Monday, May 30, 2011

Memorial Day 2011

"At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them"

Thursday, May 26, 2011

A day In The City...Of Sydney

We started out at Museum Station and rode the train to Circular Key where I took this pic.
Thence off to show Daniel the fabulous Sydney Opera House........
then we took the Manly Ferry - Daniel said as opposed to the "girly" ferry!
We strolled along the beach at Manly.......
watching the many hardy surfers awaiting the big waves......
the water was a balmy 22 celsius. Too cold for me but warmer than the ambient air.
Having worked up a little appetite we spotted this burger joint....

and found it to be a very good choice for lunch.
I loved my lamburger and the guys had the works!

We ambled down the main shopping thoroughfare and I couldn't resist taking pics of this iconic Aussie pub with the vintage posters.
These are not paper, they are beautifully done on some kind of more permanent product, they look like painted porcelain and have been there for decades.
Daniel wanted to know what was for dessert so I bought him a huge cream filled lamington!

You can tell he did not enjoy it!
Back on the ferry here are the Sydney Heads, guarding the entry to the gorgeous harbour.
As we approached the city we were able to see the beautiful vista framed by the Opera House and Harbour Bridge.
The remainder of the afternoon included a visit to the city's tower........
a stroll through Martin Place, where there is a monument to the Australian military.......
and one of the many flower stalls around the city.....
and kiosks.
We finished up at Paddy's Market for souvenir shopping.
No pics from the markets but take my word for it there was a bit of shopping!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Sunday In Tamworth, New South Wales, Australia

We drove out to Nundle today, a lovely sunny day for a drive in the country.

It's about 60 KMs from Tamworth, I wanted to re-visit a charming quilt shop I had found on a previous visit.

It’s called “The Cottage On The Hill” a couple of K’s out of the actual town, set in the midst of lovely rolling farmland, where the delightfully friendly proprietor, Kerry Swain, long arm quilter, quilt designer and author of two books and many patterns, holds retreats and serves local area quilters with a nice selection of fabrics, books, patterns and notions as well as her longarm services.

I was fortunate to visit in the middle of a retreat........

these ladies appear to be having a great time assisted by Kerry with various projects in progress,
And if her latest book is any indication at all these ladies eat very well on their retreat!

My SIL and me in front of Kerry's shop.

I purchased Kerry’s latest book, a compilation of delicious sounding recipes and adorable fabric related projects and she graciously autographed it for me and I found a few little quilty gifts for the friends who weren’t able to fit in my suitcase!

By this time it was well and truly lunch hour so we returned into the little town of Nundle and ate lunch in this vintage country pub- the iconic Aussie pies, peas and chips washed down with good Aussie beer or wine!
Well fed, we drove on through Wallabadah and Quirindi to Werris Creek another 75 KMs to check out the old railway museum there. I had been to Werris creek before both by road and by train [I have a funny story about that for later]
but never spent the time to see the museum so when my brother suggested we make the detour we willingly complied.

Werris Creek station has quite a history of service during WW2.

As it turned out we were happy that we made the detour!

Two retired railway men, volunteers both, happily answered questions and told us tales of the old rail days till well after official closing time.
I took pics until the dratted battery died and I did not have the spare with me.

My brother lent me his phone but we haven’t been able to transfer the pics to the computer so this is all that I have, sufficient to give you an idea of the variety of artifacts here from the past.

An old railway cart, I remember these, with an assortment of vintage signs displayed above.

This was what we sat upon at Central railway and in all station waiting rooms, there were park style benches out on the platforms.
And now for the funny story!
Many years go my Mum and I were on the way to visit my brother in Wee Waa, so we took the train from Maitland to Narrabri. What we did not know [normally making the trip by car] was that the train split at Werris Creek and half went to Brisbane the other half to Narrabri, our destination.
We also didn't know that our seats were assigned according to the destination, all those in the forward carriages for Brisbane, the others for Narrabri.
Around midnight or so my Mum suddenly woke and said "quick Roslyn we have to change trains here"- obviously in the fuzziness of being half asleep still she had misunderstood the conductor's announcement that the train was parting ways at Werris Creek. I bounded up and sleepily grabbed our bags off the rack and stumbled onto the platform in the cold, dark winter night. We stood there for twenty or so shivering minutes until our half of the train pulled back into the station....... and we re-boarded, the same carriage and the same seats! The passengers around us must have thought we were really crazy and we have had many a laugh about it since..

I have been composing this in the car on route to Sydney from Raymond Terrace so please forgive any typos etc! I have two different font sizes and I cannot seem to normalize them but I will try again from our hotel tonight.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Dad's 100th. Birthday Bash!

Wednesday. May 18th. my Dad turned 100 years old, simply amazing to think what he has seen and lived through in a century.
Here is his message from Queen Elizabeth.
Dad has all his "marbles" [ sometimes I think he found some of mine, lol] but physically the past year he has been very frail since he needed a blood transfusion he has not bounced back. Until then he was out to the local village twice a day on his "scooter", visiting my Mum's memorial and doing his bit of shopping. I know he is very bored and lonely, feeling trapped without his previous freedom but he just hasn't the physical strength these days to handle the "scooter".
My brother was the MC of the event and gave a bit of a talk on the life of our Dad, very truncated of course to try and cover 100 years in only 15 minutes.
John realised just before he began that he had omitted part of the "history" and ad libbed that bit in........
but my Dad reading along with the speech didn't have that.......
and immediately called John over to tell him of the error! My brother said" I knew I was going to be in trouble but I thought I'd get past the first paragraph", and everyone had a good laugh, Dad might be very hard of hearing but he doesn't miss a beat!

Dad chatting to one of our sons in USA via Skype.....
Here is my brother and his family, missing his son in law who couldn't get away from work.
Niece Brooke with her family......
her Mum [my youngest sis] and me.
Here is my family missing sons Lucas [our soldier] and his family except for his oldest son who traveled with us, and son JW and his little boy [JW had finals for Med.School].

Here are Dad's descendants, missing the above, but also missing are two other grandsons, one each of my brother's and my twin boys whom we lost to our everlasting sadness, in 2002 and 2006.
Of course also missing is my Dad's beloved wife, my Mum.