Friday, 30 March 2012

Extremes

I'll be in Tasmania next week for work, woohooo! I saw some pictures of Tazzie scenery and it really looks very much like New Zealand. I'm very curious. Me and my manager will be delivering two workshops for clinical educators, on Monday and on Wednesday, and will drive from North to South on Tuesday (which will only take an hour or two). Can't wait to take it all in.

At the moment it is 31 degrees here in Adelaide, and I got this picture, taken by the husband of our contact person in Tasmania...


Amazing!!!

My manager was wondering 'where her coat was' - imagine that, people in Adelaide don't seem to have a coat. She thought her coat was still in Sweden :-)

Rest assured, the forecast for the coming days in Tas is 21-23 degrees. No beanies or bedsocks but sunscreen.

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Finding accommodation for Easter

Yes, I know, we're late again... couldn't decide what to do with Easter... And now there's not much choice left. More precisely, no choice at all.
But I see light at the end of the tunnel, probably not at the coast where we wanted to be in the first place, but the Barossa should be just fine.

Kangaroo Island is impossible as the ferry is full, Robe seemed perfect, but that's sold out up till the last bed -  if we were millionaires it wouldn't be a problem to book something, damn.  The Barossa or the Hills is all that's left.

See if we can book something tonight then. If not, I'm going to scream.

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Time's flying, and we'll be flying soon too

We've been quite busy at work, and Jos & Zwaantje with being holidaymakers. On Friday we went to our last performance of the Adelaide Fringe festival, which was quite nice. Located in the planetarium of our University, in a circular setting with recliner chairs to look up at the dome-shaped ceiling where the Southern Hemisphere Sky was projected, we listened in the dark to the Fiddle Chicks. They played folk music, Irish inspired, on violins, ukelele's and foot drums. The sound quality was really good and we had a lovely evening.

We didn't do much on Saturday, except some preparations for a high tea on Sunday. Roger and Fran, plus Colin and Zelda came by, mainly to pick up the golf clubs I borrowed from R&F, but also, of course, to enjoy a nice Sunday afternoon. We made salmon and tuna sandwiches, apple tart, scones with strawberries and cream and we had yummy chocolates. On Sunday morning I also baked my best ever banana bread, with a crunchy crust. It was really good.

Saturday afternoon I had my matchplay practice at golf, this time with the pro involved, who captured our swings on video and gave tips during a couple of holes when he walked along with our groups. Got to make an appointment now to see myself back on video. That'll probably be confronting in a way. My handicap is now back to 20.8. We've only two more Thursday evening twilight occasions left before we go back to wintertime. Already it is getting darker by the day, especially in the morning it's pitch dark at 6.30am. Last Thursday night on the last hole it became hard to judge distances -  and that was probably around 7.30pm.

Jos & Zwaantje rented a car for the week, which makes it easier for them to get around, as we use our car fairly often ourselves - and it may be a bit scary, our old BMW. They are now discovering areas of South Australia we've never been; nice to see the pictures. They'll go to New Zealand on Friday for a week or so, and then to Canberra for a couple of days, to visit Lois and Richard. When they return it'll be very close to Easter.

I've just looked into my Calendar for April and that is looking like the May month usually is like in NL: lots of holidays (or days out of the office in this instance). April has Easter, I'm in Tasmania for a couple of days, we have Anzac day, if everything goes according to plan I'll be playing the golf club champs during one of the weeks in April and will be working from home then. We'll also get visitors over from New Zealand at the end of April, which is quite nice, and then it's our turn: we've booked flights to NL and will be back for two weeks in May. A holiday for me, work-related for Age in the first instance, with a week off at the end for him.

What else...
My part of the family has been affected by health issues lately. Last week my mum was struggling with some kind of stomach bug, my brother's wife was taken to hospital with suspected gallstones, their daughter wasn't fit either, and then my dad suddenly developed heart issues and underwent open heart surgery yesterday to get 4 bypasses.

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Long weekend!

We have been busy the last couple of days, enjoying the great weather and some Adelaide Fringe performances. On Friday we went to see the Comedy Gala in the Town Hall, with prior to the show an absolutely lovely dinner in a restaurant next to the Town Hall.

The sound quality in the Town Hall was terrible, with a strong echo, which made it hard to understand some of the comedians, especially those who eat their microphones when speaking/singing/screaming. And as Jos is slightly deaf he didn't understand a thing of what was being said, but luckily not every comedian needed a lot of words to be funny.

We took it easy on Saturday, had breakfast at our favourite cafe, can't remember what we did next, besides grocery shopping for the rest of the weekend.

Hmmm, had a senior moment there, as I totally forgot we went to our second Fringe performance, Phantom in the Forest. That was a very small and intimate outdoor opera performance at an eco-winery (why does eco always go hand in hand with a bit of a mess???). Pre-performance drinks at 7pm, and the show started at 8. During that hour the sun set, it slowly became dark and the birds living in the forest came 'home' to their resting place. White cockatoos, and large flocks of yellow-tailed black cockatoos were flying around, screeching like hell.

At the entrance of the winery the owner welcomed us and told us to go to her husband, who manned the bar. Well, we approached their outbuildings and under the pergola we saw a man and a woman, sitting side by side at a table. So I asked the man: 'Are you the bar?'. 'No', the woman answered, 'I am the entertainment'. If I had paid some attention before opening my mouth I would have noticed that she had her business cards and cd's on display on the table!

The evening was great; sitting outside in the dark, sipping wine with the full moon coming up, an audience of just 25 people, enjoying the picnic we brought along, and the music, was lovely. It got pretty chilly though!

On Sunday we went to Aldinga Beach (see pics from previous post), a fantastic beach just South of Adelaide. Driving South it became very hazy and at some point we wondered whether there would be a bushfire nearby or so, as it couldn't be fog. When we arrived at the beach and got out of the car there was this smokey smell, so indeed, something was burning.

We didn't find out what it was until that evening, when we read a news item about lots of phone calls from concerned people about this blanket of smoke - apparently on the border with Victoria there was a prescribed burn and because of the Eastern winds the smoke drifted towards Adelaide.
We had lunch at a winery, a nice platter, wine, ice creams and coffee.

Monday was a public holiday and we decided to do a walk, from Cleland Wildlife Park to the Mt Lofty Summit. It was lovely in the bush, although fairly hot with 30-odd degrees, and our walk happened to be quite steep. It was only an ascent of 220m, doesn't sound a lot, does it? I compared it to rowing 200m, which is easy as, but Age thought I should compare it to rowing vertically 200m (never done that...), or climbing half the height of the Rimutakas in NZ (ah, that is something different).

So we were huffing and puffing a bit. We weren't the only ones doing this, whole families and large groups were (appropriately dressed in sports wear) climbing the hill, most of them coming from down town instead of halfway up the hill like we did. And some of these people seemed really angry at their partner for putting them on that hill :-)




The view at the top was lovely.




Oh, I completely forgot the whole army of koalas we spotted on the way to Cleland Wildlife Park. That was actually our mission of the day: finding koalas. If all else failed we could go and see them in the wildlife park. Well, on a road where we've seen a couple of koalas before, suddenly Jos shoited out: there's one!!!!

We parked the car, walked back to where we saw the koala, took tons of pictures (Jos did), walked back to the car. And there was another one, just in the tree next to the car. This one looked like he was on holiday!
Then Age spotted one more on the opposite side of the road. And next to that one were two more!




So after 20 minutes we'd achieved the mission of the day.





Sunday, 11 March 2012

Aldinga Beach

Beautiful beach South of Adelaide






















- Evelyn

Thursday, 8 March 2012

Holidaymakers at home

Yes, we have a couple of holidaymakers at home: Jos & Zwaantje, Age's parents. They arrived last Sunday early in the morning. I went off to golf after their arrival, as it was the opening day of the new season, and Age had to keep them busy and awake. He did a marvellous job, they crash-landed to bed about 9 at night I think.

On Monday I went off to work, and Jos was rougly woken by Age who couldn't get his motorbike going. Apparently they tried to push it on, downhill, which didn't work, and then had to push it uphill again.
J&S had a quiet day, did some grocery shopping, walked to Blackwood, and cooked for us. Yummm!

Tuesday was my day off work, and we went to Stirling and Hahndorf. That was lovely and we noticed a lot of trees turning into their autumn colours. We enjoyed a proper German lunch with sausages and kartoffelsalat.

Yesterday was a big day, because we got Matt & Sarah, their two kids plus Matt's parents over for dinner. Matt's parents knew J&S were coming and a while ago invited to take them out for a day trip. Better let these people meet each other early on in their holidays then! We spent a chunk of Tuesday on grocery shopping and preparation for our Wednesday dinner, but it was well worth the effort as we had beautiful food and a very nice evening. We even got four complimentary tickets from Matt's mum to the comedy gala on Friday in the town hall, which is part of the Fringe Festival.



Next weekend is a long weekend for us, with on Friday the comedy gala, on Saturday classical music at a winery, and then Sunday and Monday off. Monday is Adelaide Cup day (horse racing). We haven't made plans yet for those days, but we'll show you the photos afterwards :-)