Eagleby Wetlands

After Mum discovered the Eagleby Wetlands while browsing through the Refedex, we headed out there for a spot of birdwatching.

And while I got a bit frustrated with my zoom lens and its very noisy focussing gear (and gazed with envy at the truly enormous lenses that the more professional birdos were lugging around) I did manage to get a couple of bird shots.

Like this Scarlet Honeyeater. Isn’t he pretty? Apparently we have these on our property, but I’m yet to see them. Hopefully the new planting that Mum and Allen helped us do, with lots of grevilleas and banksias, will bring these little birds down closer to the house.

Regressing

We went to Garter Belts & Gasoline for the first time last weekend – sat in the sun, listened to bands, got sunburnt and people-watched those in “the scene” (to quote one overly emotional bloke who gave a speech later in the day).

The 50s/hot rod scene, to my uneducated eye, seemed like an odd mix of 50s, punk & country styles. Lots of tatts, skulls, 50s hair and cowboy boots. We definitely didn’t fit in in our tees & shorts, and I began wishing I had a parasol after a couple of hours. It was a good day though, with some good bands – I think next year we’ll go to one of the night events (more music, more dancing and… burlesque, I think).

Improving their wind resistance

I went to the races at Doomben for Kat’s birthday.  It was fun – we had a table on the grass, right near the fence, which enabled me to lean over and take photos every time the horses went thumping past.

I am happy to say I’ll never have a gambling problem.  I just don’t get that thrill from gambling – it makes watching horse racing more fun, but when I’ve lost a few times (and I never win) I get irritable and stop.  I bet on a horse called Polar Bear because I liked the name, despite its chubby jockey (60 kilos to the other jockeys’ 53 – shocking!).  It actually led the field for the entire race, which was rather exciting, and then came fifth, which was not. (Erm, I have now realised that the weight listed next to the horse is the weight that horse is carrying, not the weight of the actual jockey. Sorry for defaming you, poor anonymous jockey.)

Verve Cafe

I love the atmosphere at Verve Cafe.  Set underground, beneath the Metro Arts building, it’s a dark little venue, frequently noisy, with a bar towards the back, and a congregation of smokers out near the back stairs. I generally go there for weekday lunches (it’s much more crowded in the evening), and always for the pasta, which is divine (and reasonably priced, at around $15 to $18).

This week my companions both had the carbonara, while I tried something new with the chicken and basil linguine above.  We all started with the herb bread, which is fantastic – four slices of bread with a gorgeously thick mixture of herbs and garlic slathered on top. The linguine was delicious – cheesy, and a lovely mix of flavours. It was a little oily though, with a residue left in the bottom of the plate. The carbonara was pronounced delicious. Next time I’m determined to try one of the pastas that involves alcohol – there are several on the menu with either vodka or brandy in the sauce.

Verve has a nice selection of cocktails, including my favourite which involves lychee liquor (I adore lychees), but I try to stay away from cocktails during my lunch hour, unless I’m having a particularly bad day. The verdict – Verve is a fabulous place for workday lunches, but not for the claustrophobic.