墨尔本绝妙的建筑

We tend to forget that Melbourne is only 179 years old. Founded by colonial settlers on the traditional lands of the Kulin nation, the new city’s great good fortune came about not only  from the gold that fueled its growth, but also from the vision that drove its planners.

They built Melbourne according to a thoughtful design that created wide boulevards and verdant parks. The grand buildings that lined these boulevards were an expression of the city’s wealth, and represented the most impressive architecture of the day. “Marvellous Melbourne” as it came to be known, expanded rapidly to become by 1890, the second largest city in the British empire after London.

Within the grid laid down by the founding fathers, Melbourne’s skyline has since changed dramatically and ever more rapidly. The old heritage buildings that remain are now nestled  between skyscrapers. Victorian architecture stands side by side with a profusion of architectural styles that have been in vogue over the years – including Colonial Regency, Victorian Italianate, Art Deco, Neo-Gothic, Internationalist, Modern, and Post-Modern.

Melburnians and tourists are fascinated by this array of architecture and seize opportunities to explore the buildings in this city. One of the best opportunities is Open House Melbourne, when the month of July is dedicated to the exploration of Melbourne’s design and architecture. In one weekend event, 100 buildings are thrown open to the public. Thousands rush from building to building. Hundreds queue for hours waiting patiently for entry. Access to some buildings is restricted because they are working offices. There are even buildings restricted to only 10 people in total because they are so susceptible to damage. Hundreds of people enter ballots for a rare tour of these restricted buildings.

WomanGoingPlaces  took part in this event to bring you images of some of these buildings in our video presentation. We photographed a range of architectural styles  including the Manchester Unity building, an extraordinary example of Skyscaper Gothic built in 1932; the Windsor Hotel built in 1883, the oldest hotel in Australia; the 150 year-old Treasury building where the gold bullion found in the goldfields of Victoria was stored; the gorgeous Block Arcade of 1892; Harry Seidler’s 1988 building with its enamel mural by Arthur Boyd at No.1 Spring St. that heralded the European Modernist style in Australia; and Federation Square that recently won recognition as the 6th best square in the world.

Our access to buildings also enabled us to photograph aspects of Melbourne’s skyline of which most people are unaware and cannot observe as they hurry along the streets on their daily routine.

Even if you missed Open House this year or did not get to see as many buildings as you would have liked, you can still continue to visit many buildings. The Open House Melbourne printed program provides extended information on each building including its history, architectural features, significant stories, location and interesting facts. It is a valuable resource that has a life outside of the annual event weekend as it allows you to create your own Melbourne architectural walking tour year round. (See link below)

Marvellous Buildings of Melbourne photographer – David Zycher

Editor of video & post writer – Augustine Zycher

Music – Albare ‘No Love Lost’ from the CD  ‘The Road Ahead’ www.albare.info

See the Gallery for the names of the buildings in the video.

For a map of where all the buildings included in Open House Melbourne are situated go to http://www.openhousemelbourne.org/buildings

 

 

 

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日本记事 – Notes on Japan

 

媛梦之旅刚刚在去年年末完成了第一次日本之旅。2016年,访日的游客达到了两千万人次。随着2020年东京夏季奥运会的临近,去日本旅行的游客更是将会大增。大家可以欣赏到日本奇幻的美景,感受日本独特的风情。

我们选择在秋天时节,探访了北半球上的四大岛屿:北海道、本州、九州和四国岛,还有包括宫岛在内的一些其他小岛。

在接下来一系列的旅游微博中,我们将会与您分享我们参观过的一些景点以及我们在这段旅行中一些独特的体验。

在日本这个国度里,人民对于外国人的态度都是相当的礼貌,并且乐于伸出援手帮助外国游客,特别是那些愿意花力气学上几个日语单词的人。尽管英语并没有在日本普及,但是语言并不是像你想象的那道不可逾越的鸿沟。当你需要指路或搭乘公交的时候,你会发现带着善意和将你的目的地与住宿以日英两种语言写下来是非常重要的。

希望你们能喜欢我们的《日本记事》。下面的视频即为《日本记事》的开头篇。同时也希望我们的经历能给为您带路,引导您来领略这个美丽岛国的风光。

 

 

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卡卡杜国家公园 – 加拉邦弥 (库尔品大峡谷) 澳大利亚北领地 – Kakadu National Park, Northern Territory, Australia

 

作者 Jacinta Agostinelli

卡卡杜国家公园之不走寻常路

我女儿吉纳维芙现居在达尔文,她在附近的土著社区内工作。我曾经让我女儿带我去一个她最喜欢的景点。她从朋友那里听说了加拉邦弥(Jarrangbarnmi)这个地方,因为这里是一个神圣的地方,她想应该能成为带着母亲和妹妹安娜一起去游览的一个理想地点。因为我对于土著文化以及其与周围环境的关系很感兴趣,我以前总是想找一处圣地去参观。而在此之前的一次旅行中,我们已经去了几个在卡卡杜国家公园内更受欢迎的地区。

 

Jacinta hiking

Jacinta hiking

在八月份的一个周五下午,我和我的两个女儿离开了达尔文。在离开达尔文约三个小时后,我们在玛丽河(Mary river)护林站的钥匙箱内找到了我们的钥匙。在我们开车回家还钥匙的过程中,我们停下来研读了片刻这张记载了当地文化和考古历史的巨型故事板。

 

加拉邦弥 (库尔品大峡谷)

Two upper pools

Two upper pools

 

位于北领地卡卡杜国家公园东南部,加拉邦弥是坐落于达尔文324 公里外的一块进入有限制的区域。这里只有在干旱的季节游客才允许进入。因为加拉邦弥地处偏远山区,并且其在文化和环境方面的影响也非常重大,所以游客一定要提前申请许可(申请许可最长可能需要七天的时间)。想要在这里游玩,你必须有一辆较高的四驱车。手机在这里是没有信号的(所以只有你感觉自己适合并且可以接受这种环境再过来玩)。另外,这里没有可以直接饮用的水,并且游客们要遵守严格的游客指南。旁边的营地里有环保厕所和壁炉,厕所产生的废物可以作为燃料。因为我女儿平时会因为工作或休闲的原因去偏远的地方玩,并且她还是一些偏远地区的救护车志愿者,所以和她一起旅游我很放心。鉴于此,我只建议那些在澳大利亚有这种到偏远地区游历经验的游客或者有此类经验的人陪同的游客来这里游览。对于游客来说,尽管去加拉邦弥玩要花费很大的精力,但是在这里他们绝对会有所收获。

 

Swimming at pink pool

Swimming at pink pool

 

如何到达

我们沿着一条崎岖的四驱车的轮胎印开进灌木丛中。因为当时正当旱季,灌木丛非常的干,尽管如此,我们还是在沿途中穿过了两条小河。许多土生土长树木的叶子正在飘落,这让我想到了原来现在还是“秋天的时节”。卡卡杜是一片不老的土地,拥有着几千万年的历史。这些都表明它具有高度的适应性,才可以生存至今。实际上,这里的生态系统非常的微妙,几乎没有留下什么余地可供我们人类进行干扰。一旦我们失去了它,可能再也无法重新恢复这里天气,土地以及万物间紧密契合的关系。尤其是加拉邦弥 (库尔品大峡谷)(Koolpin Gorge),它很好地反映出了这个微妙的平衡关系。当我们到达这里时,天色已暗,所剩无几的光线仅够我们支起帐篷和做个晚饭。

第二天我们在营地看到了指示牌,指示牌上警告说当地原住民的土地已经越过了边境线,另外在一些特定的水域中还有鳄鱼,所有游客下水游泳前不可以涂抹防晒霜。因为气温已经快超过三十度了,所以宽沿的帽子和保护性的衣物都是必需品。我们打包了野餐午饭,泳衣和足够供当天饮用的水,之后就向着峡谷出发了。

 

池子和水洼

Vegetation pool

Vegetation pool

尽管这里没有标记好的小路,但是踩着岩石、沿着小溪的河床就可以到达加拉邦弥境内众多的池子和水洼。植被池(Vegetation Pool)是途径的第一个水塘,但是游客不得入内,这是因为这里是个神圣的地方,彩虹蛇便栖息在此。鳄鱼也会在此出没。在峡谷的深处,有另外四个池子,分别是粉池(Pink Pool),黑池(Black Pool)和两个更小的池子。如果你想把所有的池子都看个遍,那你的身手就要足够的敏捷,不然就无法攀爬众多的岩石,尤其是如果你想要到看到最里面的两个池子。游客要量力而行,只攀爬至自己力所能及的高度和深度。

这片世外桃源相对封闭,沿着水洼水塘走就不太容易走丢。我们将这些池子当作向导,花了一整天时间在池子里和池子旁边游玩。小鸟儿们频繁的冲击着水面,在安全返回树上之前在水面上迅速的小呷一口。除了能看到小鸟、昆虫和听到鹦鹉的声音外,我们再也听不到和看不到其他的动物。这里安静而昏暗,天上的星星明亮而美丽。尽管我们藏匿在这黑暗而偏僻的地方,但我没有一丝的恐惧或害怕。互相陪伴能够起到很大的作用。

 

原住民的圣地

我们知道我们处在一片神圣的土地之上,考虑到这附近的社区,并且怀着敬畏之心,我们决定不要随便向灌木深处闲逛了。大多数来游览加拉邦弥的人都对原住民文化和环境也感兴趣,因此,游客们都对这里的人和土地充满敬意。

当我们处在这一片神圣的原住民土地上时,我们有那么一种感觉。当我躺在静止的阴凉下,或感受着冰凉的溪水抚过温暖的肌肤,亦或是聆听着那些狂乱拍打的小翅膀发出的轻微的响声,都让我感受到了周围的神圣,让我不禁对其肃然起敬,发自内心的想去关心它。这令我们对大地赋予的如此美妙的礼物充满感恩之情。

* * * *

照片由 Jacinta Agostinelli 提供

 

 

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佩吉·古根海姆和威尼斯 – Peggy Guggenheim In Venice

 

佩吉·古根海姆(1898-1979)为20世纪现代艺术的发展做出了不可比拟的贡献。但是在她死后的37年间,误解和偏见仍然萦绕在佩吉·古根海姆的故事中。大多数的评论都将她的角色定义成“现代艺术的接生婆”,但是却又轻蔑地把她描述成一个不知疲倦的性瘾者。

 

她可以慧眼识英雄,并且懂得如何在伟大艺术家成型的阶段中培养并塑造他们,但这经常被人认为仅仅是男人告诉她如何做的结果,而不是出自她自己的判断和与生俱来的品味。

现如今,坐落于威尼斯大运河旁的佩吉·古根海姆藏品纪念馆已经成为这座城市最受欢迎的景点之一。这里典藏着她于1938年到1979年间收集到的珍品。这些20世纪欧美的艺术品和雕塑的杰作包括了毕加索、波洛克、恩斯特、达利、克利、布拉克、曼·雷、夏卡尔、蒙德里安、考尔德、

贾科梅蒂、康定斯基、杜尚、康吉和米罗的作品。

佩吉·古根海姆在1948年买下了韦尼耶·莱奥尼宫(Palazzo Venier dei Leoni),一座建于18世纪的宫殿。在接下来的30年里,她将这里当作她的家,画廊以及艺术先锋们的“沙龙”。那些最聪明和最开明的人都聚集于此,他们中包括了艺术家,知识分子和作家。在这其中有贝克特、乔伊斯、斯坦和庞德。他们是她的朋友,她的情人和她的伙伴。

 

 

她整个一生中最重要的贡献就是购买新兴艺术家的作品,以赞助和支付佣金的形式支持他们创作出新的作品。她在伦敦,纽约和威尼斯发现了三家画廊并将它们作为平台,有效地帮艺术家们打响了国际知名度。

在1938年的一场文艺活动中,佩吉·古根海姆第一次作为开拓者开始扮演她的角色。在伦敦,她开办了她的第一个画廊,尽管当时已经初见战争的苗头。当时她到欧洲去购买一些名不见经传的艺术家的作品,那时这些艺术家的作品很便宜,这不仅是因为他们急于卖掉他们的作品逃离纳粹的统治,也是因为根据那时的艺术评判基准,这些作品中的很大一部分并没有多大价值,这其中就包括了毕加索、达利、巴拉克、蒙德里安、布兰诺西和莱热的作品。当佩吉请求卢浮宫将她购买的作品同他们的展览品一起安全地运走时,卢浮宫以作品不值得挽救的理由而拒绝了她的请求。她不得不通过她自己的方法将这些作品掩饰为居家用品从而搬离出欧洲。之后她在她伦敦的画廊里展出了这些作品。

在战争期间,她搬回了她从小生长的纽约,并且在1942年开设了她第二个画廊“当代艺术”。这个画廊立刻成为了纽约当代艺术中最令人振奋的地方。在这里,她向美国人民展出了她的立体派、抽象和超现实主义艺术的收藏。另外,波洛克、马塞韦尔和罗斯科及许多其他美国艺术家也在这个史无前例的画廊里第一次向公众展示他们的作品。波洛克当时仍然在做木匠,佩吉·古根海姆借给他钱让他去买了栋房子并且建了一个工作室,她还付佣金给波洛克,请他为她纽约的新公寓花一副巨大的壁画。

佩吉·古根海姆支持了这些来自美国的抽象表现主义先驱者,并且在美国的第一次艺术运动发展中起到了至关重要的作用,这次艺术运动也在国际上有着非常重要的影响力。

她同时也是另一项重要活动的领导者。早在1943年,她就在她纽约的展览馆中展出了《31个女人》,这是一场女性艺术家的展览。而在之后的1945年,她又一次举办了一场献给女性的的展览,该展览名为《这个世纪的艺术女性》。

战争结束后,她关闭了她的画廊并离开了纽约。到了1948年,威尼斯在双年展中为她提供了一整个展馆来展示她的藏品。“我感觉到了整个国家都在支持我”,她说。从那之后,佩吉·古根海姆就在威尼斯落脚生根了。

她于1979年去世,之后她的房子和收藏品被赠予了所罗门阿古根海姆基金会(Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation)。

佩吉·古根海姆长眠于她生前旧屋的土地中。

*  *  *  *

 

幻灯片摄影师和编辑:Augustine Zycher

音乐: 笛子版《Amara Terra Mia》

 

 

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塔斯马尼亚玛利亚岛 – Maria Island, Tasmania

Maria Island: Historical, Geological and Natural Wonder

玛利亚岛:历史、地理以及自然的奇迹

 

玛利亚岛(Maria Island)在澳大利亚历史中占有举足轻重的位置。这里是澳大利亚野生动物的避难所。这里不仅有美丽的自然景观,同时也是一片地质奇迹。

在殖民时代到来之前,土著居民会定期登上玛利亚岛,那里仍旧保存着他们出现过的证据。最早出现在这里的欧洲访客是捕鲸人和捕海豹者。之后到了1825年,这里成为了澳大利亚领土上由英国人设立的第一批流放地之一,这里甚至比臭名昭著的亚瑟港(Port Arthur)更早。

如今,它已经成为那些受到威胁的自然野生动物的”野生动物方舟”了。

这里是观察袋熊,小袋鼠,小型树袋鼠和树丛大袋鼠自然习性的最好的地方之一。他们可以无拘无束的漫步,因为岛上不允许出现任何车辆,商店或是宾馆。我们偶遇了一个母袋熊和婴儿袋熊。算上引进的觉鹅(Cape Barren Geese),这里有超过140种鸟类。

游客可以在这里参观和短期停留,但是应该是不能够在玛利亚岛长期居住的。

 

 

玛利亚岛沿着海岸线的地质构造所带来的复杂美令世界各地的地质学家心生敬畏。在近海岸搭乘小船是欣赏这些构造的最佳地点。

沿着海岸线的旅途让我们欣赏到了包含着许多古代化石的高耸的石灰岩化石悬崖的壮丽美景,被砂岩装饰的悬崖由于被氧化铁附着,染上了极为美妙的彩色斑点,那便是红赭石色和灰色。我们还见到了3亿年前由冰川滴落形成的名为坠石(Drop)的岩石。在这里,就算形成时间最晚的岩石也要早于恐龙出现前1亿年。

小船经过一条由悬崖倾泻到海里的瀑布,悬崖的外部由美轮美奂的钟乳石构成。我们进入了一个镶嵌着化石的深洞,尽管里面很黑,但通过照相机魔术般的镜头,明亮的粉色、绿色、棕色和金色的石头像蛋糕的千层一样展示在了我们的眼前。

这里有丰富多样的水下生命,包含了海豹和海豚。当我们对着海水望眼欲穿时,一条飞鱼一跃冲出了海面,它闪着光芒的鱼鳍伸展开来就像翅膀一样,它的这一跃就高出了水平面一米,在重新潜入海里前它飞过了差不多15米的距离。我们都被这一幕震撼了,导致都没来得及掏出我们的相机, 不过幸运的是在这艘小船上的其他人之在前一周捕捉到了跟这条飞鱼一样的画面。

壮丽的白色新月和由蓝绿色海水充斥的古朴的海湾构成了玛利亚岛的轮廓。从小船上,我们能欣赏到纯洁无暇的沙滩,然后在达灵顿(Darlington), 我停靠在其中一个码头。这些沙滩上的沙子是由与坐落于塔斯马尼亚弗雷西内半岛(Freycinet Peninsula)的世界著名的酒杯湾(Wineglass Bay)一样的白色花岗岩构成的。

 

Darlington

达灵顿

达灵顿是在世界文化遗址上列出的最早的罪犯聚居地之一。我们花了些时间在这里周围参观。英国在19世纪中期抛弃了这块地方。取而代之的是,殖民统治者在更加偏远的阿瑟港建立了罪犯聚居地。一些早期罪犯的住所仍然还在达灵顿,不过现在已经被用来当做游客的宿舍了。

漫步穿过达灵顿保存完好的壮丽的大楼是一件非常值得做的事情。除了最早期的罪犯用的大楼,这里还有许多令人印象深刻的建筑。比如说由满怀希望的移民者在19世纪建造的咖啡宫殿(Coffee Palace)。当时这里的生活十分艰难,他们没能维系住他们的居所, 但是他们留下了令人着迷的印记。在一些著名人士的见证下,包括像由于参与1848年年轻爱尔兰叛乱运动而被流放在这的爱尔兰民族主义领导人William Smith O’Brien, 他们赋予了玛利亚岛丰富多彩的历史和自然景观。

 

除了Karen Dick拍摄的飞鱼(Flying Fish)外,所有照片均由Rosalie和Augustine Zycher拍摄。

音乐:Albare演唱《No Love Lost 》选自专辑《The Road Ahead》

 

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Woman In…Patagonia

    “Oh, that’s impossible, I can’t do that!” This is what I would have said, if I had known what I was about to embark on beforehand. But I didn’t know. And so, when my daughter asked me to go with her to Patagonia, I agreed. Although this remote part of Argentina and Chile had never appeared in my travel imaginings, I knew that I was going on a 60 kilometre trek of medium difficulty over five days, and I knew I could do that.

    Do you have your own stories to share? It’s easy….
    Visit our Woman-In page for more details about submitting your stories
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    So off we went, first to the Torres del Paine National Park in Chile, and then to El Chalten in Argentina. We set off happily on our first day shouldering backpacks with six to seven kilos of bare essentials, our sturdy waterproof walking shoes, a map, water- and wind-proof jackets, and the promise of experiencing natural beauty which an American trekker we met in the base town of Puerto Natales told us “nothing can prepare you for.”

    The natural beauty

    The American was right. The mountains of snow and ice, the blue lakes (paine is the native word for blue) and the painted skies were endless. Natural tracks that were not manicured but still safe and easy to follow, lead us around the mountains, through wooded areas and over trickling waterways. The sky was a great empty plain and we could hear the rumble of avalanches falling miles from where we stood. There is only one path to follow so it is impossible to get lost, and yet you have the sense that you are lost from the rest of the world. I am privileged to own such rare,unique moments.

    The refugios 

    On the Torres del Paine trek you take a day to walk from refugio (lodge) to refugio. The path is well marked, and there is enough time to make the distance without having to hurry. You measure distance in time because the terrain has to be considered. Pre-booking is essential to make sure you get a bed, and we did all our booking from Australia. There are lots of companies online. I was unsure what to expect from the refugios as they are remote and Patagonia isn’t economically wealthy. We had dormitory sleeping arrangements and I hadn’t slept like that since I was young. But the lodging surprised me and it was always exciting to arrive at our new lodge, each one warmed by a stove and the sound of exhausted, hungry and happy trekkers. Food was delicious and ample, and we ate at long mess tables, so you always had company while dining. We collected a picnic lunch and snacks in the morning when leaving, which meant we only had to carry food for the day.

    Fitness

    I am in my mid-fifties and if referring to age and fitness, I was in a minority. Most of the trekkers were under thirty-five. Some were extremely fit and I swear some of the young men who galloped past us were cloven-footed, their feet barely hitting the ground. But there were still plenty like me, moderately fit and young at heart, and we managed steeps ascents and the distances. Perhaps it was the curiosity of what’s around the next corner that kept me going, but mostly my strength of mind compensated for my lack of physical strength, and meditating on the present kept ‘what if it’s too hard’ thoughts at bay. I would have liked to have been fitter. It may have made the difficult stretches easier, although I have no lasting ill effects on my knees or ankles! However, be aware that once you leave the drop-off point and head into the mountains, there is no vehicular access. If you injure yourself you will rely on the goodness of strangers to carry you out or on the availability of a donkey.

    Other trekkers

    While there are many welcome ‘alone’ times, you are never lonely. We met women travelling on their own, families, dads carrying their small children in backpacks. We met an artist returning after ten years; people of all ages from around the world. So many interesting people and conversations.

    El Chalten

    Just when we thought it was safe to hang up our trekking shoes, we arrived by bus in El Chalten and Los Glaciares National Park – the trekking capital of the world. We hired a local taxi driver – enterprising young people use their own cars to provide a taxi service – to drive us out of town to a starting point for the Laguna los Tres hike. This day-long hike was the most difficult of all the hikes around El Chalten – but the most beautiful. At the bottom of the steep ascent to view FitzRoy Mount was a sign warning that only trekkers in top physical condition should attempt the climb. I knew by now that I always had one more step in me, so off we went. We climbed for an hour or so, the people on the rocky slopes ahead of us like a thin trail of ants. I treated it as sacred, my treading on the aloofness of mountains.

    The weather

    We had expected strong winds and rain, which are daily occurrences in Patagonia, particularly in March. But the gods were smiling on us and we had still, sunny weather for four out of five days. It was cold but it was a clear sunlit cold that is ideal for trekking. And being cold means the paths and lodges are less crowded.

    And in conclusion…

    Now back in Australia, I want my steps to stay slow, the silence of mountains to stay in my mind and their grandeur impressed on my imagination – and the impossible to remain possible.

     

    Jacinta Agostinelli  is a Melbourne-based writer and editor.  She enjoys spending time with her husband and five daughters, and travelling to far-away places.

     

     

     

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    在澳大利亚将霞多丽葡萄酒转变为伏特加

    It is rare to find a winery and a distillery located in the same vineyard. It is extremely rare to find that this winery is producing chardonnay that is then transformed into cognac by the distillery.

    But this is exactly what is happening at the Darling Park vineyard on the Mornington Peninsula. In this wine making region, the Darling Park winery and the Bass & Flinders Distillery have an unorthodox, but very innovative relationship.

    Judy Gifford is the winemaker.  A former biochemist, she studied wine making at the University of Burgundy in France. She is an admired and respected member of  the Red Hill  community, and in a profession dominated by male winemakers, she has become the general manager of the of the Darling Park vineyard. Judy is responsible for a range of wines produced at the vineyard, including chardonnay, pinot noir, pinot gris, shiraz, and sauvignon blanc. But it is the chardonnay that is the basis of the relationship with the distillery as it is a base wine for the cognac.

    Bob Laing and Wayne Klintworth are the distillers. They are neighbours who together decided to do things differently. Instead of making vodka and gin from potatoes and grains,  the way it is made in Russia and Poland, they wanted to make them from grapes. Chardonnay, which they source from different vineyards, was considered the  wine most suitable to undergo the conversion into spirits.

    They sought mentors internationally, and then set up their Alembic copper still in Darling Park.  These copper stills date back to the Egyptians in 800AD, and were used over the ages to concoct not only alcohol, but also medicines and perfume. Alchemists even used the alembic still in their attempts to magically convert base metals into gold.

    And there is something magical about the process of turning wine into spirits. The grapes are crushed and fermented into wine which is heated until it is vaporised. The vapour is then chilled to condense into liquid and flows out as spirits.

    You can taste the wines and spirits at the Cellar Doors of both the Darling Park winery and the Bass & Flinders Distillery, and stroll through the pretty vineyard that surrounds them both.

    _____________________________________________________

    Videographers and Photographers: David Zycher and Rosalie Zycher

    Video Editor and Writer: Augustine Zycher

    For further information:

    http://www.darlingparkwinery.com

     

     

     

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    Australia’s website for women’s travel, activities and adventure – Why we set up the WomanGoingPlaces Website?

    WomanGoingPlaces is Australia’s website for every woman from 30 to infirmity seeking information and inspiration for travel, activities and adventure.

    We set up the WomanGoingPlaces website because we recognize that there are many women like us. Women who want breaks from our everyday lives, or who want to do and see things we’ve put off while working or raising families, or both. Many of us are beyond the age of backpacking, but we still have the same enthusiasm for travel. We just want to do it more comfortably and safely. Women’s travel is now an exciting trend across the world.

    Australia is our home and our focus. It is well-known for its many attractions, its extraordinary beauty and diversity. We want to share with you the things that appeal to us as Australian women, and that we think will be of interest to other women.

    We will show you these places, people and activities from our distinctive perspective. We will also reveal places, people and activities that you would not otherwise hear about.

    And we will do it in the most dynamic, colourful way through videos, pictures and posts.

    We’re able to do this because together, we have many years of professional experience in journalism, media and the arts. AUGUSTINE ZYCHER is a speechwriter, and was foreign correspondent for The Age, Melbourne, a producer for CNN, director and producer of documentary films, and an investigative journalist. ROSALIE ZYCHER was an actor, theatre and opera director, New York International Arts Festival organizer, dramaturge, and is a business communications consultant.

    Ours is the independent view of women who have lived and worked in different countries and cultures, and have frequently gone places on our own. We are not a travel or tour agency. We are writers and photojournalists.

    Although Australia is our primary focus, we are nevertheless interested in overseas travel experiences, particularly those less well-known. So we’ll call on women in different places in the world to contribute posts and pictures giving their perspective on places that are special to them.

    And we invite your contributions and comments. Let us know of places you’ve discovered and love.

    You can send your submissions to our email address [email protected] or from the WomanGoingPlaces Contact Us page.

    Let’s share our experiences and encourage a community where everyone can be a woman going places.


     

     

     

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    Why are women terrified of dining solo?

     

    Why are women terrified of dining solo?

    When Australian women travel overseas on our own, we know that part of that experience means eating out alone. But when home in Australia, a woman dining out alone is considered a rarity, and may even be treated as an oddity. We seem to view it as an uncomfortable if not humiliating experience. It can be such an ordeal for women, that few feel brave enough to put themselves through it.

    I don’t mean grabbing a sandwich in your lunch-break or going to a cafe. I mean if by choice or circumstance, you find yourself alone for lunch or dinner – would you take yourself out to a fine restaurant?

    Most probably not.

    Even women who travel for business and are undaunted about representing their companies  find it difficult to face eating solo in hotel restaurants. “I’d rather call room service for a cheese sandwich than have to walk into the restaurants downstairs, unaccompanied,” said my friend Jean, a senior executive at a multinational company.

    Brave women, women of intelligence, strength and capability are intimidated by the prospect.

    But why is it, when we have overcome so many obstacles on the road to equality, our bravery deserts us when it comes to eating dessert on our own?

    Here’s what happened to me when I went to a very trendy restaurant in town for lunch.

    I was greeted by the maitre d’ with the question “Is it JUST you?” with the decided emphasis on the ‘just’.

    So I put on my biggest smile and confirmed happily “Yes, it’s JUST me.”

    I was led past the crowded tables all the way to the back to a place on the bar near the toilets. I looked around and saw that out of more than 100 people, I was the only woman there on her own. However, there were several men eating lunch on their own – not an uncommon sight.

    While other people were served around me, even those who had arrived after me, somehow I had become invisible. No-one approached to set water or bread before me. No-one brought a menu. I waited and tried to signal to the waiters but their attention always slid away towards groups of patrons. I noticed the chef working next to me in the open kitchen looked over at me with growing concern. I signaled and waited fruitlessly for more than half an hour. Finally, the chef called to a waiter to attend to me. By that time I had lost my appetite and I walked out.

    This type of experience would make women choose to eat at home or seek anonymity with a sandwich in a coffee shop.

    But I’ve also had a few surprisingly good experiences in dining out alone.

    On a hot summer’s day as I walked into the vineyard-restaurant, I felt that there was no way I would get a meal. Groups were packed around all the tables and spilling out onto the deck. I stood in dismay at the entrance, and then the proprietor came up to me. Instead of saying “Sorry, we’re full”, he said “Wait a minute.” He went out the back and brought out a small table and chair and placed them in the best position overlooking the vineyard. He then offered to prepare me a special version – suitable for one person – of the share plates that were their speciality.

    He was gracious and accommodating, just as a good restaurateur and host should be. I became absurdly grateful for being treated in the same welcoming way as other patrons who came as a couple or a group would be treated.

    What then is it that prevents greater numbers of women from going into a restaurant for dinner alone, as a man might? Is it the occasional bad experience or is it something else?

    There are no restrictions mandating that we always have to be accompanied by a male, as is still the case in many societies. So there is no social prohibition. But there is a very powerful self-prohibition. And it’s based on fear. What will others think of me?

    Perhaps we are afraid we are signalling that we have failed to acquire a companion, and that we are objects of pity. Or it could be we are afraid that people will misinterpret our being alone as being available.

    We put up this barrier of negativity, so we don’t have the confidence to walk into a restaurant. Walking alone into a restaurant  becomes as frightening as walking onto a stage. It’s as though everyone is looking at us. We feel completely exposed with hundreds of critical eyes focused on us. We build it up in our minds into a 3-Act drama when in truth, how much scrutiny is there really going to be? A few seconds as the waiter leads us to our seat. Most people are too absorbed in themselves to give you more than a passing glance.

    But it’s all about women feeling at a disadvantage in social situations when alone.

    Many women don’t have the nerve to walk confidently into a restaurant and order from the staff without feeling they have no right to be there. Perhaps we feel we don’t deserve the kind of attention, and even fuss, that other patrons would expect.

    Sometimes we are made to feel we are inconsiderately occupying a table that could be earning twice as much. So frequently we are not offered a table, but a seat at the bar or are squeezed into a corner.

    We might help change that treatment by patronizing restaurants that welcome solo women diners. After all, in terms of numbers, we are actually an economic force, not a liability.

    The reality is that the more we dine out solo, the less of an oddity we will be, and the less of an ordeal it becomes.

    There is reason to be optimistic. I remember reading that Ruth Reichl, the famous New York Times restaurant critic, would always visit a restaurant several times before writing her review of the dining experience. So I decided to do the same and re-visited that trendy restaurant that I had walked out of 6 months earlier. This time however, even though the place was packed, I was greeted warmly and instead of being led to the bar, was shown to the only available table, right in the centre of the restaurant. The service was prompt and pleasant, and the food was good. A totally different dining experience! Why? Who knows, perhaps a change of staff with a better attitude.

    But to begin with, we need to change our own attitudes. So let’s not hesitate to take ourselves out to lunch or dinner when we feel like it. Let’s savour our freedom, enjoy a beautiful meal in pleasant surroundings, and not waste a second worrying about what other people think.

     

     

     

     

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    走进澳洲雨林, 喂养本土鸟类

    跟随媛梦之旅一起走进已有6千万年历史的热带雨林。

    这片森林是如此的古老,它早已在澳大利亚成为独立的大陆前就存在,当时我们还只是冈瓦纳古大陆(Gondwana)的一部分呢。

    然而从墨尔本只需一小时的车程,我们便可以飞驰进入这片古老的发源地,这可谓是非常的奇妙。

    丹德农国家公园(Dandenong Ranges National Park)连绵起伏的山脉上厚厚地盖上了凉爽温润的热带雨林。不管你是开车、走路还是寻找适合野餐的好地方,这里都有许多不同的入口供你选择。我们是从舍布鲁克(Sherbrooke)的格兰茨野餐地(Grants Picnic Ground)开始我们的徒步之旅的,舍布鲁克位于蒙巴克路(Monbulk Rd)上(C404公路)。

    美丽的深红色玫瑰鹦鹉飞离枝头,落在我们的头上,胳膊和手上来寻找种子。然后,在我们把它们捧在手上的时候不慌不忙地吃着种子。白色和粉色凤头鹦鹉也神气地走来走去,抢夺已经掉落在地上的种子。

    接着,我们选择了一条泥泞之路,沿着哈迪沟大自然之路(Hardy Gully Nature)向雨林深处进发。这是一条走起来相当容易的路,但是根据徒步的难易程度以及时间长短,你还可以选择很多其他不同的徒步路线。

    沿着壮观的阿什山(Mountain Ash)一路前行,很快我们进入了一个蕨类植物丛生的沟壑。这里有着世界上最高的开花植物——桉树, 这些树的高度可以超过100米,树木底部直径可达30米宽。这些庞然大物给森林里的100多种哺乳动物、鸟类、爬行类动物和蛙类提供了栖息之地和食物来源。

    在桉树林中生长着厚厚的蕨类植物,我们完全沉浸在了这片绿色的汪洋中。鲜绿色的苔藓依附在倒下的木头上,给树的根基盖上了一件绿色的衣服。我们也听见了涓涓细流在蕨类植物中流淌的声音,水流过苔藓汇入小溪流中。

    空气的味道也令人难忘, 桉树叶、树皮、蕨类和灌木植物湿漉漉的泥土气息混合在一起。这种味道是如此的与众不同,它渗入你的记忆,久久不会褪去。

    笑翠鸟沙哑的笑声打破了寂静。但这真的是笑翠鸟吗?又或许是世界上最擅长于模仿的华丽琴鸟(Super Lyrebird)?这种琴鸟不仅能维妙维肖地模仿其他鸟类的叫声,而且还可以模仿电锯、爆炸、乐器、狗和婴儿哭泣的声音!有时你还可以在较矮的灌木丛看到它呢,你会发现雄性琴鸟美丽的尾羽就像一把七弦琴,它们的名字就是由此而来的。

    雨林里的化石告诉我们,琴鸟已经在这里生活了1600多年。

    但是雨林的面积正在大幅度地缩小。我们必须竭尽所能来保护这些不可取代并且美的森林。

    发帖及照片编辑:Augustine Zycher

    摄影:D. Zycher

    维多利亚公园管理部门关于琴鸟的照片

    欲了解更多关于访问丹德农国家公园(Dandenong Ranges National Park)的信息,请联系维多利亚公园管理部门,网址是http://parkweb.vic.gov.au

     

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