Your faith is shaken


I seem to be cursed to have my faith is humanity shaken lately.

In general, I like Perth and I think life here is pretty good. Nice people, in general.

But this morning I met the one who disproves the rule.  An utter bastard.

I was leaving the North Beach Deli, in North Beach Drive, crossing the road, leaning heavily on my stick (more on that in a minute), finding it hard to walk. I judged a gap in the traffic with a 4WD coming towards me on my right, but a good 50-100m back.

It was clear on my left, so I started to cross. Would you believe the guy on  the right started blowing his horn at me, barp, barp, barp, barp. As he drew almost level, he leaned out and shouted “Get off the road, you fat bastard!”

I wish I’d had the guts to stop right in front of him. As it was, I shouted back, “Fuck off! You bastard!”

I can hardly believe it. All he had to do was slow down a little to let me cross, if even that, but he loses his lolly at me. Nasty bastard. I was quite upset, as you can imagine. This very rarely happens. Most people are very polite and considerate. Not this bastard. Typical four-wheel-driver, says me who was driving a 4WD!


So I came home on the freeway and managed to call in to what I thought was the location of Altronics, where I have a package of parts awaiting me. But they’re not there any more! I’ve been going there for years. Damn. I drove around, hoping I’d spot them nearby, but no luck. UPDATE: their new address is Unit 2, 182 Winton Rd.


So I’m home, shaking and trembling with fatigue. Something’s wrong. This has come on just in the past few months – weakness, loss of muscle strength, fatigue. This is not normal. It’s got worse just in the past couple of months.

I was battling to find my words talking to my friends this morning. Normally I have fantastic recall, but I was struggling. The GP has been on holidays and I have an appointment but not until  the 9th. I doubt he’ll be able to fix me.

I had other errands this morning but I can’t do them – I have to rest. It’s hot outside- 33deg or so.


These are New York apartments. Aaaarrrgh. I would not want to live like this, ever, no matter what. Apparently the building sways quite noticeably in wind, and some people have moved out because of it. Ugh!!


I bought two more Photobook vouchers a few days ago and it’s not a bad deal – you get two copies of an 8.5″ x 11″ layflat landscape hard cover (image wrap cover), 24 pages with postage included for $43.90 total, i.e. $21.80 per book. Postage is a killer these days – it’s usually $15 each book, last time I used it, a few years ago now.

Layflat means what it says, the binding of the pages lays flat when it’s open. It means you can do landscape spreads that look like one image. If ya get what I mean.

Another plus of these vouchers is that they have six months validity. That’s a double edged sword – the usual three months gives you a bit of urgency to get the book done, but with six months, you can become complacent. I did actually lose a couple of vouchers years ago, when I forgot about them. They do give you some leeway, but they didn’t that time.

These will be for the Croft History volume 3. I made a start about a year ago but got bogged down. I have to get onto it now as I feel that time is running out, and I don’t just mean voucher validity. Unfortunately also, my subscription to MyHeritage has expired, which means I can’t do the colourisation and enhancement I was doing. It’s about $70 for another year. Should I pay it?


Yesterday morning, 30th, I finally made myself put in a phone call to the makers of my horrible mattress, AH Beard. They give a 1-300 number to cal for any complaints or warranty problems, so I phoned the number.

But all you get is a recorded message asking you to leave a message! I had too much to say, so I didn’t speak, and then I heard them say to send an email to So I did. Quite a long one. With my phone numbers.

Have I had any response? No, of course not, silly me for thinking I would.

So that’s where it stands at the moment. On the mattress tag, they ask us to give them a good review. Well, it’s not looking good at the moment. Bugger!


Progress on the model railway front: the blue lined squares are 100mm x 100mm.

Each white dot above represents a rail join. You can see how many there are, and the way they line up along the line between pieces of base board. This is so I can build it in sections and join it together. Then break it apart to move it and store it.

You wouldn’t believe how much time it takes to make all that track fit. Endless fiddling and changing. But I’m getting there.

The idea is to print the gray area out on sheets of paper and stick them to the baseboards (just with sticky tape, not too firmly), then lay the track on them using them as the template. That’s where the fun part begins. There will be endless fiddling and mistakes made there too.

It’s a double track all the way around, but I’ll be able to get things going with a single outer loop, as a start, after all this time. I’ve been collecting all the bits for more than five years now and wow, I have got quite a collection! I reckon I’ve got at least fifty wagons of various kinds, both goods and passenger. Plus about 12 locos, a few DCC decoder equipped but most just 12V DC waiting for me to convert them. I may have to start with just 12V DC at the beginning, until I can get more than two or three locos converted for DCC (Digital Command and Control).

As well, I have about six platforms for stations, about eight scale model buildings, four overhead footbridges, a myriad of trees and shrubs, a few dozen containers (the type you see at ports and on trucks), several dozen (at least) lighting poles, a couple of road crossings, two sets of crossing lights (clang, clang, clang), a dozen or more tracks signals, scale model vehicles and so on. And I’ve just received two laser-cut rail bridges. These are made from thin, (1/8″) plywood, beautifully cut with a laser ready to be pushed out of the frames and assembled. It’s wood colour at the moment, but I plan to spray paint it, first grey, then with a partial coating of rust colour.

Would you believe I’ve actually got an air brush sprayer, still new-in-box, never used in four years from Aldi. I’ve never used one before, so here’s my chance to find out how. I’ve also got at least a dozen tubes of paint, again from Aldi. One o’ these days, Norton, one o’ these days.

I can’t model an Australian scene very easily, since there are almost no models of Aussie locos and wagons. I plan to make a general Aussie industrial scene, with lots of goods and stock sheds and buildings. The same goes for scale model buildings – almost everything you can buy is based on British models.

You never finish building a model railway. You never finish. It’s never complete.


I’m reading a new book at the moment, Red Rain. As the name implies, a red rain falls across the whole Earth, and only a handful of people are left alive, including our heroine, Emily in New York.

Sounds as if it could be silly, but it’s got me hooked at the moment. As a Kindle book, it only cost me $2 so if I don’t like it, it’s no great loss.

I was taken to an Amazon page yesterday which shows me all my Amazon purchases since forever, including all the Kindle books. It’s fascinating to look back over the list, and if I can work out a way to display them all, I’ll try to show them here. I could do screen grabs, but there would be too many.


I’ve been giving a lot of thought to my use of gas for water heating and cooking, and whether I could dispense with it altogether. I’m thinking heat pump for the hot water, and doing without a gas stove-top completely, just using my electric bench top oven. I’d still leave the gas cook-top connected (or would I?) for house resale value, but I’d get the gas storage hot water heater removed altogether. To be replaced with a heat pump. They need solar power for part of their operation, and I’ve got that, so what’s stopping me?

What’s stopping me is, will I have hot water at 7am on cold winter mornings? I can’t find anyone who knows the answer. I must admit I haven’t tried very hard to find out, so I should try harder.

If I could do this, I’d like to get the gas disconnected completely, to avoid the service fee. Hmmmmm….


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