Sunday, February 25, 2007

'beach break'

A reasonable piece of writing in The Weekend Australian Magazine: Susan Maushart on "Rottnest Island, 19 Pellegrino-perfect kilometres of Indian Ocean due west of my kitchen sink..."

She mentions the dugites, the Aboriginal history, the ballot, and how a crate is usually devoted to the transport of booze.

This is good, about the quest for a booking: "...I am a master of the cancellation booking, for which one must trawl tirelessly all summer long, like a retiree with a metal detector".

It's all good on Rotto. But you have to be careful: did you see that West story a few weeks ago, about a 29-year-old Heathridge man charged with stealing passengers' bags from North Freo?

"A search of the area located the alleged offender hiding between vehicles in the North Mole terminus car park and he was detained with the help of the public," The West said.

"As the officers tried to arrest the man he allegedly became aggressive and refused to follow their directions and police were required to use pepper spray to handcuff him."

Saturday, February 17, 2007

no swim

If everything had gone to plan, there'd still be knackered people staggering up the beach at Rotto right now.

Alas the Rottnest Channel Swim was cancelled and didn't happen today.

Perth Now says there could be a "surprise lifeline", though: the swim could be held on March 17.

'Rottnest Channel Swim Association president Shelley Hatton said she had not discussed an offer by Freo to Rotto Big Splash race organiser John Guilfoyle to hand over that date to the channel swim.'

At there was no more on that, but there were posts debating the merit of the cancellation.

"I can't believe what a chickenshit society we have become", gottabejoking howled.

He was in turn howled down, with this being a reasonable response: "I was to be a paddler and if the race had started I would probably have been spewing up by now and I would have been watching many other support crews in boats doing likewise".

Monday, February 12, 2007


An associate reminisced to Rotto Bloggo today about his happy days on the island.

"I long to soak in Little Parakeet Bay, nibble a cream bun and doze on my stretcher bed reading books and listening to the wind in the pine trees," he said, after we told him we were angling to book for seven days anytime during the next few weeks.

"I used to sleep on the verandah of bungalow 5, which we rented for two weeks every year for the first 14 years of my life, and could look through the open slats and hear the hiss of bike tyres long into the night.

"A few memories that I'm sure you'll share - grey RIB* supplied blankets, wire fronted bread safes in the kitchen, rigging up illegal showers in the back courtyard, getting caught in the pay showers mid-lather, constantly stubbed toes, endless card games at night, House of the Rising Sun and Rock 'n' Roll all Nite on the Milk Bar juke box, pub pong at the Quokka Arms, foam blowing across the road from the salt baths and the wind in the powerlines... ahhhh, what a place.

"As far as Maccas** goes, I'd hate to think it would ever happen - the RR*** outlet has changed the face of retail in the main square - I used to think the general store was a magical place.

"I'm so anti-change I'd be mortified even if they fixed up the lumpy road that runs along Thomson Bay!"

* Rottnest Island Board
** MacDonalds
*** Red Rooster

Sunday, February 11, 2007

going, going...

There was an ad for Rotto in The West Australian yesterday.

It reminded Rotto Bloggo of a recent excellent article in The Sunday Times' outstanding supplement Prestige Property.

The article looked at rising sea levels, and how premium property in WA will be affected...

Mr Rosser says if everything goes as expected, there will be a one-metre rise in sea levels by 2100.

A one-metre rise means islands off WA will be affected, as will our coast.

“Rottnest? We’re losing it now,” Mr Rosser said.

“But even with a six-metre rise, when Greenland goes, there will still be bits of it left. I don’t know about the bakery, but the quokkas will be huddled together in the centre of the island.”

(Matthew Rosser is from the WA Sustainable Energy Association).

Substitute quokkas for the seagull in the ad and you've got a good idea of what we can expect in 93 years time...

Saturday, February 10, 2007

on the (bacterial) beach

The admirable Post Newspapers has a story today about Rotto beaches getting the health tick.

"Local river spots and beaches have been given the thumbs-up for summer following the first comprehensive survey of bacterial levels in Perth waterways," the Post reports.

The Dep't of Health's Environmental Health Directorate surveyed 11 Rotto beaches (and 34 on the coast, but who cares about those?).

"At Rottnest, the concentration of organisms in the water was consistently less than 10 per 100ml," says the Post.

"But one sample taken in Geordie Bay on April 25 last year was 2100 per 100ml."

Yuk. The Dep't said it was because of school holidays...but no conclusive link between boats and high bacterial presence had been found".

Of course not! It's just a coincidence!

"Samples also indicate regular changes in bacteria levels at Thomson Bay, the Thomson bay jetty, Parker Point and the hotel jetty and fule jetty areas," the Post posted.

Have a squizz at the report (long columns of numbers) at the above link.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Rottnest rumpus

We've been scanning the MSM (mainstream media) today for news about a court appearance, but no joy so far.

A 13-year-old Claremont boy was due to be in Fremantle Childrens' Court , charged with GBH.

The Thin Blue Line had these details in a media release on their site:

"A dispute between two schoolboys that started on the internet and developed into a fight at
Rottnest on 6 December 2006 has resulted in police charging one of the teenagers with assault.

"Fremantle Detectives in charge of the case say the two 13 year olds were holidaying on the
island when the Claremont boy and a large group of students approached the Fremantle boy
outside his chalet.

"The offender allegedly grabbed the other boy in a bear hug, pulled him over his shoulders and
spear-tackled him head first into the concrete floor.

"The victim lay unconscious and was taken to the Rottnest Nursing Post for treatment and the
next day admitted to the Princess Margaret Hospital Perth with life threatening bleeding on the

"He underwent successful surgery and is expected to make a full recovery."

Which chalet? What was the Internet dispute about? I guess we could've gone to Freo and sat in court, but Rotto Bloggo was busy in Perth and Mount Lawley all day.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007


Yet another fabulous Flickr photo of the magnificent island.

This is by LozzaWA, and was taken at nine in the evening, six days ago.

"Full moon rising after a lovely balmy day at Rotto," Lozza says.

"We went for the day to snorkel and decided to stay overnight. Magic day, took my partner who hadn't been to Rotto before (he's from South Africa) and had some special swims at Cape York bay and of course the Basin, the jewel of Rotto."

Quite right. There's nothing like chasing fish underwater at the Basin. They nearly let you catch them.

Another fabbo Flickr photo coming soon.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

“doesn’t get much better than this”

That’s the caption above this Flickr photo.

Flickr user and local blogger manthatcooks (a.k.a. Anthony) was in Stark Bay on Australia Day weekend and snapped this beauty.

“It’s like a scene from a Rick Stein tv show” someone commented on Flickr.

Except Mr Stein has never (to our knowledge) been to Rotto.

Inspired by manthatcooks’ good-looking grilling?

Recipe here:

Sunday, February 04, 2007

more sea strife

Another Rotto rescue: four blokes motored out in Thomson Bay at around 1am this morning.

Their motor went kaput, the dinghy drifted towards the deep, so two of them sawm back to Rotto.

"The police helicopter was called in to search for the missing men using its infra-red camera and eventually found the pair on Phillip Rock, at the east end of Thompson Bay", ABC Online reports (and, as usual, spells Thomson with a p).

"Police say the men were tired and apparently suffering exposure but otherwise okay", Aunty concludes.

Saturday, February 03, 2007

"save Rotto"

Wonder how many people were at the Swan Yacht Club today?

It was stinking hot, but the Rottnest Society planned to have a Rally for Rottnest at the Club at 4pm.

We'll drop them an email to find out how they did.

Man In Suit Laurie O'Meara (RIA chairman) said he's be there.

The Post quoted the Society's Sue Folks thus today: "Key questions like the length and terms of the lease agreement with developers Broadwater Hotels have not been answered".

Our pic today is of a photo in the Rotto film shed: it shows more Men In Suits (an early Rottnest Island Board, which was created in 1917) meeting on the island.

They knew how to wear hats in those days.