana Rumi

Saturday, 26 March 2011

Children of Laos, Burma & Thailand

Some have asked me to post some photos of my recent trip to SEA, so I give you today a photo of an Akha family and a video of some of the children I met, which I've set to a famous Chinese song called "Liang Zhu". Seeing temples and other attractions are nice, but I loved seeing the children and "talking" with them. They are so open and friendly although many are very shy. I just squatted down and spent time with them. It was heart-warming seeing their little faces light up when they smiled

Above: Akha Mother & Baby
The Akha are a hill tribe people known for their beautiful handcraft and artistry. You can read more about these people here.

The children of Laos, Thailand and Burma (Myanmar)

Some of the children I met live in cities like Bangkok, Chiang Mai and Luang Prabang, but most of these children live in villages. Some villages are very poor and have little in the way of modern conveniences, yet they have a closeness with each other that you can feel when on your first encounter. Temples and "attractions" are nice, but the time I spent with these children means more to me and it is this memory that I hold dear.

Today's quote: Every child comes with the message that God is not yet discouraged of man ~ Rabindranath Tagore

Friday, 25 March 2011

Mekong Sunset

Above: Sunset over the Mekong
This was taken after we'd docked at the slowboat landing and were trudging up the walkway to Luang Prabang.

To see other skies around the world click here.

Today's quote: Sunsets are so beautiful that they almost seem as if we were looking through the gates of Heaven ~ John Lubbock

Wednesday, 23 March 2011

Mitre Tavern - Melbourne's Oldest Building

My favourite pub in the Melbourne CBD is the Mitre Tavern where the beer is good, the barmaids are pretty and the barmen are good-looking! (and flirtable). It has a great atmosphere and you feel like you've stepped back in time and you're in a country pub.

Above: Mitre Tavern
It's the oldest building in Melbourne and when it was first built in 1836 there were gum trees and paddocks all around. The place may be overshadowed by tall buildings and office blocks today, but this little pub remains a favourite and it's not just for the historical significance either.

Above: Timber shutters
As you can see here, there are (solid) timber shutters combined with window plants and brass nameplate. A double storey cement rendered brick building on a bluestone foundation.

A little bit of history
The Tavern was altered in 1868 and the first publican was Henry Thompson. Around 1900-1910, it was altered quite a bit more ~ Queen Anne style additions were constructed using Marseille pattern terra cotta tiles on a gable roof with half timbered gable ends. On the western side of the Tavern, a brick building was added and the windows have been altered. The Queen Anne style was very popular around the time of Federation. (Federation was 1901)

There are three bars and staff rooms on the ground floor and two dining rooms and service rooms upstairs on the first floor.
The Mitre Tavern is classified by the National Trust and is on the Victorian Heritage Register and is protected by state law.

Above: Al Fresco
These cane chairs not only look good, they're comfortable too. Just the spot for a quiet drink or tête-à-tête.

A Bit of Trivia
It is said that Sir Rupert Clarke's mistress Connie Waugh hung herself in the Mitre and her ghost haunts the halls and rooms of the tavern. Indeed, the last time I was at the Mitre (it was a Saturday) as night fell, a Ghost tour group came our way (we were sitting in the beer garden) and the guide proceeded to fill in all the grizzly details.

Above: Drinker's Corner
One thing about Melbourne - we know how to do things in style. This is the area I have dubbed "Drinker's Corner" - there's some serious drinking done here where suits rub shoulders with labourers and blokes from all walks of life stand and have a beer. Note the 'table' - a beer barrel.

Above: Beer Garden
This is the largest beer garden in the CBD and surrounded on three sides by buildings, it's sheltered by the wind. A good choice in winter and for the summer, you get a bit of a breeze from the laneway.

Mitre Tavern is located in one of Melbourne's laneways - Bank Place which runs between Collins and Little Collins Street. The beer garden is in Mitre Place which is off Bank Place. The Tavern is still in use today as it was originally - a Club/Hotel/Coffee Palace. So next time you're in Melbourne, make sure to pop in to the Mitre where you'll have a rip-roaring time where the beer flows, conversation keeps going and the pub grub is hearty and there are 34 different beers.

Today's quote: Beer is proof that God loves us, and wants us to be happy ~ Benjamin Franklin

Monday, 21 March 2011

An Op-Art Roof?

Above: Domed Waves
The warm colours of the retail area coupled with a futuristic light-filled roof and trees growing in the centre make this a joy to shop. This is the "Paris end" of Chadstone Shopping Centre, aka Chaddy where you will find goods and fashion from the lower end of the scale to the very top. Think - Louis Vuitton, Prada, Ralph Lauren, Jimmy Choo, Tiffany... and you'll get an idea of just what lies under this gorgeous roofline.

Oh, and did I also say that "Chaddy" is the largest shopping centre in Australia!

Today's quote: If men liked shopping, they'd call it research ~ Cynthia Nelms

Sunday, 20 March 2011

Bridge over the River Kwai

Above: River Kwai Bridge
This black iron bridge was brought from Java by the Japanese supervision by Allied prisoner-of-war labour as part of the Death Railway linking Thailand with Burma.

The bridge is still in use today and was the target of frequent Allied bombing raids during World War II and was rebuild after war ended. The curved spans of the bridge are the original sections. A daily train still follows the historical route from Kanchanaburi to Nam Tok Station. Over 13,000 POW's died building the track work.

If you're interested in reading about the building of the train line and the most infamous cutting, Click here to read about it on my other blog.

Today's quote: There are no bridges in folk songs because the peasants died building them ~ Eugene Chadbourne

Melbourne Daily Photo

Hello, I created this blog because Melbourne is my city and I want people to see what a beautiful place it is. So come with me on a journey of discovery as we traverse the dining precincts, the culture, the laneways and hidden gems that make Melbourne marvellous.