Friday, July 06, 2012


Last weekend I had to drive down to Bunbury for a conference. Because I had to be up early to deal with the registration, I had an encounter with my old nemesis… the sunrise.

Stupid sunrise! Quit following me around!

Fortunately the conference ended relatively early, so I also had an encounter with the sunset, a pleasant, relaxed, undemanding companion, literally the polar opposite of its evil morning twin.

After a day of being cooped up in a lecture theatre I decided to take a long walk along the seashore, then returned to my hotel along the front of the marina. Bunbury is filled with prosperity at the moment, resulting in a rash of very big, very expensive houses and high rise apartment developments.

However unlike its little cousins such as Margaret River and Dunsborough, Bunbury hasn’t attracted classy money. So these enormous new houses are the Grande Dames of Butt Ugly: ill-proportioned, garishly painted and hideously decorated, and often appearing to be the result of an architect mashing together several middle-class architectural fashions. Which he probably did, when his clients said, “I want a minimal, glass walled modernist look… but with lots of Tuscan features and a Federation veranda.”

It was getting dark by this point, but some of the houses seared themselves into my memory such that I had no problem finding them again on Google Maps…

Why is the left balcony completely different to the right balcony? Because f*ck you, that’s why.

I like to think that the architect designed a classical and symmetrical, if not particularly couth house, and then the client said, “That’s great, but can you hitch up the left side? I want an underground garage. And it’ll have to be wider… no, I don’t think it matters that it unbalances the proportions. Ooh, and I want it slathered in Milo-coloured render! The wife likes Milo.”

It was all going reasonably well until someone discovered the mis-tinted paint bin at Bunnings.

Seriously? I have no idea what’s going on here.


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