Strop over! Let’s enjoy life!

I’ll not beat about the bush!  It was dreadful!

I hated being back home from 6 months travel.  Poor Mr was a final straw.  I simply stopped, sulked and shouted a bit!

I still miss Mr.  He was a fantastic cat.  The other two seem slightly relieved it is over.  Perhaps they knew he was suffering.

Topping that, the house is still full of two families belongings.  My wonderful daughter, her husband and son have done a great job at cleaning and caring but their things have entered the fabric of the building.  We are only just beginning to see how to extricate them from us!

They plan to move from London to Devon.  Although they have job prospects, nothing substantive has been finalised yet.  As a consequence they are finding it hard to leave.  Besides, I honestly wanted them to stay on for a little while so I could get to know my grandson again after our six months apart.

He is gorgeous!  I’m amazed by his sense of humour!  Before we traveled, we were lucky enough to see him nearly every day sometimes, and certainly every week.  So we both felt there was a lot to catch up on.

We decided it was time to go on an outing.  Three generations packed into the car: it’s a Mini so ‘packed’ is the right word. I had forgotten how much space a 20 month old takes with all his paraphernalia!

Polsedon Lacey is the headquarters for the National Trust in Southern England, some 4 miles from Dorking, Surrey.  It was bought by Mrs Greville, an Edwardian hostess, in 1906 and became a fabulous venue for weekend parties, including visits by royalty. Best for a toddler are the gardens.  At this time of year, there are fabulous displays of tulips.

Keoni is very keen on nature and ‘ohh-ed and ah-ed’ well at the displays.  The hen house is a new feature, which I had not seen before; Keoni loved it.

He was quite keen to explore the flower beds and look for minibeasts.  In fact, he must have walked for miles on the muddy grass, simply because he will not walk in a straight line!

Ok, so maybe it’s not so bad, being here!  We had a great day out!  Thanks Keoni.

Happy New Year – 31st December 2011

Happy New Year to you all.


We went to see Melbourne’s fireworks. They sent a fortune on them but spread them right across the city, mounting them on skyscrapers. The theme was gold, to celebrate the history of gold mining within the state of Victoria.

They even out on two shows: one for children at 9.30 – as if they would the go to bed! I actually like that one a lot.

However, the main display was not well enough coordinated and we had to spin round 300 degrees to follow it. The result, low impact: sorry Melbourne. You need a focal point!

However, the crush on the bridge near Federation Square was quite fun! The tannoy repeating “No standing on the bridge, please keep moving!” and no one able to out a foot forward. Took us half an hour to move 20 meters.

All very good humoured though!

Happy New Year!


Domestic bliss – 12/17th December 2011

It is very strange once the scenery stops whizzing by, how quickly I become slightly lethargic.

Melbourne itself is a really brilliant city and I can well understand why it is one of the top places to live in. We begin with the free bus tour and tram tours around the city. The information centre in Federation Square is brimming with leaflets to help occupy your time. We pick up loads but I would recommend the little ones which give guided walks around the city. We do the lanes and malls one.

Melbourne has two markets and we visit the nearer one at South Melbourne. Crammed with clothes, fresh veg and loads of meat and fish suppliers it’s a great place to shop.
We are limited to walking everywhere but determine to hire a car soon, so we can go further afield. Walking around Melbourne we alternate between feeling Christmas is a bit of a swizz, because we have no friends and family to buy presents for or to cater for, and feeling Christmas is different but quite exciting over here. We cannot get over the queues waiting to see the David Jones and Myers windows. We loved the ones in Sydney but these do not appeal to us do well.

Some of the decorations around are hilarious, like tying up the TownHall in Ribbons

But for the most part, I work away at my blog, trying vainly to catch up. We play on our computers. Read lots. Go for bike rides, as my friend has two brilliant bikes and walk a lot.

Greyhound journey to Melbourne – Saturday 10th December 2011

Long story short
Greyhound journey was 12 hours overnight.
It’s hard to find a comfy position to sleep.
You are awakened for a ‘break’ just as you go to sleep and have to get off the coach.
You arrive in Melbourne in a dazed state and have to sort out their tram system.
Which is impossible.
My friend had provided excellent clear instruction to navigate to his house.
He has already gone back to England.
His parents have stayed on from New Zealand to greet us.

We are going to stay in this house for one month. The parents go back to New Zeland tomorrow. It’s lovely, but a blooded volcano of a cold sore has erupted on my lip after the long journey.

No photos please!