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Big Little Lies:

Looking for Pirriwee?

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We might have to ask Liane Moriarty, author of Big Little Lies, what’s still lies beneath, as Monterey, California, is again laid bare for a second series?

The original story by Morriarty is based on an apparent paradise she calls Pirriwee. Her setting is broadly recognisable as the upper Barrenjoey Peninsula, stretching over several communities, beyond the reaches of Sydney’s northern surfurbia.

The book and the series brings to the boil, the greatest pot-boiling cauldron of salacious gossip, spousal abuse and vengeful retribution since Payton Place unblocked the plumbing of the Pleasantvilles of the Eisenhower era.

In the century to come, Morriaty's prescient exposés of the self-focused comfortable classes of a collection of sea side communities, may rank her as a Dickens of her time...

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Sydney NYE Fireworks:

Why is it a Little Dissatisfying?

775249770DA154_City_Of_Sydn - SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 01:  Fireworks are seen during the Midnight Fireworks on New Year's Eve on Sydney Harbour on...

Looking for something engaging, different and constructive to do in or around central Sydney on New Year's Eve? Good luck, because the Sydney Harbour Fireworks completely dominates the city, and there is little space—physically or emotionally—to do anything else.

The fireworks are definitely dazzling and predictably pretty. But it is an essentially passively “consumed” event, with just a whiff of “bread and circuses”…

The City of Sydney spends an absolute bomb to get the biggest bang out of its fireworks buck. Yet as a “top-down” mass event; it is entangled with branding processes, which leaves many with feelings of vague dissatisfaction. There are reasons for this and a far more engaging model is on offer.

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775094912DA006_City_Of_Sydn - SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - DECEMBER 31:  People begin to spill onto the foreshore around Circular Quay on New Year's Eve on Sydney...
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Italy:

Milan: Italian Modern

Milan magnificently exemplifies the possibilities of a fully modernised Italy. What is plain to see in Milan is exactly what all Italy could achieve if only more of its people were as comfortable in the 21st century as the Milanese obviously are...

Milan is a city that presents as totally at ease with the present, and by inference, with itself…

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Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II

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Michelangelo: Unfinished Rondanini Pieta

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From the Duomo roof

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In and around Rome:

MonumentItalia

In and around Rome are any number of sites related to art and history—two interwound fields in Italy. These sites lay about this multi-layered region, as normally and naturally as if it were the same the world over.

And with so much on offer, a little bit of research reveals all sorts of gems on offer, and are often below the radar of many tourists... leaving luxuriant amounts of time and space to savour and better comprehend.

Acceptable bad taste?

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From the Vittoriano: View across Piazza Venezia and down The Corso.

To the ancient hills

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Temple of Vesta from gardens of Villa Gregoriana, Tivoli

Haven from the furies

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Lake Albano from the Papal apartments, Castel Gandolfo.

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A very familiar castle

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Castello Orsini-Odescalchi, Bracciano

A tale of medieval masonry

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Nave, Cathedral of San Lorenzo, Viterbo.

Stage to the world

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Statue of Francis of Assisi and companions arriving at Giovanni Laterano.

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