The Storks of Böbs

The Storks of Böbs
A Very Fine Pair

Around the World (Again) Brisbane - Wednesday Market

Brisbane-27th Nov-Market Day and a bit about the Youth Hostel.

I was up (as usual) at about 05:00 and wrote up my blog (I do it in word first before committing it to Blogger) and down sized a few photos. I then went up to the roof kitchen and dining room. This is incidentally, where the sundeck and swimming pool is situated, but more of that later. I made myself a nice breakfast of bacon, fried eggs and toast. I am at the moment drinking (with the exception of the odd flat white when out) only tap water (well if it was good enough for the settlers and prisoners then that will do me).So breakfast cooked, eaten and the things washed and stowed away I headed into town along George Street, passing the New Law Courts with the City Hall behind.

 City hall between the Law Courts
Across Adelaide Street and then to the Wednesday Farmers Market that takes place at the lower end of Queens Street at Reddacliff Place.

This also contains the City Library, like the State Library across the river handy if you want free internet, it also contains the casino housed in the old Treasury Building, another historical building put to another use (similar to its earlier use but at least now you have a chance of getting something for your money)

The Old Treasury Building

The market crams lots into a quite small area, it is a farmers, food producers market, so this is what it does, I only noticed one deviation from this and that was one of the stall was also selling pendants and necklaces. All too often many victualing markets turn into a hotchpotch of general bric-a-brac, car boot and supposedly artisan artefacts stalls, this one hasn’t.

The market

I walked around, just weighing up what I was going to buy, I fancied fish tonight and had spied that the fish stall had some Moreton Bay Bug meat on sale at a very reasonable price, they aslo had local oysters at A$13,-a dozen, this I noted for later (I didn’t intend hauling fresh fish around with me for half a day (though fair do’s, on the stall they do wrap it and put it in the chiller for you to pick up later, alas I only found out about this later). 
The Fresh-fish stand

I now had in my mind what I would be cooking later and that was bug meat cooked in a chilli-lime sauce. With that and sampling the fresh freebe’s (every fruit stall has dishes with, mangos, apples pawpaw’s, melons, peaches, plums to taste) all the time you hear “would you like to taste sir, no obligation” I also sampled a coconut yoghurt, Biltong, Beef, Roo, Emu Jerky (with various spices and Au natural), Because of the strict hygiene laws there is no fresh meat on sale, but a German stall does sell the whole range of pork dishes, from Wurst to Kassler . They also have the BBQ and roasting oven on the go for those that would like a Bock, Brat, Krakower or any other Wurst in a bun. (For lunch I had roast pork on sauerkraut with loads of crackling).But for the moment I had a fresh pressed frozen lemon juice with a raspberry topping (it was after all creeping up to 28°C and it wasn`t yet 10:00.

I decided to pop into the city library for an hour to read my mail and chat on the wildfood board and all the other stuff one must do now-a-days. I also wrote a few post cards just to keep those without an electronic means of communication informed of my goings on, there still are a few.
When I came out I went across the road to the main pedestrian shopping precinct, I needed to buy a few things, I think all I bought was another stack of post cards, having used up my last 3. But I window shopped and then decided to go back and have lunch at the German stand. I almost tried the stall next door, this was Spanish and had Paella (various types) on the go, but my German home won the day.

German or Spain?

I then went to a small Vietnamese stall and bought, chillis, garlic, onion, red pepper and tomatoes, I went there because the lady was such a dear and they didn’t mind selling in ones and twos . I then went back to the fish stall, alas no oysters left ( I knew I should have had them earlier, but I was still full from breakfast.

 Organic fruit and vegetable stall

But he still had bug meat and at A$ 15 a 500g pack it was a gift. Next door was a smoke oven doing hot smoked Tasmanian salmon with various herbs and spices.
Hot smoked  Tasmania salmon

I then hot footed it back to the hostel to get the bug meat into a fridge, stopping on the way to have a pie from one of the better pie shops (I have become quite a regular).

As I passed the Roma street travel centre (where all of the trains and busses come into town) I noticed 3 young lasses in front of me, I couldn’t resist taking a photo, this is how not to backpack!!
Not only that but they seemed to be lost, I asked were they wanted to be, they pointed at a map and I said you are heading in the opposite direction, the lasses, 2 scousers and a brummie a long way from home!! I never took that amount of swag with me when I went away on a two year sea journey.

Certainly not day trippers

Everything stowed in the fridges, I decided to cross the road and have a well-earned cold pint in the Hogs Breath Pub. Then back for a bit of sunning on the deck and general lazing around reading my travel guide for SE Asia.

I then took a few photos of the Brisbane YHA, just to show you what they have in the way of amenities.

It was by this time to get my spiced bug on the road.

I diced and softened an onion in butter (I am on holiday), while that was softening I deseeded and diced 4 birds eye chillies and a green chilli, 1 tomato, 2 cloves of garlic and 5 anchovy filets. I removed the zest from 1 lime, sliced and diced it.

I added the garlic to the onions and softened for a few minutes (not too long you don’t want then to burn, I added a teaspoon of tomato paste, cooked for a couple of seconds and added the tomatoes, chillies, lime zest and anchovies, I allowed to soften and then added a good splash of Teri-yaki sauce, I then put in ½ tsp. ground cumin and ½ tsp. ground coriander, also a good sprinkling of chilli flakes (I like mine hot). I cooked out the spices, adding a handful of fresh coriander, before added the bug meat and cooking in the sauce, it only takes a few minutes, do not, I repeat do not overcook it as it may go tough. A squeeze of Lime juice and away you go!
I only used ½ of the bug meat as tomorrow I was aiming to do something totally different.
And that ladies and gents, was my evening meal.
28th November

I was again up bright and early (I am no matter what, too much going on and too much to miss). I decided on no breakfast or at least not in the hostel, I was going to the State Library to get some information about plants and birds and things and they have a very good café attached to the bookshop. I got myself showered, packed my day backpack and headed off across the William Jolly Bridge.
The William Jolly Bridge

This takes you straight to all of the museums, galleries, theatres, cinema and the State Library on the South Bank. The library doesn’t open until 10:00 so I arriving at 09:30 had plenty of time to have a cup of flat white and a lemon muffin.
Breakfast over, the library was open, so it was up to the second floor reference section, there I spent a good couple of hours digesting books on Australian birds, tropical plants, shrubs and trees, needless to say I know a great deal more about them that I did before, interesting how many plants from the Antipodes’ are now common features of our gardens back home. 

I also read my mail and done a quick post on a board that I belong to. I published my blog (it is the downsizing of photos that takes most of the time; I wish they had an automatic function that reduces down to the required blogging format.
That done I headed back across the bridge and to the Barracks complex to do my shopping for the evening at Coles.

Coles shopping list:
1 stalk of lemon grass

1 red pepper
6 mushrooms
1 bunch of sprouting broccoli
1 bunch of baby asparagus 

I then popped into the Drifter for a pint (Drifter is the bar, café, restaurant attached to the YHA).
It was still early afternoon and it was hot, so I decided to marinade the remainder of bug meat for that evening’s meal.
I bashed and sliced ½ of the lemon grass
Chopped 1 red and 1 green chilli
Crushed and diced 2 cloves of garlic
Juice of ½ a lime
Pinch of black pepper
Pinch of salt

Placed the bug meat in a container with a good slog of Teri-yaki sauce, placed all of the above ingredients in with it and lid on and into the fridge for a couple of hours. While that was in the fridge, I creamed myself (sun cream) and went out onto the sun deck for a couple of hours.
5 o’clock prompt (you need to get in early before the surfing and day trip rabble gets back, as then it gets more than a bit hectic). I headed for the kitchen, chopped an onion (rough), crushed a clove of garlic, diced the remainder of the lemon grass and sliced half of the red pepper. I oiled (spray) a wok and added the onion, garlic fried until translucent. In the mean time I put a pan of water on to boil, on top went a bamboo steaming basket , into this went the washed and cut broccoli and asparagus.
Next I sliced some mushrooms and added these
to the onions, quick stir fry, then in went the contents of the container, quick stir fry just enough to cook the bug meat, tasted sauce adjusted with lime juice, salt and pepper, mixed in the broccoli and asparagus. How quick was that!
Boy was it tasty, I even had enough for breakfast the next day!

I didn’t take any photos of the food (except a couple of steaks that 2 Sheila’s had cooking!Big Appetites those two lasses!

But did of the kitchen and other facilities in this first class Youth Hostel.

The Crockery section

 Front Cooking stations

 Rear cooking stations

 Outdoor Eating area

 Indoor Eating area

 Communal area and lifts

 Outside of the Youth Hostel

Reception area

 Swimming pool and sundeck

 Brisbane by night
That evening was a trivia quiz in the drifter bar, took part with another Brit and a Canadian Lass from Toronto, we didn’t win but done quite well (I think we came second, but got nowt to show for it) got 3 of the questions wrong, the Black Swan is the Emblem of Western Australia and it was Estonia not Lithuania on the map of Europe and though I told them it was the Wave Rock the other two refused to believe me so put nowt and so lost the bloody race. Humph!!!
I had met a new roommate earlier ( a constant changing clientele, the girls doing the rooms (housekeepers) certainly earn their keep (they don’t get paid only bed and board). He came from Manheim on the Ruhr and had worked for 10 years for a firm that I knew very well, MVM, I had worked on their ships generating sets many times in my past life on board ship and the Emergency generating sets at Gütersloh were also MVM. We had a good chat about this and that, he said he had had enough of work, had saved up and had decided to see Australia. He had bought an Estate car and put a mattress in the back and was traveling around Oz where ever the fancy took him, Gud on ya matey!   
It was quite late when I got to bed, most unusual for me as I am normally in the sack at 22:00.

My next Blog will be from Adelaide as tomorrow is a laundry day, getting booked on my flight and then there is a Barbie tonight, all for A$5,- BYO! I shall, I shall.

See you in Adelaide mateys!

Around the World (Again) Brisbane-Roma Parklands

Brisbane -Tuesday 26 Nov-Roma Parklands
I had heard from another hostel guest that this was well worth a visit and as I had seen it mentioned during my day out on the water, I thought today, it being a little overcast and cooler would be a good day to visit.
It isn’t far from the YHA, about 1km so easy to reach on foot. There are a few options to entering it but the two main ones are either the top one on College Close and the other being the one at Roma Street Station.
At the top of Roma Street is an area called the Barracks, so called because it adjoins the “who would ever believe it?” Victoria Army Barracks (must visit it seems to have a museum). This is also the area that backpackers do their shopping, it has a Sushi Restaurant, a small but wonderful Dim Sum stall (all fresh all hot and do try their amazing ginger chilli dip to go with them) there is a pharmacist’s, a few restaurants, some souvenir places Coles the Supermarket and the Hogs Breath Pub, good beer and events most nights.
1. Victoria Barracks

1a Barrack Block

I selected to do it the hard way, I went the long way right to the top entrance at the top , college Road, but it was a nice morning and I had made myself a good breakfast (bacon, scrambled eggs and fried tomatoes) before setting off. At the top I then followed a foot/cycle path (pedestrians beware), all the way back down to the entrance at College Close, I could have saved myself a good deal of effort, but this way I got to see the desert plant section, containing cacti of every shape and size.
Roma Parklands contains tropical and subtropical plants and trees from every continent (tropical and subtropical of course)
2. Cactii

On the way down there are lots of warning notices telling you about being dive bombed by birds, this is the nesting season and they are only protecting their young. The path is quite shaded, with Paperbark Eucalyptus trees and shrubs harbouring large butterflies (which I failed miserably to photograph)
3. Bird Notice

4. Paperbark tree

5. White Frangipani
Pulmeria abtusa

6. Yellow Hibiscus

The pathway passed over the actual entrance to Fern Gully and so I eventually entered the Parklands proper via the Palm Garden entrance with its large Bronze and then into the Fern Gully.
7. Entrance fern Gully from above

8. A Bronze

This was the original source (not of the Nile but) of fresh water for the settlers back in the early years. It ran down from here along what is now Roma Street and then down Creek street and into the Brisbane River at Eagle wharf (now a very desirable area), but you know that already as you read about it on my boat trip (if you had been listening).

9. Entrance

10.Golden Candle, or Lollipop plant
(Pachystachys lutea) Peru

11. Watercourse

12. ferns
Fern Gully was full of bird (none dive bombed me) flora and butterflies (again I failed miserably).

13. Water cascade

14. Walkway

It goes through an area of rain forest and wet lands, Waterlily covered pools with its bird life, Moor hens with young hiding amongst the waterlilies (just in case you’re wondering, the big fella is not a moorhen but a bronze) and ducks also with some ducklings tagging along, strutting their thing on the boardwalk.

15. Yellow Waterlily
Nymphaea   Australia

16.  Dusky Moorhens
Gallinula tenebrosa

17 Australian Wood Ducks
Chenonetta jubata

I noticed a board walk and this lead to a small head land on a lake, the lake being the central feature of the Parklands.

18. fountain in lake

The Pandanus Headland had a couple of very interesting sculptures on it, One was depicting the early building of the railway (tools and other implements) the other is a corner of a settlers cabin.

19.Railway Bronze
20 Settlers Cabin

I backtracked and walked across the boardwalk and around the lake taking a rest in the free deckchairs (the Brisbane city fathers make sure there are a lot of free things for their visitors)and taking in the view, it was still quite early and not a lot of visitors were about, just me birds and butterflies in the main.

21 Deckchairs
22. View across lake

23. lake fountain
24 lake and hub

I then went to the Hub, this is as it suggest the place where all of the places to be visited radiate out from and incidentally where at 10:00 and 14:00 free tours start each day (except good Friday and Christmas day). Here is a water feature which spurts water in various directions at various times.

25. spurt  & 26. spurt

From there I entered the Colin Campbell place, this is the more formal part of the parklands with wonderful laid out flowerbeds in a fantastic display of colour and species (most of which I have no idea of the names of). I wandered around here for quite a while, photographing the plants and water feature.

27. garden plants - names to follow

28. garden plants - names to follow
29. Dumb Cane – Blue Ginger
Dieffenbachia Brazil

30. garden plants - names to follow

When setting out the Colin Campbell Place, they (whoever they were) decided to commission local artists to do pieces of art that would blend in with the garden, this I think they succeeded in very well.

Just before leaving there is a section of plants, shrubs and trees full of colour some just coming into bloom. Predominantly vivid reds and yellows.

34. Firebird flower
Halicona humilis 

35. Wild Ginger
Zingiber zerumbet India and SE Asia

36.Wild Ginger (different sort)

37. Wild Ginger (same as above but different from the first, I think)

 On leaving you pass the Weeping Fig Avenue,
38. Weeping figs
Ficus Benjamina Australia Asia

or you can go another way and visit the Amphitheatre, but I went for a third option and walked uphill along White Jacaranda Avenue, with its flower lined pathway.

This took me too the place I had been at right at the very beginning and if I had taken a left instead of the straight on would have been at least two hours earlier. Never the less, I did then discover the Memorial Corner, a place to remember the ANZAC and Australian Fallen in various conflicts. I stopped to reflect.

42. Gallipoli

43. Tobruk

44. Tobruk plaque

45. Vietnam

I then walked to the Harry Oakman Pavillion, passing various bird life some new to me and some not. I have since learned that Harry Oakman was the designer and main instigator of the Park as it is today.

46. Crested Pigeon
 Ocyphaps lophotes

48. Cicadabird
Coracina tenuirostris
49. pair of Australian Magpies

50. young Magpie

one is a bit of a bossy boots and tends to hide under bushes and hiss and jump out at you in the middle of the night (I had this experience about 20 years ago on a campsite while visiting the toilet after dark, almost didn’t need the toilet).

51. Bush Stone-Curlew
52. Three Stone-Curlews


The Harry Oakman Pavilion is the highest point and you can get a great panoramic view over much of the park and beyond.
53. view across park

I descended along a path that looked down on the Amphitheatre

54. Amphitheatre
There was a shrub full of little butterflies, I managed to capture one on film (all be it electronic these days), one in focus and alas one out. Ah well better than nowt!

55. Butterfly in focus

56. Butterfly out of focus
I reached a BBQ area, that was covered by a monster Fig tree (not the Mediterranean type), there a worker was cleaning the tables and grill ready for the next users, I stopped and had a chat with him and talked about the various types of Australian Fig Trees. I think I impressed him when I told him I had been to the largest in Australia up in North Queensland many years ago not only that but also knew about the strangler fig tree that is actaualy a vine and wraps itself round very large trees (normally Kori) and throttle it, the tree eventually dies but the vine is then able to stand alone.

57. BBQ area

The pathway took me past and through some tall palms and other exotic plants and their warming himself on the path was a largish lizard (well not komodo dragon size but still quite large).
58. Lizard on path
59. Lizard close up

60 shady palms
I then headed down to the exit at Roma Street, here at a area called Carriage Shed are toilets and seating, but also an ice cream place (well they do sell other things as well) and I partook of a well-earned double ice cone (Mango and Lemon). I sat on bench, beside the Queensland Greats Wall (I must admit most of whom I had not heard of) admiring the view across the events lawn and the water wall beyond.

61. Water wall

I also admired the antics of some old people (Older than I) having a great time they had gotten dressed up for the occasion, it was their Christmas Party, what a great way to spend a day.

62. Christmas Party.

I then walked through the Roma street station and across the bridge to the Library (it has become a daily stopping off point so that I can do my blog and read my e-mails (it’s the free WiFi thing you see).

I had a quick Skype with Linda she was up and getting ready for work, poor thing my heart bleeds, I then headed back towards the Barracks to have some Dim Sums and a pint in the Hogs Breath.
63. Dim Sums.
Back to the hostel for a Siesta, then dinner on the remains of my chilli from last night. There is a film evening twice a week in the hostel, I decided to watch this one (free popcorns), it was rubbish, Cyber-something or other, I left after about 20 minutes, the best thing about it was the popcorns. I decided to go to the reading room and read up a bit about the next part of my Journey Adelaide and Port Elliot.
I will endeavour to get the names of the plants that I have missed over the next few days, bear with me I am on Holiday after all