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I was just thinkin' .......




Just throwing this out there…  (An across-tables revelation)


Being Sunday-afternoon movie addicts our lunch times are dictated by what’s on at the theatre and when.

If there’s nothing worth seeing we stay home have a table-picnic (cheeses, meats, Tuscan mix) and a bottle of wine; with Mary having to guess the Australian wine; which is no mean feat bearing in mind her American origins – though now an Australian citizen. If it’s a very early showing I grab a blue-heaven milkshake from Panache while Mary collects her diet coke and popcorn. A mid-afternoon showtime involves a fast-food eatery within the mall. This week’s 3.15pm start meant we could enjoy lunch at Bistrot Plume (a deliciously-small Mount Pleasant Road restaurant).


It wasn’t long before the two inevitable questions were asked of Mary

by the delightful couple at an adjacent table – Where are you from and

How did you two meet?

By 3.00pm our respective stories had been shared;

during the telling of which I handed across my card -

which led to us being made privy to an interesting bit of history…

As a secondary school student the now 76-year old gentleman had the “good” fortune of being given, during term breaks, some money-earning work at the Fyansford limestone quarry by his uncle, the work’s boss – his job to stand at the edge of the drop-off and direct the backing of trucks to the edge so they could deposit their loads of top soil. Apparently, toward the end of one shift, his mind wandered, a left-rear wheel came a little too close to the edge and, with wheels spinning in the scree, began a slow but inevitable slide toward the drop-off. The shocked boy immediately jumped out of the way, the driver evacuated the vehicle (must have been before seat-belts were compulsory), and both, with dropping jaws, watched as the behemoth disappeared in heart-stopping slow motion over the edge coming to rest with a loud thump upside-down at the base of the incline. A works-crew subsequently arrived, retrieved the vehicle, cut it into bits and welded the parts back together. Within three weeks the truck was back at work. Needless-to-say none of the drivers henceforth took their eyes of rear-view mirrors, ignoring the lad’s directions totally. Yes, as the boss’s nephew he kept his job. But, I don’t think he went to the Christmas breakup.

As told to John & Mary (Sunday, 3rd November, 2019)

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It's black & white

I never saw it. Until this morning...

On the bike at the gym

watching the National Press Club address.

It's not the passage of time that makes it so hard to get older. It's ageism, a prejudice that pits us against our future selves -- and each other.... "Aging is not a problem to be fixed or a disease to be cured....

It is a natural, powerful, lifelong process that unites us all."

Ashton Applewhite 

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I've seen two top TV programs this week. Programs that made me think. Really think!

Firstly, You can't ask that... with a group of totally with-it olders.

Secondly, The National Press Club address featuring an amazing thinker, Ashton Applewhite.


If I could get a link to You can't ask that... I'd show it.

Here's the link to Ashton Applewhite's address.

Here's a link to her Ted Talks presentation.


Made me think about life, myself, Fyansford...

It's time to create a world of age equality by making discrimination on the basis of age as unacceptable as any other kind of bias.


Our Fyansford is what it is. It has a great history.

It will have a great future.

It will be a lovely place to live, to raise families, to enjoy life.

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Just thinking!

Back in the days…


.... when weekends were filled with dives, week nights with writing the club newsletter and the Geelong Dive Club was a big chunk of my world (as part-owner of the Geelong Dive Centre) life was an everyday buzz; never knowing when a dive might deliver to me that nugget of gold; well, at least a classic old bottle or broken shard of pottery from an earlier time just released from the sands by currents…


Nowadays my days with Mary and Archie are filled with family, friends, travel, meals out, that quiet whisky at night, pottering around the house, delving through history and writing my blogs/websites. But, still that occasional nugget is revealed with ensuing excitement.


Just last night I met with a gentleman who worked on the re-routing of the Moorabool and who  gifted me a bundle of photographs (16) and a news-clipping from the Geelong Advertiser. Many thanks, Leo. My blog schedule is set for the next couple of weeks. But, I’ll let you know when your memories are set free.

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Every contribution appreciated... whether in a bundle or individually

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Betsey Anne Benne My dad at fyansford qu

Betsey Anne Benne - My dad at Fyansford quarry

Vikki Wazhere (Synot family home)

Grazing Licence ~ Thanks, Dianne!

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Latest delivery... Thanks, Kurt!

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Section from "Assisi Scene"

Painting by Mary Flatt

These Assisi frescos at one time had meaning. Nowadays tourists walk past without giving them a second glance.

Relics from a different time...


Take me to it...


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Our relic from the past
Our relic from the past

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Click image to access slideshow


I have always enjoyed walking my dogs; currently Archie (a beaglier) and formally Magic (a cavalier) and I never know who I am going to meet; always fun chatting with and learning from my  neighbours.

It's truly amazing what talented people live 'next door', just up the road, around the corner, in the next street.... One neighbour is a micro-biologist, one a gold prospector, one a keen off-roader...


One Fyansfordite  I've come to know is just the most talented "creative" I've ever met. Totally unassuming - but oh so talented.


To me a creative photographer is one who does more than just take photos. It is what he or she does with them (in the editing process) that is so amazing. I see Michelle as a creative artist in the field of photography. And, yes, I have thrown out the challenge to Michelle to weave her spells over some of our Fyansford features. Here's hoping....                                                 See Forever exploring

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There is always a fair share of letters from:

  • Indian IT companies offering ways to get me on page 1 of Google

  • Followers requesting permission to post a photo or quote a piece of text

  • Researchers seeking information (many obviously never having first searched my site)

  • People correcting something I have said (I always appreciate these contributions)

Occasionally there is a little gem:

  • A photo I've never previously seen (see rail-line image from Pam Jennings)

  • An informative comment (see Paul Westcott's email - I've deleted personal details)

  • Something which, unfortunately, I can't help with (see John Gowty's request below)

Every now and then a real nugget comes my way that really impacts on my site:

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Fyansford Rail line from Pam

But, above all, I love it when I actually get to meet others with

an interest in Fyansford:

  • Like the day Dianne Higgins came knock, knock-a-knocking (see Janet Hovey)


always exciting!

I never know what's going to be there...


Not all alike…                     Thankfully!

I have friends ~ some of whom are gifted photographers, talented sportsmen, highly qualified academics, amateur gardeners par excellence, tradies I'd trust, artistically creative or possessors of unbelievable memories. I am none of these. That is not to say I am without skills of which I am proud. Some have said that I’ve been lucky in life. No, I would rather it be said, I’ve been opportunistic in dealing with Life’s offerings.


While I have had books published by MacMillan, Addison Wesley Longman, Pearson…, this would not have happened had I not first approached Longman Cheshire back in 1986. Now I appreciate seeing others step out of their comfort-zones and, thus, I congratulate Greg Dale on presenting his poem tentatively titled “There Was a Place” to the world via the Fyansford Community Noticeboard.

There Was a Place …


There is a Tavern down there,
Doors are gone,
Lanterns are out,
People are gone,
in its day,
Horses just wonder about.


Roof has holes,
Windows aren’t there,
Walls are still in tack,
At the Junction hotel,
Coming into Fyansford town.


Not many knows
What stood there,
As they passed each day,
Cursing down the highway,
Coming into Fyansford town.


They come down that road,
Fyansford Gheringhap Rd,
They don’t know what it is,
As people have gone
From a past day,
Horses just wander about.


Roof it has holes,
Windows aren’t there,
Walls are still in tack,
At the junction hotel,

Coming into Fyansford town.


In its day.
It was the place to be,
Place to catch up,
Leave note
Of where you would be.


Roof has holes,
Windows aren’t there,
Bluestone walls are still in tack,
At the Junction hotel,
Coming into Fyansford town.

Back then...

The Junction Hotel, Fyansford-Gheringhap



For some,

Christmas is a sad time...

For many, a fun time...


For me, a time of joy;

an opportunity to make new memories and build bridges.

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Some might call me anal.


   I just love attention to detail....


I can't help

but be impressed

by the work of architect Sam Brak

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Concrete Dreams Design Brief

... convert a group of massive, disused concrete silos on the outskirts of Geelong into a

multi-function community centre.

Forecourt in the afternoon
Forecourt in the afternoon

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One possible option
One possible option

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North Entrance at night
North Entrance at night

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Forecourt in the afternoon
Forecourt in the afternoon

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Take me there...



Unaccustomed as I am to melancholy...

Fyansford is still Fyansford ~ even without the silos

Those palm trees ~ who planted them and why?

A new shopping precinct ~ will it reflect the uniqueness of Fyansford?

A bottle shop makes sense ~ but....

History is more than just a blank slate...

The Parade has seen a lot of history, just as our Monier bridge has...

Will the old Swan Inn be resurrected yet again?

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Guess I just have to live vicariously through the adventures of the young'uns...

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Getting older

is a real bummer

Special thanks to Evert van Dreven and Mac Haywood for this morning's contributions.

Evert van Dreven

Pulling down the remains of the old Fyansford cement works limestone conveyor. Built in 1966 this overhead conveyor system replaced trains carrying limestone from the Batesford quarry to the Cement works in Fyansford

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Evert van Dreven (3)
Evert van Dreven (3)

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Pulling down the remains of the old Fyansford cement works limestone conveyor. Built in 1966 this overhead conveyor system replaced trains carrying limestone from the Batesford quarry to the Cement works in Fyansford

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Macaulay Haywood

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Mac Haywood

The last remaining ventilation shaft for the quarry rail tunnel

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Mac Haywood
Mac Haywood

The last remaining ventilation shaft for the quarry rail tunnel

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Shopping precinct
Shopping precinct

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Never too old to ...

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Some mornings I wake up, shower, walk the dog and just want to go surfing. Well, I can dream.....

The next best thing is to surf the net.


So, this is an introduction to a page of unplanned wanderings, some might say maudlings; on those mornings when, no matter what is waiting to be completed, I just feel like doing something a little different...

So, I just go where the WWW takes me... trusting there will be something interesting that turns up...

So, let's go surfing...