Once again South Australia and Victoria are ablaze with soaring heat and property losses, while other parts of the country are having floods.  Unfortunately, at the same time the east coast of Australia is suffering severe drought, farmers have to hay feed cattle until the rain comes. The Government has finally stepped in and is now providing much needed support. Sadly farmers have had to shoot their cattle and in some cases themselves, such is the desolation of the bush.

Manus Island is having riots with refugees objecting to living in Papua New Guinea, and wanting to go to Australia.  Meanwhile the boat people are being turned around and towed back to where they come from, this system is working and fewer boats are arriving.

New Zealand sky diver Chuck Berry was mesmerised when in his wing suit he recently flew over Lake Hillier in Western Australia.  Bright pink in colour due to salt and brine prawn, it is a haven for Banded Stilts and Hooded Plovers endemic to Australia. The Lake has been identified by Birdlife International and an important bird area, as well as providing W.A. Salt. How Leonardo da Vinci would have enjoyed flying over this spectacular lake in the middle of a bright blue ocean surrounded by a rim of sand and dense woodland of paper bark and eucalyptus trees in multi shades of green.  Leonardo drew plans for his flying machine in 1485 with high hopes; however, he did leave us the most famous painting in the world the Mona Lisa. This masterpiece has all the elements an artist could wish for, mystery, intrigue, fascination, technique, and still being enjoyed after five hundred years.

Super Star Dolly Parten is in Oz touring Sydney, Brisbane, Adelaide, Cairns, and Perth, here until the 27th February.  At 68 years of age she is still wowing her adoring fans with her music, her hair, and tiny waist. This Queen of entertainment has received rave reviews as she tours around with her new album “Blue Smoke”.

Following her into the city that cheeky chappie Brit Pop Super Star Robbie Williams, here to promote his new album “Swings Both Ways”.  Popular and pleasant to one and all with his charming personality and dashing smile, Robbie gave a lively appearance on the ‘Today’ show singing with his band many new numbers and some oldies.  He will also appear on the television show “So You Think You Can Dance”.  He will be returning in September for a full tour of Oz.

Congratulations to Karrie Webb as she wins her fifth Women’s Australian Open Golf title in Melbourne at the Victoria Golf Club, finishing with 4 under 68 in the final round to beat Cheila Choi by one stroke.  Enjoying the windy conditions of the day enabled her to catch up and take the title.

Native orchid growing wild taken by Reginald J. Dunkley

Native orchid growing wild taken by Reginald J. Dunkley

Tauro Bright wins silver at Sochi, bright by name and bright by nature she receives the first Australian medal at the Winter Olympics, followed by Lydia Lassila with Bronze, and David Morris silver.  Congratulations to one and all spectacular sights with bodies soaring through the skies.

Once again Mitchell Johnson has come up trumps playing brilliant cricket, helping to assure a one nil lead in the series in South Africa. Cricket fans watch this space.
All eyes are on Cate Blanchett the talented Aussie actress after winning the Best Actress award at the British Academy Film Awards.  With a raft of trophies to her name already it looks as if she is on course to Oscar glory.

Today at Shelly Beach I gave the beautiful birds a treat, they absolutely loved the grapes which I cut and strew around the garden. It was well worth it to see them all tucking into the fruit.  A few flowers from the garden to brighten your day. Enjoy!

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Cymbidium Orchid in the garden Taken by Reginald J. Dunkley

Poinsettia in the garden. Taken by Reginald J. Dunkley

Poinsettia in the garden. Taken by Reginald J. Dunkley

Pink azalea in the garden taken by Reginald J. Dunkley

Pink azalea in the garden taken by Reginald J. Dunkley

Cheers, Patricia.

About Patricia Newell-Dunkley

I am an artist writer, born in Sussex, Shoreham-on-Sea and educated at Ealing Modern School in London. I studied amongst other subjects English Literature and Art which sowed the seeds for what would become a lifelong passion. It was not until 1970, after moving to Australia, that I began to satisfy my artistic desire when I first started Porcelain on-glaze painting using mineral oxides paint, a style which would become my forte. Within six months I had bought a kiln, and I embarked on an extensive series of courses over the following years in Grounding, Gold and Silver Gilding, Lustres, Raised Paste and Pen work. In 1980 I began to offer my art through a number of major Sydney outlets. Initially the Fine Art Department of the Myers City Store, followed by David Jones, Grace Brothers, The International Airport, Micawbers Antiques, Bourke’s Hilton Hotel, Roseville Gallery and Toowoon Bay Gallery. Over the years my painting styles have expanded to include Oil, Pastel, and Watercolours. I am a member of the Society of Authors and also a member of the Society of Women Writers and Journalists UK. My writing includes articles and poems published in This England, Evergreen, and The Radio ABC Pot Pourri of Poems, as well as short stories. “The Complete Guide to Painting and Decorating Porcelain,” “Wallis the Woman I Love,” a narrative poem, “Letters of a Travelling Lady,” and six romantic novels.