An accomplished, well travelled writer and reviewer, Michele resides in Brisbane. Witty and highly articulate, her rivetting reviews show life through the eyes of a highly Gifted Adult viewing a world where she has an IQ in the top 1% of that world.
Published April 22nd 2012
Image Credit: Albert K. Murray, commissioned by the United States Navy (Wikimedia Commons)
I have discovered not one, but four free Brisbane tours that rock! The most simplest of all is Brisbane City Council's free bus, 'The Loop'. It goes around and past the most important parts of the city. Jump off at any stop or just sit there with your bag on your lap and do that loop on that sassy red bus. No navigational skills required.
Visit Parliament House. This one is a double whammy. You get to see the dusty old parliament house with its politician style, tax funded rich decor and antiques from an era when there was terrible poverty and the rag and bone man pushed his cart. Then, excitement plus - if Parliament is sitting, go in at 10.30 am or 2.30 pm for a session. Sit nicely in the public gallery and see how our leaders lead us and make laws. You may be surprised that it is by argument and insult, yelling and booing as Mr Speaker bangs his gavel and yells to no avail, "Order!" You will notice the occasional, "Hear, hear!" Listen to their flying insults as they mock members' penis size or bottom width.
There's this amazing thing called, 'Parliamentary Privilege' which allows them to say anything and insult each other. Freedom of speech is taken to cosmic heights as school bullying causes suicide and these hell's angels raise the bar. You can boo if inclined to and if one of the members has used public money to pay for racy prostitutes, call out, "Whoremonger", "Hooker muncher" and "Brothel ant". It's just not right. He should have used his own money and if he's paying by credit card and not cash, then the girls aren't getting tipped. A gentleman always tips.
On Tuesday or Thursday at 10 am, get to Police Headquarters at 200 Roma Street. Book ahead for an amazing behind the scenes visit to Brisbane's NASA. See state of the Art computers at work. See the Communication's centre where miked cops in head phones are assisting police fight against crimes in progress. They are dishing out back up, dogs, snipers, negotiators, boats and helicopters or the coroner. Remember it was police dressed as trees with trained dogs that couldn't capture Malcolm Naden for seven years. In the finger print bureau, you will learn that every person has a different print. See photos of crime scenes. In the forensic lab see small jars that display the day by day growth of a maggot as it eats a corpse. Take in the museum with its nooses and ball and chains. Nod to a cop- they deserve it.
Nurses. What would we do without them? Well, they can do without me because after sacrificing Law where I was hated for Nursing, I found myself overworked and underpaid. I missed breaks, I threw in unpaid over time. I did rocket scientist things, I did boring things. I worked under incredible pressure where a mistake could kill. I laid out the dead. I held hands and had patients cry on my shoulder while I searched for the right words after a doctor had blown in, said You've got three weeks to live" then vanished. Visit the Museum of Nursing at the Royal Brisbane and Women's Hospital. You will see equipment I was using not that long ago when we took a pulse with our fingers and blood pressure with a stethoscope. See the lovely white uniform that made me feel special and a gold fob watch identical to the now historical one on my dressing table. Pray for our nurses that stayed as I left.
If you've taken their hardship to heart, you'll be in need of the next tour: the XXXX Brewery Mill at Milton where you can hold up a bottle and say, "Here's to our nurses" and then drink to forget them there on that highway to hell.