A Petition for Freedom

petitionI delivered the Freedom for Fleurieu Dogs petition to the District Council of Yankalilla today; in the end it attracted over 1,000 signatures, not only from locals, but from people all over the world.

Will the Council take any notice? The track record for the short term is not good. It ignored another, traditional, petition to the same effect last month, which was signed by over 1,000 locals.  And when a proposal to ease the restrictions was moved at the last Council meeting, it was voted down. And, demonstrating the sort of mean-mindedness that is prevalent among dog-haters, they also voted down an acknowledgement of the efforts of those who had consulted with the community on the issue.

A number of locals have come to the view that the way to fix this is to get the errant Councillors voted out of office in the elections due later in the year. A new Council will simply be able to repeal the offending by-law. These locals may well be right.  The Councillors get elected with tiny numbers of votes cast, and this issue seems to be by far the most important in the minds of the local electorate. The total numbers of petitions in the two petitions is some 40% of the electorate (although of course there are bound to be a few duplicates, and some petitioners live outside the area), and so one would have thought that the prospects for getting a dog-friendly Council elected would be quite good.  It is quite extraordinary that the present Council should be insisting on these dog restrictions when they know full well that they run counter to the strong feelings of the great majority of ratepayers, particularly since the restrictions are causing real damage to the health of residents, our dogs and to the local economy.

The petition went in with a covering letter which read:

Please find herewith a hard copy of the on-line petition Freedom For Fleurieu Dogs.

As you will see, this has been signed by over 1,000 people, both locals and those from further afield, who seek a rolling back of the recent laws restricting the exercise of dogs.

As such, this on-line petition compliments last month’s petition of locals, which also attracted over 1,000 signatures.

It is a regrettable reflection of these new laws that they are offensive, not only to locals, but also to friends from all around the world.

There is a long way to go in this saga…



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My vegetable love

WP_20180108_001Normally, I am not really, really keen on too many vegetables. That said, I am warming, quite a bit, to my new vegetable garden.

Never having had such a thing before, I am something of an amateur. But it turns out to be rather good. Chard, freshly picked and wilted with fried onion, turns out to be surprisingly good to eat – like spinach only more subtle. As do the beetroots: pull ‘em out, wash ‘em and chop ‘em and then straight into the oven for baking. Courgettes have been appearing in abundance. And the tomatoes will be red soon – they are already smelling good.

Still wary of lettuce. But overall, Continue reading

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Water, Water, Everywhere, and But a Drop to Drink

A neighbour put his drone up the morning after the fire last week. This picture from 400 feet shows how close the fire got to my property.


There is a striking contrast between the scotched earth below my house and the blue reservoir above it.

Viewed from this angle, it is all the more bizarre that neither I nor my neighbours have access to any of the mains water from the reservoir. Then again, we get no post, no rubbish collection and no access to the beach just down the road for our dogs to exercise. The reputation of the local council, around here, is Continue reading

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ThermometerIn Numbers, in the Bible, Jehovah was really quite mean to the poor Jews. Eg Chapter 21:

6 And the LORD sent fiery serpents among the people, and they bit the people; and much people of Israel died.

It is a wonder that they put up with Him.

Anyway, my numbers are:

31oC by 5.00 am this morning, with a stiff Northerly breeze. It is going to be warm today.

So far, I have lost 2½ kilos since Christmas. I was starting to get decidedly overweight.

40,222 is the number of litres of rainwater I have left in my tanks. Unless it rains soon Continue reading

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Big fire, if it’s close…

…and it was close. All along one side of my property. At one stage I was fighting it toe to toe with a garden hose where the bottom of the sheoaks were catching. Happily, the professionals soon turned up. At its worst, it got 15 yards or so in, setting fire to some mulch.

But the house is fine. My housekeeper did not even stop her usual round of dusting and hoovering.

Several fire bombers, both planes and helicopters, were onto it. Happily, there was water in my dam, which the fire engines were able to refill from.  More fires were breaking out, and the Country Fire Service were responding, hours later. They say they will be here all night, watching for more resurgences.

I gulped a bit too much smoke doing the garden hose thing. But Continue reading

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I cannot recall why I am on Pinterest. It must have been when I was looking for something or the other. Something useful, like a solid wooden front door, or a cast-iron knocker, or an armillary sphere, or a Georgian-cut shirt or a theorbo.

leggingsAnyway, they sent me this image. Now, I have never given any indication to Pinterest that I want long leggings. I have not the necessary gender, nor the legs, nor any cross-dressing tendencies. Besides, it is warm here – no one needs long leggings. Why would Pinterest assume I want long leggings? That said, they do look good.

Perhaps fortune will send me a tall, slender, elegant wife one day, and if global warming turns out to be a complete nonsense (likely enough) she might need Continue reading

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red belly

Not my red-bellied black. And not me doing the stupid thing.

I have just spotted my first snake at The Phenelry. After 2 years + here.

A red-bellied black, I fancy.  But a splendid looking fellow anyway.  Around 5 feet long, I’d guess.  I tried to fetch my camera, but he was soon gone, into the welcome waters of my dam.

My tacit understanding here is that I do not kill or maim the locals, and Continue reading

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Sprechen Sie Deutsch

ColossusMy builder and my garden designer have now each discovered that the other is originally German.

It is like that moment in Colossus: The Forbin Project when Colossus and Guardian start talking to each other.

Continue reading

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The Quick and the Politically Dead

I have no idea if Damian Green was a competent member of the government; he was a minister who operated largely well back from the front line. But he has been forced out by a thoroughly incompetent Prime Minister.

maltby full

The “uncomfortable” Kate Maltby, as she posed herself for the press, pretending to be in high heels

On two grounds, apparently. The first is that he made a journalist, Kate Maltby, feel “uncomfortable”. The background was that Ms Maltby had posed for a tabloid newspaper in a corset and leggings.

Now, if senior politicians are going to have affairs, or even flirt, they should IMHO stick to elegant, discrete women, and stay well clear of overweight blabbermouths. So it was an error of judgement for Green to send a message to Ms Maltby saying:

“Long time no see. But having admired you in a corset in my favourite tabloid I feel impelled to ask if you are free for a drink anytime?”

Clumsy and inappropriate.  But hardly a sacking offence. If Ms Maltby feels uncomfortable, that may well be because of her wholly inappropriate choice of clothing.

The other ground concerns Continue reading

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Old School

Major Sir Hereward Wake MC (14th Bt) has died, at the age of 101. He was the son of Major-General Sir Hereward Wake (13th Bt). His title goes to Sir Hereward Wake (15th Bt).

The original Hereward – a Welshman – was notable for resisting the invasion of England and Wales by the Europeans in the later part of the 11th century. Unhappily, without success. It was not until 400 years later that the ghastly Normans were eventually eased out of the chair by another Welshman – Henry Tudor.

It is hard not to like the final note in Continue reading

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