Sunday, November 21, 2004

The Petersham boutique brewery

Being extremely environmentally conscious, Ma and Pa have installed a rainwater tank in our backyard just in front of the 400 square metre garage/showroom/warehouse/home of Bobbity (Dad's bike with the special Lancewood seatpost). Sydney is in its third year of drought, although you could have fooled me with the rain that we've had of late. It's a bit like Melbourne weather at the moment actually: Thursday it was 36+, Friday was 30+, Friday night it rained and Saturday/Sunday were 20-ish. Sorry, I had to get that in. My favourite site is

The rainwater tank enables us to collect rain that would otherwise be wasted on the garden or the tree that fell down or something like that. So instead of using tapwater to clean my bike, I can now use rainwater. How environmentally sound is that??

The real reason it was installed was so that Pa could re-start the Petersham boutique brewery, which he has now done thanks to a brewing kit, beer barrel and hose. It may not be brewed to the original Petersham Trappist Monks' specifications, but at least we can be sure that it is fermented from the purest water and the finest quality ingredients that you can buy at the local Woolies supermarché. I'm not sure how long it'll take but they keep telling us the War will be over by Christmas so that's a date to fix in your calendars.

Stark reminder: Only 34 more shopping days until Christmas! That is, if you shop on Sundays like I do. I have been secretly building up a stockpile of Chrissy presents over the last few weeks because it always pays to Be Prepared like Baden Baden Powell, Der berühmt Pfadfindermeister.

Weevils are here again

The ever present mystery of where on earth all the weevil moths in our kitchen come from is still plaguing us. The theory that they all emanate from one particular cupboard which contains open, half empty packets of flour, is plausible but weak in our learned opinion(s). Instead, inspired by Michael Palin's travel doco on the Himalayas that we saw the other night, we have come up with a new hypothesis.

In Nepal (or Tibet if you prefer), the Buddhist monks throw roast barley flour into the air as part of some nefarious ceremony. It's obvious that weevil moths inhabit this flour, and being Buddhist weevil moths they are capable of Astral travel, whereby their minds and spiritual bodies roam free while their physical self remains stationary. It's clear that most of these Astral travelling moths find their way to our kitchen, where they inhabit the bodies of the dead moths that we kill each day. They then rise up again in a sort of pseudo reincarnation, only to be squashed by one of the Jones family in a fit of rage. Thus, the cycle begins all over again.

I don't know what you'd have to have done in a former life to be reincarnated into a weevil moth, but it's probably something pretty bad. Like voting for Dubya. It may be bad karma to kill the moths, but they're annoying buggers.

The "Rappo"

I've managed to race three times this week (Tuesday/Saturday/Sunday), finishing off with today's Anthony Rappo Memorial out at Eastern Creek. Tuesday and Saturday at Heffron were nothing spectacular, but at least A grade finally caught B+C grade on Tuesday so we were in with a shout for the Big Money. Lock it in, Eddie. But we only caught C grade on the laatste ronde so things were a tad dicey as we tried to get around 30-odd C graders. I think I got about 10th.

Saturday we only had 7 starters, although it was a decent quality 7. Pete "The Machine" McDonald spent the first half of the race attacking and the rest of us spent the first half of the race chasing. Then things slowed down; I had a couple of gos but Tony Iannacito (Caravello) attacked on the laatste ronde and stole the race. I thought it was pretty cool because he was probably the weakest guy in the group but because none of us chased, he won! Strange that the Randwick boys all chased me but not him, but that's club racing for you.

Today was somewhat better because we can actually ride as a team in Open events. We had about 35 starters in A grade and three of us from Randwick (me, Matt Lucas and Pat Naughton). Pat got in most of the early breaks that were brought back, but then after about 25 mins a bigger group went away with three Lidcombe riders in it, so I took the option of going across with Matt on my wheel. I think we had about 10 of us all up and we worked reasonably well, averaging around 43 clicks to put a 20 second gap into the bunch.

After about 45 minutes I was starting to feel it a bit and just before the hour mark, Jorge Libonatti attacked and split the group up into two lots of five. Matt made the front group so that was good and the rest of us were caught by a Klayten Smith-driven chase group. I didn't have to do any more work 'cos Matt was up the road but I wasn't sure if his group would stay away. On the last lap I could see it was coming together , although Jorge had ridden away for a solo win by that time.

Klayten had a dig on the hill with about 2 km to go, as I knew he would, but I still didn't want to go because of Matt. But Klayten caught and dropped that group and held the rest of us off to get second. I was involved in the sprint for third which meant I ended up 10th. I am sprinting like a hubbard at the moment, and I don't mean Rosealee...

Cruised back via Parramatta and not on the silly freeway today, thank goodness. We stopped at a coffee shop with Klayten, Nash Kent and a Parramatta guy. Nash shouted us coffee which was damned decent.

After Friday night at the Trinity and Wednesday night's soiree at home with Coas the Builder (who done up our house tres nice), this week has once again been a social whirl. Only two weeks until holidays too. Yay.

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