A Snapshot of Two Cities #20

14:31,Β 29/11/2015, Nanjing University, Nanjing, China

What an intriguing scene you’ve captured here, Isabel! A moment of reflection, puzzlement, curiosity, or just daydreaming perhaps? I’d really like to know what she was thinking.Β The whole scene feels so still and calm. And props to the lady in the all-magenta tracksuit set. My brain automatically links back to Kath and Kim for some reason (Kath and Kel had matching tracksuits, didn’t they?) so it always gives me a chuckle. And there’s another lady off to the left in the same kind of colour! Are they a part of a club? I hope so. I also like how the colour of their outfits brings out the purple-red of the leaves in the trees behind. It’s funny with the change of seasons, hey? Isabel’s photo looks like it’s got a tinge of a sunset or even sunrise happening, with the orange light spilling onto the grass, but it was taken mid-afternoon!

grants picnic park

16:40, 30/11/2015, Grants Picnic Ground, Sherbrooke, Melbourne, Australia

On Monday afternoon, I took myself off to the Dandenongs in search of a) some cool shade in the sudden 31 degree day we were having and b) a photo for this week’s post. I drove around for a bit, wanting to stop almost every 30 seconds because it is just so ridiculously scenic up there, but eventually drove past Grants Picnic Ground in Sherbrooke. I turned around as soon as I could and pulled into the car park. As soon as I opened my door, I was met with the characteristic screech of the sulphur-crested cockatoo, which is the main attraction at the picnic ground (aside from the 1000-year old trees and beautiful walking paths). It was nearing closing time so the feeding arena was almost deserted except for this one family. There was a young boy who was quite eager to try and feed the birds but they weren’t particularly interested (maybe they were full!). The lady sweeping in the background even tried to coax one of the birds to jump onto her arm to help the boy feed it but it didn’t want a bar of it. There were about 15 birds hanging out in this one tree and, all of a sudden, they took flight together. I tried my best to capture the moment as they cascade out of the tree. I liked how chilled the grandparents on the bench look too.

Lordy lord, it was a bit of an ordeal to get this post up, yet again. I changed my website hosting, which took just under a week, and then WordPress cracked it when I tried to upload any of my photos! Rude. Never mind. I baked a banana cake, took some photos for my Etsy shop, and then managed to fix the problem all on my ownsome! In the end, I just had to be logical but I think I needed to cool off and calm down before I could even get close to approximating logic. Sometimes you just need to take a step back, go and do something different, and then come back to the problem at hand, don’t you?

This week’s post is the PENULTIMATE installment of A Snapshot of Two Cities. Second last! Only one more week to go! I’ll be so sad to see the end of this wonderful little project with Isabel, but I’m also excited for what else might be on the horizons!


A Snapshot of Two Cities is a collaborative project between myself and Isabel from Nanjing Nian. We take a photo of something that catches our eye each week and post the photos on our blogs. We hope you enjoy looking at the differences and similarities between the two cities and cultures, and also just some pretty pictures. You can read more about it in the first posting.

Jacquie is a 20-something maker and writer from Melbourne. She enjoys eating virtually anything that is labelled salted caramel and, contrary to popular belief, has forgotten how to ride a bike. She feels ambivalent about writing in the third person but thought it might be fun. It was.


  1. Carolyn

    Ah, yes, I love magenta lady too and the way she coordinates with the foliage. I have so enjoyed this photo series. Is there anything up your sleeve for the new year? I think your banana cake looks delish. Nothing cannot be solved after a little step back and something lively coming out of the oven. I, too, have had trouble with my site but solved it by looking at the troubleshooting page and fiddlin around with HTML. So techy!


    1. birdandfox

      Thanks Carolyn – it’s been awesome to take part in. Nothing set in stone just yet but some rough plans have been formed for 2016 πŸ˜€ And thank you! I remember learning in high school that the crack on the top meant something important – perhaps a too-hot oven or an overbeaten mixture? Meh. It tastes good and that’s all I focus on! Baking is wonderful for making you feel productive, I think! I’m sorry to hear you had bloggy issues too. It’s just no fun at all πŸ™ But so glad you were able to fix it yourself! That’s a pretty good feeling.


  2. Isabel

    Hello! Your photo makes me so excited to come home to Melbourne, Jacquie. I can hear that squawking flock of cockatoos all the way over here in China πŸ™‚ I’m sad to report that the magenta ladies were not part of a club, but if I see them again, I’ll suggest they form The Magenta Ladies Society or similar. I know, the light is so hazy at 2.30 in the afternoon – I blame it partly on pollution, and partly because it’s dark by 5.30, so 2.30 kind of is mid-late afternoon…the golden hour, we might say. Yes totally agree with your Kath and Kim analogy, they totes had matching tracksuits. Man, I loved that show. How funny was Sharon?! That’s why I sometimes find the matching tracksuit top/bottom combo a little hard to understand, because back home it’s a little, ahem, Fountain Lakes-esque, but lots of women embrace it over here and I say good for them! x


    1. birdandfox

      Hello Isabel! Haha I’m glad you’re looking forward to hearing the racket they make because they’ve certainly been in full swing lately.

      Boooooo to the lack of club. I’m sorely disappointed! I think you should definitely suggest it if you see them again. And tell them to get matching t-shirts to wear underneath the tracksuits too! πŸ˜€

      Ahhh yes, the pollution. It’s funny, I just had that thought in the car on the way to uni this morning. Did it take some getting used to or does it still surprise you/do you still notice it when you step out the door? I know it’s particularly problematic in Beijing but is it pretty widespread?

      Hahaha yeaaah. Good old Kath and Kim. I say good on them too! Wear the double tracksuit with pride, ladies! Just maybe don’t power walk in them πŸ˜› x


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