Launceston is the second largest city in Tasmania – which is hard to believe given its population of just over 105,000. For Australian standards though, that’s a big town, in fact it’s the ninth largest non-capital city down-under.
It’s also a pretty unique place, over 200 years old – and it comes with the unique charme of an old world town. Where people still know each other, where markets still look and feel like back in the days, and where you still believe products are truly natural and organic.
Have you been to Launceston or Tasmania? What was your impression of it?
No matter how you feel about January 26 – it’s hard not to laugh out loud to The Meaning of Mate. Here’s a decipher of 18 of the most Australian word’s iconic uses as articulated by a yobbo on a cliff. (via the good folks at Smith Journal)
Memory Loss Mate
A weekend out of the city, even in Winter, is always a beautiful thing. Especially when it’s fresh yet sunny.
The Ada Tree walk is a beautiful spot, and pretty empty in winter too. In the midst of some devastated logging area is this a 600-hectare reserve, excluded from the clear-fell harvesting that is in operation about a kilometer away. And it’s here that one of Victoria’s largest trees, the Ada Tree lives. The Ada Tree is about 76m high. Its also about 270 years old and a phenomenal girth of 15.7 meters. Almost too big to photograph. But around the corner, set in some beautifully thick forest, with ferns 15 meters high and things, are the Toorongo and Amphitheater falls .-)Well .. and here it is, too big for a 24-70mm, the majestic “Ada Tree”, in all its 1500 tonnes beauty. It has the charm of a whale, and indeed its bark looks a bit like a micro-cosmos of many other plants, animals and insects. Not too nice as a photographic subject (from my vantage point anyway) but in a blog about the tree, it should feature, shouldn’t it?
The Ada Tree
All images are shot on a Nikon D700, 24-70 f2.8 – next time I’ll pack a tripod, too.
Hicks, the Australian Guantanamo inmate pleaded guilty today, probably to finally get out of that prison and get back home to Oz since “his guilty plea is likely to mean a more lenient sentence and the judge ordered the prosecutors and defense lawyers to draw up a plea agreement. Under a long-standing diplomatic agreement, Hicks will serve his sentence in Australia.” Now Hicks, is probably not really a known name in the rest of the world, but down-under he’s headline news, with people demanding his release since years. Interestingly, I just today saw the latest Magnum in MotionPodcast about Guantanamo. Goodness, what a nightmare that place is. It is so crazy to think, that this kind of stuff is really regarded as a valid means of interrogation and imprisonment. Watching the clip, I felt quite disgusted with the way in which we humans are capable of explaining away and justifying even the greatest mistreatedment and abuse of human rights, even up to torture. Is it not the the same sadistic sadness that Hitler rolled into action, defending “the good” with the worst of evil. And now ist just all under the banner of: “Honor bound to defend Freedom” What kind of a sick joke is this? What Honor are they please talking about? What freedom? I am not trying to bash America or Bush, but it is just so saddening, sickening, disturbingly crazy how such evil can be done by people. I feel like I wanna shake up some of those folks: “What are you doing? This is supposed to be the so called free world of opportunity and equality” Please watch the Magnum In Motion Podcast by Paolo Pellegrin. And if you still can afterwards, maybe this one called War Status Iraq. Same twisted game. If I would call anything evil it’s the mindset portrayed in these acts against prisoners – guilty or not – iraquees, and alliance-soldiers alike. I think they are just as much victims of this evil spiral everyone else – they might just not know it.