December Reflections and Colours.

Keynsham Park

Reflections Under the Bridge
Fallen Ginkgo Biloba leaves.

Ginkgo biloba, commonly known as ginkgo or gingko also known as the maidenhair tree, is a species of tree native to China. It is the last living species in the order Ginkgoales, which first appeared over 290 million years ago. Fossils very similar to the living species, belonging to the genus Ginkgo, extend back to the Middle Jurassic approximately 170 million years ago. The tree was cultivated early in human history and remains often planted in gardens and parks. Ginkgo leaf extract is commonly used as a dietary supplement, but there is no scientific evidence that it supports human health or is effective against any disease. Conservation status. Endangered in the wild

In 1806, William Hamilton wrote to Thomas Jefferson that he intended to send him three trees that he thought Jefferson would “deem valuable additions” to his garden. Ginkgo biloba or the China Maidenhair tree was one of the three. Hamilton went on to say that it produced a “good eatable nut.”

The Gingko is a large, hardy, deciduous tree with delicate, fan-shaped leaves that turn bright yellow in fall, and it has been used medicinally for thousands of years. The female trees produce edible fruit.

On the way back to Wollongong

We left Wagga after another look at the RAAF Museum aircraft in the sunshine.

The Gloster Meteor with its resident Willie Wagtail

The Gloster Meteor is a twin-engine jet fighter, the first jet aircraft to serve with the Royal Air Force (RAF) and the only Allied jet aircraft in combat during World War II. Almost 4,000 were produced, mostly in
service with the RAF between 1944 and 1965. In 1946 a Meteor captured newspaper headlines when it flew over Melbourne, Victoria at 788 km/h (490mph). However, it was not until 1951, when Meteors
went into action with No. 77 Squadron in Korea, that these aircraft made their mark in RAAF history. Ninety-three Meteor F8s and six Meteor T7s were allocated to the Korean War, they were used mainly in
the ground-attack role, but also accounted for three enemy MIG-15s in air to air combat. The enemy MIG-15 proved to be a more capable adversary and despite significant success in the ground attack role, the cost of RAAF Meteor operations in Korea saw the loss of 32 pilots and 53 Meteors from No. 77 Sauadron. The RAAF “officially” retired the Meteor in 1963. However, Meteors with RAF and RAF serial numbers
continued to fly on Ministry of Supply trials at Edinburgh and Woomera.

English Electric/GAF
Canberra Mk 20

A84-235 was acquired by the RAAF on 22 October 1956 and was allocated to No. 1 Aircraft Depot (1AD) at Laverton, Victoria. Later that vear it was reallocated to No. 82 Wing at Amberley, Queensland. It flew with No.6 Squadron and was then allocated to No. 2 Squadron at RAF Butterworth in Malaysia. Canberras from No. 2 Squadron became the first Australian jet bombers to perform a combat sortie in September 1958 when an attack against guerrillas in Northern Malaya was carried
out, the first of many such missions. In May 1967, A84-235 was in service with No. 2 Squadron in Vietnam as part of the United States
Air Force (USAF) 35th Tactical Fighter Wing. No. 2 Squadron’s Canberras flew just six per cent of the Wing’s sorties, but inflicted 16 per cent of the damage. Overall, 11,963 sorties were flown in Vietnam, 76,389 bombs dropped and two aircraft lost. In 1971, during a bombing run, Flying Officer Michael Herbert and Pilot Officer Robert Carver were killed when their Canberra came under attack. They were
not recovered during the war and it was in April 2009 that the wreckage of their aircraft was found and their remains returned to Australia. By the time it returned to Australia, No. 2 Squadron was the last RAF operational Canberra unit and A84-235 retired from service 27 July 1973.

Storm clouds massing to the east, the journey back was uneventful but we encountered some rainstorms on the high ground. Rest stop with just 110 miles to go.

Overlooking Breadalbane

Arrived back at Sea View at 16:00 hrs. And recovered from the drive with a nice cup of tea.

Torrential rain on Monday so we returned the car to Budget and had an Uber back to the house and in the evening had a lovely meal with the family.

Tuesday was a lazy day, sitting in the sun in the garden, sorting stuff out and wondering whether it’ll all go in the suitcase, followed by a lovely meal out at the ChanChaLa.

Chan Cha La

Chanchala is a Sanskrit adjective basically referring to the unsteady vacillating nature of human mind and actions which need to be stilled, neutralized or controlled for gaining right speech and vision… food for thought maybe!

Last Full Day of the Trip

WATER TANK ART. RAAF Base Wagga Wagga NSW. Artist – Sam Brooks

“THEN. NOW. ALWAYS”. Commissioned as part of 100 Year Centenary of the RAAFThe vision was to understand the connection, contribution & sacrifice Riverina residents made during WW2. A training mission undertaken 1939-1945 where 27,387 aircrew were trained in Aviation, Navigation, Engineering & ground operations.

Throughout the mural –
The CAC Wirraway. (Commonwealth Aircraft Corporation)
Tiger Moth.
Avro Anson.
Maps of the Riverina.
141 Stars – The 141 aviators that lost their life in the Riverina whilst training.
Sqn Ldr N. Parry AFC of Deniliquin (wearing the Mae West)
William Ellis Newton VC
Womens Auxiliary Australian Air Force (WAAAF)

Dassault Mirage III, located as a gate guardian at RAAF Base Wagga in the 1980s
English Electric Canberra, which flew during the Vietnam War and located as a gate guardian at RAAF Base Wagga in the 1980s.
Macchi A7
Gloster Meteor Mk8
Wiradjuri walking track along the Murrumbidgee River
The track hardly visible under the water of the swollen river.
A concerned onlooker!
Path to the beach under water.
Stopped in our tracks by the floods.