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Marriage Equality: Vote Yes

The “YES vote” campaign is highly visible in Martin Place (downtown Sydney).

Here in Australia, we’re in the throes of an emotionally charged postal survey to discover people’s opinion about changing the law to allow same-sex couples to marry. The YES camp and the NO camp are putting their messages in front of the voters. The survey is not a referendum, not a plebiscite — the result will have no binding consquences and will not force the federal government to take any action.

It’s not just banners, there are ads in Martin Place too.

“This means that even if a majority of Australians vote ‘yes’ in the postal vote, it doesn’t ensure same sex marriage will be legalised. Instead, [Prime Minister] Turnbull says that a ‘yes’ vote will prompt a free vote based on a private members’ bill in Parliament. A ‘no’ vote will not trigger this action.” (source)

I walk through this avenue of banners every morning, just one more faceless drone scurrying to the office.

So we have our say in order to determine whether Parliament will even consider passing a law. Tortuous, but the only option at the moment.

Quite apart from the serious message, the banners are, well, pretty! Their bright rainbow colours are a cheery sight.

I don’t normally take an overt political stance, but this issue is a no-brainer. Love the person you love; marry the person you love, if that’s what you want. The state should have no right to dictate such matters.

An Australian flag behind a YES banner.

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Random Fridays: Wisteria

Wisteria at an entrance to Waverley Park, Bondi Road, Bondi.

Wisteria at an entrance to Waverley Park, Bondi Road, Bondi.

It’s spring here in Sydney, which means the wisteria is giving us its annual brief blaze of glory. The temperature on Wednesday was 32C, which won’t have done these delicate blossoms any good! But while it’s blooming, it’s beautiful.

Wisteria at an entrance to Waverley Park, Bondi Road, Bondi.

Wisteria at an entrance to Waverley Park, Bondi Road, Bondi.

Wisteria at an entrance to Waverley Park, Bondi Road, Bondi.

Wisteria at an entrance to Waverley Park, Bondi Road, Bondi.

Sadly, the flowers are already starting to drop.

Fallen glory.


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Waiting for the train

Lamy station, New Mexico.

Lamy station, New Mexico. Not a lot to do.

I spent a few hours at Lamy train station, waiting for the westbound Southwest Chief to take me from Santa Fe, New Mexico to Williams, Arizona (for the Grand Canyon). It was hot. It was dusty. It was endless.

Every now and then, the station master would add a new figure to the ETA post-it note.

Delay after delay after delay.

Lamy station Indicator board.

Lamy station Indicator board. About as low tech as it gets.

Peering down the rails. Still nothing. Still waiting.

Still no train.


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Big waves at Bondi

Big waves at Bondi

There were unusually big waves and powerful surf at Bondi Beach today. Very dramatic to watch as they gathered themselves up, curled over, and then surged in foam towards the shore.

Big waves at Bondi

Big waves at Bondi

Big waves at Bondi

Big waves at Bondi

Very few swimmers ventured into the water, but a few of the better surfers got in on the action.

Surfing the big waves at Bondi

Surfing the big waves at Bondi

Surfing the big waves at Bondi

Surfing the big waves at Bondi