Tuesday, 6 July 2010

A Sunday in Brisvegas


Dateline: Sunday July 4, 2010
Up early and a bit indecisive on where to go for my morning exercise walk. I eventually decided that a walk down to the opening of our newest bridge across the Brisbane River was in order.
What is it with Brisbane? Why doesn't our river have a decent name? London has the Thames, Paris the Seine even Hobart is built on the banks of the Derwent, and I can probably easily name dozens more. But no, Brisbane never got around to naming it's river. It is just the Brisbane River. Fortunately it is not a creek or a swamp, how romantic would that be? "I took a walk around the Brisbane Swamp". I sat by the side of the Brisbane Stream and had lunch swatting the mosquito's away". Eeek
Anyway I wandered down. Ooops I mean that I power walked to the river and bridge. I managed to miss the official opening ceremony. I vaguely heard words to the effect that "the Go Between Bridge" was now officially open. To celebrate I bought a coffee. I should mention that it was only open to pedestrians today. Cars, bicycles and other means of locomotion were banned. Also a series of Market stalls set up on the bridge.
The day was by this time sunny, but windy. A pleasure to be out in the sun but not too exposed to the wind. At this stage the bridge had maybe 100 genuine visitors on it, numbers outweighed by officials, security, vendors and "volunteers". I think that the opening of a letter may have brought a bigger crowd.
In fact some market stall tents were still not open.
I wandered over the bridge. Bought a German sausage in a roll. The seller asked if I would like Sauerkraut on it. "I love Sauerkraut" I said. He handed me a sausage in a dry bun. "Can I have the Sauerkraut?" I asked. He seemed put out, but eventually gave me what I wanted. Man this guy needs to learn about customer satisfaction. At my local Saturday markets I can get the same German Sausage in a similar bun, with fried onions, sauce, mustard and Sauerkraut for the same price, plus a pleasant "hello how's your day?".
Any way I wandered back over the bridge, then back again on the walkway. By now I was running low on things to do on a bridge. As far as bridges go it isn't all that exciting. It crosses the river and links the north shore to the south. It is only 200-300 meters from another bridge, the William Jolly Bridge, which serves the exact same purpose. It is an unfortunate fact of Brisbane geography that 2 bridges need to be so close to each other. The road configurations are dictated partly by history, partly by the river and partly by the surrounding terrain. In effect this new bridge will greatly streamline traffic flows, but it still seems a waste with a perfectly good bridge so close by.
As to the naming of the bridge. A little bit controversial. The "gobetween" Bridge, according to the marketing department will allow you to Go Between the North and South Shores. Gosh they must pay these people a lot of money. It also celebrates the former Brisbane based band "The Go- Betweens". They were big apparently, although I can only vaguely remember their music.
Maybe the next bridge will be called the Powderfinger Bridge in honour of another iconic Brisbane Band that I do recognise their music and actually have some in my collection. Time will tell.
Where is this blog going I am lost at the moment.
Oh right, back on the Gobetween Bridge. If you followed my footsteps I am back on the wrong side of the river and need to cross gain to get back home. So I did.
And then the Bludger went home.

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