Friday, 22 March 2019

We're home!

We left Perth, Australia on Sunday 17th March at 19:40 and travelled through what seemed like several dark nights over a variety of countries and seas for 17½ hours ...
 arriving at Heathrow at 5:22 on Monday morning (18th) taking into account the 8-hour time difference between the UK and Oz. You can see above bottom right that local time in Perth was 1:15pm.

We had the most fabulous six weeks in Australia visiting Perth, Melbourne and Sydney, each unique and different in their own way catching up with old friends and meeting and making new ones. We took lots of excursions by coach and by river boat; we did lots of wine tasting and eating out and saw some amazing sights including koalas, kangaroos and kookaburras.

As you can imagine we were slightly jet lagged (slight exaggeration, lol)  but over the past four days have gradually started to feel better, having lots to do has helped us to stay awake during the days.
 Still Rockin' was where we'd left her at Hambleden Marina and we were surprised (but shouldn't have been) to see all the daffodils out ... it does seem strange to have come from a very hot summer to spring in one fell swoop!
 After waking up at 4am on Tuesday morning we decided to walk into Henley for some exercise after sitting on a plane for all those hours ...
 and found the lock a busy place ...
 the bollards being spruced up and the vegetation cut back ...
and burned.
and a rather old boat on the lock's tail landing.
Chrysoprase built in 1899.  The link is to an old advert when the boat was for sale in 2014.

I am well aware that I've neglected my blog for some time now and admit that all the photos that I want to record on my blog have become rather overwhelming, but bear with me, they will be posted as time and energy allows.

Until then, we're so glad to be home.

Saturday, 9 March 2019

Melbourne from the top of the bus part 2

It's still the 20th February and we've now booked into our hotel, found our rooms and unpacked ... time now to do the other bus top tour to get our bearings in Melbourne and decide where we want to visit this week.

Along Victoria's Yarra River and we decide that a river boat trip will be on the list

 We saw lots of these older, very pretty houses in Melbourne

 The notice informs of 'A Limited Release of Exclusive Graves' !!

China Town - will have a meal here one evening

 Melbourne Cricket Ground - or the 'G' as it's known locally

Tomorrow we start our explorations on foot!

Friday, 8 March 2019

No service!

Apologies for the lack of posts this past week
the free wifi here in our Manly hotel is hopeless!
Normal(ish) service should resume next week
when we're back in Perth

In the meantime just one quick photo while the usage of the wifi should be a bit quieter (it's 8am here in Oz)...
of George and I in Manly's Skiff Club 
one of Paul Macy's favourite haunts here.
May he rest in peace with the lovely Elaine.

Friday, 1 March 2019

Sunrise over Melbourne and from the top of the bus ... edited

After a problem with our aircraft's computer our flight from Perth to Melbourne left over an hour late at about 01:45 on Wednesday (20th) instead of 11:30pm on Tuesday (19th) and we arrived at Melbourne airport at about 06:30 local time (3-hours behind ahead Perth) - got that?
 Never seen a sun-rise like this before as we fly across Australia - no idea what time it was though!

Arriving at the airport.

My brother Garry and his wife Sue came with us to Melbourne and the plan was to take the taxi already organised by our travel agent, drop our bags off at the hotel (we couldn't book in until 3pm) and then catch a hop on-hop off bus tour of the city.

Things never go to plan do they?  The taxi wasn't there for us.  We waited for over half an hour but there was no sign on him so we took a taxi from the rank at the airport arriving at the hotel at about 8 o'clock.  

The reception at the Rendezvous Hotel, Flinders Street was good and they promised to contact us if our rooms became available earlier.  We paid for breakfast and ate very well and then set our for the bus from Federation Square  ... so this is what we saw ...
 The Forum Australia's premium music venue

 South Melbourne
 St Kilda's waterfront

 We quickly decided that this area was the one we wanted explore further another day
 Huge  cruise ships ...
 and volley-ball courts on the beach
 I think that's a big screen on the top of the ship

 Melbourne's CBD
 By this time (11:30) both of us had received calls from our hotel that our rooms were now available