JULY MAP MONTH

Please bear with me…my keyboard has what people these days call “issues.’ Funny word to describe a keyboard clagged up with biscuits crumbs and whatever the word is for rubbed-out-bits of homework…

But you can pop across to Scarlet’s place here and read what she has writ.

I do hope you’ll pitch in. There is no prize, no generous cash donation. A bit like “funding” pledged for Notre Dame repairs! Nope. This is all about having a bit of a lark. Come up with a map of…something and leave a link to your blog in the comments, either here or at Scarlet’s place.

I shall be back when I’ve scrubbed this recalcitrant keyboard with carbolic. No, Muriel, it’s NOT car bollocks. Drink your Horlicks and No! It’s not that! go to sleep …

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SOME WINT’RY SUNSHINE.

The summery new header is not only for me- I understand things have been “terribly English” in the land of my forebears.

Last week we had what the Met. Office calls a “cold snap.” I take that to mean snap as in the quick-freeze method of preserving vegetables. Damn’ near worked on me, I can tell you!

I went to the emporium of domestic appliances, looking to buy an electric blanket (yes, it was THAT cold!)…apparently everyone else in town had the same idea and I spent the morning burning up fossil fuel (probably now responsible for global warming single-handedly!) and finally managed to get an electric blanket.

The sun came out. The sky was blue. I shed three layers of clothing and turned on the fan…

But I’m not here to do a weather report. Oh no! Some of us who faff around in the cobwebbed corners of Blogland have been talking about maps. And someone (I think it might be the Inexplicable One) suggested a challenge, in which those bloggers who are so-inclined come up with a map of…well, we haven’t defined the thing yet!

But it involves drawing a map of somewhere, real or imagined, to be posted on your blog. We haven’t nailed down dates or anything sensible yet, but it might be a good thing to sharpen your pencils and wits…

Here’s a picture of a Macrozamia in our garden.Shame there aren’t any dinosaurs left to eat it…

Possibly Macrozamia miquelii

NOT SURE WHETHER I’M ON A ROLL OR A SLIPPERY SLOPE…

Only a week (ish) since I was entertaining you and here I am again!

Not a lot is happening around here as the rain is still hanging around. That’s fine by me as my herbs are doing well.

But the major overhauls have had to be put on hold until things dry out a bit.

Remember last week I said I was hopeful of masses of crimson flowers on the Megaskepasma eryth…etc? Well…

Blimey!That was quick!

Erm…no. I scrambled up the back fence and took this shot of Bob the Builder’s bush. Hey! It’s not cheating if you tell the truth.

And this morning i discovered this…

Let’s see who can guess what it is. Try not to be too rude. MURIEL!

Our internet/phone change-over is all set now.It took a while and required someone to be here to answer the ‘phone and I have still to compose a non-dorky message. I favour something like: “If your call is important, leave a message and if I think it’s important I’ll call you back.” But The Man says I can’t do that. Wanna bet?

We were enjoying an afternoon glass of wine the other day when I spotted a moth between the window and the wire screen. It was a bit tricky, but I managed to flap a tea towel and drive it down to where I could reach it and release it. There was no time to get a camera (despite having at least two fully-charged!) so I let it go.What was it? Mr or Mrs Dysphania, parent of the Yellow Fellows. Here’s one from the internet

Dysphania numana

(Photo: courtesy of Buck Richardson, Kuranda, Queensland)

And now it’s lunchtime !

I know the lovely Scarlet staged a Sunday Music coup last week and she can still host that (unless Mago wants it back!)

But I’d like to leave you with some “local” flavour. Just close your eyes and imagine you’re one of the first Europeans to hear this sound. Would it have given you the willies? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cLu9GmV2vF0

WHATEVER HAPPENED TO BLOGGING?

I suspect many of us are enticed away by the quick-fix of Instagram and suchlike.

And, of course, Facebook has ensnared many bloggers. Yes, I have a presence on that platform, but I have culled a great many contacts who were buying into the bitch-fests. I don’t like hateful comments, especially from people who can’t spell! And it does seem to be a magnet for Brexit and Trump and climate deny-ers and Flat-earthers…

But we’re not about blame here at the Idle Thoughts. Actually, we (and that’s “we” used in the Royal context!) don’t seem to be about very much of anything. Another two months gap in posting. Slacking, Dinah!

A quick update…it has not rained since last Friday. What this means is that I am back to watering some plants! With drinking water! Sacrilege!

I have a few photos to share…undefined…More Yellow Fellows. Dysphania numana cats.

Tithonia, aka Mexican sunflower or tree daisy. Tied back from the driveway and still flinging its gorgeous flowers about. A bit of a thug, but I do love it.

This is a Megaskepasma erythroclamys . And I Googled to see if there is a more pronouncable common name (and you all know how I feel about common names!) Apparently, it’s also known as Red Cloak. Over the years I’ve struggled to keep it alive and this is from a 6″/ 15cm cutting. The rain has been a boon so I’ve planted this and am hopeful of masses of crimson flowers …

And now, my faithful readers, I’d better press the button on this as things might get a bit tricky…we are changing providers and are only part-way through the process.I’d hate to have you cut off in your prime, as it were.

SUMMER’S SWAN SONG

Perhaps. Maybe. I hope so!

Yes, it’s no secret that I do not cope well with extreme heat. So the current cooler nights and bearable days are very welcome.

Now…let’s see what I’ve been up to since I last popped in here…

Blimey! Two months ago! Well, we had more rain. Not as much as some badly-affected folk, but things were a little soggy. And many plants were confused, believing they’d had their wet season, albeit drier than it should have been.But hey! RAIN. Come on, flowers, go totally bonkers, bloom like crazy then set seed. Weeds, too! Homage to St Fiacre.

And so they did. Every. Single. Thing.

The Man and I seemed to be constantly sharpening blades and hacking our way out to the shops, then hacking our way back in again.And in between the hacking it rained.

So we finally got a couple of small areas cleared and I nipped around with a camera….



The golden thread on the web of a Nephila pillipes


As The Man cleared some of an overgrown Hibiscus and even more overgrown weedy stuff…he exposed this. Nope, nothing to do with me! It just appeared on the stem of a huge palm.


Another big one -this is one of the vanilla orchids, heading for the sky!
A Natal Plum (Carissa)
The miniscule backyard after a make-over

Because it’s been two months since I touched this blog, I am having all manner of trouble with bloody WordPress’ changes, damn them!

I expect I’ll figure out which finger to put on which key…eventually. Someone reckoned change is as good as a rest. Well, I’ve had “change” and it’s left me in need of “rest.”

So I’m heading for the coffee pot. A bit too early to start on the vino, darlings!

here we go again…

You know that feeling of “been there, done that” that is somewhat more prosaic than deja vu?

Well, chez Dinahmow, we’ve hit the “repeat” button. In 2008, when still a very young cat, Sporran broke a leg. 

And on Tuesday, Mr Ginger Stanley, who is/was the neighbours’ cat, broke his leg. Same leg, same break, same repair. Because the neighbours were at work, I took him to the vet, suspecting possible fracture or ligament damage. Yep. X-ray confirmed that the tip of the femur was broken. And the only solution is surgery to remove the hip “ball” as there is no room to pin the break.

A simple enough matter, but the vets were crazy-busy with several emergencies so Stanley was given pain relief and settled in a cage til his op. on Friday morning.

We brought him home late Friday afternoon. “Home” now being here, at our place. He’s on meds til the stitches come out next week and so far, is taking it all in his slightly wobbly stride.

Recovering


Sporran was not at all pleased with the “stink” that came home with him! But he’s managed to groom most of the hospital smell away.

We are in for some more rain this week, though not the volume expected north of here. Serious flooding already and worse expected.

Meanwhile…Tasmania and Victoria are battling fires. And dead fish continue to float to the surface in the Murray-Darling debacle.

Let me see if I can find a “pretty” for you.

Allamanda in a corner of the front verandah. We eat breakfast and lunch here most days, though by evening its NW position is too hot to be out there. But the scent of the flowers is reminiscent of daffodils…




SUMMER HEAT

I think the thermometer might be broken. Even this far north it’s not usually giving such consistently high readings ! Still above 30 C this late in the afternoon is not funny!

A couple of weeks ago…I saw a strange little plant in hardware store’s garden section. I didn’t have a camera with me so thought I’d look up the name when I got home. You know what’s coming, right? Yep. By the time I’d run several errands, stopped to chat with a friend and put away all the groceries when I did get home, I’d forgotten the name!I thought it began with S or maybe C or was it Ts? Searching images without a name was no help whatsoever.

So next time I was in town I popped back to the hardware store…no plant.

However, yesterday I had to go back to town again and, while waiting to have something fixed, I went to the store and there it was! Well, two small pots of The Thing. And no name tag. Stay with me, it gets better! First assistant I asked had no idea, but said she’d call the senior lady. The senior lady couldn’t remember, but said she’d ring the grower. The grower was not available. Oh, look, why don’t you pour a beverage of choice …go on. I’ll wait. (I’m getting lots of practice at that!)

I couldn’t hang about any longer so I left. But today…the name still eluding me, I went back to the store and there, on a rack, two pots with hand-written name tags. Dischidia pectinoides . 

I bought one!

Dischidia pectinoides

And right now, it’s in the “day spa.”

Update for Jon, who asked about the “day spa.”

Orchids, enjoying some humidity
Vanda- those roots need more room than the tub affords!

The days between rain are s t r e t c h i n g out alarmingly. At this rate I’ll have to bring the orchids back for some “spa treatment.” When it did rain there was a rush of growth and masses of things have filled bare patches, in some cases crowding things I planted for colour. I’m leaving it, weedy though it may be, as it’s an effective mulch, helping to keep soil cool and moist. Besides, if I get all sweaty trying to weed the mess I’ll add unwanted salts!

View from the back deck
The sunbirds fledged.We missed it!

And this morning, The Man found a scrunched-up moulted ‘skin’ of a Huntsman. It was all dusty with bits of fluff and grass.

The grubby little molted skin.

And when I got back from town he showed me this…he’d painstakingly cleaned away the fluff and straightened the legs.

Huntsman skin after careful cleaning!

And now I do believe it’s Happy Hour! Bubbles time!With Cheddar and Corella pears.(I removed the feathers!) 🙂