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Monday, October 18, 2010

Home again!

What a trip! For once I had a holiday I wanted to go on and on and on! None of this, "I'm ready to go home now". It surpassed all my dreams and expectations, leaving me thirsting for more. Roll on the next one.

Trying to work out how to add photos so you can all see why I loved it so much. Will be back when I work it out.
So we have a picture of steamy, sultry Singapore. This is the area known as Chinatown, lots of market stalls, pagoda temples etc. fascinating if you can resist all the demands to part with your dollars! Hubby haggled with a trader for a watch. Saved S$5! The Pagoda Temple was lovely. We had to remove our shoes to enter. I was perturbed by the way people showed little respect for the holy place. (Saw more examples of this in Rome later on.) Not easy to find a cup of tea, lol.
Then we have part of Holyrood Palace in Edinburgh. The palace is still standing but part of the chapel is in ruins. This palace is now only used in July when the Queen presents awards. It is a fascinating example of middle ages living, dark timberlined walls, heavy tapestries, etc.
Thirdly we have a fascinating, if strange little village called New Lanark. This was an old mill town, reconstructed by Robert Owen, as a project intended to create better living standards for the people, to provide education for their children etc. He had some strong beliefs and today this would be seen as a sort of cult, but he certainly did improve the lives of those who lived in the town he created. Lovely spot though.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

English Stately Homes

After the sultry, steamy-ness of Singapore, the weather in England has been refreshing. Not quite summerish, more like Autumn or Spring, but enjoyable really. It has been really ideal for touring the gorgeous stately homes and castles. To date we have visited Edinburgh Castle, Holyrood Palace, Whitby Abbey, Castle Howard, Chirk Castle and today was the turn of Chatsworth House, home of the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire. What a fabulous house it is, too, with the most amazing painted ceilings, sculptures and colossal chandeliers. The best one to date.

Just have to tell you this, though. I was in a public loo the other day and saw a notice saying: help us help the environment; use both sides of the sheets of paper. Well, I was trying to get my head around this one, and imagining trying to use both sides of a sheet of toilet paper, before deciding I would give this request the flick. I was told later that this notice actually refers to writing paper. My question, why then is it posted on the toilet wall??????????????????

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Doing What I was Born to Do!

Wow, the Holiday Inn Atrium in Singapore is fabulous. 200 dollars a night including buffet brekky to die for and airport transfers. Fabulous accommodation. Chinatown is wonderful. Very colourful and vibrant. The Pagoda Temple was awesome and inspiring. Flight from Singapore to London was interesting. We were accompanied by 30 16 yr old Hormonal Catholic School girls on way home from sports tour of Oz. Made an interesting journey.

Picked up our hire car at Edinburgh Airport. Vauxhall Corsair. Very nice. Auchterarder is lovely. Allendale House was outstanding B&B. Edinburgh is a fabulous city filled with amazing architecture, and the Military Tattoo was awesome. I will definitely visit Scotland again.

The satnav is the best thing we ever bought. "Emily" is very patient when we make wrong turns. In fact I have decided I want to be Emily. My hubby does everything she tells him to!

Windermere was lovely but I was very weary so didn't make it to Wordsworth's home and Hilltop was closed so missed Beatrix Potter too. All more reason to return one day. Moved on to Whitby and was sad that the accom was not up to our usual standard. However we had two lovely days seeing Whitby and Robin Hood's Bay, and eating yummy fish and chips.

Visited Castle Howard near York on the way to family in Maltby. Yay! got to cuddle my grandsons for the first time in 16 months. Gorgeous! Grown so much.

Several daytrips over the next few days to Magna Centre in Sheffield, Clifton Park in Rotherham, Langold Lake in Notts. Visits to family members each day too. Exhausting but worth it. Arrrggghhh, I hve left my most important medication behind in Melbourne and need to see a doctor here to get a script. Hopefully I will still be alive and kicking later this week. If so I will come back online to continue this update and hopefully be able to post some photos. Bye for now...

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Taking to the air.

This is it! We are actually doing this at last. Funny, I read my horoscope today, (I know, don't laugh) and it said "you are about to travel widely, which is what you were born to do." I laughed my head off. Yes, this is what I was born for and am going to fulfil that mission now. This is just the beginning. The diet has worked (9 kilos gone!!!), the legs are waxed, the eyebrows waxed and tinted, the hair is done, the nails are manicured, the cat is cared for (thanks Jac, Annette and Tommy!) and the bills are paid (well, next month's anyway) so we can lock the door behind us and just go. First stop Singapore. Yay!!! See you all there!!!

Taking to the air.

Taking to the air.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

7 sleeps!

OMG, I can't believe it is only 1 week away. Just bought a laptop bag, only $19 in Kmart. Strong, and plenty of room for a few extra bits and pieces. Booked a 3 hour tour with Viator, to see the Vatican Museums, St Peters, the Cistene Chapel. Very reasonable, too at less than $90 for 2 of us. It is hard to believe we are actually going to be seeing these amazing structures and creations. Dreams are certainly coming true.
Another dream came true today, too. For many years I wanted to write a memoir of my father-in-law. He was a very interesting and eccentric man, who had the ability to frustrate and yet endear you at the same time. Fascinating. Well, I finally finished it and collected it from the printer today. It took much wheedling and threatening to get some of the family members to cough up their memories, and some never did, of course, but it was worth the hassle, and I am very happy with the end result. All 20 copies will be going into the bottom of the suitcase to be distributed among his children and grandchildren in England. I think they will be pleasantly surprised...