Thursday, February 16, 2012

Crabbing at Ardrossan

Ardrossan is a small town on the east coast of the Yorke Peninsula, about 150 km (90 mi) from Adelaide, South Australia. Tourism plays a large part in Ardrossan's economy with the town being a popular destination for Adelaide residents on weekends. While it doesn't have an attractive swimming beach, it is a popular location to catch fish, squid and blue crabs which are abundant during the months of September to April each year.

The jetty was constructed in 1876 and completed in 1878. It is 150m long with some benches for sitting while waiting for the crabs to get into the nets.

It was a very exciting experience for Vinh and me as this was the first time we'd been crabbing. Vinh ran up and down the jetty to check the nets every 5 minutes.

The South Australian Crabbing regulations state that anglers must make sure that their crabs measure the legal size of is 11cm across the widest part of the shell. Under sized and females bearing eggs must be put released back into the sea, otherwise there is a maximum fine of $5000. There is also a "bag limit"  of 40 crabs per person from the jetty. 

At the end, we successfully caught 15 crabs, although we had to throw back about 5 times as many that were undersized. At home, David cooked them the Aussie way by boiling them with a bit of salt and then we ate them with a seafood sauce...Yummmm! Next time we go, I will cook some with oyster sauce :)

Can't wait until we go again (which with any luck, will be in 2 weeks time :) )

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Pancake Kitchen

Yesterday, David and I met with Shanty and Brendan at the Pancake Kitchen for dinner. It was my first time there, but David and Brendan spent a part of their teenage lives at this Adelaide institution that was establish in 1965. The place was quite nice, it was an old building with a lot of caricatures framed on the walls.

The food was OK, but nothing like David and Brendan remembered.

Well, David and I spent $25 for our meal but we spent $12 for 1 hour and 3 minutes parking. Bloody Hell!...someone's making some money.

We finished the evening (and part of Sunday playing Poker at Brendan and Shanty's place. David is considering opening a branch of Gamblers Anonymous for all of my school mates that he is introducing to the game of Texas Hold'em...we now play it so many of my friends.

Australia Day

The tradition of having Australia Day as a national holiday on 26 January is a recent one. Not until 1935 did all the Australian states and territories use that name to mark that date. Not until 1994 did they begin to celebrate Australia Day consistently as a public holiday on that date. On that day we come together as a nation to celebrate what's great about Australia and being Australian. It's the day to reflect on what we have achieved and what we can be proud of in our great nation. It's the day for us to re-commit to making Australia an even better place for the future.

There are a number of events and ceremonies which have become both a tradition and a symbol of our national day such as Citizenship Ceremonies, Australian Day Breakfast, Parade, Concert and many more other events. This year I volunteered as one of the crew for the Adelaide City Council's Australia Day Parade. Participating in this parade were a lot of communities and organizations. One of them was Indonesian community which won the best costume award. 

The parade made it's way from Hindmarsh Square to Elder Park where the Australian Day celebration continued with Ricky Lee Coulter, the Australian Idol winner and Stan Walker in concert followed by a fireworks display. It was here that I met up with David, Vinh and Tri to enjoy the concert together. To my surprise, there's the truck full of shortbread biscuits in the shape of Australia distributed for free. Mind you, there was around 30,000 people there.  

When the Ricky Lee Coultar concert started, Vinh and I went to the front of the stage and together with other audience members, clapped hands, danced and jumped about. I was so tired, but it was so much fun and reminded me of the night out I had in Bali with my UOBI friends.  The fireworks, sponsored by the Commonwealth bank was spectacular. Well, another great night out in my new home.