Tag Archives: Kristina Greenwood

#100 Appreciate Small Discoveries

This pandemic has challenged us on so many levels over the past—how many?—months, but there’ve been unexpected rewards along the way to compensate.

For example, the realisation that owning a dog means escaping lockdown whenever an excuse is needed to leave the house was a lightbulb moment for many. Similarly, it’s been a real eyeopener for many businesses to discover that all workers don’t have to battle peak-hour traffic twice a day when they can work effectively from home.

As the world contracts and international travel fades into memory, one way to extract the best out of life is to:

#100 Appreciate Small Discoveries


Parking in a side street a couple of weeks before Easter, I came across this cute rabbit painted on an inconspicuous wall.

It brightened my day no end:

Easter Bunny by talented local street artist Kade Sarte.
The eyes even follow you

Another unexpected offering appeared alongside the entry to a car park. This sunny butterfly frieze greets passers-by like a welcoming smile, so thanks, Kristina and Albury City:

by Kristina Greenwood for Upstream 2021

Its personal significance was enhanced exponentially when a matching beauty landed in my garden a couple of days later:

Australian Painted Lady Butterfly on chive flowers.
“Hey, you’re famous!”

The pandemic threw up another joy recently when Warburtons, a UK company that bakes much loved crumpets, released their secret recipe to comfort suffering compatriots during the depths of winter.

With a rallying cry of

who could resist giving it a go?

My first batch, cooked in a pan on the stove top, resulted in terribly mismatched crumpets, until the idea of repurposing my pie maker into a crumpet maker seemed a worthy experiment.

Woohoo! Yessir!

Have a look at them cooking:

Perfect shape, perfect bubbles, perfect browning when turned! What’s not to love about a pie maker?

Here’s the adapted recipe if you want to give it a try:

Delicious 😋

An innocuous visit to my GP this week threw up another new and exciting discovery when the doc asked me if I’d like eScripts sent to my phone instead of handing me the usual paper ones. (She’d noticed I was using earpods in the waiting room, she said, so assumed I was tech savvy. 🤣)

Heart thumping, I agreed to the eScripts, not wanting her to know the truth about my dread of technology and its propensity to go bad. Of course, the minute I walked out of the surgery, I checked my messages, convinced it wouldn’t have worked, but to my surprise …

So now all I have to do is show the pharmacist the super trendy eScripts on my mobile to get them dispensed.

Edited, but you get the idea!

There are so many wonderful small discoveries to be found at our new Harris Farm Market that I don’t know where to start, but the little lime-green kale/silverbeet/herb stripper has to be up there with the best. It rips out the pesky central stalk in milliseconds.

Insert the stalk into the hole of best fit, pull through and voila! the leaves are freed.

Harris Farm sells assorted native finger limes, too …

Little bubbles of citrus caviar

And what this means is that I can now amass any and all ingredients needed for my latest craze: the home made poke bowl with added crispy kale and finger lime bubbles topped with sriracha mayo.


And a final discovery has been the talented Marsh family from Faversham in the UK, who’ve been coping during lockdown by repurposing songs and posting them on YouTube.

Here’s their performance at the BBC Comic Relief concert. They re-worded Total Eclipse of the Heart to reflect what everyone can relate to on some level during the pandemic.

They’re more often found performing (in pyjamas of course) in their bedrooms, kitchen or living room.

Who’d have thought small discoveries could give so much pleasure?

#74 Admire Public Art

Imagine being in a job where you’re rarely praised, often the target of harsh complaints and dismissively known as the Rates, Roads and Rubbish people.

Such is the lot of local councils, but in reality, they’re so much more than that. The council can help make it a real pleasure to live in your town or city.

At our most recent Discovery Group meeting, a local artist, Ken Raff was invited to speak to our members about the public art works he’s been commissioned to create for the Albury-Wodonga area. Since hearing him speak, it’s caused me to stop, look around and …

# Admire Public Art

Ken spoke about the evolution of a public sculpture, and it was the first time I’d realised that our council has people assigned to this very process. Impressive!

Extensive work is involved in the development of such pieces, involving the tender process, the artist chosen, site evaluations, various council departments as well as engineering and fabrication experts and businesses. And through all of this, the artist has to hope that the vision of his work will be maintained.

Here’s one of Ken’s wonderful creations, where it all came together so well.

Called Porta, this installation is sited at the entrance to Victoria from NSW

The choice of colours and even the tilt of the spheres have been meticulously considered by the creator.

And a panoramic shot may give you a better sense of its imposing height and perfect positioning …

This also shows the importance of ‘place’ in public art. In the wrong spot, it might have been lost, but here – simply magnificent!


My public art crawl has now ranged from the stainless steel facade sculpture by renowned artist Matthew Harding, sited at the back of our Art Gallery, MAMA,

Degrees of Separation  (Crossing Paths)

to another of Ken Raff‘s works in the main street …

                                                                      The River 

and on to the imposing galvanised steel artwork called Grow by Warren Langley, representing the crimson spider orchid, an endangered flower found in Albury, but few other locations …


Then there’s the latest sculpture in the Botanical gardens …

The Fern by Michael Laubli

… so perfectly suited to this position.


Public art can also encompass improving some of the plainer aspects of modern living, like applying mural art to otherwise dull areas such as drains and NBN boxes –

Birdwatcher painted by Kade SarteBanana Joe by Kristina GreenwoodThe cover-up!

It’s exciting to come across the art in your local neighbourhood.  I know there are several more pieces for me to discover.

During this adventure, I stumbled across a copy of Banksy’s Rage  – local artist unknown – stencilled under a bridge on the New South Wales side of the Murray River.

It’s positioned to look like the person is about to lob a hand grenade – into Victoria!

Fortunately, the missile is a bunch of brightly coloured flowers.

Cute.

 

 

Photo of the Tai Chi Bunnies taken at Circular Quay, Sydney in January at the Chinese New Year celebrations. I’m told they glow at night!  

.