Tuesday, April 27, 2010

chile on isle

Rotto Bloggo readers would have noticed that snide comment yesterday about missing the big Rottnest news while examining the E.Taxi ride.

It seems a Destiny's Chile member spent some time on the beautiful island.

We are always most amused when a skivvy-wearing, beret-topped, hand-wringing, NIMBY-proclaiming, tree-hugging, real lager-quaffing, Juliet balcony-standing, little dog-owning, ooshta-yearning lefty member of the lefty intelligentsia subtly implies he (or she) could do a better job than a fearless reporter in the trenches by the mean city streets.

We had to fire up the electric internets to find out more about the DC member, who is Kelly Rowland (but we say in our defence we knew Beyonce was in DC).

From what we can tell she is not as popular as that Justin Bieber bloke, but she is quite popular ("...total record sales, when combined with the group, have surpassed 60 million" according to Teh Wik.

Anyway - Kelly was not on Rotto, as this snap of a computer screen yesterday shows.

Monday, April 26, 2010

happier times?

Just three-and-a-half hours away from the Troy Buswell press conference.

As Rotto Bloggo had to vacuum and attend to various other chores, we reflected: 'It could be worse.'

Here's a pic of Adele Carles in what might be happier times: a cheery group by the Bathurst lighthouse. Is it dawn or dusk? There's a Rottnest link to everything, we find.

Coincidentally outstanding local blogger Fremantlebiz - on about local birds at the moment - recently wrote about a wedding he witnessed at the same lighthouse.

"I'm suspecting the couple will reenact their blissful kiss at the same spot in anniversaries for many years to come," Paul predicted.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

winter break

Only twenty bucks for a weekend on Rotto.

OK, it will cost a bit more: 10 hours work, and you have to get your own food and drink.

But it sounds good to us.

Yes, the volunteer weekends organised by the Rottnest Society are coming up again.

They have three weekends booked: accommodation for the first and third weekends will again be in the Caroline Thomson cabins; the second weekend will be in the Youth Hostel.

The Rottnest Island Authority will provide ferry vouchers plus Saturday night’s accommodation in exchange for 10 hours work over Saturday and Sunday.

You can go over on any Rottnest Express ferry on the Friday, and work on Saturday from 9am to 4pm and on Sunday from 9am until 12.30pm.

The projects to be done are determined and overseen by the Rottnest Island Authority and the Rottnest Society coordinates the volunteers.

Planting or environmental work: 11-13 June
Planting or environmental work: 13-15 August
Weeding: 17-19 September
Cost per person $20.00 to be paid to the Rottnest Society on arrival at Rottnest

To book email convenor@rottnestsociety.org.au or call Sue Folks on 9438 1413 or 0411 880 199.

Saturday, April 24, 2010


More Extraordinary Taxi news: this report in today's POST...

An unleaded-fuel taxi was the latest vehicle driving on Rottnest Island this week.

Tourism WA's Extraordinary Taxi campaign had a four-day stint in Perth starting from Saturday, April 17.

Western suburbs stops on driver Doug Slater's and passengers Heinz and Patricia Markuse's itinerary were Kings Park and Rottnest.

The XT Ford Falcon cab was loaded onto the island's supply barge at Fremantle early Monday morning and hit Rottnest at half-past eight.

A Tourism WA spokeswoman said the passengers snorkelled, rode bikes and went on Eco Adventure and lighthouse tours.

The taxi returned to the mainland at around 4pm.

The spokeswoman was unsure if Mr Slater and his passengers had been to Rottnest before.

The Extraordinary Taxi website describes Rottnest as “one of the most extraordinary little islands on earth”, with attractions including beaches, bays and the quokka.

“One thing you won’t be seeing (on Rottnest) is any cars – quite an attraction in itself,” the website says.

But a Rottnest Island Authority spokeswoman said the taxi joined at least 60 vehicles already on the island.

The Authority has seven cars, nine buses, a railcar, five trucks, two Landcruiser fire units, three electric golf buggies, a petrol golf buggy and a quad bike.

The police have two cars, the nursing post has an ambulance and contractors Programmed Maintenance Services drive 22 vehicles.

Three businesses have a vehicle each, and cleaners have an undetermined number of vehicles.

Friday, April 23, 2010


Only 65 days to go until Rotto Bloggo is next scheduled to be on the beautiful island.

We will pack our Rottnest Society T-shirt - and also this marvellous new garment when we snap it up at Red Bubble.

Rotto 6161 is the latest fabulous design from fashion force House of Skink.

We can't understand why the City of Perth doesn't share Skink's dreams.

The four digits form Rotto's postcode, but they also happen to be the combined number of beaches and bays on the beautiful island, and the number of Scrabble games Rotto Bloggo was won while on a Thomson Bay balcony.

We decided against buying a Rottnest Channel Swim shirt this year - how many Ts does a man need, to paraphrase Tolstoy? - but we regretted it later.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

secret taxi business

Except it wasn't secret.

Many thanks to legendary south-of-the-river blogger Fremantlebiz, who sent this exclusive pic of the Extraordinary Taxi on the beautiful island.

"I hate film crews at tourist destinations," someone peering over Rotto Bloggo's shoulder just said. "They tend to regard the public as an inconvenience and the local officials tend to go ga-ga."

Fremantlebiz has recently returned from a few glorious days on Rottnest -read his excellent reports here (he's on about endangered robins today). For more info on the Extraordinary Taxi, which was on the island on Monday, see here.

Monday, April 19, 2010


More original art published on Rotto Bloggo.

Ever since we bought some excellent T-shirts off Red Bubble (we snapped up a couple of designs from thelazyaussie at The Worst of Perth) we have been keeping an eye on the site.

As with Flickr, perusing the images on offer is a way of immersing ourselves in the beautiful island.

This one shown above caught our eye: it is by Elli Christou and you can get it on a card for $2.77 or a print from $19.80.

"My first go at a landscape painting," she says of her treatment of Transit Reef.

We like it: a welcome change from the bog-standard cerulean blue of the 458 beaches and 923 bays.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

drenched by the sun

We are indebted to Southall Travel in the UK for this news: the beautiful island has been judged one of the 30 - or 31 - best secret islands in the world.

Who has made this perceptive decision? None other than Travel + Leisure, a monthly out of New York with nearly five million readers, according to Teh Wiks.

No argument from Rotto Bloggo. The Southall people say T+L lable Rotto as a "sun-drenched reserve", so we clicked over to have a look.

"When Dutch mariners arrived on this antipodean island, they encountered the rare quokka, a marsupial that they mistook for a rodent (hence the name Rat Nest, or Rottnest)," T+L says.

"Since that unfortunate beginning, the sun-drenched reserve and its friendly, kangaroo-like inhabitants have welcomed Western Australians who take day trips via a 90-minute ferry from Perth (or 25 minutes from Fremantle) to surf and lounge on the sand." Or fish off the natural jetty!

"No private cars are allowed, and the residents will happily tell you that plans for a luxury resort are progressing slowly." Hmmm.

"For now, the best place to stay is Hotel Rottnest (doubles from $208), set in the former governor’s mansion overlooking Thomson Bay.

"T+L Tip: Buy your ferry ticket in advance, especially during the Aussie summer months. Once there, the spit is easily navigable on foot."

The spit? Does that mean the ferry jetty? These New Yorkers and their strange argot.

The T+L list is interesting, if tedious (there's no list, and so Rotto Bloggo had to click through until we got to number 23 to find the Rottnest page), and there are some other islands we had never heard of.

Number 15 is Espiritu Santo off Mexico, the Japanese Ogasawara Islands are number 27 (a flamethrower burst from Iwo Jima, and you can feed sea turtles), and number 10 (Seabird Key in Florida, a 10-acre spot that goes for US$5,595 a week for four).

Saturday, April 17, 2010

brown water

A Rotto Bloggo associate regularly rants about the boaties in Thomson Bay and elsewhere: he is convinced they empty their toilets in the water.

"How many of them are going to do the right thing and motor out to where they can dump their sewage?" he frequently questions.

For those needing a reminder of dos and don't's with ones and twos, see here.

We were reminded of our associate's angst by this report from yesterday:

"round the island to different bays - all beautiful, sunbathed on white sandy beaches and snorkelled on the coral reef! saw lots of fish including a massive sting ray which ste swam right over and shit himself!!! (he was busy thinking of what happened to steve irwin!!! - crikey cant lose another ste!!!)".

Yikes. There's a day-old floater somewhere: alas the Mitchells don't reveal in which of the 332 bays or 602 beaches this evacuation happeend.

But they were able to post a microreview of Setonix brachyurus: "also saw the quokkas - king sized rats that are actually cute, they are like mini kangaroos!!"

Thursday, April 15, 2010

quokka shocker

It's an outrage: the quokka is not worthy of critical assessment.

We were speechless with rage this week when we learned of popular US blog Animal Review's lack of attention towards the quokka.

AR has looked at the jellyfish, the alligator, the bullet ant - but zip on Setonix brachyurus.

Rotto Bloggo resisted writing to AR: we know to let the red mist descend before firing out indignant emails.

But we will be sending a cross missive to Jake Lentz and Steve Nash - and encourage our entourage to do the same.

Perhaps it is just as well there has been no AR microscope on the quokka.

Mr Lentz and Mr Nash make several juvenile attempts at humour about the jellyfish using the same outlet for its mouth and anus.

Would our fair creature escape similar ridicule for some perceived fault or strangeness?

Outstanding quokka pic from Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quokka

Sunday, April 11, 2010

rotto servo?

Does Rottnest have a service station? Does it have a dole office? Is there a university?

Hmmm. This site invites you to show what's on the beautiful island: "You can show your expertise of Australia by contributing and refining the information Bonzle has about Rottnest Island".

But why be satisfied with merely clicking? "Do you have a photo of Rottnest Island gathering cyber dust on your hard drive? Why not upload it and share your information with other Bonzle users."

Hmmm. What, pray tell, is Bonzle? We hadn't heard of it before. It's by Digital Atlas Pty Ltd and "it uses data from a variety of sources including those listed on the data sources page and like all such data is potentially inaccurate, probably incomplete and not up-to-date".

Indeed: "The nearest sealed road to Rottnest Lighthouse is Queen Victoria Street (23.5km away)."

Like Wikipedia, but not quite as popular?

Thinking about it, Rottnest should have a uni. We fancy ourselves as the Vice-Chancellor of Thomson Bay.

Friday, April 09, 2010

anthologise this

An associate glimpsed this on the Fellowship of Australian Writers site.

Sounds good to us.

Rotto Bloggo's literary links to the beautiful island are deep and meaningful: we have posted the first three chapters of the only known Bills & Moon romance set on Rottnest, for example.

Write Around Rotto

Weekend July 31 - August 1st 2010

A proposed Activities Program is being developed for the retreat, so potential guests can see the types of activities on offer. Details will be available soon.

We are also investigating some fundraising ideas to contribute towards catering costs and other expenses. Book your place with a deposit of $100 by 31st March (balance due 1st June).

There will be no tutors, instead it will be a weekend for individual writing during the day and sharing at night. The group may decide to produce an anthology from work begun during the weekend.

Make your bookings with Pat Johnson on 9384 4771 or email: admin@fawwa.org.au

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Thomson Tiwi

Famed Rotto author Ted Snell had this item in The Australian about FotoFreo: it had some welcome Rottnest content.

"Peter Eve and Monica Napper's exhibition Yiloga! Tiwi Footy, exploring the role of football in Tiwi culture (on show at the Salt Store on Rottnest Island)...."

A desultory Google doesn't reveal any Yiloga! stuff, but we're sure it's fabulous.

Our photo for this post is also artistic: the beautiful island is framed by the sculpture, although it's hard to actually see Rotto. Take our word for it that it's there.

The artwork is Mark Grey-Smith's 'Centrefold' and is aluminium and black oxide: it was in Sculpture by the Sea in 2006 and bought by the council.

Monday, April 05, 2010

flagging interest

A man in Japan has been asking about the Rotto flag plans.

Rotto Bloggo was excited to get a Christmas Island flag on our birthday: the magnificent object features a golden bosun bird, the Southern Cross, and an outline of the island.

We shared this excitement and the man in Japan asked: “Does Rotto have a flag?”

It does now: here is Rotto Bloggo’s elegantly simple brilliant design featuring no bird, no stars, and an outline of the island.

The traditional Rottnest orange surrounded by the deep blue of the 127 beaches and 443 bays of the beautiful island.

Does it work? Would you be happy running this up your pole?

Could be worse: our superb creation, the Indian Ocean speck (and the delightful Mediterranean destination that is Cyprus) work better than banners like Andhra Pradesh, the stylised Gaza on Al-Aqsa University and NZ’s Chatham Islands.

Copyright acknowledgements:
Christmas Island flag by Zeljko Heimer, Cyprus flag by Martin Grieve, Andhra Pradesh flag by Antonio Martins, Al-Aqsa University flag by Eugene Ipavec, Chatham Islands flag by Jaume Olle.

Sunday, April 04, 2010

on the go

onthegogirl enjoyed her stay on the beautiful island: check it out here.

There are a few worries: Thomson Bay becomes The Settlement, there's a "condo complex" somewhere, and quokkas ("like miniature Wallabies") are nocturnal.

Also her underwater camera was kaput, but she'll be back.

Worth a look is Danny's pic of a washed-up fish with "teeth worse than Ken Dodd".

And he's got a quokka video here.

Note both onthegogirl and Danny feed the quokkas. Naughty!