Royal National Park: Monday, 3rd October, 1977

We awoke at five past seven to a sunny sky and relative warmth. It was hard to believe that the airport, which is perhaps only twenty kilometres or so distant, as the crow flies, was closed due to fog.

I drove up to Miranda where Tiki and my brother-in-law, Roger, left my sister, Susan, and I in the car while they went to buy two half cartons of beer. The bar attendant must have presumed that they were husband and wife and took it upon himself to give the change to Tiki, as he pronounced, “This is the only opportunity you’ll get!”

Thirteen of us, in all, boarded “Dad’s” launch, “Ocean Swell”, which is thirty-one feet in length. We headed up the Port Hacking River to the causeway at Audley where I suddenly experienced the insuperable urge to announce that it was near there, on the river’s bank, that I had first told Tiki that I loved her.

From there we travelled back down the river and anchored near the old rusty shell of a small boat, which is located just off the eastern shoreline of South-West Arm in the Royal National Park. Declared to be a national park in 1879, it became only the second in the world, after Yellowstone.

After lunch some members of our party set off in what the family term the ‘Quintrex’ and later others went for a row in the dinghy. When everyone was accounted for we weighed anchor and, with Tiki and I seated at the bow, journeyed to Bate Bay at the Port Hacking’s mouth prior to our return to the in-laws’ via Burranear Bay, Dolan’s Bay and Great Turriell Bay.

It had been an appropriate day to be on the water as the mercury reached thirty-three degrees Celsius. This meant that it has been Sydney’s hottest day, in October, since 1969. In fact, the city recorded the highest maximum of any Australian capital, being one degree warmer than Darwin’s.

Roger and Susan packed their bags by six o’clock and left us with a map of Melbourne. We intend to spend Christmas Day with them.

At half past six on Channel Seven’s News, read by Roger Climpson, I learned that the late Perc Galea’s horse, “Sir Serene”, had won the prestigious Metropolitan Handicap, which was run at Randwick Racecourse this afternoon.

 

No Piano: Tuesday, 4th October, 1977

John Burles played Mark Holden’s current hit, “Reach Out For The One Who Loves You”, and the late Johnny Horton’s classic, “North To Alaska”, from the year of 1960. Today presented us with fine weather and a maximum temperature of twenty-two degrees Celsius.

“Country Road”, at 6.00 p.m. on Channel Two was hosted by the singer and pianist, Jade Hurley. It included footage of the Welsh singer, Bonnie Tyler, performing her recent hit, “Lost In France”. Jade even had Tiki voicing his praises when he performed Jerry Lee Lewis’s classic from 1957, “Great Balls Of Fire”.

I left at seven o’clock to walk to the house of Tiki’s grandparents, only to come upon the scene of a nasty accident at the intersection of Port Hacking and Burraneer Bay roads. The front of a yellow Datsun had been stoved in and a woman’s head was being bandaged. I reached the house by eight and stayed until a quarter to nine. Her grandmother gave Tiki, on this her actual birthday, the usual choice from a number of crocheted doilies while her grandfather, whose eighty-fifth birthday falls due at the end of the month, handed her an envelope that contained twenty-one dollars. Tiki had expected more, as her cousin for her corresponding birthday had been presented with a new piano. Although I walked home bearing a feeling of tiredness, I also, quite incongruously, felt very much alive.

Cook It Yourself, If You Can!: Wednesday, 5th October, 1977

It is supposed to reach thirty degrees Celsius today, but there is a heavy overcast and it is relatively cool. “Dad” surprised us with the news that “Mum” will have to enter hospital to have her troublesome neck manipulated.

This evening, we dined at the restaurant, The Golden Phoenix, in Miranda Fair. Having perused the large menu, we decided to have the special for two at a cost of nine dollars. We each received three dim sims, nasi goreng and sukiyaki.

The ingredients of the sukiyaki were served half cooked and we had to complete the process at our table by placing them in a solution of broth, which was supposed to be heated over a small stove that was fuelled by methylated spirits. The only problem being that the flame kept going out. This called upon the pleasant waitress to use matches to continually relight the stove. Finally, even she recognised the futility of her repetitious actions and replaced the stove with another. The bill totalled ten dollars and ninety cents.

We watched the televised film, “The Virginia Hill Story”. Produced in 1974, it stars Dyan Cannon. The knob was then turned to Channel Ten and the last hour of “Valley Of The Dolls” (1967). Its cast includes Patty “The Patty Duke Show” Duke and the late Sharon Tate.

 

The Top 40 Fantasies: No.6

  1. The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face (1972)                                                                                                                                                                               Roberta Flack
  2. Rocket “88” (1951)                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Jackie Brenston; (pianist: Ike Turner)
  3. Crimson And Clover (1968)                                                                                                                                                                                                           Tommy James and The Shondells
  4. I’ll Never Smile Again (1940)                                                                                                                                                      Tommy Dorsey and his Orchestra; vocals: Frank Sinatra and The Pied Pipers
  5. Sad Movies (Make Me Cry) (1961)                                                                                                                                                                                                 Sue Thompson
  6. Jack And Diane (1982)                                                                                                                                                                                                                      John Cougar
  7. Il Silenzio (1965)                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Nini Rosso
  8. Be My Baby (1963)                                                                                                                                                                                                                              The Ronettes
  9. One O’Clock Jump (1938)                                                                                                                                                                                                       Harry James and his Orchestra
  10. Lonely Teardrops (1958)                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Jackie Wilson
  11. One O’Clock Jump (1937 and 1947)                                                                                                                                                                                       Count Basie and his Orchestra
  12. Go Now! (1964)                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   The Moody Blues
  13. While You See A Chance (1981)                                                                                                                                                                                                       Steve Winwood
  14. You Mean Everything To Me (1960)                                                                                                                                                                                               Neil Sedaka
  15. Last Chance To Turn Around (1965)                                                                                                                                                                                               Gene Pitney
  16. You Are My First Love (1956)                                                                                                                                                                                                            Ruby Murray
  17. Help Is On Its Way (1977)                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The Little River Band
  18. You Are My Sunshine (1941)                                                                                                                                                                                                              Bing Crosby
  19. Padre (1958)                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Toni Ardern
  20. Jackson (1967)                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Nancy Sinatra and Lee Hazlewood
  21. Mexico (1961)                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Bob Moore
  22. Zabadak! (1967)                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick and Tich
  23. Computer Games (1979)                                                                                                                                                                                                                       Mi-Sex
  24. Above And Beyond (1960)                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Buck Owens
  25. Right Said Fred (1962)                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Bernard Cribbins
  26. C’mon Everybody (1958)                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Eddie Cochran
  27. Girls Talk (1979)                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Dave Edmunds
  28. Jennifer Eccles (1968)                                                                                                                                                                                                                            The Hollies
  29. Hula Love (1957)                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       Buddy Knox
  30. Breathe (1997)                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           The Prodigy
  31. Hold Me Now (1983)                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 The Thompson Twins
  32. Shame, Shame, Shame (1975)                                                                                                                                                                                                          Shirley (And Company)
  33. S-S-S-Single Bed (1976)                                                                                                                                                                                                                             Fox
  34. Le Chaland Qui Passe (1934)                                                                                                                                                                                                                Tino Rossi
  35. Abigail Beecher (1964)                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Freddy Cannon
  36. A Bushel And A Peck (1950)                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Doris Day
  37. Simon Says (1968)                                                                                                                                                                                                                               The 1910 Fruitgum Co.
  38. Top Forty, News, Weather And Sports (1961)                                                                                                                                                                                    Mark Dinning
  39. Mr. Custer (1960)                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Larry Verne
  40. Toast And Marmalade For Tea (1971)                                                                                                                                                                                               Tin Tin

 

Bert Bryant Calls It A Day: Thursday, 6th October, 1977

John Burles, the annoucer at breakfast, on 2KY, stated that the uniquely witty Bert Bryant has officially retired from his job as a broadcaster of horseracing. Bert last worked for the Melburnian radio station, 3UZ. Earlier this year, a blood vessel burst behind his brain.

Tiki had her hair washed, conditioned and then styled with a blow-dryer at a cost of six dollars and fifty cents at the Gerrale Salon on Gerrale Street, in Cronulla. The salon is located opposite that suburb’s R.S.L. (Return Soldiers’ League) Club.

“Country Road”, this evening, included footage of performances by Donna Fargo, Australian country legend, Smoky Dawson, and Johnny Chester, who ‘butchered’ Tom T. Hall’s “Old Dogs, Children and Watermelon Wine”.

At seven o’clock, on “Willesee”, Paul Makin spoke with Bert Bryant in an interview that was fittingly recorded at a racecourse. Bert is fifty years of age, but looks more like sixty-five.

It has been a cold, windy day. Rain began to fall by 8.30 p.m.: the starting time of “Bless This House”, the British series which stars the late Sid James. At five minutes to nine — and also on A.B.C.-TV’s Channel Two — a programme from tonight’s “Stuart Wagstaff Playhouse”, which is entitled ‘The Lover’. Its cast includes the English pairing of Patrick Allen, Robert Swales and Vivien Merchant. It was written by Vivien Merchant’s husband, the playwright, Harold Pinter.

The Reflections

Tony Micale, Phil Castrodale, Ray Steinberg, Dan Bennie and John Dean were the founding members of The Reflections, a doo-wop group from Detroit, Michigan.

The vocalists experienced just the one major hit, “(Just Like) Romeo And Juliet”, in 1964. The single reached N0.6 on Billboard’s Hot 100 chart while, in Australia, it peaked at No.14. The Australian group, Mental As Anything, revived it there, in 1980, and, whilst it rose to No.17 locally, I find it to be a pale imitation of the original.

Reduced to a quartet, following the departure of Ray Steinberg, The Reflections appeared in the film, ‘Winter-A-Go-Go’, in 1965.

A Fortnight Underground: Friday, 7th October, 1977

This evening, “Wild, Wild World Of Animals”, at six o clock, is about those who reside in caves. Tiki watched the film, “Challenge To Lassie”. Made in 1949, it stars the veteran English actors, Edmund Gwenn and Donald Crisp and, of course, ‘Lassie’. It was introduced by Channel Seven’s resident expert on the subject of motion pictures, Bill Collins.

In the meantime, I read about the eleven miners, in West Germany, who were trapped underground for fourteen days in October of 1963.

Tiki washed the dishes, again, tonight.

Tasman Bridge Reopens: Saturday, 8th October, 1977

Although I awoke at ten past six, I did not rise until eight o’clock. By nine we had ventured up towards the back fence to begin our first serious attempt at pulling out the copious amount of Wandering Jew that was growing there. We also dismantled one of the chicken coops and a half of another. They have roofs of green Alsynite, which the creeper had partly concealed.

We returned to the house at ten minutes past ten and left to walk through Gymea. There, we passed the store that was used to sell carpets until it was gutted by fire last night; a fact that had been mentioned on “2KY News” earlier in the morning. At a cost of forty-cents, I bought a single red carnation for Tiki while she was shopping for groceries in Miranda.

Another programme of the series, “Cher”, appeared on Channel Seven from noon. “Sportsview” on Channel Two was hosted by Barry Eaton. It included a replay of the fourth and deciding Test at rugby union, which had been played at Eden Park, in Auckland, between the All Blacks and the touring British Lions. New Zealand scored a try in the last minutes of the match to snatch victory by ten points to nine and, thereby, also win the series by three matches to one. Bevan Wilson, whom at the age of twenty-one, bears the same name as a former Wallaby, played in the position of full-back for New Zealand.

This afternoon, “Luskin Star” took his record to ten wins and two seconds from his only twelve starts when he proved victorious in the Caulfield Guineas. “Family Of Man” won the Caulfield Stakes from “Unaware” and “Royal Cadenza”. “Nunkalowe”, proved to be too fast in winning the Toorak Handicap from “Tulla Honey” and “Lady Blintz”. “Luskin Star” has now amassed prize money of two hundred and forty-five thousand dollars.

Hobart’s Tasman Bridge reopened today, thirty-four months after it was rendered unusable when struck by the cargo ship, “Lake Illawarra”, on the evening of the 5th of January, in 1975. Twelve people died in the mishap. Seven of those were members of the ship’s crew.

Some friends of ours have recommended that we see the motion picture, “Rocky”.

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