There was a long queue at security screening in Terminal 2 Sydney Airport this morning (although not as long as in this photo of the weekend with the ‘Virgin troubles’) (Terminal 2 is the Jetstar / Virgin / Rex terminal)

When confronted by a long line, its worth remembering that there is another, barely used, security screening point at the other end of the terminal.

Go down stairs, and head west, past all the laggage carousels (and the property storage centre), and past the gates where Rex boards (Gate 47), and there it is. Never a line up!

There is a similar sneaky security gateway in Terminal 3 (Qantas domestic), just up the escalators from the baggage carousels at the Western End of the terminal.

Both of these can be lifesavers when you are running late for a connection.

What I Learnt On 31st January in other years

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In case you missed it, this was one of the ten most successful Internet ads for 2010

What I Learnt On 30th January in other years

30th January 2012 23 and a half hours23 and a half hours
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“Fellow Australians, it is my melancholy duty to inform you officially, that …Great Britain has declared war upon Germany and that, as a result, Australia is also at war.”

“Well may we say “God save the Queen”, because nothing will save the Governor-General!”


Had dinner tonight in ‘The Ginger Room’, which is in Old Parliament House, Canberra, the site of some of Australia’s greatest (political) battles. The Ginger Room restaurant is in the old member’s dining room, where I imagine Bob Menzies and Gough Whitlam would have acted as the host for many an entertaining dinner.


After Federation in 1901, the Australian Parliament first met in Parliament House, Melbourne, which it borrowed from the Victorian parliament (who moved into the Royal Exhibition Building).

Canberra was selected to be the site of the nation’s new capital in 1908. Walter Burley Smith won a contest to design the new city, and construction began in 1913. Work on Parliament House commenced in 1923. It was designed by John Smith Murdoch, the Commonwealth’s Chief Architect, and intended to be a ‘provisional’ building to house parliament for about 50 years.

The Australian parliament sat in Old Pariament House from 1927 until the new building was opened during the bicentennial celebrations in 1988.

By that time, the building was far too small to host the politicians, staff, public servants and journalists who worked there. Many saw this as an advantage – ministers were always accessible, and it was impossible to keep a secret.

The Aboriginal Tent Embassy was established on the lawns in front of Parliament House in 1972 as a protest against the giovernment’s failure to acknowledge aboriginal land rights. It has been a continuous feature since 1992.


Old Parliament House now serves as the Museum of Australian Democracy


A current exhibition is the Best of Australian political cartoons of 2010.…



Back to the meal –  the Ginger Room is a very formal restaurant, and the service was impeccable.

The food may have been a bit sophisticated for me – I had some trouble identifying the dishes.


Can you work out what the desert in this slideshow is?


What I Learnt On 29th January in other years

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Today I learnt that nothing changes much at Sydney University, just as the motto* implies
My daughter Alex enrolled there today, 29 years after I did.


More food outlets, but same food, unfortunately.


Same Marxist Collective, and it appears the exact same people handing out pamphlets.


Same political posters – though now Labor are the baddies!



Same student union functions with the same attraction – cheap beer.


The Jacaranda tree remains remarkably healthy in the main quad – Tradition is that if you haven’t started studying by the time it blooms – you’re too late (Got that, Alex!)


And all paths still lead to Johns College.


I also learnt that you need the very useful SRC Counter Course Handbook **before** you enrol in your subject choices, not afterwards.



*Sidero Mens Eadem Mutato is the motto of Sydney University- “The constellations change, but the mind is the same” -ie “The traditions of the older universities of the Northern Hemisphere are continued here in the Southern.”

What I Learnt On 28th January in other years

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What I Learnt On 27th January in other years

27th January 2012 New Year PrayerNew Year Prayer
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