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Now living in Sydney, still thinking of Perth

March 4, 2016
You'll notice that I haven't posted for many months now. There are several reasons for this. But the main one is that I actually relocated to Sydney in recent months. I moved for various reasons I won't go into here. But I will probably return eventually (then leave again after a few years!). I have done this several times already. Having grown up in Perth it's still "home" even though I have to get away from it from time to time...

After getting settled in the east I didn't know what to do with this blog, so I just decided to leave it up on the web. I figured that I would just resume writing posts if and when I eventually returned. 

But now that I've been back in Sydney for a while, I find I keep thinking about Perth. I'm not anywhere near the point of wanting to return yet again. I'm still trying to "digest" the last few years I was there. So I think about it a lot and keep an eye on the media for what's going on in the west. Not surprisingly I'm seeing the city from a different perspective to the one I had while living there. 

I've recently come to the conclusion that this is a worthwhile angle to pursue in this blog. I can write posts about the similarities and differences between the two cities, for example. Or I can just post observations about Perth that readers may still find interesting. Hell, having spent decades in the place I've certainly accumulated a lot of them!

The main drawback from being over here is that I'll no longer be able to take photos of the place to complement posts. But I can link to ones taken by others if need be -- as well as embedding YouTube videos. 

So I will start adding updates again before long. I hope you enjoy reading them wherever you are.
 

Tareq Kamleh joining ISIS proves emotion trumps intellect

April 26, 2015
Not so long ago it was reported that a former economics student from Perth called Muhammed Sheglabo had signed up for jihad with ISIS. Now there's been an even more alarming story in the same vein.

Doctor Tareq Kamleh, who practised for some time in Subiaco, is now appearing in recruitment videos for the gruesome pre-mediaeval death cult. If this doesn't disprove the hackneyed ol' PC theory that Islamic radicalization springs primarily from legitimate anger against the greedy, racist eeevil we...
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Church of Christ building on Eighth Ave, Maylands

April 19, 2015
I lived in Maylands in 2006-2007. It was quite different then. Not exactly a flash part of Perth, the main drag of Eighth Ave was pretty low key and almost run down. 

Lately, though, there have been some big changes such as the big new library and community centre being built nearby. Upmarket units have been constructed in recent years, most notably on the corner of Eighth and Whatley. As a result the suburb is becoming more attractive to young professionals. 

Eighth Ave itself has a much more ...
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Grand Hotel in Wellington St is now Grand Central Backpackers

April 17, 2015
Perth has some fine old hotels. Some have been lovingly preserved and refurbished. Others haven't fared so well. 

The best example of the latter kind is the old Grand Hotel in Wellington St. You'll see it as you go into the city along Beaufort St as it becomes Barrack St, just near the bridge over the railway line. 

It's still in commercial use, now as the Grand Central Backpackers. Doesn't look in the best of shape, not unlike the venue's tenants, who you sometimes see sitting on one of the li...
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Perth buskers are a colourful bunch

March 30, 2015
One thing I've noticed since returning from Sydney a few years ago is just how many buskers and street performers there are in Perth. Even taking into account the city's significant increase in population, there do seem to be an awful lot of them! When it comes to busking this city seems to punch above its weight -- much like it does for that other mode of self expression, street art.

Granted, many of them are not that good. And some of them are just excruciating. But some are extremely accomp...
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Bon Marche building sadly scarred by graffiti

March 28, 2015
There's a lot of aesthetically pleasing street art in Perth these days -- most of it done with the owners' blessing, I suspect. But there's still too much ugly, stupid "tagging" going on as well. That's depressing on any structure. But it's particularly so when it's inflicted on a beautiful old architectural creation. Sadly, this is what's happened to the Bon Marche building recently. 








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Army surplus stores in Wellington St have been there for ages

March 26, 2015
New construction in the CBD continues apace. You don't have to walk far within the city proper before you see a building site. This is good news in many ways, of course. But it can also be disconcerting -- even a bit depressing -- because some buildings that held sentimental value are just no more. 

But there are still pockets of Perth that seem untouched. Hopefully they will remain this way for quite some time. 

One example is the corner of Wellington and Pier Streets in the city. On that corn...
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Ben Cousins' sad decline continues

March 25, 2015
Ben Cousins has been in the news again lately. This time he wound up being arrested after some bizarre behaviour near a temple in Canning Vale.

A lot of people find his mental problems a bit of a laugh. Check out some of the comment threads on Facebook page updates by news sites and you'll see what I mean. But I think his protracted fall from grace is terribly sad

Clearly drugs have played a huge part in this ongoing tragedy. Meth has clearly damaged his mind severely and it seems permanently...
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The Bassendean Hotel

March 24, 2015
There are many differences between the general atmosphere of Perth and Sydney. Perhaps the biggest relates to the relative amount of space in each city. Perth is far more spread out, giving it a more relaxed feel.

Another big difference: pubs. If you're anywhere near the Sydney CBD, there seems to be a charming old pub on every corner. In Perth they are comparatively few and far between. They're here of course. You just have to look for them.

One of the few Perth hotels that has that comfortabl...
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St Denis Catholic Church in Joondanna

March 24, 2015
As I mentioned in a previous post I've really started noticing churches around Perth. Their function makes them distinctive, of course. Then there's the fact that they aren't overly numerous. Then there's the care that's gone into their construction. Several of them are quite distinctive architecturally also.

Take the St Denist Catholic Church in Joondanna. It has an unusual curved roof that is very noticeable when seen from the side. 







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