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New York

 

When we lived in New York my first wife and I had an apartment in a York Avenue high rise, near the East River. 

 


Apartment 27D 1365 York Avenue - new in 1977 under repair in 2010 for concrete cancer

 

My eldest daughter was born in New York Hospital just across the way.  Over the years York Avenue hasn't changed much, except that New York Hospital no longer operates as a general hospital; it has become a medical research institution.  But elsewhere New York’s changed a great deal since the late 1970s.  The most dramatic changes are downtown, around Soho and on the West Side.  An area that used to be mainly artists’ lofts and old garment factories has transmogrified into a major retail area with lots of trendy boutiques.  It seems the whole West Side, up into the hundreds, has been gentrified.

Because of my familiarity with the area we rented a serviced apartment in east 58th street.  This is still a good choice as it is an easy walking distance to Fifth Avenue, Central Park, the Museum Of Modern Art, the Metropolitan Museum and the Guggenheim.  We were there at the end of March but there was still snow piled at the end of Central Park the day we arrived.  Our first night we walked across town, past Carnegie Hall to Broadway and then back via Grand Central station and Lexington. 

 

 


Broadway - to see more photos click on the above image

 

You either love New York or you hate it.  I’m in the former group.  It’s like London, I feel at very much at home when I’m there.  But of course it’s quite different to Sydney. 

Needless to say we visited the various museums; the Empire State Building; Radio City Music Hall; the Chrysler Building, from outside and above; took a Circle Line tour around the island, taking in the Statue of Liberty; and went to the Opera at the MET one night (la Traviata).  We also did the ‘sex in the city thing’, based on the TV show,  and shopped.  I picked up some new skis and boots from the after winter sales and a new camera.  The catalogue of Wendy’s purchases is too long to list here. 

Then it was time to pick up the rental car and drive to Washington.

 

 

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Travel

Hong Kong and Shenzhen China

 

 

 

 

 

Following our Japan trip in May 2017 we all returned to Hong Kong, after which Craig and Sonia headed home and Wendy and I headed to Shenzhen in China. 

I have mentioned both these locations as a result of previous travels.  They form what is effectively a single conurbation divided by the Hong Kong/Mainland border and this line also divides the population economically and in terms of population density.

These days there is a great deal of two way traffic between the two.  It's very easy if one has the appropriate passes; and just a little less so for foreign tourists like us.  Australians don't need a visa to Hong Kong but do need one to go into China unless flying through and stopping at certain locations for less than 72 hours.  Getting a visa requires a visit to the Chinese consulate at home or sitting around in a reception room on the Hong Kong side of the border, for about an hour in a ticket-queue, waiting for a (less expensive) temporary visa to be issued.

With documents in hand it's no more difficult than walking from one metro platform to the next, a five minute walk, interrupted in this case by queues at the immigration desks.  Both metros are world class and very similar, with the metro on the Chinese side a little more modern. It's also considerably less expensive. From here you can also take a very fast train to Guangzhou (see our recent visit there on this website) and from there to other major cities in China. 

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Fiction, Recollections & News

Preface - The Craft

 

 

A Note about Witches

In fairy-tales, witches always wear silly black hats and black cloaks, and they ride on broomsticks.
But this is not a fairy-tale.  This is about real WITCHES
REAL WITCHES dress in ordinary clothes and look very much like ordinary women.
They live in ordinary houses and they work in ORDINARY JOBS.
That is why they are so hard to catch.

Roald Dahl - The Witches

 

The Craft is an e-novel about Witchcraft in a future setting.  It's a prequel to The Cloud, set initially at the turn of 2069-2070 after The Great Famine.

It has adult content.  

As with all fiction on this Website stories evolve from time-to-time.   Unlike printed books that have distinct editions, these stories morph and twist so that returning to them after a period may provide a new experience.

Click here to Read more...

 

 

 

Opinions and Philosophy

Energy and a ‘good life’

 

 

 

Energy

With the invention of the first practical steam engines at the turn of the seventeenth century, and mechanical energy’s increasing utility to replace the physical labour of humans and animals, human civilisation took a new turn.  

Now when a contemporary human catches public transport to work; drives the car to socialise with friends or family; washes and dries their clothes or the dishes; cooks their food; mows their lawn; uses a power tool; phones a friend or associate; or makes almost anything;  they use power once provided by slaves, servants or animals.

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