Saturday, 19 November 2016

Meet the Futility Company

Last time we visited Mallacoota there was a line problem somewhere so power was no longer available.  I was reminded of Tanzania's National Motto "Hakuna umeme" (We have no electricity. )  Today Frances tried to toast her bread and found the toaster didn't function.  Neither did any other appliances.  On visiting a shop in town it turned out the power was off from 9am to 5pm today and tomorrow for "line maintenance".

I was trying to think of an antonym for "utility" and realised that simply adding an 'f' did what was needed!  Sort of like 'effing useless'.

Anyhow, let us get back to the last two days.  Our plan was to pack the car and drive to Queanbeyan where Frances would do a Pilates class and I'd take Tammie for a walk.  That got a trifle amended as we noticed air-conditioning was not available as we drove in.  So I took myself to the Mitsubishi dealer where a helpful guy found the drive belt to the air-conditioner was not where it should be.  It had been "spat".  They would need to order in a new belt - arriving on Monday - but we'd be OK to drive the car in the meantime.  "It'll just be hot."   Did I mention it was 31oC?

So we set off, experimenting with windows open to various levels to balance cooling and wind noise.  It turned out to be not too foul, although we did wonder how we used to drive across the Hay Plain at >40oC.  We must be getting soft.

About 90 minutes into the trip we came up to a triple-decker full of sheep.
 It wasn't going badly on the downhills but spluttered on the uphills so I passed it.  About a minute after doing so Mr Plod appeared with all lights on, going very quickly: a few minutes later an ambulance appeared going a bit slower (but only because it didn't have a hotted up V8 under the hood).  I guess there was a prang somewhere behind us.

Then we met really slow traffic in the form of two motorbikes!  Fortunately they turned off in Bombala as it was the weekend of the town's motorbike show.

On on.  We had wondered about using the Mount Darragh Rd as Brown Mountain was closed (the Roads Division of the NSW branch of the Futility Company was doing something there) but the traffic seemed no heavier than usual so we kept on to Imlay Rd.  There we met a log truck which was very sociable in signalling me past as soon as that was rational.
 On getting to Mallacoota romantic mistiness was available.
 Also available was a nestful of Red Wattlebird chicks.
This has meant we are being a bit careful about not disturbing the adults from their feeding.

On our usual late walk to the Jetty Welcome Swallows were also getting fed.
 Grevilleas are in good floral shape at present.  These from the garden of our residence.

After a night slightly disturbed by a possum war on the deck, the romantic mist was still around at sunrise the next morning.
We then noticed a flotilla of boats gathering down by the Karbeethong Jetty.   It seemed a little lower key than the Bream fishing competitions we have seen in the past ...
.. but the folk still seemed a little willing to get going.
In the afternoon I went past on a run and the boats were all coming back in here, rather than the town ramp.  It turned out this was a catch and release Flathead competition so no weigh-in.  Instead the anglers put in photos of their fish.  It also seems length, rather than weight, of fish is the main bragging issue.

On the subject of the waters, and somewhat out of timeline,when we went to Betka Beach there was a very stiff Southerly wind blowing up the waves.  Not at all pleasant.
 Little Black Cormorants were decking the jetties on the way into town.
 A family of Australian Wood Ducks were heading for a swim.
Later in the day a Rainbow Lorikeet was deleting nectar from a Callistemon outside the kitchen window.
 As was a New Holland Honeyeater.
 Our main walk was the Heathland Route which was very quiet in terms of both birds and flowers.  The gale may have had something to do with this.  Here is a Fringe Lily (Thysanotus tuberosus)...
 .. and a Burchardia umbellata (aka Milkmaids)
 The only orchids seen today were a few Petalochilus fuscatus/Caladenia fuscata.
 The biggest alarm of the day was the eruption of this Goanna (Lace Monitor) from beside the track.  My guess is that from snout to tail it was about 1.7m long: not huge but quite impressive.
Readers may also be interested in a post about Mallacoota weather.

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