Just in case he hasn’t, let me remind you again that Kangaeroo Corner is a little Aussie plants garden in comfy outer suburb of Tokyo.
And playing a prominent role in that Aussie garden is the Fountain of Strewth.
At first glance, there seems to be nothing untoward about the fountain (which is actually a bird bath with a solar-power water sprayer, but still….).
Except, of course, that few Tokyo homes have a fountain.
But this is a little special, and that’s where the strewth factor comes into play.
Despite looking like a classical antique work, the bird bath is made of plastic and was as cheap as chips.
But it’s the actual fountain (well, water sprayer), where the real wonder is.
Kangaeroo has tried several of these solar-powered sprayers over the year or so since the garden first sprouted.
They were bought from Aliexpres.com, purveyor of puerile plastics, and most of them performed with the lack of reliability that could be expected.
Except for the current fountain, which went into operation in August last year and has not stopped pumping whenever sunlight has hit it since, even after being frozen over in the sub-zero temperatures last month.
And the birds love it! We get pretty much daily visits from the birdies, though the neighbors aren’t too keen on that development.
Without doubt, the Fountain of Strewth is one of the Seven Wonders of Kangaeroo Corner.
Koshigaya, located some 30 kilometers from downtown Tokyo, and Campbelltown, which is situated about 50 kilometers from Sydney’s central business district, were almost made for each other, even if only serving as satellite cities for their respective countries’ largest cities. Koshigaya and Campbelltown are sister cities and it’s hard to see a better example of the custom than the relationship between the Japanese bed town and its Aussie sibling. Koshigaya is also home to a picturesque corner of Australia, complete with wallabies, emus and some lovely wild birds, including rainbow lorikeets, superb parrots, Major Mitchell’s cockatoos, tawny frogmouths and kookaburras. The Campbelltown Forest of Wild Birds in Koshigaya could arguably be one of the Kanto Plains areas best-kept secrets. Though only a small-scale park, the attraction is overall an excellent one as it gives a reasonably close view of some delightfully colorful (mostly) Australian birds in a fairly authentic aviary, the largest of its type in Japan. Surrounding the aviary are plenty of gum trees, adding to the Down Under-flavor of the Saitama Prefecture city. Koshigaya and Saitama became sister cities in 1984, one of the earliest formal relationships between local governments in Australia and Japan. The Campbelltown Forest of Wild Birds opened in 1995 to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the sister-city relationship. Campbelltown reciprocates with its Koshigaya Park, containing Japanese gardens. Details of the Campbelltown Forest of Wild Birds in Koshigaya are as follows: Campbelltown Forest of Wild Birds(Japanese link) 272-1 Daikichi, Koshigaya, Saitama Prefecture, 343-0008 Open: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Closed Mondays, new year season holidays Entrance fees: Adults 100 yen, children (primary and middle-school students) 30 yen Related information on Koshigaya-Campbelltown ties Campbelltown-Koshigaya Sister Cities Association Campbelltown City Council page on sister city relations Campbelltown-Koshigaya Sister Cities Association student delegates arrive to celebrate the 30th anniversary of their relationship Campbelltown-Koshigaya friendship is 30 years young
Shinzo Abe addresseｄ the Australian Parliament at Parliament House, Canberra, on July 8, 2014. He was the first Japanese prime minister to address both house of parliament. He gave a joint news conference with Australian Prime MInister Tony Abbott following the address.