Tone-in-oz just doing it anyway

Monday, September 27, 2010

what a week!

see? to many thorts...
One night/morning, a list appeared to me of my life as girls I had fallen for and the music at the time.
And then in the shower, other ponderables occurred to me. and became un-ponderable with days.
As I am watching Glass:A portrait of Philip in Twelve Parts, there was an almost frission with him.
He was describing music as not imagined, just needed to be written down as if it appeared as a tree from the mist in the park as you neared it, or the mist cleared. My paraphrasing.
Yeah, I have a heading and a start, then a preamble, and then a ramble, then a short conclusion.
Awright, and pologies to them:
Wendy J, Joanne S, Jenny P, Sue G, Tarn A. Some of these people have literally disappeared, others, gone for ever. Another had hair to her bum, and moved off to have kids with another potter. Nat, Dan.
Music to match? Primary school memories of the radio? Beatles. Rocket Man. Super Tramp. Beach Boys. Queen. Skyhooks. BTO. Dire Straits. U2.
Mostly dark haired and mostly brown eyed too, one had very curly hair, JS I think.
Sometimes try to track them down through old school friends, or now, google and facebook.
My friend Marshall was surprised at a thing I mentioned the other day. Once a long time ago, we had a large collection of empty Alpine packs.  I remember when I was young...

Thursday, September 23, 2010

car #7

After 6 months of gazing at a Mercedes in the car-park, the bank let me have one.
And the family car can have a rest- poor thing. A quality vee-hee-cal doin' deliveries!?

Its only a van, mind. Second hand too.
Big inside enough for the courier work, and ALL THE WINDSURFER stuff. Bigger than Lev
Oh yeah, and sleeping too.
So when the speed week comes up soon, off we go this year, the first time for years.
Maybe will afford it.
Even compete?
Will see.
At 30 bucks a month for another 3,003 years and 1 month, I think it is a cheap investment...

Weeelel, that's not quite right.
The investment was a better deal than that, within budget.
And hopefully will be able to do piece work for other little places around town.

helping a friend

Today I was asked to help out an ex-girlfriend. I cannot just say NO.

Not me. No excuse not to, I have the time. I suspect she knows that as well.

Anyway, she was a little late, as usual, to pick me up. Or should I say, her car was driven up by her eldest, The Learner Driver.

We were to measure some blinds and to see if they would fit in the windows at her new house she had just got built, in the next town.

There was the usual parental directing from the front passenger seat- Slow Down Please or We Will Pull Over and Swap Drivers! Been there! We arrived and his hoonish type car was scrapped up over the curb into the not yet made driveway. Advice offered on how to avoid scrapping the exhaust off next time he parked the car. Hope it did not seem boorish and in one ear and out the other.

It is a nice new house, largish bedrooms, two lounges, big block, with a bit of a view out the back to the south across the valley.

The blind did not fit the window, too long, needed to be cut? Hmmm. Hmmmmmm. Off the shelf does not always fit. Maybe get a shop to do it? I could fit it, but would the trim be neat enough? Dunno, dunno.

The blind did not fit back into it's box either!

Well, it was not me that stuffed some one else's dream up this time. There were alternatives.

Will keep posted- may be a handyman job there after-all!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Vineyard and Alcoholery Production (cof cof...)

The Portable vineyard is coming along fine, the nursery vines seems to be growing well and the cuttings are a low percentage success. The last three weeks have resulted in a few drinks being made.
Some liqueurs have been made up, like anise flavoured, cinnamon flavoured and vanilla bean flavoured. Half a litre high alcohol content with ingredients should make up a nice drink around Xmas time, just seive the stuff out and add sugar- about 300g and equal amount of H2O.
Will be making limonella too, the lemon tree has stayed the course after a severe hair cut, and the fruit looks good. Poor old thing may need some more cut off it next year.
Have not made chocolate milk stout for a few years, so out to the brewery- and now have two-dozen-plus long-necks maturing. Give them six weeks and that will be a nice little present for other afficiendos too.
From 8 kg of sugar, managed to 'scrounge' 5 liters of base, enough to make 10 liters of spirits, or about 14 bottles of whotcar. Carbon filtering should remove most smells, or will 'scrounge' it again. Need to 'scrounge' some afters too, and maybe the horrible wine off the garage vine will be added to that. Faux brandy even!

The Portable Vineyard as of middle September:
There are at least three Shiraz cuttings, 5 Pinot and two chardonnay budding at the moment, and last years shiraz cutting are really doing well.

Monday, September 13, 2010


I have some bad news
and some good news.
I was walking toodey
aroon the hoose .

Why was the rain water gutter wet?
Been No Rain?
Fixed the Block
in the nearby drain!

Hmm. wet Groond
the post for the garden tap.

It was in the path of the mad BMXrs...
Maybe they had bent it under ground and cracked the join?

So dug carefully aroon it.
Velly wet.
And lots of tree roots from the big tree a few yards away!
So the roots had bent it and maybe the kids had had knocked it too.
A wee crack in the pipe there was.
Oot wif dat den!
Soo ezy to undoo too!

Two bucks and ninety cents
for a plug and the nuisance post and leak
 was dissa peed...

Figjam does it again,
up the tradies
(sorry fellas)

Sunday, September 12, 2010

The Portable Vineyard 2010/2011 season

The Portable Vineyard was finally weeded, tended, fixed, fertilized and mulched. There were new buds on the potted vines on 1 September, and now the established vines are budding too

The nursery plants were also fixed up, with some re-potted.
Chardonnay and Pinot 2010

What is it?
Last count was 29 Shiraz/Syrah vines in pots at various stages- 15 fruiting vines, the rest the nursery vines. There are also 6 chardonnay and 2 Pinot Noir vines along the veranda that are producing, the birds got last years chardonnay, and the liter of pinot wine turned to vinegar, but it was a great red wine vinegar! there was a real sense of achievement when spaghetti bolognaise tasted just fine with it added.

 In a addition to the potted vines are the original 6 vines planted in 1999 out along the back fence (4) and next to the shed/bungalow (2). These are the origins of the Portable Vines, cuttings propagation.

Production currently
Last year I managed to coax enough fruit for 5 liters, or nearly 6 bottles of shiraz, and the same this year.

The wine from last year was really nice, I don't think any is left to mature more than a year! I could be wrong... I will have to check the Micro Wine Cellar. I am pretty sure there is none in the Alcoholery*!
[ *That's the Beer/Wine/Spirit Making Shed, abbreviated from "Brewery/Winery/Distillery Ex-car Garage". ]

But Why?
When we bought the place (1998) there was a vine against the garage. After the first summer there was HEAPS of grapes. I asked a home brew shop owner what could I do with it. I had to buy a beer brewing kit, and also enough ingredients to make Milk Stout. 

So that is why I make wine at home.

From a book published in Australia, I learnt that about 50 wine grape vines would be a fine idea to make enough for a years consumption- up to 50 bottles a year I think was the idea, but when you only have a quarter acre, you have to compromise... So when pruning three year old vines, I kept them to make cuttings propgation, and that started it all.

Now I have a shelf full of wine making and beer brewing books.

A garage full of brewing equipment. And bottling stuff and Bottles...

I read about Canadian Ice Wine- a sweet wine made by letting the berries freeze, and squeezing the unfrozen juice out to ferment. The vines were grown in old barrels, cut in half and mounted on trolleys!  I guess that this was so that they could be wheeled in and out of the barn or green house for winter. 

So that is why it is a Portable Vineyard, if I have to sell up, it all comes with me!

Friday, September 10, 2010

Been there

Today I was asked for a special; take some soft-drink out to the heliport. 18km later! And the river plain was flooded. The road was 'that' much from being flooded last night. The boss was lucky I didn't ask for twice as much for the trip- 100km to deliver some coke! But it was nice to get out of town. Might have been good to take the kids, but they were supposedly in school at the time, ah well.

I have not been out there for close to 7 years I reckon? There was a big chopper there- Executive Transport or something- as big as the Pres's one! A Supa Puma? Must have been some big wigs that missed the Citation or Lear from the Big Smoke. But really, who on earth would really choose a big fat super loud and vibrating like all shit sixty minute chopper ride anyway?

The heliport hasn't changed, and the guards did not recognize me one could have cos I recognized him. Don't know why that sort of hurt, was irregular I know since 85 but geez, more regular in the Noughties! There are new posters about having or a getting security card! Wow. It's different that much.

Of course the cases of bottles coke was not certified as a special delivery, no Name to Deliver it too, another call back to base. And another chopper was warming up as I called in, great. So the reception there was called up, and then the canteen, and I thought, Oh Great, looks like a wasted trip for someone.

Then someone turned up and said Hey that's for us!

Excellent. See ya losers.
So then I stopped along the way back at the rowing shed at the port- the rowing dock was way out. And Hard to get to.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Late late late

I have a simple job and life style. Today, had to take # 1 to school at 7am for a running excursion. Back to bed. Up at 8:10- for brekky and loose supervision of the wild things.
No dishes put away because the dish washer did not go off!


Take the arms out- full of LARGE grit, so won't turn. HMPHPH!!! Will talk to boys tonight!!

Tried it again, and again. Worked.  Great.
Bye to the kids, finish brekky, hit the sack again, bash the snooze a few times and then the off and then woke up LATE.

Dang. Rush off, and then the P&T meetings for the girls.

The teachers love them, nothing wrong, doing so well, joy to have in the class.

Single dad, a bit of help, and I get that. Makes up for the sleep-in!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

What it means to be The Daggy Dad and lists to do not getting done

Today's List-
Post Office.
Rack off chocolate milk stout- done
Work on the Portable Vineyard- weeding- fertilize- transplant young ones to bigger pots
Work- done well!
Housework, not done
Parent Teacher Interview, tomorrow you ejit
Band Practice

I have another blog, I want to separate the Confident Know it all Dad from this one....

 Well, after a little dig about my favourite wind-cheating cosy warm pull over/jersey/jumper/guernsey/wind-cheater from my youngest daughter back in June, I thought the blog title would be appropriate.

The wind-cheater has a large embroidered Rip Curl emblem  on the back.

Some one else once asked whether I had picked it up from an opportunity shop! The Cheek- I bought it brand spanking new when it arrived at the sailboarding shop I used to hang out in back in the 90's, Thank-you Very Much!

It is much loved, and has old ciggie burn holes in it. Sort of striped maroon, and lined. It's just nice to wear, and no, not fashionable. Daggy.

As the Daggy dad worried about Parent/Teacher meeting this morning, he shaved, showered, and nearly shined the boots up, and went off just in time to school.

At the appointed time I waited to see the teacher of the eldest twin outside the class room. She Herself walked out, and said-

"Dad, I put it on the calender. It's tomorrow."

Friday, September 3, 2010

no housework so far, but beer brew ON!

I have done no housework so far today, as was scheduled ;-(, just making beer, as per Whitbread Milk Stout, yum. And a brew to turn into a bundy type drink, double distilled and triple filtered, come on summer :-). Just no housework, yet.
-as per face book earlier today.

Later, I read my friends blog, and needed to do something positive for me, not mooch around as September usually makes me do. Well, Tarns anniversary is closer and closer, which somewhat spoils the excitement of Frzldazlers 15th soon.

But, the day started...

I was doing something after a morning work run, which brought me to the The Alcoholery, aka The Shed. And a BREW TIME overtook me!

It's been a while since I made a batch of beer or stout. 

Went through the shelves, and assembled the gear and stuff. Found the measuring devices, as discussed previously and went to work, blithely ignoring the piles of crap left around by co-habitors. Washed the brewing vessels, boiled up the constituents and also made up some chocolate malt from scratch.

The bundy brew was the easiest, should get 15-20% out of 25L and 8kg of sugar. IE 5L to make 10L of bundy! All for about 20 buckaroonies.

The milk stout should be ready to bottle next week- forty bucks for two dozen classy tasting long-necks of stout, better than Guinness, and not eighty bucks or more! Just the time to assemble and brew, and then washing the bottles... (No pain, no gain...)

The Kitchen was left a mess, four different pots, from 3L to 10L used- oh boy, but was a quick wash up.

The bathroom is now the brew room; some wood, and the bath is a ready made bench, nobody uses it at the moment.

There is a nice smell about the place from the chocolate malted grains that were boiled up for the wort. Like having a coffee machine or vanilla milkshake, or fresh, hot and soft but crusty bread sitting there straight from the oven or bread maker!

I love those smells, like the yellow wattle in spring down here in south east Oz- you know that summer's is coming, and will be having a drink to that then!
Racked off the stout 7 Sept. Thats' a big bottle o' beer, Oi!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

some humour thanks very much, I liked it anyway

So on Friday night on the telly, there was a repeat.
And it was the one with the the old fashioned big lawn mower giving the Roller and house windows a bloody good spray of driveway gravel, by accident, before a big party.
I larfed and larfed.
And then, the nerds in a different show.
It was LOL, and the kids were looking at me.

hmm They have not got a clue...