November 29, 2006


It’s been drizzling since I got here…
I’ve been shopping, and shopping, and shopping. Picked up my visa, did a bit more shopping, chopped all my hair off, and am trying to close my suitcases (note the plural!). Mostly gifts, a couple of necessities and just one or two luxuries…

Heading out to Mother India tonight for a last curry with Jo & Dirk to thank them for housing me on and off over the last 3 months, it’s just about over, next time I talk to you I’ll be in Paris!

Note: the weather pixie is back in Glasgow….

filles at 7:22 pm

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November 26, 2006

schedule update

Flying back to Glasgow tonight. First stop Singapore, then London, arriving in Glasgow on Monday evening. Mad dash in Glasgow to get my hair cut, catch up with some friends, sample some curries, then I’m off to Edinburgh to pick up my visa on Wednesday, and back to Paris on Thursday.

Painters come on Friday to paint the bedroom. I hope I’m over the jet lag by then.

I’m not sure how much internet access I’ll have over the next few days, so be good….

filles at 12:55 am

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November 24, 2006

For Nancy

Today I had a request, and I carried it out to the best of my ability.

We had a BBQ for breakfast, down on the beach. Eggs, bacon, sausages. Followed by lots of swims. It was 27 degrees today and sunny… just beautiful. The rest of the day was rather good as well. We arrived home in time for lunch (mangos & peaches & ice-cream) – I know, I know – and that was mum! I fell asleep on my blow-up lime green ‘hammock’ with a book in my hands while having a paddle in the pool – and then later in the afternoon as it cooled down we headed into town to visit the Community Arts Christmas Fair. Loads of lovely things, loads of heavy things. I decided against buying anything – I think I’m going to have enough trouble jamming everything into my bags as it is.

And that was it. My third last day here.

I’m sitting up now filling in time before I check in on the web and try and arrange the best seat I can from the Singapore airlines online seat selection option. It’s sad I know, but with approx 30 hours of travel ahead of me, I think it’s worth waiting up for another hour in the hope of getting a seat with a bit more leg room.

filles at 3:27 pm

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November 22, 2006

Santa & Sales

London for christmas eve, christmas day and boxing day (that is, kids, kids and Selfridges!)….

Planning has now commenced.

filles at 1:46 pm

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November 20, 2006

Wind, weather and washing

Did I tell you? I had news a few weeks ago about my visa.
Good news.

I have an appointment scheduled in Edinburgh November 29th to get the first stamp in my passport. This stamp gets me back into Paris, and for a meeting at the ‘Prefecture’ where I have to have another interview, convince them of my worthiness, have a doctor check me out to ensure I have no communicable diseases and then if the stars align, I’ll be granted permission to stay for a period of time, which is generally 1 year. At the end of the 1st year, I have to return to the prefecture and undergo the same interview, less the medical, and so and so on for as long as we decide to stay and for as long as the French ‘allow’ us to stay in their yet to be proven, but so I’ve been told – wonderful country.

Initially the news was a relief. Now, facing just 6 days left in Australia – I’m starting to panic. I don’ t really want to leave here. My routine is fairly set and I love it. Amazingly including the wonderful sunshine and swimming pool just steps from my self-contained apartment in the garden at my mum’s, I think I’m going to miss the washing line the most.

Imagine. A washing line, outside, open to the wind, yet shielded from the rain, where the washing dries in less than 1 hour and smells fresh, with a hint of gardenia from the bushes nearby. Compare that to a fold out washing stand, balanced in the bath, which holds one sheet at a time, and takes close to 2 days to dry…. see what I mean?

And that’s only the start….

How about the aqua-aerobics class in the heated swimming pool – OUTSIDE in the sunshine every morning?? and what about the dozen or so coffee shops where I can enjoy wonderful flat whites and Vegemite sourdough toast for only $4 after my exercising each morning? and then there’s the jacaranda trees which are flaming violet at the moment and the parrots that come and feed from the bird stand outside our front door while we have a cup of tea and slice of cake of an afternoon? and the swim at the pumice stone passage in Caloundra, followed by the walk along the boardwalk to Kings Beach then the fish & chips with white wine while we watch the sun set enjoying all this on the beach? and the BBQ’s at the dam, and in the back-yard, and at friends, and with family and just about anywhere because there are free BBQ’s built into each park, beach and roadside rest-stop here in Australia… The list goes on and on and on.

I read today the temperature for Glasgow was 0 – 4 degrees Celsius today. The temperature for Paris was 4 – 12 degrees Celsius. The temperature here was 29 degrees. I got sun burnt reading my book (from the fab library in town) in the pool on my lime green li-lo (ambitiously named ‘The Hammock’).

It’s going to be a tough call for Paris to win my heart after the unwelcoming start to our stay there. I’ve remembered, after 8 weeks in Australia, just what home is all about… and it’s going to be a hard act to follow.

filles at 10:04 am

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who hates spam!

The servers have been hit by spam which is why the site has been down…. I know the wonderful hosts I have will be doing everything they can to fix the problem – so please be patient.

filles at 9:35 am

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November 13, 2006

Bird Watching

For Michelle’s last day, we splurged and let her dictate what she’d most like to do…. Bird watching.

Originally we answered a ‘What’s On’ article in the local Range News for a Breakfast with the Birds morning – but in the end decided on a 3 hour bird walk in Ewan Maddock Dam near Landsborough with Gail Hill.

It was fabulous. We saw loads of birds, loads of dragonflies, had beautiful weather, and Gail is a fund of information on birds and wildlife. She doesn’t just teach through talking, she encourages you to think and question the laws and anomalies of nature. It was very interesting.

I was so wrapped, I thought a walk like this would be a fabulous Christmas present for all of mum’s 17 grand-children, but a brief discussion with the oldest of said grandchildren (18 & 15 year olds) last night at a family dinner for my step-brother Ray’s birthday confirmed that – maybe not… kids today are not quite as open-minded as I had hoped….

I ended up feeling like the sad old aunt they suspect I am.
But for anybody else – birdwatcher or not, I’d encourage you to go and discover a new way of watching the world around you.

filles at 4:47 am

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November 11, 2006

best of Thai

Mum & Pete treated us to lunch out at the most fabulous Thai restaurant today. It was set in a tropical garden, lots of little pagodas, ponds and scary lizards crawling about, and the food was divine.

I’m not going to tell you where it is, or what it’s called, apparantly it’s already very very difficult to get a booking…. if you live in south eastern Queensland, or you’re really into Thai restaurants you’ll probably know where I’m talking about, and if you don’t, but you’ll be passing through, I’m sure I can make an exception… just email me.

filles at 8:52 am

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November 8, 2006

Spicks & Specks

I know it’s been long, here’s a quick summary….
Fundraiser was good.
Re-union was a lot of fun.
Hotel was fantastic.
Michelle arrived safely.
Hotel was fantastic.
Katrina was in good spirits.
Nanna was nanna.
Weather was fine.
….and now we’re back in QLD, about 2,700kms later. Had an excellent trip. Couldn’t decide between inland or coastal route, so did a bit of both. Stopped in Uralla the first night, then Byron Bay for 2 nights – and the rain was with us all the way. Now normally that would have really upset me, but since it’s the first rain for 7 years, it’s very difficult to complain. The country really needs every drop of it. We had a lot of fun, I caught up with loads of old friends I haven’t seen for literally years, in some cases 20 years – and it was all good.

We’ve been back in our little paradise in Maleny since Sunday and we’ve been keeping busy but being laid back all at the same time (it’s a skill, truly!). We’ve had a lunch in Noosa at my aunts, frequented the gym, tried all the coffee shops, swum in the pool, been to Eumundi Markets, aqua-aerobics in the outdoor pool at 7.30am, and done the full-on Melbourne cup luncheon, hats and all! And it’s all been a hoot! Michelle has only 3.5 days left, and counting….

I better get back to enjoying them – Spicks & Specks is on now, I’ll write soon…

filles at 12:50 pm

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