Welcome to my blog. Here you will find my adventures with my family and friends. Thanks so much for stopping by.

I'm so enjoying this wonderful world of blogging where I have met and made so many new friends.

Please leave a comment when you drop by so I can visit your blog and get to know you too
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Sunday, October 29, 2017

KEEPING MY HEAD ABOVE WATER...... JUST !

Wow !
It is ages since I've gathered my thoughts together to write here and lots has happened in 2017.
Thank you to those who have missed me and enquired after my well being.
I'll do my best to fill you in on what's been happening in my neck of the woods.

1. A Death in the Family

Back in March we lost one of our three Oldies  - Tony's mother.


She was a couple of weeks off  97 and passed away peacefully after spending five years residing in an Aged Care Facility where they looked after her very well right to the end.

As you can imagine Tony has been much engrossed in dealing with the business of arranging the funeral, winding up her estate and organising plaques etc.

She leaves a hole in our lives

2. The Other Oldies

My parents are soldiering on . Both are 95, Dad almost 96 and both struggling.


Dad is increasingly fragile but still very alert mentally. He looks forward to his epic games of 500 every Saturday and Sunday where he has an aid to help him hold the cards and battles with very poor eyesight and almost complete deafness.


Mum looks like a million dollars. She is always dressed beautifully and takes great care of herself but her mind is failing and Dementia is well developed. She still fusses around Dad, taking care of his every need that she can, but her ability to cook has deserted her and she is no longer able to take care of family finances, her job for the whole of their 72 years together. This had caused many unpleasant disagreements in their once very argument free marriage but Dad is amazingly patient with her tirades as he understands she cannot help it. It is a very difficult time.

At the beginning of October we finally moved them from their own home in the Retirement Village they loved into Aged Care. It was difficult to persuade them at first but Dad finally realised he could not manage and although she was unwilling wherever Dad goes, Mum goes.

And guess what ? They LOVE it !
A brand new facility where they are the first residents.
I have never seen anything like it, it looks like a 5# hotel. It has the capacity to take 150 residents and there are now only five at the moment so they are being very well looked after with lots of attention....and Dad is able to go off to the old Retirement Village for his beloved card games on Saturday and Sunday while family and friends ( and eventually the staff at the facility ) keep Mum occupied.

It was my job to arrange the move and to pack them up with their clothes all marked etc. and clear the bedrooms and wardrobes of unwanted stuff before I returned home to Tony who has spent quite a lot of time home alone during this process and the preceeding time where visits to Hervey Bay were often week long and more and more frequent.

The packing up of their little house and selling off of furniture has fallen largely on the shoulders of my brother who lives nearby and has borne the brunt of the many emergencies over the past two years.
We are greatly relieved that they have settled in so well and are very happy and well cared for.

3. A Birth

Yes, we are finally GRANDPARENTS !


Brett and Sarah have a delightful little boy, born on 3rd September in Sydney.


Jackson (Jax) Anthony's arrival was not without drama. He was born by emergency caesarean four weeks early when Sarah became very ill with a type of Pre Eclampsia. Weighing just 2.5kg he was so tiny in a family used to 9 pound babies.


I am pleased to report that he is progressing well and has doubled his birthweight in 7 weeks and Sarah has now recovered well. They are proving to be the very capable parents we knew they would be and delighting in their little boy.



Grandma and Pa are delighted too and can foresee a lot more visits to Sydney in the future. ( we went down last Saturday !)
It is such a shame they live so far away.

4. News of Sally
Sally continues to follow her dream of becoming an animal physiotherapist. It is a very hard direction she has chosen with working two days of human physio, one and a half days animal physio and study while still trying to have some time with friends and doggy fun with her two fur babies. She has also moved house and making friends in the new place has not been easy. 

























Add to this, the cost of gaining this new qualification . It is only available through Liverpool uni in the UK so she is doing it externally with many others but discussion times and lectures over the internet are often done at 2:00AM Australia time and her final exam means she has to travel to Liverpool in May for one short  exam - a huge expense. There are quite a few Aussies and a couple of Kiwis who would be better served by sitting for the exam here, supervised by an Australian university but their pleas have fallen on deaf ears.

5. Planning the next holiday

Flights have been booked for mid April - ones that can bee changed. (You never know what is ahead with our Oldies.) Plans are still sketchy but we are thinking Yorkshire Dales, Whitby and then Ireland. Sixish weeks.
We are feeling the need for a more relaxing holiday where we drive on the same side of the road and speak English if not Australian ! Walks through GREEN countryside, tea and scones, country pubs, stately homes, castles and beautiful vistas. Nothing beats the UK for all of that and we are really looking forward to it.

Well there you are. All caught up.

Life has been very hectic and mostly not in a good way.
We have had family visiting from overseas too and that is always busy with family reunions and group picnics on a smaller scale than last time but in this large family of mine nothing is ever small.

I will try to come here more often and blog more. I do visit your blogs from time to time an try to comment when there is time but I try to do this from my ipad and find it is not easy. Tony has just bought me a new one so perhaps that will improve.

Nice to chat with you again my friends.

Cheers.




Wednesday, May 31, 2017

STROLLING ALONG THE PROMENADE PLANTEE IN PARIS

After a bit of research we found the entrance to this converted railway line not far rom Bastille Opera House.
It was once an elevated railway line crossing the city but has now been converted to a garden walkway. It was the first one of these gardens but now there are others across the world such as the famous one in New York.


Not a promising stair case but once you reach the top that changes 


and a wonderful world of green vegetation peppered with glorious clumps of roses opens up before you.



This pathway is high above the roadway and when there is a break in the trees you can peek out into new neighbourhoods and gaze at the many lovely apartment buildings along the way.


Roses, roses everywhere


Sometimes, off to the side there are little parks made into fitness areas and you exit via a lift or stairs


and always ahead there is that lovely cool green path beckoning.


Or another beautiful building peeking through the trees



Of course there are places too to sit in the sun as Parisians love to do.


Then out of that hot sun again into lush cool green growth.





It's a great place for joggers and walkers getting their daily eexercise


Or mothers with their babies in strollers. 
The good level surface makes the going very easy.





Every now and then there is another small park off to the side 


Where workers can be seen lunching or just soaking up the sunshine.


Sometimes it comes back down to road level and goes through suburban shopping areas.


Sometimes it cuts buildings in two





Sometimes it passes through dark, damptunnels where bats are supposed to live.




Then this again. 


There are regular exits ..and even Public Toilets - a rarity in Paris !



Finally you come to the end


with a staircase to test your knees


and you arrive in the 12 th arrondissement 


With lovely buildings 


and flower decked roundabouts

 
and a Metro station to quickly whisk you back home.

Another Parisian treasure !

Cheers.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

VISITING THE EAGLES' NEST

When you read online reviews of visiting Hitler's Eagle Nest - a gift ed holiday retreat that he actually rarely visited - you could easily be persuaded not to go there.
But we are probably not coming back this way again so we decided to brave the dreaded crowds and give it a try. 
We are so glad we did !



Getting there involved three buses from Salzburg- not difficult to negotiate with a bit of research - and a final trip up the last 124 m in a shiny brass ( walls and ceiling ) lift.



The final bus trip was up a one lane road in special buses with very special drivers. You go in a convoy of three or four buses at a time in a reserved seat 
and end up here.


No time to stop and look at the view....


though it is magnificent !


You race to book your return trip down on the bus in about 2 hour's time.

Then you head for the final bit of your journey - the lift.


124 metres along the tunnel - it's freezing cold and damp in there.
Eventually you come to the queue for the lift. The reviews said you can line up here for hours but we missed one lift and were first on the next in about ten minutes.


 The lift is all brass. Shiny gold walls and ceilings but for some strange no photos allowed here.
Another 124 metres up. Very fast !
And this is what greets you !


You are on top of the world up here. 
In the snow.
360 degree views.
Not cold.


No Eagles but a few crows riding the breeze.


But you're not quite at the top yet !
A path with steps and snow covered patches takes you up


higher and higher


with the view getting more breath taking with every step


till you reach the top .


Looking down on the Eagle's Nest.


The war must have felt a million miles away from this magnificent spot.


We took hundreds of photos


In all directions.

How could you resist ?


We had time to sit down here and have a bit of lunch.
Not an opportunity to pass up.


So we didn't!


Note no Aperol spritz. Not taking any chances with balance up here !

Cheers.