Location: Manning Valley
Date: June 2012

June 26, 2012. After much buggerizing around with the technicalities of movie making, I finally got the Driving Around Taree vid finished and uploaded to Youtube. 

June 17, 2012. Took a ride on Lachlan Valley Railway's 3237 steam loco yesterday. We broke down at one point... a problem with an axle bearing, so that'll put paid to any more steam trips this weekend. I'm lucky to have booked the first one. There was a diesel loco at the ass end so it pulled us back to Taree.

We also had to pull over to a siding to wait for a freight train as well as the XPT to pass on its way to Sydney, so we were stuck out in the sticks for about an hour. I shared a booth with 5 talkative and jovial people so we managed to pass the time okay. There was an English couple in their '80s, a retired pilot, an arty type of bloke who lives at Tinonee (a small country village just outside Taree), a retired Italian and me. The English couple and the Italian have been living in Oz since the '50s, and they love it here. "Best country in the world," said the English woman. When I first arrived at the booth, before we left Taree, I poked my head in and said, "Oh, no, I'm in a booth with a bunch of old blokes." They all looked at me and said, "Whaddaya think YOU are!" Hehe.

Ours was carriage #1 but it was at the tail end, so I got more wind noise than loco noise. Still and all, I shot some decent footage, especially on the platform before the journey began. There were a million people, most with cameras, but the commotion added to the atmosphere. At one stage I stood on a bench (despite the wobbly legs) and shot over the top of the crowd. On board the train, I knelt on the hard floor and did several shoots leaning outside an open window (bit hard to lean outside a closed one). When I stood up again, it was a real struggle and I had to hang onto the window sill. I ain't getting any younger ya know. But it was all worth it. 

June 3, 2012. Most mornings I peruse the newsgroups looking for shots of various types of cars, particularly from the 30s and 40s. I was a kid when my older bros brought home their fancy (and sometimes not so fancy) chariots. I found the art deco dash fittings and leather seats that looked more like plump buttoned sofas absolutely fascinating. The plush felt hood lining and molded timber-look window frames made the car feel cozy and inviting. Luxury on wheels. Yes, the rich, warm smell of those interiors and the throaty burble of the old side-valve V8s... unforgettable. So here's a small collection of old Fords given a new lease on life. Click here for the photo album.


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