Saturday morning Murray took the dog, Michelle, Duncan and I for a 2 minute walk to the shops. I should have known he always takes the long way! It was getting very hot by the time we returned home. I spent some time with Hamish & Donna trying to work out what was wrong with my camera. I had been having problems getting the photos off the card. Because the camera had gotten wet before Anson gave it to me I was rather suspecting something serious.
We eventually took off south to Freemantle. Wandered past the old jail. By this time it was very hot and I was not coping with the heat at all. We all ended up at an eatery on the waterfront. I was feeling sick from the heat so when they others had lunch I just had a bottle of water. Duncan had ordered a huge fisherman’s platter so I helped him out and ate his salad which he very generously allowed me to have
From there we walked to the markets and wandered around for a while then on via a didgeridoo shop where Murray tried out a few and then through another market and back to the car. Said good-bye to Hamish & Michelle – even though we had only known her a week we parted old friends. I so hope she gets her passport and comes visit sometime.
Murray diverted into the centre of Perth so I could take my camera into the shop. It was quickly diagnosed that the memory card was faulty and corrupted so I bought a new one. Hopefully the photo files can be retrieved by a shop in Nelson as I didn’t have time to allow the Perth guys to do it.
They then drove up to Kings Park and dropped me off with strict instructions on where to meet them afterwards. I went through security, found the necessary food and managed to find a good spot to park up. I had a folding chair and was very happy with my spot. The place was a natural auditorium, grassy slopes down to a small lake with the stage set up behind. Bojeme was playing when I arrived. A very talented group of 3 young Australian ladies who play strings. http://www.savannah.net.au/
Most enjoyable, I was just sorry I had arrived late so missed most of their performance. After the break Grace Knight came on. Her style is sorta swing/jazz. Not really my scene and not as enjoyable.
However, at 7:30pm on came The Ten Tenors.
‘Here’s To The Heroes’ concert.
They subjected us to 2 hours of excellent entertainment. Fantastic singing, amazing voices and 10 very handsome young Australian dudes to watch as well-!! The sang a variety of songs from classical, opera, Bee Gees, Simon & Garfunkel and their best one from Queen – Bohemian Rhapsody. I was sorry when they finished but dutifully text Duncan and made my way up to the meeting spot by the ANZAC memorial. As it was dark and there were hundreds of people and cars all milling it was a very good thing that Murray had been so specific as to where I should wait.
They all arrived around 10pm after picking up Jasmine and we zipped down into the city to look for food. Found a place and then Murray couldn’t find a park. He refused to pay for a parking building so we circled until he found a small gap behind a car and rode the pavement to fit his Landcruiser in. 4WD’s can go anywhere you know The food was awful, I sent my first plate back to the kitchen, and then had to eat my 2nd plate in a hurry as we were running short of time. It wasn’t much better and I was feeling decidedly ill by the time we got to the airport. We said our farewells to Murray, Hamish, Donna & Jasmine – the week had flown so fast – but we had packed an awful lot in.
Our plane left Perth at 12:55am and got to Sydney at 7am. Only 4 hours flying time as we went back 2 hours in time, and not too much sleep time. We were both pretty shattered after flying the red-eye special. Got a taxi to Duncan’s in-laws house. Sylvia was staying with her sister so I just met her parents Joe & Mary. They are a delightful Maltese couple who have been out here since the early 1950’s when he was 19 and she 16.
After Duncan had several coffees and I had a very needed shower Joe took us to the rental car agency and we picked up the car and headed over to see Aunt Elvina. She didn’t know I was coming and as I had never met her I was wondering how long it would take for her to click on as to I was. Well, she gave Duncan and huge exuberant bear hug and then when he asked if she knew who I was she said ‘Yes, it’s Raewyn’. Then I was engulfed! We spent a couple of hours with her. She was delightful and chattered away non-stop not noticing the times when I nodded off and woke with a start as I nearly fell off my chair or when Duncan also had a doze in the chair next to her.
We left around midday and drove over to Sylvia’s brother’s house. Young Joseph & Marcel were having a birthday party for their wee 3 year old, Sarah. It was a typical Maltese family get together, lots of food, hugs & kisses, noise and laughter. Duncan, Sylvia & I took off for a couple of hours and went shopping at the Sydney Markets. It was huge. Most of the stalls were manned by Chinese and a predominant number of the customers were Muslim, all the cd’s and dvd’s for sale were in Arabic. I found some clothes for the children. 10 pairs of sox for $10 for the wee ones and a tee shirt for Seb which said – ‘If you love something, set it free. If it comes back, hunt it down and kill it’!! Appropriate for an avid hunter I thought – and yes, he loves it. We then drove back to the party. We were both shattered by this stage so I dozed on the sofa for a while and Duncan escaped the noise and sat out in the garden.
Around 6pm we took off in the car and drove into the centre of Sydney. It was so cool to see the Harbour Bridge and Opera House up close. I was hanging out for a Frappacino so I was dropped off at Starbucks to get one and coffee for Duncan. We parked the car and then walked all around the Opera House. It was so amazing and surreal to be there. I said to Sylvia that I just couldn’t believe that the night before I was sitting in Kings Park at a live concert of The Ten Tenors and then this night I was soaking in the architecture and of the Opera House and the Harbour night life. So cool.
But all good things have to come to an end so we drove back to the house and packed out bags. Joe and Duncan returned the rental car and we crashed out at 11pm. Up bright and early next morning as we had to be at the airport by 6:30am. I was amazed at how busy the traffic was there at 6am. Went passed an accident – car, tanked and motorbike. Didn’t look good for the biker.
Duncan & Sylvia were flying directly to Christchurch with Air Emirates and I was flying with Qantas. I did some duty free shopping – found a really cool sunhat for Shoshannah and a fantastic Aborigine shop with some brillinat books which I just had to get. We flew directly over our farm just before landing in Wellington. It was so clear, I was kicking myself that I never took any photos. I could make out the house and I could see that Tim was out in the boat as it wasn’t on the mooring. We were late getting in so only had a short time to get through customs and find the plane to Nelson. John met me at Nelson in the Mercedes and chauffeured me back to the motel. I quickly loaded my gear into the Terrano, picked up veggies and headed for home.
I had a good drive in, wasn’t too tired until about 30mins before home. Of course when I got there my body was still operating on Sydney time so at midnight I was not really feeling to tired. This morning though when two wee people came in at 7:30am to tell me they loved me it was a different story. My eyes wouldn’t open. It was a major effort to find the shower and get the day organised.
Doesn’t take 5 minutes for the holiday to disappear into the recesses of the mind. 15 loads of washing, organising people to go here and there, getting instructions as to where to put the bull and how to load the sheep on the truck tomorrow, helping get them away on their camping trip to D’Urville. Yes, that’s right. They have deserted camp and gone hunting/camping/fishing for 2 nights.
Great-!! I can have a day or so to wake up, unwind, and maybe even get some school stuff organised for the children for when they return. I think we may just start with Australian Aborigine studies this year. After all I have soime great resources now
But just for now, I am totally shot and have to find my bed.