Monday, 28 September 2015

One Month here already

It only seems like yesterday when we arrived here in Aus. touch wood everything has gone great, We are lucky to have the use of Mary's car and the fact that we know the area, not well but enough to know where we are going and how to get back everything else is just pot luck. As from next Wed we are on the Pacific Cruise which I must admit I am looking forward to as this will be a first as I have never been in the pacific before. I know we are visiting Papau New Guinea but other than that I just hope to be suprised, I have eaten very well since arriving and thrown the diet out of the window so, I am on a crash diet this week so I can pig out on all the cruiser food Well! why not the food is supose to be one of the high lights and it would be rude not to???
Saturday we went to the  "Opera in the Park" Our Nephew Mark sugested it as he had something to do with the organising, Just like our proms in the park we all turn up with chairs and blankets food and drink, I am still not sure who the main acts were but everyone there seem to know them?? They had the Gold coast junior Orchestra, Junior dancers abd Junior Choir all in all a great night and finnished off with dinner in the Casino great stuff, Sunday after mass we took of again to go to one of our favourite places which is Byron Bay however that is the second time we have tried to get there and failed both times, this time it was just volume of trafic, to get there meant crossing the state border into New South Wales, but what I did not know that weekend is the last week of Queensland holidays and the first week of the NSW HOLIDAY and the roads were manic. But Noreen remembered that just over the border there is a place called Fingal Head, First sighted by Capt Cook in 1770 and us on Sunday, Fingal Island is just off Fingal head, it has a lighthouse and until 1970 had its own lighthoue keeper, it is also void of traffic which was a blessing. The structure of the headland is the same as Giants Causway in Northern Island we had a great day even though it was not were we set out for. You have to stay flexible

Fingal Lighthous

Fingal Head

Guess who buggered up the camera timer 

After the thunder Storm two Rainbows

Burliegh Head (Noreeen loves getting me climbing ) 

Cast of Opera in the park

Engrossed Audiance 

Wednesday, 23 September 2015

Is anyone reading this blog????????

Things here are getting quite warm we seem to be out of the early spring weather and now are into the much warmer dryer weather though we still get the odd heavy shower but in this heat it is more of  blessing than a hindrance, Noreen and I are getting out quite a lot and still finding lots to explore Last saturday we went to a sculpture exhibition on the beach at  Curumbin on the just south of here It was fantastic there are some very clever people about who seem to make art out of nothing and I wondered with some of the sculptures how many hours went into it  check out the Lion and Dragon the lion is constructed of Wire Mesh and the Dragon from Chain just amazing.
Having sampled the art life we remembered a place called Tamborine which is a small town on top of Mount Tamborine (obviously) The mountain is 1575ft above sea level with a flattish plateau on top
It is very similar to Hebden Bridge in Yorkshire where in the 60's all the Hippies went to do their own thing and never left even today there are more VW camper vans in Hebden than anywhere else in England and the place is full of craft shops and bistro's Anyway Tamborine is a very similar place with artisan shops every few paces, vegan cafe's, vegetarian shops, with lots of people with white wish Peace and harmony with everyone. It even has people wishing to throw themselves of steep slopes into the wind and sky tied to a frame of what would appear to be scaffolding surrounded by bed sheets these extra ordinary Pilots have either no sense, no brain, on drugs, or just very brave people seeking a great thrill, I could not see the point when they trained me to jump out of a perfectly good aircraft  when they said I had to throw myself, again I transgress Tamborine is a very nice place and Noreen and I had a great day up there' We didn't try free love, vegetarian food, Vegan food, magic potion  or anything else that my not agree with my prescribed drugs????????
God Bless to All

                                            I am using this sign on my art work


                                                                  How Many Hours

It was 18.00 the sun going down and quite a chilly evening

Friday, 18 September 2015

Camping Ausie Style

Hi Everyone
Just returned from three days camping and fishing, we took off to a lovely location called Summerset Dam which is up in the hills north west of Brisbane It isnt until you start to explore that you realise the vastness of this country Summerset dam has 240km of coast line Roger and I were fishing from the boat and even in the three days there we only touched the a very small area of the lake. 
Even though the fishing was not at its best we managed to hold our own with this Ausie lot who I must say are a very happy chatty and  welcoming lot the experts all agreed that the fishing was not at its best which compensated a little for our poor catch rate even so I did not disgrace myself. It was very strange to sit there very happily fishing with Kangaroo's  bouncing past, Sea Eagles soaring above and Pelicans gliding by as you can imagine its very hard to concentrate on the fishing with all that going on. The Australians seem to love there camping and the outdoor life they also enter into the spirit of camping where everyone pitches in, as far as equipment goes they seem to take everything and that is the Australian Ute comes in, these four X four utility vehicles built for the traders, have taken on a new dimension when it comes to camping they are equipped with everything fridge Freezer, cookers its a case of put up the tent (huge things) open up the back of the Ute and start camping oh yes everyone tows a boat, Noreen and I had our first experience of camping Ausi style when we really went Bush and drove with Mary and Roger from Adelaide to Ayers Rock over a period of four weeks as I say great adventures and everyone here seems to do it.
On this trip nothing strange happened other than an encounter with a Possum at 04.00 in the morning it would appear that we both needed the loo and neither would give way,  as I needed the loo more than it, with a bit of bullying I won. only to be greeted by a big  red Kangaroo who had come t the aid of his little mate I did not take a chance and try to bully it so we had a stand off it got bored and buggered off and I went back to bed, stories of giant snakes and spiders are very much distorted in all our years of camping in Australia we have come across very little that would actually harm you OK they are here but so are double decker buses in the UK and have you ever been hit by one.
We now have two weeks on the gold coast,  before we head off on a cruise to Papua New Guinee which should be exciting. so over the next couple of weeks we will no doubt be doing some more exploring I will be able to borrow the boat and get some more fishing in and just generally join the crowd down here and just hang out in the sun
sorry these are short but Hey I cant tell you everything we are doing

God Bless 

Camp site ours was a small site and basic 
because we know how to "rough it" with micro wave and coffee machine ?????

Night CAMP Strange encounters ??



These tree towered about 15m above us at water leval 
and we were fishing in 20m of water so I make it that when the dam was flooded these trees stood about 200ft and the dam was flood in 1950 so they have been stood in this water for 65 years Amazing and very erry at night 

what can one say

Monday, 7 September 2015


Yesterday Noreen and I borrowed Mary,s car and set off for the hills, on a previous visit we visited a place called Springbrook Its a small village at the head of a great valley at the head there is a waterfall of about 200mt high and after a good rainfall is quite spectacular. unfortunately yesterday it was quite dry and not as spectacular as we have seen it before however on the previous visit I had knee problems and couldn't  complete the 6km walk that descends into the gorge fords the river at the bottom and then has a hard climb out. this time with knee in good working order  and Heart just overhauled we decided to have a go
The area is sub tropical making he undergrowth quite thick though there is a well recognised path, also being spring here everything was in full colour really beautiful the steep trek down into the gorge caused very little trouble as I had to keep stopping to take pics and its a way of slowing  Noreen down as she gallops off like a whippet there is no holding her back. once down into the heart of the waterfall the hight of the fall shows the enormity of the task of climbing out again. After a good few minutes catching our breath and soaking up the splendour of the falls it was time to start the ascent, after about an hour and half a dozen relapses we reached the summit and again were reunited with the car, which meant we could now go for a coffee and lunch.
Its fair to say that here on the coast everything is very up market and sophisticated as my mum " things are done proper" the further you go into the hinterland (away from the coast) the less you see of the sophisticated life style. first cafe I ask for "two long black decafe please" black decafinated coffee I reply with a sharp grin I was told 'None of that stuff erre mate, OK just two black coffees "coming right up cobber' Noreen had forgoten her sweeteners after a short discussion it was decided not to tax the lad any further and we used the granulated supplied on the table.  Ordering our lunch took a little more effort from the young man,  and had to get the owner as our order seemed to mystify him a little, as the owner came out I thought a prop forward or stand off but he turned out to be a Dutch guy who had worked in Manchester and got the accent straight away and we became great mates within minutes. Here they we would refer to them as red necks of hill-billies, the Alf type of Aussie off neighbours, they are wonderful no nonsense type people, the kind you would like to have around in times of trouble and strife. just pure honest good people
all in all a great day out visiting our antipodean cousins  even if most of them are foreigners just like the UK
The view from the top

Half way down the gorge

Noreen showing the way

The falls not a lot of water but still spectacular

Noreen at the base 

Saturday, 5 September 2015

All in a days work

I'm not sure if I have said yet but whilst in Australia we are staying with Noreens Sister and Brother in law Mary and Roger who are really great people and tolerate me which is even better having me for eight weeks is enough to test the patience of a saint. The house is magnificent the host and hostess the best in the world we are so lucky to have them.            I am not sure if its me being a  Jonah or just a spot of bad luck.  Yesterday  it was decided that we take a little trip out in the yacht it a very nice little 40 footer and sails superbly well
Having had our tour of the craft which everyone should have when stepping onto a strange boat when things happen its to late for asking questions, Its a very compact Marina with a lot of very expensive looking boats and not enough room to swing a cat never mind a Boom so people tend to take their craft into open water under power as we cruised away from the mooring a felt very save in the hands of our skipper who I may add was handling the yacht extremely well, having now left the marina behind Roger beckoned me to take the helm while he set the sails. everything was going so well I was even managing to keep the boat on a heading between the channel buoys, it was then I  noticed a very fine haze coming up from the engine bay Now even from my perspective I knew all was well I summoned Roger who left the task of setting sail to investigate. then like a true skipper he shouted cut all engines we have split a heater hose, and within seconds he had emerged from the engine room along the deck and tossed over the anchor as we were now say marooned just to starboard of the main Channel, and about 10 min out of the marina Such is life, Roger phoned the breakdown recovery and we nothing else to do but sit and watch the Dolphins who had turned up for a nosey and a good laugh at our expense. The engine is a Vetus not my favourite engine and of course put together by someone with a over active sense of humour, why do they do it the hose that was split could have had a temp repair IF we were able to get to it whoever the engineer was really stitch us up by putting the jubilee clip on with the screw head facing the alternator and no room at all to loosen it off so it was decided to make the best of it and enjoy the watching everyone sail and cruise by while we waited for the recovery. our Tow truck arrived and very professionally we were breasted up and under-way within minutes having been returned to marina it was time to get home fro a good G&T 

Rescue boat arrives

Mary & Noreen looking for Dolphin

                                                     Breasted up with rescue boat

Two sisters enjoying the day