Dust Storms in Brisbane, another extreme.

September 24th, 2009

[ Updated on the 7th of October with pictures after the dust storm ]

Yesterday (23 September)  Brisbane has experienced the worst dust storm in 70 years with visibility dropping to 200 meter (normal is 25 km) . Also Sydney was coloured red as was on the news in The Netherlands. It was a strange experience when de sun was hiding behind red dust coming from the west (Outback). It was a nice cool day but too dusty to stay outside since it was causing problems for eyes and nose.

After the storm everything outside was covered under a thin layer of red dust causing a  lot of clean-up work. We have our own tank/rain water, but for people connected to town water, water restrictions will be relaxed to enable residents and businesses to clean up (from 12.01am (AEST) on Saturday September 26 to 11.59pm (AEST) on October 4). New dust storms are expected in the coming weeks and a new one is already expected for next Saturday.

Road to our house during the dust storm. Road 2 weeks after the dust storm.

Our house in dust storm. Our house two weeks after the dust storm.

Our dusty garden.

Our arrival in Australia was followed by many extremes and records. First we  have experienced extreme storms followed by extreme heavy rainfall covering large areas with water, but also filling up the water reserves in the dams. Recently maximum winter temperature records were broken by an extreme “heat wave” (35 degrees Celsius). And now we have experienced an extreme dust storm. (We are not even mentioning the financial crises as another extreme.) Nevertheless, we are still alive 🙂

Update of last month will follow soon.



GP day, a musical and …

September 5th, 2009

Performance on Grandparents Day by Prep year (incl. Jorick).
Performance on Grandparents Day by Grade 2 (incl. Nicole). At Genesis Christian College Nicole and Jorick had Grandparents Day. Since their grandparents are overseas (and very ill) Jan and Anita played a role as stand-in. Nicole was also visited by an older former Dutch couple which she appreciated very much. After some songs and other performances we had a mornings tea and could visit the class rooms to see our kids in action.

Wallum Sedge Frog on Jorick's head. Kissed by a Wallum Sedge Frog. The local animals around the house still have their attraction on the kids and Nicole loves to catch (and cuddle) Lizards and other animals. Jorick is less interested but so now and then …

Still they need to be care full not to get bitten by a snake of spider, although not all of them are venomous. But who knows the difference between all the different sorts ? We don’t.

A carpet snake behind our shed.

During just some garden activities we suddenly saw a carpet snake (at least that’s what we think) creeping behind the shed being around 3-4 meters long. Although not venomous, we still find it very impressive to have such animals in our garden. It was amazing how he could disappear without any noise in very low grass. This again told us that you can very easily step on one and get bitten, when walking though grass. Because of the snakes we are also limited in choosing a pet because their smell can attract snakes. But luckily we don’t have that problem with Nicole’s Gold Fishes.

So now and then we still try to discover new things so when we read in the newspaper about a “musical” in “Pioneer Village Bicentennial Hall” in Petrie we went there. We bought some tickets and after eating a big sausage, the show started. When we entered the hall we already got suspicious because we felt like the youngest people around and after the show started we knew why. Some local older amateurs were reading the lyrics and so now and then they sang a song. Although it was a nice experience, the kids got very much bored and we left in the break, where after we went to Lake Samsonvale (a dam, one of the water reserves of Brisbane) to see some pelicans and to have a play.

"Musical" at Pioneer Village Bicentennial Hall. Pelicans at Lake Samsonvale. A play at Lake Samsonvale.

We are still enjoying the environment as you can see.