Old photos from September 2004

Another in my series of posts of ten year old photos: some snaps from September 2004… I don’t seem to have many of interest this month, but oh well.

Collins Street and Elizabeth Street, a snap not used in this blog post. Trams were turning around here for a special event up ahead for Olympians returning from the 2004 Games in Athens. In some ways it hasn’t changed much, but there’s a big tram superstop at this spot now; no more narrow “safety-zone”.
Collins and Elizabeth Streets, September 2004

Riding my bike in the backyard, for this blog post. It’s been a while since I’ve ridden the bike — not helped by the lack of bike lanes around here. And I still have that ugly stripy t-shirt. I think that might date back to the 80s — perhaps one of the last Australian-made t-shirts ever manufactured, and it’s as tough as nails; it just won’t die.
On my bicycle, September 2004

My then-local station Murrumbeena. The train shown is gradually losing its “Moving Melbourne” M>Train colours. The signal looks rusty and ancient… if it hasn’t yet been replaced, no doubt it will as part of the Dandenong rail upgrade.
Train at Murrumbeena, September 2004

Steamrail K190 at Caulfield on 12/9/2004, marking 150 years of railways in Victoria. We then boarded the train, and I didn’t remember where it went, but apparently it was through the city to Sunshine and back (lots more photos there).
Steamrail train at Caulfield 12/9/2004

…I also shot this very brief video:

Photos from August 2004

Continuing my series of ten year old photos… This month there’s a few domestic pics thrown into the mix.

This is the view out onto St Kilda Road from the National Gallery of Victoria, one rainy afternoon. Quite arty, isn’t it. The photo I mean, not just the gallery.
View out of the National Gallery of Victoria, August 2004

The pedestrian bridge over the Yarra, back when there weren’t gazillions of padlocks on the wires. Looks like the Eureka Tower was still under construction. (Wikipedia reckons it was built between 2002 and 2006.)
Yarra pedestrian bridge, August 2004

The entrance to the Degraves Street subway aka the Campbell Arcade to Flinders Street station. Most of the shops in the subway have got a bit more hipster since then. The background has changed a bit — no giant tram Superstop back then.
Flinders Street, subway to station, August 2004

Flinders Street station clock tower opposite Elizabeth Street. Hasn’t changed much.
Flinders Street Station tower, August 2004

Richmond station: a Siemens train, then in very plain colours, arrives. I think they were still coming into service at this point, and Connex had only just taken over M>Train’s routes, so liveries and so on were probably in limbo.

Glenhuntly station’s resident pigeon feeder in action. He used to bring an enormous amount of bird food, which of course led to an enormous amount of bird poo on the platform. Some years later, one of the station hosts subsequently told me he’d passed away. A smiley-faced former M>Train is heading to Frankston.
Glenhuntly station, August 2004

Moving to domestic matters, the rental house we had in Carnegie from 2003-2005 had a big backyard. Here it is one winter’s morning, with frost on the grass. The trampoline’s been put on its side to reduce the moisture getting onto it. In the two years we lived there, I never touched the vegie patch. Being a big block, close to Carnegie’s shops and railway station, the site is ripe for redevelopment — a quick Google shows it sold for $805,000 in May 2013.
The back garden, August 2004

This was the garden shed/car port at Carnegie. When I moved out, the agent optimistically described it as a lock-up garage — it didn’t lock. It was pretty ramshackle. I never kept the car in it, myself — at the time I had the Magna, which would have been uncomfortably tight. Most of the crap in it wasn’t mine, though I did own the discarded red noticeboard and the TV antenna which I’d bought for the previous flat.
My shed, August 2004

Lunch for myself and the kids, ready to go. The small boxes must have been Play Lunch. Hmm, chocolate muesli bars, not a particularly healthy choice, and I guess I’m to blame for that.
Packed lunch, August 2004

Here’s an interesting find. Taken at work (well, at a client site) by then-colleague Linda, we were just about to have cake for my birthday. At the time I had a lot less grey hair, wore a tie (stopped in 2011), and obviously wore the phone (a Nokia 6100) and its (wired) hands-free kit, along with an ID card and key hanging from my belt. I think that’s another colleague’s desk/computer in the background, but mine would have been similar (less tidy, probably). Another colleague, Gary, is evidently keen to get into the cake, and on the far right is John, who passed-away in 2007.
Daniel at work, August 2004

Update Sunday 17/8/2014: Since Michelle wanted to see the cake, here it is:
Daniel's birthday cake, 2004

Some photos from July 2004

Another in my series of old photos from ten years ago

In 2004 the situation with crowded trains hadn’t really hit as a big political problem, which is why it took until 2006 for the government to decide not to scrap all the Hitachi trains after all, but expand the fleet. It was certainly occurring at that point however, and I snapped this photo one morning at Richmond. I was particularly pleased with it — it conveys the sense of frustration from passengers really well.
Crowded train, Richmond, July 2004
[Another pic from that same morning]

At Southbank there used to be a regular display from a group called Chalk Circle… one day I found that had this image of The Goodies.
The Goodies, chalk art at Melbourne Southbank, July 2004
[Original blog post]

They’re a common hazard now, but chuggers were around even back then:
Chuggers at Southbank, July 2004

The view looking west along the Yarra. Despite it being almost 20 years since trains ran over the Sandridge bridge, it still looked like a rail bridge. It’s only in recent years that it’s been fully renovated and made available to the public again.
Looking west along the Yarra, July 2004

Jeremy using the computer at home (see another view here). Note the floppy drive. In the foreground is a Harry Potter DVD — I’d ordered it from Amazon UK because in Australia at the time you couldn’t buy the widescreen version.
Jeremy using the computer, July 2004

By way of a bulk sale of their Summertown CD, my mate Tony organised a private concert in his house of Deborah Conway and Willy Zygier. [Original blog post]
Deborah Conway and Willy Zygier, July 2004

Old photos from June 2004

Yep, it’s June, so time again for another batch of my old photos from ten years ago.

It seems that for some reason I didn’t take very many photos in June 2004.

A Hitachi train pulls out of Richmond station. Note the markings of the then five-years defunct PTC on the shelter glass. Other than that, it hasn’t changed much.
Hitachi train pulls into Richmond station, June 2004

Up until that point, red (emergency) and green (next train) buttons hadn’t been provided at Richmond, despite having been deployed at most stations almost ten years earlier. Around then, they decided to install them.
Richmond station green/red buttons not yet commissioned, June 2004

For a day or two, they were filming an advertisement at the kids’ school — we think it was for the Cancer Council, on being sun smart. For some reason, they felt the old main school building’s red bricks weren’t good enough, so brought along their own brick wall. I’ve had a quick look; haven’t yet found the ad online anywhere.
Filming in the school yard, June 2004

Back when you could get SMS alerts for train cancellations — they ran from 2001 to 2013 — here’s one from then operator Connex, on my old Nokia phone of the time.
Connex train SMS alert, June 2004

Finally, this is what my desk at home looked like in 2004 — the photo was taken for this post, which has pop-up captions. The computer (a Gateway, from when they still traded in Australia) I’d got back in 2000. Almost everything beige/grey in the photo has been traded for black — including the desk.
My desk at home, June 2004

Photos from May 2004

Another in my series of photos from ten years ago.

The Nylex sign worked for years, inspiring Paul Kelly’s song Leaps And Bounds. I caught it at 11 degrees (and in the month of May, too), as in the lyrics of that song. In 2005-06 they tried to get it working with an upgrade, but seem to have given up now.
Eleven degrees

I took the kids down to Port Melbourne one day to see the Rainbow Warrior (the second one), Greenpeace’s ship which was visiting. I don’t think we actually had a look on board — from memory it was quite busy, and we hadn’t booked. But it was good fun to look around the pier.
Rainbow Warrior, Port Melbourne, May 2004

2004 was the year we got the XBox. One of the initial games I got for it was Midway Arcade Treasures, which included my old favourite Gauntlet. I’d have to say that arcade games aren’t well-suited to modern console controllers, which are no good for mashing the buttons (high-speed repeatedly presses) — particularly a problem in games like Joust, which was also included. For a while the kids enjoyed playing Gauntlet with me.
Playing Gauntlet on the XBox, May 2004

People who haven’t had kids in the last decade or two might not know about indoor playgrounds. I might be wrong, but they seemed to take off in the late-90s, and by 2004 there were lots of them. This is one in Moorabbin. Like all of them, they’re quite fun (even for the adults, sometimes) if not too busy, but when they get crowded, they’re just a feral cacophony of noise. If they’re not too crowded, sometimes adults can enjoy the facilities — in this picture you can also see my stepfather Peter and his daughter Emma sliding down.
Indoor playground, May 2004

I think Tony had let me know this was there — the then Tattersalls office on Dandenong Road had a giant electronic billboard, but on this day it was obviously faulty. In the background is one for the trainspotters: a Comeng train in the M>Train colours (matching the M>Tram scheme seen last month).
Tattersalls head office, faulty electronic billboard, May 2004