The Smiling Bilby

A passion project complete. During the start of the pandemic I started writing a children’s ebook, and with the delightful illustrations from my friend @mathiasdraws it has come to life. The Smiling Bilby is available on Apple Books https://books.apple.com/au/book/the-smiling-bilby/id1563704277

Streaming services and which one to choose

Australians have, on average, spend $30 a month on streaming services according to savings.com.au. With the recent addition of two new streaming services – Apple TV Plus and Disney Plus we may see this figure rise, or we may see services fail and bow out of the market. In the meantime how do we choose which service to keep?

Netflix is the market leader in Australia with more than 4 million subscribers, followed by Stan. However Disney Plus has a large volume of content including its entire back catalogue of classic and modern Disney movies, Marvel, Pixar, Star Wars and National Geographic. All for $8.99 a month. This is definitely one to watch as a potential rival to Netflix.

Baby Yoda is a can favourite on The Mandalorian – one of Disney Plus Originals.

Apple TV Plus contains roughly a dozen shows, all originals, with more coming each month. At a cost of $7.99, it doesn’t give as much bang for your buck as the other services, but each show is distinctively different, original and contains some stellar casts including Oprah, Jennifer Anniston, James Momoa and Reece Witherspoon.

A quick summary of each streaming service available in Australia:

Netflix – the king.

Stan – a close second to Netflix.

Amazon Prime – wide range of horror movies, dark comedies and classic movies.

Hayu – all the reality tv you need.

Apple TV Plus – will come to its own in 2020 as more titles are released.

Disney Plus – this is a must for any family or Star Wars or Marvel fan.

FOXTEL Now – the Foxtel streaming service – for those not able or wanting to get FOXTEL satellite.

Kayo – the Netflix of Sports. It includes a long list of sport shows and events, from rugby, NRL, tennis and NBA to the light saber championship.

My take on the streaming services: try them out for a couple of months and then see if you can whittle them down to three or four favorites.

Why Uluru should top every Aussie’s bucket list

Most Australians favour an overseas adventure to a holiday in their own backyard. However there are some places in Australia that boast a beauty that is found in no other – one of those places is the Red Centre, Northern Territory. And the heart of the Red Centre, all 863 metres of it, is Uluru.

Sunrise at Uluru
Sunrise at Uluru

Uluru is more commonly known as Ayers Rock; it was named by William Gosse in 1873 after Sir Henry Ayers. Uluru is the Aboriginal and official name. You can fly directly to Uluru and take one of the many transfers to Ayers Rock Resort, where five different types of accommodation await, from camping grounds to Sails in the Desert, a five-star resort.

You can see Uluru from the air, walk around it (all 10km of it), the local tribes recommend you don’t climb it for spiritual reasons, or watch the sunrise on a camel.

Sounds of Silence dinner at Uluru http://www.ayersrockresort.com.au/sounds-of-silence/
Sounds of Silence dinner at Uluru http://www.ayersrockresort.com.au/sounds-of-silence/

A must-do is the Sounds of Silence dinner, winner of multiple tourism awards. Nothing showcases the beauty of this massive monolith than a candlelit dinner in the middle desert, complete with astronomer and a showcase by a local indigenous tribe.

Uluru at sunset
Uluru at sunset

Whether you stay for a weekend or 5 days, the red sand of Uluru exudes a positive energy which you feel as soon as you are in its presence, and there are not many places in the world where you can say that.