A DREAM DINNER PARTY

A DREAM DINNER PARTY

Daydreaming in our pandemic iso-world is a national pastime. Here is an imagined dinner, hosted by myself and my partner Rob in our new house at Blackheath, in the Blue Mountains of New South Wales. There are four courses (well sort of), and four dinner guests from

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LACHLAN MACQUARIE JNR & A MORAL COMPASS?

LACHLAN MACQUARIE JNR & A MORAL COMPASS?

I was intrigued to come across a reference to one of my articles on the internet recently. It was included in the description of a rare and beautiful item offered for sale by Hordern House Rare books, located in Sydney’s Surry Hills. This tiny object was of

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EDITOR DES LEAVES LOCK-DOWN

EDITOR DES LEAVES LOCK-DOWN

Hello, Desmond Conolly here. I’m off to old Sydney town at last! Yay, lock-down has been such a challenge! Mind you, right from the start I knew the trip would be difficult for someone with an independent spirit comme moi. And wow, was I right! At Medlow

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SYDNEY SOJOURN FOR EDITOR DES

SYDNEY SOJOURN FOR EDITOR DES

Hello Peeps My elderly guardians Pauline, and Dr Bob went on a little ‘rest and recuperation trip’ to Sydney this week, after the bushfires in our village of Blackheath. I believe it’s called a ‘sojourn’. I wasn’t allowed to stay home alone due to a previous incident,

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‘GONE TO GOWINGS’ ……BAR AND GRILL, SYDNEY

'GONE TO GOWINGS' ......BAR AND GRILL, SYDNEY

Remember the old Gowings Department store in Sydney? And their catchphrase, ‘GONE TO GOWINGS’ ? It was the place to go for rural chaps in town for the Easter Show. Sadly, the store closed a good while back, much to my disappointment. I loved the eccentricity of

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THE LOST PORTRAIT OF A BIG HEARTED SINGER

THE LOST PORTRAIT OF A  BIG HEARTED  SINGER

To mangle the words of Oscar Wilde, for an institution to lose a miniature portrait would be unfortunate, to lose a life-sized framed oil painting sounds more like carelessness. Catherine Hayes (1818-1861) was a celebrated, Irish born soprana who toured Australia extensively in the mid 1850s. At

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THE GRACE HOTEL

THE GRACE HOTEL

Recently I paused and looked skyward at this wonderful Sydney building. At street level it’s hard to appreciate its full, 300ft glory, sheathed in glazed cream, terra-cotta tiling. Somehow it reminds me of the toy blocks I played with during my 1950s childhood. However, it was built

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BRIDGET AND PYLON – THE ‘COATHANGER’ CATS

BRIDGET AND PYLON - THE 'COATHANGER'  CATS

Around Christmas 1950, twin white cats were spotted atop the southern pylon of the Sydney Harbour Bridge. There they remained. It seemed the pair had decided it was the best location in the city, with world class views. Well really, who could blame them? The snowy residents

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DEATH ON YORK STREET – 1946

DEATH ON YORK STREET - 1946

The victim, Jeanette Wicks. In 1935,  Jeanette Wicks divorced her husband  of seven years on the grounds of desertion.  She  subsequently supported herself  by operating a tiny kiosk, located at the entrance to a four storey building at 97 York Street, central Sydney.  Tobacco products and lottery tickets

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SYDNEY’S VAPIANO – WHERE HAPPY HOUR IS JUST THAT!

SYDNEY'S VAPIANO - WHERE  HAPPY HOUR IS JUST THAT!

CASUAL DINING OUT IN THE BIG SMOKE! This Italian eatery is located  in King Street. It was so good that on a recent visit to Sydney my partner Rob and I dined there two nights running.  The style is described as Euro-chic. It’s decorated with pots of

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