Monday, 11 July 2016

Film: The Together Project

This film caught my eye in the program for the Scandinavian film festival, so I went along tonight with a couple of friends. We spent a really enjoyable 8+ minutes chuckling along. After seeing Rams, also from Iceland, earlier this year, I've come to appreciate that Icelandic humour is....well, different...I can't possibly describe it, but deadpan might be an apt word.

A French / Icelandic co-production, it was certainly a quirky romcom, based around a swimming pool, a congress of lifeguards, and swimming in an Icelandic hotpool.

Here's some reviews:

The Hollywood Reporter.
Screen Daily

An excerpt on You Tube:

Tuesday, 28 June 2016

The Pool: Australia's exhibition at the 2016 Venice Architecture Biennale

Australia's exhibition at the 2016 Venice Architecture Biennale is The Pool. It provides an insight into this aspect of Australia's cultural identity. Janet Holmes a Court, the Commissioner for the Australian exhibition writes: "A pool has been created within the exhibition space along with an immensely multi-sensory experience that transports visitors poolside..."

As I can't visit Venice this year, I've contented myself with buying the book. There are contributions from:

  • Tim Flannery - an influential environmentalist, discussing the history and continuing relevance of the Great Artesian Basin, including the hot pools at Moree, Lightning Ridge and Pilliga in NSW and other states;
  • Ian Thorpe, Olympic champion, talks about what is so appealing about the act of swimming, what he loves about pools and the feel of water;
  • Designers Anna Plunkett and Luke Sales explore their experiences of the pool growing up, and the pool in memories of childhood;
  • Christos Tsolkas, author of Barracuda (starting soon as a drama series on ABC TV). He sees the pool as a deeply symbolic artefact of Australian culture. He tells the story of the pool from his childhood into adulthood;
  • Anna Funder, award winning author, looks at the importance of public pools in the towns and cities of Australia;
  • Hetti Perkins tells the story of the Freedom Riders who challenged the exclusion of Aboriginal people from the public pool in Moree in 1965. It was a turning point for the struggle for Aboriginal rights in Australia; working towards a PhD on the role of the public pool in Australia. Here she talks about competitive swimming and its legacy;
  • Singer-songwriter Paul Kelly has got into deep water in many places on his tours and speaks of a place for family gatherings, celebrations and everyday meditations. 
It even includes my favourite Women's Weekly swimming pool cake recipe. And lots of great illustrations.

Friday, 11 March 2016

Darelle and Sally's Swimming Adventures Part 7: South Coogee and South Maroubra

On a fairly overcast, but hot and humid day, we set off to find the rock pool (Ivor Rowe) at South Coogee. It's a natural pool which was enlarged in the 1960s.

We arrived at high tide, and there was a high swell, so we didn't venture down - the steps looked really really slippery too - lots of algae on them.

So, we took off to search for the rock pools at South Maroubra, to discover that they are mainly revealed at low tide. We arrived at peak high tide (1.83m). Still, there were pools and headland to explore, and a nice cup of coffee back at the cafe at the Surf Club afterwards!

Fortunately we only saw the sign!

Wednesday, 3 February 2016

Darelle and Sally's Swimming Adventures Part 6: Nielsen Park

Today's swimming adventure destination was Nielsen Park - another fabulous harbour beach in the eastern suburb of Vaucluse (between Parsley Bay, our second destination, and Redleaf Pool, with a view across to Clifton Gardens.

There is a gorgeous netted, sandy swimming beach, plenty of grass and vast shady picnic areas.

The kiosk/cafe has good cafe, the wait staff were friendly and helpful. There's a casual takeaway kiosk as well as an attractive inside dining room, and where we chose, birdseye verandah seating.

We watched a pair of dolphins frolicking in the harbour from our spot.

Toilets and change rooms are adequate. Parking is at a premium in nearby streets. But you can have a peek at how some of Sydney's wealthiest residents are accommodated on the walk to and from the car!

Wednesday, 27 January 2016

Darelle and Sally's Swimming Adventures Part 5: Little Bay

After a bit of rain to start, Australia Day became sunny and humid, so time to head off for our next swimming adventure: Little Bay beach. 

I've blogged quite a number of times before from here. 
See here:
Today there was a yacht race from Sydney Harbour to Botany Bay and back, and we could clearly see them as they passed by. 
It was much more crowded than times in the past, BUT it was a public holiday, and there ae many many more apartments and houses there now as the old Prince Henry's coast hospital land has been developed. 
Facilities are pretty scant - no real shade except in the sandstone overhang. There is only one toilet / change room and the queue can be long if there are a lot of people. No beachside cafe, but there are some a short drive away. 
The water was deliciously warm, but there were a fair few bluebottles to be seen; they weren't deterring anyone (except us). We didn't notice them when we did have our swim, and we emerged un-stung. 
The beach is on the eastern coastal walk between the harbour and Botany Bay. A short walk to the southern headland is rewarded with magnificent views (see below) 
Happy to be back in the water: 

The ring of rocks pool : see link above for more information:

Up on the southern headland :

Why not pitch your tent and set up your picnic directly across the only access path to the beach from the headland! I had to pick my way across the the picnic!