Parents and Ancestors

I recently did a DNA test, simply to decide which would have been the likely origin of my surname, then I saw a TED talk on why we make the decisions we do. It’s those family memories that influence us; ” I won’t be like my parents”, ” Dad used to ride motorbikes, I like to too”, “Grandfather flew a Sopwith Camel, I’d like to learn to fly” …

How often do you say something to a friend or child and think, I just heard my mum or dad? Tucked away in our subconscious are the family stories, we unknowingly follow them.



After a Trip away

Travelling opens ones eyes to other ways of life, the similarities and differences.
Coming `home` and having a visitor from a country you have just visited come to stay opens your eyes about your own country.

Melbourne is very multicultural, and the Yarra Valley a wide open space.

You notice the wideness of the roads, the faster traffic, and after the brief stop at a winery, the difference in road laws. Japan has a zero alcohol limit for drivers, perhaps we should have that here? Motorcyclists in the first year of their licence are zero, as are learners, then they go mad and accidents due to drink driving occur.

Travelling to another culture and living with the locals opens your eyes to the commonality of life: family.



I keep thinking to myself, I must get out on the bike.

It used to be out on the pushbike/bicycle, but in the last few years, my injured hip, from a driver who failed to give way,  has made it more painful to ride long distances so I’ve taken up motorcycling instead. It’s the rolling along the road with the wind in my hair, well on my face anyway. On the bike of a fellow who passed his motorcycle test the same day as I was a sticker that read:
” Only bikers know why dogs put their heads out of windows”

Today I dropped the Dragon ( Honda VFR750FL ) in for a service and new tyres. I walked home, but there is freedom in walking too, under your own power. The world around you is closer than in an enclosed vehicle.  I guess that’s why small yachts are fun too, just you and the wind.

Looking forward to getting back the big bike and doing a tour. I also want to get touring cycle fixed up. Until then I have the little scorpion ( Yamaha Scorpio Z 223cc ) to whizz around on. This bike is fun in the tight turned mountains, what it was built for in Japan, nothing over 80km/hr. A friend once said the cheapest fun on two wheels is a 250cc. So true.


Forest after the rain.

A few days ago I woke feelling dizzy, so I went back to bed after breakfast. Later in the day after waking up I decided to go for a short walk along a nearby aqueduct.
It was still overcast day with fine drizzle, si set off with an umbrella. After short section along the busy highway I entered the sectioned off aqueduct area. It is adjacent to the Yarra Ranges National Park and is part of the catchment area for the Marroondah dam that supplies watr to Melbourne.
It was peacefull walking along the access road beside the aqueduct. At the far end near the weir I stood on the culvert and looked up the creek, a beautiful sight.
Tall ash with mist through the crowns.
Walking back along the track I stopped and watched the forest. It was clean after the rain, and looked vibrant as one does after a long hot shower.
Soon I realised it wasn’t just a forest of trees. There were birds, insects, it was alive with moving things. The longer I stood, the more I could see. The forest was a restaraunt, supermarket, highway, community centre, accomondation centre. The forest was a city full of life.
Further along the track the forest changed from tall wet forest of ash and  regrowth wattles to black burnt dry forest trees, tree ferns and low bushes. I could hear the highway again, car, m’bikes and logging trucks.
I wished I could stay and camp in the forest back there.

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Article: “No More Yoda Heads”: The Force Is Strong with MarkForged’s Carbon Fiber 3D Printer

“No More Yoda Heads”: The Force Is Strong with MarkForged’s Carbon Fiber 3D Printer

Ability to 3D print in this material will open pathways to complex lightweight fully assembled items. Production item will be a duplicate of devevelopement item, unlike many other manufacturing processes providing same quality printer is used.

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Why Coal fired power station is not sensible in a dry country.

As I studied metallurgy I know about materials at high temperature. The tubes that carry water to be turned into steam are susceptable to internal and external corrosion and being blocked by deposits that will inhibit flow causing hot spots. Any of the above problems can cause drastic failure, loss of life, and shutdown. To avoid internal corrosion and blockages the water has to be very pure, that is high quality drinking water, that  gets turned into steam and often vented away.
In a country that has a rainfall far less than the world average and is considering desalination (that is more coal fired energy consumption), it would make more sense to just stop using coal and change to renewable energy to reduce water and CO2 production.
We need sensible sustainable technologies.

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