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Memory Lane – Sydney Australia…Saturday Workshop October 2009

Looking back….we can tell a tree’s story…..admire an image…..capture a moment…..remember a special event… inspired – to create a memory for tomorrow. 

I hope you enjoy this regular peep into some of John’s bonsai history.

Memory Lane – Sydney Australia…Saturday Workshop October 2009
When I was booked to demonstrate at the National Bonsai Convention in New Zealand I was kindly invited to do some bonsai work in Sydney which I suppose to a layman like me on the other side of the world was presumably just around the corner……well a reasonable flight away. When you have recently spent 36 hours continuously in the air or in an airport building even America could be classed as my neighbourhood!
Unfortunately my trip to Sydney had to be a “flying” visit……arrive Thursday evening, recover on Friday, workshop Saturday, demo Sunday, leave Monday morning and fly to Perth.
Rick had everything extremely well organised and we packed so much into my brief visit.
He collected me early on Saturday morning to drive to the workshop venue on a campus the other side of Sydney. When you are used to the company of Yorkshire Sparrows seeing Cockatoos flying freely in passing gardens is a truly amazing sight. The large bats that had greeted me two nights earlier at the harbour bridge had commanded my undivided attention for totally different reasons!
I was given such a warm welcome by a truly great bunch of people. The pictures will give you a small insight into how varied the bonsai material was. Some species I was familiar with whilst some of the tropicals were new to me but similar to other varieties I have worked with. I was kept very busy for most of the day and had to grab the photo opportunities as time allowed…. usually when people were having a break….hence the scenario appearing to be totally laid back and chilled out. I can assure you some serious work was carried out during that day……and I wouldn’t want it any other way.
I was also educated on safe pot lifting! I was more than happy to tuck my fingers under the plant-pot lip and lift trees into position for further scrutiny…..this happiness evaporated quite rapidly once I learned that under the lip was a favourite haunt of spiders…… you know the ones… bite and you’re incapacitated/unwell for several hours…..and of course the other ones with a bite that has you rushed to hospital and hooked up to machines/drips….never touched another pot for the rest of the day! Never realised bonsai could be such a dangerous hobby!
I hope the pictures give you an insight into a bonsai workshop in warmer climates on the other side of the world. For me it brings back fond memories of a really special occasion.
Strange though how bonsai workshops are always the same….New Zealand, Sydney, Accrington, Barnsley…..a generous mix of bonsai and raw material, education, laughter, magical transformations, new friendships, and a bunch of people the same the world over………simply the nicest people you could ever wish to meet……”bonsai people”….
……….thank you for giving me more than 25 years of pure joy.
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