Saturday, October 14, 2006


A few scenes from my day here yesterday (click on images for larger views if you want them).

Photo by Deirdre: coffee trees, paddock, jacaranda
Looking across a coffee paddock towards a neighbour's jacaranda tree (the purple one in the middle). It's weird, I always initially call jacarandas frangipanis instead, which makes no sense at all because they've got nothing in common. The only way I can remember the correct name is to think "Jack on the verandah: jacaranda".**

Also to be seen in that shot is a mechanical coffee harvester (the blue thing appearing over the tops of the coffee trees). It went through the whole crop today, picking much much more than we could by hand.

Photo by Deirdre: coffee harvester
The harvester works a bit like an automatic carwash, except that instead of squishy washers it uses solid beaters, and they pummel the trees as the machine drives over the top. Coffee cherries get shaken from the branches onto a collection belt, and then they're transferred to collection bins:

Photo by Deirdre: coffee harvesting 1
Photo by Deirdre: coffee harvesting 2
Photo by Deirdre: coffee harvesting 3, coffee cherries
Next they'll be processed to remove the outer fruit and inner skins, excluding the green (unripe) cherries, leaves and sticks along the way, and producing in the end just the more familiar-looking coffee beans (two per cherry) ready for drying.

I wasn't involved in the harvesting yesterday though, I was supposed to be mowing. And driving the mower down the road, I came across my father's ute:

It was parked there beside that public road, a coffee paddock in the background, and my Dad nowhere to be seen. On closer inspection, I found the ute's windows open, the door unlocked, and... umm, what's that in the ignition?

Oh. The keys.
My Dad likes to trust people, I think.

And here's another friendly soul:

The little dog across the road from where I was mowing. He sat there in the shade for ages, just looking down the road, presumably waiting for his humans to come home. I waved to him a few times but it wasn't me he was waiting for, sadly, so I just wouldn't do at all :(

Finally: look!

Photo by Deirdre: koala
Photo by Deirdre: koala
Another koala! He/she was scrambling under the eucalypts about 6pm, and then climbed up a tree a short distance when the dogs and I appeared.

**What's even weirder is that when writing this post, I couldn't remember the name for frangipanis.

PS. I started writing this post at 10:31pm, and it's only just ready to publish now - 1am the next day. Boo, I say. What the hell is wrong with me? Why do these things take me so long? Hopeless!!