Friday, December 23, 2011

Violino Piccolo

The young busker in Rundle Mall.  22 December 2011.

Amidst the energy and excitement of holiday shopping at Rundle Mall yesterday, I came across this young boy busking in the middle of this unique street.  Exhausted from the shopping rush, I walked towards him to listen to what he was playing and perhaps, to sit on the wooden bench nearby to relax.  As I got closer to him, I heard the melody of the carol entitled Mary's Boy Child...

James playing a Christmas carol.  Rundle St., Adelaide City, South Australia

Despite the jubilant theme of the song, I could see the sadness in his eyes.

Shoppers went past him; while most of them didn't, some of them tossed coins into his violin case lying open down the brick-covered lane.  There was a note saying, "Hope you like my playing. -James."

Whether it's for passion or just purely for financial gain, nobody knows it except James.

After taking this photograph, I grabbed a note from my wallet and handed it to him, he stopped fiddling and took it.

He said, "Thank you..." and he smiled.

"Merry Christmas, James!"  Then I left. 


Friday, December 16, 2011

Sofia's Basket

A basket of fruits for Sofia's birthday

Last September, a young Filipino family arrived and occupied the house (approximately) 70 meters south of my accommodation.  Yes, I finally have a neighbour in the chook farm compound.

Edwin- the head of the family, has been helping me with the poultry farm operation since then.  His wife Zuzette, coincidentally, was born and grew up in a town 36 kilometers southwest of my hometown.  The couple has two daughters named Sofia and Ezra.

Ezra is 4 years old, and Sophia turned 8 yesterday.  The family invited some friends to dine with them, and because it's a local tradition to bring a plate, I decided to make a cake for Sophia.  I heard from Edwin that Zuzette loves chocolate cake so I baked one... but frosting and designing it for an eight-year old girl was simply a mountain to climb.

I love to personalize my creations but this time I couldn't think of a cake that would fit the birthday girl.  Sofia loves telling a lot of detailed stories, she has a torrent of words!  Though she speaks and understands Filipino, she expresses her thoughts and feelings in English.  Her name reminds me of my Philosophy subject back in the uni- exactly the time when our professor said, "...Philos means love, and sophia means wisdom."

To make the story short, I ended up with a basketweave design.

The chocolate basket cake, left lateral view.

I am glad Sofia loved it, she and her parents were very happy and grateful!  The guests had literally dropped their jaw upon seeing it, and I am thankful they all said, "Hmmm... beautiful!"- the Australian way of saying delicious

Sofia realized she forgot to make a wish before blowing the candle.

After cutting the cake... (Photo taken using my mobile phone.)

I was happy with the outcome of this masterpiece, my plans were executed well and the cake turned out as what I had actually imagined.  To prove that the basket was really a cake, I made sure to take a photo after it was cut (Since I arrived in Australia, I have learned to use the word 'cut' in place of the preferred Filipino term- slice). 

A slice of the basket cake.

Unlike the photo above, weaving the creamy chocolate frosting was NOT a piece of cake; but it was fun!  I didn't post it last October, but I also made a chocolate doll cake for Ezra's birthday!  Somebody up there tells us to love our neighbour, I hope my gestures count.


Sunday, December 11, 2011

Rudolph and Rundle...

I took this photo at the fountain in front of the Adelaide Arcade in Rundle Mall, Adelaide City.

One of the many buskers in Rundle Mall.  This live statue was wearing a raincoat to protect himself from the splashes of the Victorian era fountain beside him.   

"Uniquely Rundle Mall" as what its slogan says... by closing the Rundle St. to traffic between King William and Pulteney streets, this mall was opened in September 1976 as the first pedestrian mall in Australia.  In short, it's a street turned into a mall!

Just like other malls, Rundle Mall isn't only for shopping but for dining and entertainment, as well.  This commercial complex is also a venue for photography, street protests, sports team's celebrations and parades, fraternal organizational initiations (eg. men and women giving free hugs) and busking.

The choir singing Christmas carols...

A Chinese backpacker busking beside one of the mall's landmarks- the Mall's Balls. 
Now, can you blame me if Rundle Mall is my favourite hang out in town?


Wednesday, November 23, 2011


Featuring the Union Jack, the Commonwealth Star, and the Southern Cross constellation. 

Last September 15, 2011, I posted this on my Twitter timeline: 
In Adelaide City... drove a friend- Marie to the Immigration; she'll take the citizenship test today. Good luck to her.  

Well, she passed.  This afternoon, Marie took her Australian citizenship pledge at Port Wakefield Council Office in Balaklava.  A dinner party immediately followed at our friend's place at Salter's Spring Road.  There were plenty of food, and the drinks were overflowing!  Everybody was happy.  

I baked a cake for the new Australian.  She was surprised and very happy when she saw it.  Marie loved it; she was very grateful!
Aussie, Aussie, Aussie!  Oi, oi, oi! 

This was my first attempt to draw or paint (or whatever we call it) an Australian flag, and I'd say it was successful.  No doubt, this cake was the centrepiece of the celebration.


Monday, November 21, 2011


The piping shrike at dusk.  Port Wakefield, South Australia.

This photograph had existed in my imaginations for eleven months before it finally happened.  Every time I went for a drive during sunsets I had been taking my camera with me hoping that I could get a photograph of a perching bird silhouetting against the final glow of the day... but I had always failed because every time I pulled over the road, the bird would fly before I could take a snap.
But yesterday, after returning the tables and chairs that we used in a party back to the owner, I was so lucky to encounter this friendly bird perching on a shrub at Port Wakefield's bushland.  

The piping shrike, often mistaken as a magpie, is a very important bird in South Australia.  It is featured on the state's flag, badge and Coat of Arms

This picture reminds me of my Veterinary Anatomy lesson.  The perching muscle of birds is called ambiens"...a thigh muscle of certain birds having the tendon passing over the knee and connecting with the tendon of a muscle that bends the toes so that the body weight on perching causes the knee to bend and the feet to clasp the perch on which the bird sit."  - 


Tuesday, November 1, 2011

'Double' Celebration

The ladies celebrating after the 2011 Melbourne Cup race.  Hahndorf Inn; Hahndorf, South Australia. 

These photos were taken from Hahndorf, South Australia.  I was there this afternoon to loosen up a bit and was, honestly, surprised to see the multitude in all the pubs/gaming rooms and restaurants along the town's main street.    
There was a celebration- tables teeming with fine foods, glasses overflowing with a wide range of drinks, balloons everywhere, and flags blowing up in the air!  The crowd was jubilant; and unlike Mexico, Portugal, Spain, Italy, France and the Philippines who earnestly celebrates the All Saints Day (and the following day- the All Souls Day), Australia holds the 2011 Melbourne Cup today.

Melbourne Cup is the major and the most famous horse race in Australia; it is actually known as 'the race that stops the nation' and is traditionally conducted during the first Tuesday of November.

In Melbourne and in most parts of the state of Victoria, Melbourne Cup is a public holiday.  Here in South Australia and in the other states, it's supposedly business as usual but I'm sure most of the Australians had turned their telly on this arvo to watch the race and bet for their favourite horse.  Hahndorf is (an old German town) located approximately 701 kilometres away from the venue of the race (Flemington, Victoria), but look at how important Melbourne Cup is to Australians.

Okay, Melbourne Cup is a horse race, but why do women wear colourful hats and hairdresses during this day?  They simply call it Fashion on the Field- there's a prize awarded to the best-dressed man or woman in the race.  It all started in 1962 and it has become a tradition- that in every local horse race, in Flemington or not, it is equally important to wear an elegant hat. 

The same women as in the photo above.

The French-based horse Dunaden- ridden by Cristophe Lemaire won the 2011 Melbourne Cup.  The horse's owner earned $3.6 million plus a trophy worth $175,000.


Sunday, October 23, 2011

The Bush Party and the Cakes

The Queen's Hat- Inspired by the Royal Wedding 2011.  The table cloth is a replica of a typical Aboriginal painting.

Today is a 'bad cake day' for me.

I was invited for a birthday celebration and was told that it's an Australian bush party.  Janet, a friend in the Port Wakefield Catholic community, turns seventy today; and since I have been trying to learn baking lately, I decided to bring a birthday cake as a present. My original plan was a chocolate cake shaped like 'cowboy hat' but I eventually thought that a Queen's hat would be more appropriate for a lady celebrant.  Even if the the cake would deviate from the theme of the party, I believed that Janet would love it considering that Her Majesty is currently Down Under for a ten-day visit, and that Australia has been proud of it's British roots.

But my dilemma about the cake didn't end there.  I only started to learn baking and cake decorating last autumn, and have been using buttermilk icing since then- absolutely perfect for cooler days but not for a warm day like today.  The forecast was 31'C, and being a chicken farmer who has been closely monitoring Port Wakefield's weather for almost four years now, I believe the mercury could rise two to three degrees above the temperature outlook.  So I researched for the best cake frosting that could stand in a warmer or hot temperature.  There were two options: a buttercream frosting or a Royal icing (very famous in the Philippines), and after how many hours of consideration I settled for the butterceam icing.

I found this 'temperature forecaster' hanging on the wall at the venue. Brilliant, ay?

To make the story short, it didn't work!  Starting at half past midday, we drove for ten minutes to get to the venue of the party, the cake was in a huge plastic container at the boot of the car.  The internet told me that shortening melts at around 40'C, so I was confident that my cake's crust was strong enough to hold.  Just imagine my face and my heart after opening the container and seeing a part of the cake decoration collapsing!  I forgot to consider the powdered sugar and the milk that I added to to the shortening to achieve the frosting.

The photo above was taken at the party, the broken part of the cake decoration was at the back but the 'golden' roses on the side was noticeably sagging.  Anyway, if you look at the photo of the Queen's hat during the Royal Wedding, the flower on the side of her yellow hat was a bit saggy too.

This post was originally intended to tell the story about the outback-themed party but it didn't turn out to be that way.  I am sharing some photos below, in case you're interested. 

The birthday celebrant Janet and his husband Robin (who's wearing a typical Australian work clothes).

This is Rhondda, she's 91 years old!  She's wearing a cork hat or a bushman's/outback hat; the cork dangling around the brim of the hat ward off the flies.  For those who don't know, the Australian outback is infested with blow flies

This is Esma (locals/friends would pronounce it as /Es-may/) with her huge coffee mug!

The chook-minder at the gate.  The outback-themed birthday party was held inside.

After fifty-seven months of living in Australia, it was my first time to eat an Australian damper.  It is a traditional outback cake baked in the coals of the campfire.  I don't have a photo of it, I got carried away during the luncheon. 

Speaking of cakes, Janet loved her yellow birthday cake; she was very happy and grateful!


Friday, October 7, 2011

Healthy Holiday

The lamps hanging on the ceiling of Cafe Aqua- Elizabeth, South Australia.  The colour reminds me of Santorini, Greece.

I've been absent from work for two days now (well, I am physically present because I live on site).  It all started with a sudden pain, and episodal cramps in my upper left abdomen the other day.  After 17 hours of dealing with it, I decided to drive myself to Balaklava Hospital at around five in the morning.  The CT scan films revealed that I have a 2-cm stone in my left kidney!

I was so scared upon hearing the findings but the GP assured me that there'll be no surgery.  She (oh that young, cute, and sexy Chinese doctor who's been here for only a month) prescribed Panadol- to be taken every four hours.  With this 8.5 out of 10 pain rating, I initially thought she was only joking, but she said was serious.  Dr. Lien Tee added that majority of these renal calculi, which usually affects men of my age, are just excreted with the urine.  I am hoping and keeping my fingers crossed.

So I stayed in the house to have a good rest.

While I was having rice and chicken tinola at lunchtime today, I turned my telly on and tuned in it on Cinema One.  Star Cinema's For the First Time was playing, starring KC Concepcion and Richard Gutierrez.  The location was in the photogenic island of Santorini, Greece... and since I am on a vacation mode, I decided to sit down and finish film.  Contrary to the title of the movie, it was actually my second time to watch it but I still enjoyed it.

In the movie, Alex or Seth (Gutierrez) a rich, easygoing Filipino young guy, who was managing a tavern in the island was boasting to this young and attractive bakasyonista named Pia (Concepcion) of the beautiful sunset taking place in Santorini.  So I waited for Director Joyce Bernal's shot of the said sunset, and yes, it didn't disappoint me; and the scene had instantly reminded me of the photo I've taken from Yorke Peninsula last month.

The ball of fire melting before my lens!  Yorke Peninsula, South Australia; early spring 2011.

This photo looks like the Santorini sunset featured in the said romantic movie so I decided to post it here.  So timely, while I was checking my blogroll, I noticed that BertN Travels latest post was about their recent cruise- and their first stop:  Santorini!

I've seen Santorini twice in the movie, and have seen photos of the island on a fellow blogger's post... its beautiful sunset is similar to the one in my 'backyard' but these things don't mean that I can live without dreaming to visit Santorini, Greece someday.  I'd love to be there!

Oh! The island of Santorini also reminds me of my Anatomy lesson about pancreas.  As an exocrine gland, there's this non-functional accessory duct called 'the Duct of Santorini'. 

If you're in love, and loves to travel but haven't watched For the First Time yet, well, grab a copy and watch it now.  I'm sure you'll love it.


Wednesday, September 14, 2011

El bloque del escritor

For more than a year now, I have lost my momentum on blogging and I hate it!  There are heaps of stories to tell, some thoughts and feelings that were supposed to be written and a few opinions that have been left unexpressed for ages!  Sayang.

I can't understand.  I simply can't manage to weave all 'these' into words and sentences.  There were a lot of beautiful and meaningful things have come and passed but I have undesirably lost the prowess to log it using my quill.  Yes, they were so intangible... oh, so subtle that even my lenses couldn't capture! 


Saturday, August 27, 2011


My birthday cake specially made by Ate Fely Shumacher.
It's been quite a while since I had a birthday party- it was ten years ago right after getting my veterinary license.   

I didn't have the plan to celebrate this year, but my Titas in Port Wakefield organized something.  It was supposedly a surprise party but they failed to keep it, so I volunteered to procure a whole roasted pork.  Special thanks to my friends who are working in the piggery farm, we got the size we want at a lower price.  We didn't use a skewer but it turned up as an authentic Philippine lechon

It was a double celebration:  my birthday, and for getting the Australian citizenship this year!  Cheers!

The main dish.

Hogwarts-inspired dessert table.

The long table.

The celebrant with the event planners.

August 27, 2011.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Another First!

Mt. Buller, Victoria, AUSTRALIA

July 8 to 13, 2011.  Luckily, I had seven days holiday between (our chicken's) batch 39 and 40.  I, originally, had no plans to escape from the farm during the week- I was simply aiming to raise a certain amount for an important project in the Philippines but the weather forecast in Victoria was so enticing that I failed to resist booking online for my 3-day adventure.     

The driver of the horse-driven carriage, Swanston St., Melbourne.

For four years I had been dreaming to visit the Australian Alps to experience the snow but there were powerful circumstances that would always come across my plans; so the snow had fallen and melted for four consecutive wintertimes without RJ visiting the place.

But not in winter 2011 because I have finally found my way to Mt. Buller!

The unique kneelers.  St. Paul's Cathedral, corner Swanston and Flinder's Streets, Melbourne.

...with Margarette- one of Melbourne's city 'ambassadors'. 

I will write another post about my first snow experience.  Most of the photos here were taken in Melbourne- a day before my first encounter with snow.


Sunday, July 3, 2011


The facade of the Freo Market, W.A., Australia
February 28, 2011.  I was exploring the Fremantle Market (Western Australia) and was expecting to see the local fresh produce of the region but was surprised to discover that there were also arts and crafts, silver jewelries and a few food stalls around.  And in one corner I noticed this boomerang shop.

Boomerang Shop.  Fremantle Market, Western Australia
Boomerang.  I heard this word when I was younger but couldn't understand when the older folks would relate boomerang with a person's deed.  My mom had tried to explain to me that boomerang is a flying tool that, when thrown, will surely come right back without hitting the ground; but she never showed me a photo nor did she draw the said tool, the reason why I couldn't understand the 'boomerang effect' that they were saying. 

...until I came to Australia and have seen the different designs of boomerang! According to Wikipedia, the oldest Australian Aboriginal Boomerangs are 10,000 years old.

Sunday, June 26, 2011


I missed the blogosphere and I am planning to be back soon.
Whether to use the same blog name and theme or to change both is what I am currently considering.  But I already love The Chook-minder's Quill, slash Lens.  After I have gone past the major milestone in this Australian migration highway, this is still me- the chicken farmer.  For more than a month after taking my Australian citizenship oath, nothing has changed really, it has remained as a mere piece of document.

And yes I am leaving no stones unturned to achieve some major changes in my Australian life.  I am praying that it will soon be granted, and as it gradually unfolds I simply want to share it to the blogosphere. 

SIDE ALTAR.  St. Mary's Cathedral, Perth, Western Australia


Friday, May 20, 2011

Simply Australian

The flag, the queen and the coat of arms.
Today, the 20th of May 2011 is a very remarkable and memorable day in my life. I attended the Australian citizenship ceremony to take my pledge- the final step in my journey to Australian citizenship. This achievement is 4 years, 4 months, 4 days and 2 hours in the making.

The departmental ceremony was very simple. NO guests allowed.  No friends, no family member—just us (a group of ten who were scheduled to take the oath at 10am). There’s no chance to take photos before and during the event.  It was a 20-minute program—brief and simple. There was a short video presentation showing some new migrants who were very happy living and working in Australia, each was proud of being a new citizen of this country.

Then the immigration officer read the message of the Australian immigration minister Chris Bowen; after that we took the pledge (that was around 10:20am), we were not even asked to raise our right hand!  Others shed some tears, but I didn't, though I actually wanted to...  After the oath, we sung Australia's national anthem- Advance Australia Fair; but NOT the entire song, only the first paragraph!  Whew!

Australian Department of Immigration and Citizenship, Adelaide, South Australia.
Happy?  Uhmn... Yes I am happy because finally I have achieved my goal; but NOT really happy with the ceremony because it didn't give justice to all the hardships and challenges that I've been through along the way.  Actually, it was my choice.  I decided to perform my oath at the soonest possible time; I don't want to wait for another sixty days to join the oath-taking ceremony scheduled at my local council.   Huhmn... should this be allowed, I would love to take another citizenship oath this coming Australia Day 2012- it must be a very big event!  More solemn and more emotional, I guess.   

Simply Filipino-Australians - Jordan and RJ.
My friend Jordan Gay-od took his pledge today, as well; he was with the batch who’s scheduled an hour after ours.  I was walking out of the elevator from the third floor when I saw him- it was only at that very moment when we both realized that we’re celebrating the same thing on the same day- we haven’t seen or ‘texted’ each other for quite a while.  So I went back to the immigration office and waited until he finished his oath; then we had our photo taken by Karen- the immigration officer who administered the oath.  After the quick ceremony, Jordan and I headed to the BBQ City in Chinatown-Adelaide to have some bites!  He paid for the main meal; I treated him with a dessert- a peach crepe of Happy Sweet.  I was happy; I believe he was, too!  At least we have each other to share that joyful moment with!  


Monday, May 16, 2011

English 101

A car for sale in Port Wakefield, definitely NOT the car that Corey wants. 

My workmate Corey told me this morning that he was thinking of selling his boat and his motorbike then use the money to get the car that's currently for sale in Pt. Wakefield.

"Huhmn!  What's the 'KO-LOR' of that kHAH (as in caR)?"  I asked using my obviously fake Australian accent.  

He didn't answer, instead, his forehead skin wrinkled.  Puzzled, he asked me, "What's that?!"

Simple, he couldn't understand what I was saying, so I spelled the word- COLOUR. A bit embarassed, I asked him, "How do you pronounce that word here in Australia?"

"KAH-LAH!" he instantly replied.


Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Happy Easter!

In Australia, I've noticed that during Ash Wednesday celebration Christians would start greeting each other a "Happy Easter!"  Simultaneously, shops and other similar establishments would post this greeting or would exaggeratedly showcase an array of Easter stuffs during the entire length of the Lent.

My icing injector broke when I was writing on my mocha cake- the reason why the letters don't look very good.

During the Holy Week, the long weekend or public holiday Down Under would start on Maundy Thursday and, interestingly, wouldn't simply end on Easter Sunday but until Monday which is called Easter Monday; and in Tasmania they are on a holiday until Easter Tuesday!  Australia is always very excited for Easter, the reason why as early as Holy Tuesday, my mocha cake is already Easter-inspired.

This long weekend is not for the people involved in the livestock industry, though.  We still need to attend to the needs of our animals every day.  But honeslty, I don't know if the entire long weekend of those who are on a holiday is sincerely spent with the essence of the season because I've observed that more people are visiting the coasts and campsites than the church, and it seems to me that local children would directly relate Easter Sunday with bunny and with the colourful eggs of different sizes than commemorating Christ's resurrection.

I can't help but compare how Australia and the Philippines celebrate the Lenten Season.  Being religious is, indeed, not a guarantee of being prosperous.  I am sorry.

The chocolates at Haigh's Chocolates, corner Rundle St. and King William Rd., Adelaide City, South Australia


Friday, April 15, 2011


"While I was driving back home from Foodland-Balaklava, I noticed the charm of the railway crossing at Bowmans... at dusk it was boasting of its silhouette against the elegance of the early evening sky!"

Adelaide-Port Augusta railway line, Bowmans, South Australia.

I survived.

We’ve been very busy in the farm for the past seven days... It’s harvest time and we’re short of one worker after a workmate didn’t turn up one day without notice and decided to forever ignore my calls.

It was not a joke to run this half a million-capacity broiler farm 24/7- physically and mentally with only three people especially during the final third of the cycle when there were five times  a week night catches, daily bird sample weighing, heavier dead bird to collect, with the main water pump motor playing up.  I simply don’t want to see these chickens to gradually die of thirst or heat stroke because of inadequate evaporative cooling during warmer days. 

It was a great relief to find a replacement for the worker we’ve lost, but it was equally frustrating that after working with us for a day and a half (a third to be exact) this 20-year old recently-employed worker decided to quit simply because he cannot handle the burden and the smell of daily mortality collection.

This photo was taken after the chicken harvest; 12 April 2011 at 11:56PM...
I had to work day and night especially if it’s my turn to act as a watchdog during harvest; forgetting about my day off until this 16-year old local joined us yesterday.  I can only wish (though I am, honestly, fervently praying) that this guy will work with us for the next twenty years (as what my employer would usually say); while hoping that at the soonest possible time the immigration department will finally grant the visa to our much-awaited Filipino worker.       
Thank God it’s Friday!  No harvest, no bird weighing, no grain stocktaking, no feed ordering, no phone calls from the integrator’s broiler serviceperson, no emails, no fax messages... just dead bird collection and minor repair, plus rodent baiting- which is very important these days to get rid of mice that love to nibble our chook feed at night—in my estimate, they are close to or even more than a million!

This afternoon I decided to do my supermarket shopping in the nearby town- Balaklava.  But I needed to do it quickly so I could get back to the farm before it gets dark and cool (especially during these days that the autumnal equinox has already taken place) to shut the blinds at the cooling end of the sheds.
...and while I was driving back home from Foodland-Balaklava, I noticed the charm of the railway crossing at Bowmans—it looks absolutely ordinary under the bright, blue sky, but earlier at dusk it was boasting of its silhouette against the elegance of the early evening sky!  


Saturday, April 9, 2011


It's the 'kangaroo and the emu', the 'green and gold', the Sydney Opera House and the Sydney Harbour Bridge... and they say 'fish and chips' is almost an Australian icon.  How about the koala and the eucalyptus tree?

Koala's paw on a eucalyptus bark.  Western Australia's Caversham Wildlife Park

I am reading the Australian Citizenship Handbook for the fourth time now in preparation for the exam, and the contents of the book reminded me of this photo.

...twenty-four days more to go before I can actually get the eligibility; I wish the universe will soon grant it to me.  This ambition is very costly, I have sacrificed a lot of things in my life, I hope it's worth it! 


Friday, April 1, 2011

In and Out

The maximum temperature was 38'C during the first day of my visit to Western Australia last February but the heat didn't stop me from exploring the city of Perth.  I went to Subiaco, the Swan Bell Tower, and the shops at Hay and Murray streets; and in the afternoon, when the daytime temperature was at its peak, I felt a great relief inside The Art Gallery of Western Australia and the Western Australian Museum.  It was cool and quiet, and the displays were magnificent!  Cameras were not allowed in the gallery, though, so I decided to take a photo outside.

The colours, lines and shapes outside the Art Gallery of Western Australia, Perth, WA.

Inside and outside, there's an art in The Art Gallery of W.A.!


Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Upside Down

I'll be eligible to apply for Australian citizenship in thirty-five days.  I have been tirelessly counting days and nights for the past fifty-five days and it has made me excited to get up every morning knowing that I have survived the challenges of the previous day and currently given another opportunity to continue my countdown and accomplish all the tasks ahead to get closer to my goal.  Mornings have been getting cooler and cooler since the onset of autumn three weeks ago, and the sun rises usually after seven but the low temperature and darkness haven't stopped me to start performing my daily farm routine at 5:40 AM.       

While I was checking the sheds at sunrise this morning, I've noticed a stunning reflection on the poorly drained area between our new chicken sheds.  So I took my camera and captured the view.

The reflection of the grain silos and the morning sky at Port Wakefield, South Australia.  March 29, 2011.

Early bird catches 'special worms', indeed!