Wednesday, 24 July 2013


In the words of the proverb, 'all good things must come to an end', and for me, that meant flying back to the UK on Monday.  Whilst I am happy to be seeing family and friends again I was (and am) desperately sad to say goodbye to Sydney and our friends there.

I checked in my masses of luggage and even managed to persuade Virgin Atlantic to take four cases into the hold instead of three and headed to the lounge to catch up on emails and do some work.

I started with the emails to family and friends and replied to our cousin Hugh who had sent an email last week expressing empathy with our feelings about leaving, having done the same from Canada a few years previously.  In my reply I said, 'I am in the lounge in Sydney wishing it was you flying me any part of today's flight'.

I got on with some work.  I even managed to get quite engrossed in it and glanced at my watch thinking I would have maybe fifty minutes until the flight was called so ought to get it finished.

Whereupon, I heard the words 'I heard we had a very important passenger today'.  And there he was!  Hugh, in uniform, to fly me home.

Naturally, I did what I always do in moments of high emotion.  I screamed and burst into tears! 

Hugh took me to the cockpit to meet the Captain and crew who would be flying me home.  I even got to press a few buttons and listen to the pre flight briefing.

These are the pics.

Happy do you think?  Always keeping those emotions in check!

Steve the Captain.  Notice how I am grasping my hands so I don't press anything by accident.

In prime position.  I did wonder what the other passengers might think when they boarded the plane, especially those who saw my sobbing on Hugh's shoulder in the lounge.

My new wheels (and wings).

Isn't she beautiful.
Hugh, thank you thank you thank you for all that you and your colleagues did for me on Monday (and Tuesday).  I am home now and still can't quite believe this really happened.  You are a very special man.

So, goodbye Sydney, hello London.

Goodbye Blog.

Sunday, 7 July 2013

The Lions roar!

Much to the envy of many, both here and at home I was very lucky to be given a ticket to the third test and the decider between the British and Irish Lions against the Qantas Wallabies.

All this week in the run up to the match Sydney has been a sea of red, with many, many, overweight Poms sporting the red jerseys.   On Saturday I was surprised to see as much green and gold as I did.

 This was the view from our seats.  Right on the 22m line.  Amzing, no?
 With my friend Caroline who gave me the ticket.  Now we were in the Members stand, which, unsurprisingly is mostily occupied by Sydney residents and, Aussies.   I was one of a very small number in a red jacket.  Which was a bit awkward given the 16-41 thrashing the Lions gave the Wallabies.
Our boys.

Such terrific seats.

See what I mean about the sea of Aussies?
It was a great night and would have been whatever the result.  Thank you so much to Caroline for making it possible for me.  xx

Saturday, 29 June 2013

Red Nose Day

The last Friday in June is Red Nose Day here in Australia.  The charity raises money for children and for research into SIDS.  There were lots of stalls in Martin Place selling noses.  Kangaroos with noses on.  Koalas with noses on.  There was alos a chap dressed as a male kangaroo on those bouncy feet things like Oscar Pistorius wears.  How did I know he was a male kangaroo?  Let's just say his costume was genetically correct .....

Anyway, he didn't get the prize for the best red nose.  No the cruise ship Carnival Spirit did.  

 I promise you these are not modified photos, she was definitely wearing the nose!
 The nose was seven metres wide.

Nice touch Carnival.

Wednesday, 19 June 2013

The pot of gold at the end of the rainbow

These are some of the other pictures I took on Friday as we sailed out of Sydney.  There was a rather lovely rainbow which appears to end in Watson's Bay - of course it does, the land of the great and the good, well the rich and famous anyway.

 As we sailed towards the Bridge there were climbers on it (as there always are). 
 They were kind enough to wave as we went underneath.  Nice folk.
To those dear chums who have emailed and texted this week, thank you.  Mr M is home and fine and Tonto and I are here and fine.  It's odd to be apart but we're ok.

Tuesday, 18 June 2013

Sailing away at sunset

The lovely Mr M and I had a weekend at sea to look out for whales (we didn't see any) and enjoy the company of friends on the P&O Pacific Jewel.  It was a lovely weekend.  Here are the pictures as we sailed away.  A rather lovely sunset going on.

 These last three shots should fit together to make a triptych - from the City across the Bridge to North Sydney.  Beautiful, no?

Monday, 17 June 2013

He's gone

The lovely Mr M left Sydney today.  He will be back in Blighty in the morning.  I miss him.  Tonto misses him.
 These pictures were taken a few weeks ago as we said goodbye to Manly.

Mr M in one of his most natural poses.
See you in 35 days my love xx

Sunday, 9 June 2013


I am forever apologising for my photography skills on this little blog-ette of mine.  Perhaps I should do some sort of course.  Today's post begins with the same apology since there is NO WAY that these photos do anything like justice to the scenery in the Blue Mountains.  So you'll just have to use your imagination.

 The mountains are blue because of the amount of eucalyptus trees.

 Hartley is a little stop in the mountains which contains one garage, two houses, two churches and a courthouse (with prison) neither of which is still in use.

 One or two structural defects were apparent even to my untrained eye.

I've no idea why the propery was built on stilts since it is up a mountain - it's not likely to flood.  Maybe they had a really good wine cellar.

This is the Courthouse.  It was built in 1837 for the princely sum of £1,437.  Yes the price is quoted in sterling on the plaque, not dollars.  That of course was the sum before the builder put in his claim for time and Variations.

Local pub sign.  They speak the truth.

The Three Sisters.

 Originally there were seven sisters.  Some sort of girl fight over a boyfriend and now there are just three.  I am being flippant (who me?) but this is what most people come to the Mountains to see.
 The white birds in the picture below are cockatoos.  The fall from the top to the bottom of the waterfall is 836 metres.

It was chilly in them there hills.  I had on a fleece, body warmer, gloves and hat.  Mr M wore a t shirt.  We operate at different temperatures me and him.