Bryon Bell - Tiger Wood's Friend - and Rachel Uchitel in Melbourne

A Man Who Looks Like Tiger's Friend With Rachel Uchitel in Melbourne

It’s not for me in far-away Australia to accuse Tiger Woods of telling porkies. Perhaps he’s become a little forgetful as he prepares to play in the US Masters on April 8, but I couldn’t help noticing when he claimed in a recent one-off tv interview that no-one in his inner circle knew about his liaisons with a string of women.

‘I’m sure if more people would have known in my inner circle they would’ve stopped it. Or tried to put a stop to it, but I kept it all to myself,’ the golfer told Kelly Tilghman of The Golf Channel.

Well, as my, yes my, exclusive photo (with apologies for the fuzziness in the darkness of the lobby) which has been seen around the world, shows, it was Tiger’s old boyhood friend and close confidante Bryon Bell who actually flew all the way to Australia with Rachel Uchitel – one of the women on Tiger’s ‘other women’ list – in November last year. He was playing in the Australian Masters, but neither Bryon, who has caddied for Tiger in the past, nor Rachel, brought any clubs with them, of course.
Emails from Mr Bell revealing details of the flight he had arranged for Rachel have already been widely published, but if anyone has any doubt that he was involved in Rachel’s travel itinerary take a look at the man talking with her and a hotel employee in Melbourne. He arrived at the hotel with her and helped her check in.
You might agree he bears rather a close resemblance to the picture of Bryon (inset).
In any case, we can expect more revelations about the people in Tiger’s inner circle who ‘didn’t know anything’ – one of the women who claim to have had a long relationship with him, Joslyn James, says she is about to release emails she received from Mr Bell in 2007 detailing arrangements for her to travel to US cities where Tiger was playing. Of course, Mr Bell’s helpfulness in arranging such travel could be just coincidence….
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Camera Club Silhouette - with iPhone

A Camera Club captured against the setting sun - with an iPhone

Wherever I go, I always try to carry a small camera with me for that unexpected scene that will make a picture.

Just recently, while doing my dog-walking duty in a Sydney park at sunset I realised I’d left my camera behind. And then, inevitably, I came across a whimsical scene that had me reaching for the camera that wasn’t there! Curiously, it was a camera club, whose members had gathered on a hill to photograph the city as it began to switch on its evening lights. They were silhouetted against the setting sun, like figures in an Arthur Rackham fairy story illustration.

Thankfully I had my iPhone but thought ‘this is really going to put it to the test’. Extreme light striking the lens and, unlike the camera club, no tripod to assist stability. However, taking a ‘risky’ photo was better than taking no picture at all.

I was surprised by the result. What do you think?

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Lady in a churchyard

A Peaceful Moment in a Graveyard. (c) Richard Shears

I found her in a graveyard, sitting with a white dog on a tombstone. I had an hour to spare so I decided to sling a camera over my shoulder and wander around an old churchyard containing the graves of early pioneers to Australia. The ancient cemetery, in the Sydney suburb of Newtown, was totally deserted…except for the figure I noticed sitting on a tomb.

It was an extraordinary scene, so surreal. I slowly approached and asked if I could take a picture. She smiled and nodded in agreement. I took just four shots. I didn’t ask her to pose. I didn’t ask her to move. I just let her sit there because there was nothing, absolutely nothing, in the picture that I wanted to change. Everything worked. The overhanging branch provided an upper ‘frame’ and the gravestone on the right provided a perfect balance to the lady, the carved figure on the headstone adding to the balance, for she was facing my accidental model.

And she did indeed look like a model. Her strong features were enhanced by her shaven head, the position of her slender arm a copy of the pose adopted by her dog. If I had taken her into the graveyard for a photo shoot I don’t think I could have done better than the scene that I’d walked into by chance.

Four photos were enough. I had no right to impose further. She seemed to be so much at peace. The inscription on the nearby headstone – ‘Sacred’ – emphasised the stillness of that place. I ventured to ask her for her name: Heather.

I thanked her and wandered off. A short time later, as I made my way out of the churchyard, I thought I would thank her again. The tombstone was empty. The lady and her dog had disappeared.

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Porntip who gave birth to a live baby, declared dead earlier

Porntip, whose 'dead baby' was born alive. Picture Jeff Darmanin

Vets are describing it as a ‘true miracle’ – a baby elephant declared dead in its mother’s womb has been born alive at a Sydney Zoo.

The baby male elephant came into the world at Taronga Zoo during the night after vets and keepers had declared two days earlier that he had died because there had been no signs of life.
Added to their belief was the knowledge that the baby was upside down in the womb of its mother, Porntip, and its position had left it crushed.
Ultrasound images had shown that it would have been impossible for the mother to deliver a live baby.
But in an extraordinary announcement the zoo announced that the male calf had been born alive in the early hours of Wednesday morning.
The name of the mother, an Asian elephant brought to the zoo from a Thailand forest work camp, means ‘Gift from Heaven’. It could not be more appropriate.
‘Porntip’s dedicated keepers reported the amazing news early this morning that the calf had been born and was showing signs of life,’ said zoo director Cameron Kerr.
‘Taronga Zoo’s veterinary team immediately rushed to the elephant to assist Porntip and the calf.’
For six days before the incredible birth when Porntip began intensive labour, keepers and veterinarians had not been able to establish any of the five vital signs that would have indicated the calf was still alive.
Even Dr Thomas Hildebrandt, the zoo’s senior veterinarian and a world-leading expert on elephant births, declared just last Monday that it would be a miracle if the calf was born alive.
Despite his jubilation at the live birth, he warned: ‘While this is incredible news, the young calf still has a long way to go.
‘There are no guarantees of its long-term survival at this early stage but we hope that its birth against the odds will stand it in good stead.’
Even the other elephants in the zoo appeared to have given up hope that the baby would be born alive.
While they had shown interest in Porntip during labour, they eventually began moving away from her – a sign that they knew something was wrong.
But it seemed that Porntip was determined she was going to help her ‘upside down’ baby – she was seen on several occasions trying to stand on her head, as if trying to turn the baby around.
Vets said that they believed her acrobatics had helped the baby’s position to some extent because the calf had turned slightly in the womb, but its position still prevented a live birth. Or so they all thought.
They suggested that Porntip would carry dead calf in her womb for several months before she could deliver it.
But circumstances have changed dramatically. Now everyone is praying that the baby elephant will pull through the early days and grow up to be as big, healthy and adorable as his mother.
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