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Hamilton Island

Hamilton Island a Tender Port. Latitude 21′ South.

Hamilton Island is a very interesting Island one of the Whit Sundays. Cockatoos, Lorikeets and Fruit bats live wild all over the island, but are not welcome by the natives, because of their mess and noise. We as tourists, had fun viewing them and taking their pictures. This was our third stop on the Circumnavigation of Australia.

What a special day! After tendering to land we took a cruise in the Denison Star (max 60 passengers) around the Whitsunday Islands. The Denison Star is a beautiful part of Australian Maritime history, made of Huon Pine, a tree only found in wilderness areas of Tasmania. This pine is the slowest growing tree in the world.

Why the name Whitsunday you ask?– that is the day Cap Cook discovered the islands. For those of you who don’t remember your Religious calendar –Whit Sunday is the seventh Sunday after Easter Sunday.

We are still a bit south of the Great Barrier Reef but in places there was a scum on the water that is from the coral, called sea saw dust. Wild Cockatoos, lorikeets and fruit bats are all over this island. We heard noise from all three of those, plus the swack from sea gulls and ravens.The cockatoos are just like pigeons any where else and become pests around the outside eating areas–Like the Ibis type bird we saw in Brisbane at the Museum.

A beautiful sunny day with just a slight breeze to keep us almost cool. There are 74 islands and more and more resorts being built on the islands. Oprah did a show in Australia and stayed in one of the new resorts.

As a beside, food here is a little over twice as expensive as in NM! For example a BLT Australian costs 12$ Aus.The exchange rate is about the same $1 for $1.

Talking to the locals;

Cockatoos will come in the house-open the screen door, or tear a hole in it, go in house and make a mess.

The bats are especially noticeable at sundown but they were flying all over when we were there as there was road work going on in the hill near their main nest. I have no idea of the numbers of bats,but I’m sure they must be in the hundreds.
The fruit bats appear to have a wing span of about 3 feet, The locals said if you are in the right place at the wrong time you might get scratched. A child died a while back on Cook Island because of a bat. Their scratch results in Lysse a virus similar to rabies. The locals would like to get rid of them, but the environmental groups won’t let the govt do anything.

Another wonderful day in an Australian Paradise

Brisbane

Brisbane

When we sailed up the Brisbane River into Brisbane we were met by this little group of Musicians. So nice to be welcomed!

Brisbane is a beautiful city. We journeyed by water taxi from our ship up the Brisbane River beyond the South Bank Museum area and viewed downtown, beautiful homes, recreation areas, and other interesting sites along the River. The exit from the river at the South Bank area featured a beautiful array of multicolored Bougainvillea and walk- way of tropical plants. The South Bank Park area is a beautiful in which to stroll. We visited the Aboriginal Museum and walked through the library. The buildings are open air, and very inviting. All over the city the bougainvillea were proudly displaying their many colors and in the Park they are growing in a beautiful archway. Beautiful birds could be see and heard all around. One interesting bird that we saw all over South Bank and at the Brisbane Museum trying to eat food off picnic tables is a type of Australian White Ibis, a large pest to shoo away from your picnic table.

Welcome to Brisbane Welcome to Brisbane

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A few photographs from Brisbane
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Egypt Sites

Inside Karnak Temple

Ram-headed Spinx-Symbol of god Amun

Ram-headed Sphinx is the symbol of the god Amun

One-armed man

One-armed man

Second Pylon in Karnak Temple

Towards the second pylon

Karnak Temple statue

with Palm headress

Karnak temple looking out

Looking through the columns towards an oblisk

Entrance to Karnak Temple

Columns at Karnak Temple

Looking up towards the sky


Sites of Egypt Colossi of Memnon

Amenhotep III (18th Dynasty) built a mortuary temple in Thebes that was guarded by two gigantic statues on the outer gates. All that remains now are the 23 meter (75 ft) high, one thousand ton statues of Amenhotep III. Though damaged by nature and ancient tourists, the statues are still impressive.

Ancient Egyptians called the southern of the two statues “Ruler of Rulers”. Later travelers called them “Shammy and “Tammy”, which may have been a corruption of the Arabic words for “left” and “right”. Today they are known locally as “el-Colossat”, or “es-Salamat”. The statues are made from carved blocks of quartzite quarried either at Giza or Gebel es-Silsila. The Northern statue depicts Amenhotep III with his mother, Mutemwia, while the southern statue is of Amenhotep III with his wife, Tiy and one of his daughters. On the sides of the statues are reliefs depicting Nile gods joining together plants symbolizing Upper and Lower Egypt.

The Colossi of Memnon (known to locals as el-Colossat, or es-Salamat) are two massive stone statues of Pharaoh Amenhotep III. For the past 3400 years (since 1350 BC) they have stood in the Theban necropolis, across the River Nile from the modern city of Luxor.[1][2]
Contents

1 Description
2 Name
3 Sounds
4 Gallery
5 See also
6 References
7 External links

Description

The twin statues depict Amenhotep III (fl. 14th century BC) in a seated position, his hands resting on his knees and his gaze facing eastwards (actually SSE in modern bearings) towards the river. Two shorter figures are carved into the front throne alongside his legs: these are his wife Tiy and mother Mutemwiya. The side panels depict the Nile god Hapy.

The statues are made from blocks of quartzite sandstone which was quarried at el-Gabal el-Ahmar (near modern-day Cairo) and transported 675 km (420 mi) overland to Thebes. (They are too heavy to have been transported upstream on the Nile.)The blocks used by later Roman engineers to reconstruct the eastern colossus may have come from Edfu (north of Aswan). Including the stone platforms on which they stand – themselves about 4 m (13 ft) – the colossi reach a towering 18 m (60 ft) in height and weigh an estimated 720 tons each [3][4][5] The two figures are about 15 m (50 ft) apart.

Both statues are quite damaged, with the features above the waist virtually unrecognizable. The western (or southern) statue is a single piece of stone, but the eastern (or northern) figure has a large extentive crack in the lower half and above the waist consists of 5 tiers of stone. These upper levels consist of a different type of sandstone, and are the result of a later (Roman Empire) reconstruction attempt. It is believed that originally the two statues were identical to each other, although inscriptions and minor art may have varied.

The original function of the Colossi was to stand guard at the entrance to Amenhotep’s memorial temple (or mortuary temple): a massive cult centre built during the pharaoh’s lifetime, where he was worshipped as a god-on-earth both before and after his departure from this world. In its day, this temple complex was the largest and most opulent in Egypt. Covering a total of 35 hectares (86 acres), even later rivals such as Ramesses II’s Ramesseum or Ramesses III’s Medinet Habu were unable to match it in area; even the Temple of Karnak, as it stood in Amenhotep’s time, was smaller.
Side panel detail showing two flanked relief images of the deity Hapi and, to the right, a sculpture of the royal wife Tiy

With the exception of the Colossi, however, very little remains today of Amenhotep’s temple. Standing on the edge of the Nile floodplain, successive annual inundations gnawed away at the foundations – a famous 1840s lithograph by David Roberts shows the Colossi surrounded by water – and it was not unknown for later rulers to dismantle, purloin, and reuse portions of their predecessors’ monuments.
Name

Memnon was a hero of the Trojan War, a King of Ethiopia who led his armies from Africa into Asia Minor to help defend the beleaguered city but was ultimately slain by Achilles. The name Memnon means “Ruler of the Dawn”, and was probably applied to the colossi because of the reported cry at dawn of one of the statues (see below). Eventually, the entire Theban Necropolis became generally referred to as the Memnonium.
Soundsn 27 BC, a large earthquake reportedly shattered the eastern colossus, collapsing it from the waist up and cracking the lower half. Following its rupture, the remaining lower half of this statue was then reputed to “sing” on various occasions- always within an hour or two of sunrise, usually right at dawn. The sound was most often reported in February or March, but this is probably more a reflection of the tourist season rather than any actual pattern. The description varied; Strabo said it sounded “like a blow”, Pausanias compared it to “the string of a lyre” breaking, but it also was described as the striking of brass or whistling. The earliest report in literature is that of the Greek historian and geographer Strabo, who claimed to have heard the sound during a visit in 20 BC, by which time it apparently was already well-known. Other ancient sources include Pliny (not from personal experience, but he collected other reports), Pausanias, and Juvenal. In addition, the base of the statue is inscribed with about 90 surviving inscriptions of contemporary tourists reporting whether they had heard the sound or not.

The legend of the “Vocal Memnon”, the luck that hearing it was reputed to bring, and the reputation of the statue’s oracular powers became known outside of Egypt, and a constant stream of visitors, including several Roman Emperors, came to marvel at the statues. The last recorded reliable mention of the sound dates from 196 (A.D.). Sometime later in the Roman era, the upper tiers of sandstone were added (the original remains of the top half have never been found); the date of this reconstruction is unknown, but local tradition places it circa 199, and attributes it to the Roman Emperor Septimius Severus in an attempt to curry favour with the oracle (it is known that he visited the statue but did not hear the sound).

Various explanations have been offered for the phenomenon; these are of two types: natural or man-made. Strabo himself apparently was too far away to be able to determine its nature: he reported that he could not determine if it came from the pedestal, the shattered upper area, or “the people standing around at the base”. If natural, the sound was probably caused by rising temperatures and the evaporation of dew inside the porous rock. Similar sounds, although much rarer, have been heard from some of the other Egyptian monuments (Karnak is the usual location for more modern reports). Perhaps the most convincing argument against it being the result of human agents is that it did cease, probably due to the added weight of the reconstructed upper tiers.

A few mentions of the sound in the early modern era (late 18th and early 19th centuries) seem to be hoaxes, either by the writers or perhaps by locals perpetuating the phenomenon.

The “Vocal Memnon” features prominently in one scene of Henrik Ibsen’s Peer Gynt. They also show up in Oscar Wilde’s fairy tale “The Happy Prince.”

Read more: http://www.touregypt.net/collmem.htm#ixzz2d8EYYjAR

http://egyptsites.wordpress.com/2009/02/10/the-colossi-of-memnon/

Sydney Australia

Early Morning on Opera House

Early morning light on the Opera House

Sunrise in Sydney

Sydney at Sunrise

Moon over the Harbor Bridge

Moon over the Harbor Bridge

Sydney Opera House at Sunrise

Opera House at Sunrise

 

Sydney Harbor Bridge at Sunrise

Sydney Harbor Bridge at Sunrise

Sydney Fort Denison

Fort Denison

 

Sunrise on the Ship

Sunrise on the Ship

Sydney in Spring

Sydney in Spring

On Observatory Hill

On Observatory Hill looking toward the Bridge

Harbor Bridge

Harbor Bridge from Observatory Hill

ship between opera and bridge

Our ship Between the Opera House and Bridge

 

$8 cup of Coffee

$8 Cup of Coffee

Sydney Australia
The Holland American Circumnavigation of Australia started in Sydney, followed by Brisbane, Hamilton Island, Townsville then Cairns, and that is just one side of Australia! The Great Barrier Reef is the next wonderful area to visit and view.

Cruising into Sydney as the sun rose brought out all the cameras on board ship and we watched and recorded the sun rise on the Sydney Opera House, and the Sydney Harbor Bridge, two of the most iconic structures on the planet.

It was October which is Spring in the Southern Hemisphere. The beautiful purple Jacaranda mimosifolia blooming in great profusion all along the walkway in the Rocks area of Sydney add more color to this historic area. We wondered around the Rocks area and climbed up to observatory hill after having an $8 cup of coffee. Yes everything is very expensive in Australia, especially in Sydney!
Click on the pictures to enlarge them

Known as the Harbor City, Sydney is the largest, oldest and most cosmopolitan city in Australia with an enviable reputation as one of the world’s most beautiful and livable cities in the word, Brimming with history nature, culture, art, fashion, cuisine, and design, it is set next to miles of ocean coastline and sandy surf beaches. Recent immigration trends have led to the city’s reputation as one of the most culturally and ethnically diverse cities in Australia and the world.

The history of Sydney and the convicts.

The settlement of Sydney began its life as a penal colony, with a total of 568 male and 191 female prisoner convicts with 13 children, 206 marines with 26 wives and 13 children, and 20 officials having made the voyage.
Their earliest huts were composed of cabbage-tree palm, while the convicts were housed in huts made of boards wattled with slender twigs and plastered with clay. By 1790, however, there were 40 convicts employed making bricks and tiles, 50 brickie labourers, and 4 stonemasons.
The total convict population that year was 730 persons, with 413 under medical treatment. In fact free settlers did not begin arriving until 1793. See The Rocks, for more history on these early colonial days.

Transportation of convicts to New South Wales (NSW) was finally abolished in 1840 and shortly afterwards, in 1842, Sydney was declared a city. The population grew rapidly during this period, helped by the discovery of gold and the gold rush of 1850 – one year after the Californian gold rush of 1849. Australia received many American and Chinese immigrants at the same time.
In 1901 the six British colonies in Australia formed a federation to become the Commonwealth of Australia. This marks the period of the modern country. Sydney continued to grow and by 1925 became a metropolis of 1 million people. This grew to 2 million by 1963.
Today Sydney has diverse demographics with people from over one hundred countries contributing to its population of over 4 million.

http://www.sydney-australia.biz/history/convict.php

Trip around Australia

A trip around Australia;

Yes one could drive around Australia, but it is a very large country, about as large as the Continental US, and much of it is desert with long endless roads except for the ever-present Road Trains. Holland America to the rescue– Circumnavigation of the country in a Cruise ship!

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-_69-Sk4wN5Q/Ufn9f0ivdMI/AAAAAAAADm8/QbgfaQdm70w/s1600/australia-north-america.jpg

Check out the above website to see the size of Australia compared to the US, and you will see why one can’t see much of the country if planning to drive unless one plans many weeks of driving.

The Holland American Circumnavigation started in Sydney, followed by Brisbane, Hamilton Island, Townsville then Cairns, and that is just one side of Australia! The Great Barrier Reef is the next wonderful area to visit and view. For the next few months I hope to share my photos and experiences while on this amazing trip around Australia. Please join me!

nCircumavigation Map of Australia

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