The week in house maintenance

It was house maintenance week this week. I took a couple of days off to do some de-cluttering and get some people in.

Hard rubbish got rid of two old mattresses, three former recycle bins, a big plank of wood, an old fan and two disused old bicycles. Amusingly, between putting stuff out/booking the collection and having it picked up, one bike disappeared, then came back, then the second went.

On Tuesday I got my ducts cleaned. (Note: This is not a euphemism.)

On Wednesday it was the pest controllers, as part of my self-declared War On Cockroaches. The guy sprayed inside and out, and we evacuated for a while to let the fumes dissipate — into the city for some lunch, a walk around, and some photography.

Princes Bridge and the Southbank footbridge, Yarra River, Melbourne

Of course, the most exciting news this week in the ‘hood has been the opening of the new Aldi store in downtown Bentleigh (in the old IGA site). Wednesday was opening day, and it was packed with people hunting down $10 kettles and toasters, and $89 Android tablets.

$89 at Aldi. Should I or shouldn't I?I must admit I was tempted by the latter. But in the end I decided not to buy it, for three reasons: [1] the check-out queues were really long, [2] although it’s cheap, a review reckoned this model of tablet has poor Wifi reception (and in fact the reviewer ended up returning it due to poor battery life), and perhaps most importantly, [3] I’d just spent days de-cluttering the house, and buying something I didn’t really need would be a backward step,

And after all, there’ll be other cheap tablets. Wait a few months and there’ll be a better one for the same price.

Live from the BBC (and a few other pics from this week)

Live from the BBC!
Live from the BBC

I’m no big fan of motor vehicles, but that is a fine looking machine.
I'm no big fan of motor vehicles, but that is a fine looking machine.

Advert for Myki top-up at 7-11 talks up the fact that it’s instant, without the delay of online top-up.
#Myki promo in @mxmelbourne talking up instant topup (no delay like online)

And finally, from a friend’s kids’ party last weekend… this castle had a high quotient of princesses in towers. Razing it was a lot easier than in medieval times:
Conquest of castles was never this easy in medieval days (1/3)
Conquest of castles was never this easy in medieval days (2/3)
Conquest of castles was never this easy in medieval days (3/3)

According to old ads, chemist used to sell stuff called “film” from a company called “Kodak”.

One of the chemists in Bentleigh is renovating, and this old signage has been revealed — soon to be covered up with something new. Apparently they used to sell stuff called “film” from a company called “Kodak”.

Old advertising at chemist in Bentleigh

The windows have also shown up some old ads. Anybody care to estimate how old they might be?

Old advertising in chemist window

Old advertising in chemist window

Evidently “Beyond 2000” finished in 1999.

What is cross linked elastin cream, anyway?

The sign on the top of the shop might be a good submission for Our Fading Past.

Halloween approaches

Just after I moved to my current address, I noted that some of the local kids went Trick Or Treating for Halloween. It’s been the same in subsequent years, and I fully expect the same next week.

I’ve decided that while I’m not into cultural imperialism and the adaption of American traditions to Australia, this is something I’m happy enough to support on the basis that it’s a good way to meet some of the neighbours.

In fact I’m seriously considering getting some fake pumpkins from the $2 shop and putting them up in the doorway to flag that we’re joining in. And I’m wondering if my kids want to have a go… perhaps the Dalek costume Jeremy built for my sister’s 40th birthday (theme: Best of British) might get another outing.

What’s the situation in other neighbourhoods?

  • About 24 per cent of Australians plan to celebrate Halloween this year, according to McCrindle Research. Social analysts suggest the commercialisation of the event is behind its growing popularity.The Age today

Want to dress like Sherlock Holmes? The menswear shop in Bentleigh is selling Deer Stalkers

Spotted at Stanley’s Menswear in Centre Road: UK-made Deer Stalker – a snip at $129.95.

Deerstalker in Stanley's Menswear, Bentleigh

(Apart from sleuthing, I guess you could also use it for stalking deer.)