Monday, September 25, 2006
Friday, August 18, 2006
On my way home!
I am so excited. See you soon.
Watch the mailbox.
Saturday, August 12, 2006
Still in Saginaw
I have been hanging out with Gaelyne and her assorted family. Her daughter draws exceptionally well. She is one cool chick.
Gee I miss my family even though I am having a great adventure.
Monday we are back on a plane to Georgia and then Gaelyne is sending me home. She flies back to Australia and arrives there next Saturday.
Saturday, August 05, 2006
Gaelyne's daughter is in the Tittabawassee Valley Drum & Fife Corps. and is doing an event in Canada.
She asked Gaelyne and me to come along and we are going Friday night and be back in Saginaw Sunday.
That will be fun. And so I get to visit another country and have a little 'mini' holiday. I am really looking forward to it.
Luckily my Travel Log will act as my passport.
Canada here we come!
Friday, August 04, 2006
The next day I went along with Gaelyne to watch a family photo session with Gaelyne and her 3 children. I was very pleased with the family's final choice of photo, and it was a picture taken when something funny was said by someone behind the photograher that put a twinkle in Gaelyne's eye.
After the photo session we went out to eat at a new buffet place that featured American, Chinese and Japanese dishes. They had crab legs, and at least 3-5 different types of shrimp dishes including garlic shrimp, coconut shrimp, hot and spicey, and plain cold in the shell. Yummy. We played the 'fortune cookie game' where you say your fortune aloud and add 'in bed' at the end of it. It was silly.
Then we went back to the airconditioned house and Gaelyne and her 3 children talked for many many hours. I fell asleep listening to them. It was a great day.
I wonder what we are doing tomorrow?
Wednesday, August 02, 2006
Into the heat
I have met Gaelyne's other sister Pam and her brother Steve, all in Georgia.
Then Gaelyne and I got on another plane and we are going to Saginaw, Michigan. It is hot there, about 90+deg. This is not overly hot by Australian standards but hot for Saginaw.
We are meeting up with Gaelyne's 3 adult children.
I am very excited. I wonder where we will end up staying?
Saturday, July 29, 2006
We have rocked up!
And guess where we went for some tucker? One of Gaelyne and Diane's favourite places - Arby's.
After we finish here we are going to shoot through and go to Diane's home to use the sleepout and have a sleep. I am stuffed after what seems like a zillion hours of travel!
Friday, July 28, 2006
Stranded in Chicago
It seems Murphy's Law and Mother Nature have played havoc with the best plans, and now we wait for the new flight plans. There were severe storms in Chicago and they actually closed O'Haire Airport. The storms must have been really awful, because it is rare to close that airport. We were finally back on a plane, but it sat on the runway so long that it used up too much fuel and, even worse, the pilot reached his mandatory stop flying time. The airlines could not locate a different pilot to fly the plane, so the flight was cancelled.
We then stood in a line of about 2 thousand people for Customer Service to reschedule our flight. Then, they CLOSED the Customer Service. We are now finding food, a little rest, then back in line to get another flight.
We heard rumours that it may be SATURDAY before we can get a flight to Atlanta. All hotels near Chicago are full, so the airline is not putting us up anywhere. Let's hope we can get out on an early FRIDAY flight instead of the rumoured Saturday.....
More when we have any news.
We have been in the air for 20 hours and are very tired and hungry.
Thursday, July 27, 2006
I am coming home.
A surprise goodbye
She told me that instead she was sending me to a new home to visit Gaelyne who is her best friend. Gaelyne lives with her husband Rod at Maslin Beach, a suburb of Adelaide, which is the capital city of South Australia.
Vicki, Dave and I have had a bonza time while I have been here and I am sad to be going.
The last morning I was with Vicki I watched the sunrise.
I am excited to be visiting Gaelyne and I asked Vicki how long I would be staying with her.
Vicki had another surprise for me.
She told me that Gaelyne had just booked a flight to go and visit her children and sisters in the USA.
Gaelyne was going to take me home.
My new friends
Views of the world
And gee mates there are so many different birds in this area.
I saw a Great Egret, a Pied Cormorant and more seagulls sitting on the jetty. The Egret has a really long neck and sits with it in a crook shape.
And there are fishermen in Vicki's road who catch and sell fish. Yummy.
Some of these have funny names too. Coorong Mullet, Mulloway and Bream.
I got to stop at the highest point on Hindmarsh Island and look at the monument that has been erected to commemorate the sighting of the Murray River exit to the ocean.
And I spied the Murray River in the distance as it finally finished its long journey through Australia and exited to the ocean.
The Murray is continuously navigable for 1986 kilometres from Goolwa to Yarrawonga Weir. In this length there are thirteen weirs incorporating locks. For the last couple of years there has been 2 dredges at the Murray Mouth dredging to keep it open to the ocean.
A Bridge view
The bridge is quite steep and high, this is to allow boats with tall masts to still be able to go under it. The bridge also has 2 curves, one up and the other to the right, this was so the ferry could still keep operating during its construction. The ferry was hauled across on fixed cables between Hindmarsh Island and Goolwa.
I am so excited Vicki let me take the pictures from the bridge. I think I took good photos and I wasn't scared at all with it being so high and windy.
I had a bird's eye view of Goolwa and Hindmarsh Island from the top of the bridge.
Tied up next to the Oscar W at the wharf is the barge The Dart which is part of the interpretive display for the wharf area.
Also at the wharf area is a ferry. It is no longer in use. The ferry used to be the only connection to Hindmarsh Island from the mainland and this was the only way Vicki could get home.
And I saw some more strange birds while we were looking at the ferry. They are called Swamp Hens.
Tuesday, July 25, 2006
We walk around town
Across the road from the Memorial Gardens was the Returned and Servicemens League building which originally was the stables for the horses who pulled the 1st Railway carriage. Dave is the Vice-President of the Goolwa RSL. Dave was in the regular army and served in the Malaysian war. Vicki and Dave go there after work every Friday night.
We went down a path and saw an old house that Vicki told me was originally the Railway Superintendent's house. The first public railway in Australia started in Goolwa and the superintendent lived in this barrel-roofed house.
And next to there was the Signal Point Interpretive Centre. This has hands-on displays of the Murray River and Paddle Steamer trade from Goolwa.
Pick me up
Right next to Vicki's work is the public library for the area. I went in and checked out all the great books and other things that the library has.
The library is part of the Alexandrina Council offices and there is a great display of the items from the area next to the library and it is in front of the council chambers. I had a look at some of the display.
Monday, July 24, 2006
The other doggie person in this household is Dimi. She is the matriarch of the family and is a long-haired Chihuahua. Dimi is about 11 years old and likes to relax a lot.
I also went to visit some chooks. They live at Vicki's daughter Melanie's house. They were a lively bunch of ladies and lay lovely big eggs.
And the last of my animal capers. I saw another bird I didn't know! Gee there are lots of birds at Vicki's place. There is a Little Pied Cormorant with its wings open drying. The big white bird is a Great Egret. It stands with it's neck tucked into its chest and some seagulls. Gee it's bird watching paradise here.
Sunday, July 23, 2006
Church Musical devonshire teas
They also had a Musical afternoon and Vicki and I made scones for the devonshire afternoon tea. We had hot scones for breakfast as Vicki and I made 4 dozen scones before she went to work.
Saturday, July 22, 2006
Hanging out with Kangaroos
They are the best bunch of kangaroos I have ever met! They live with Debbie, who is a member of the Wildlife Welfare organisation. I got to share some tucker with them.
These guys are so soft! I got to snuggle up to Rosie. Fair dinkum.
I am leaning on Rosie (female) then to the left is Coppa (male), Cody(male) is on the right at the back and in front to my right is Nicky (male).
Debbie met up with these fellas when they were babies and their mothers had been killed. Debbie raised them to be the best Australians you could ever meet.
Into the Lions Den
But the best part of visiting Maggie was going into the Lions Den!
There were 900 of these scary beasts. And none of them ate me! Whew!!
Lions were not the only thing I had to watch out for at Maggie's. Her cat Chester was interested in me as well.
Wednesday, July 19, 2006
After breakfast I spotted some more strange Australian birds in the water in front of Vicki's house. This was a Heron and on the jetty were some more Pied Cormonants (do you know the other name for them is Shags?) and there were some swans further out in the channel.
Later on we went to the Goolwa Fire station and I got to go on a BIG fire truck. The volunteers who are the firemen and women give their time and learn lots of skills to put out fires in Goolwa and on Hindmarsh Island. They were a great bunch.
Another emergency vehicle lives in the same shed. It is a sea rescue boat and is also manned by volunteers. They rescue people who get into problems on boats.
Tuesday, July 18, 2006
The day in the life of....
I helped serve some customers that came into Vicki's shop.
The postie came around delivery mail and I got to help him It was so exciting.
Monday, July 17, 2006
I stayed inside and looked at the water.
While looking out the window I saw another bird that looked funny. It was going along the shoreline getting food out of the shallow water. It had a long, thin beak for poking in the sand and long legs for wading through the shallows. Vicki said it was an Australian White Ibis.
There are so many strange birds here in Australia.
Sunday, July 16, 2006
Meeting the locals
I got to meet some local Australians today. We stopped in at the River Dolls of Goolwa museum and I hung out with the Australian's.
They were a friendly group even if they included Feral Cheryl, some Swaggies and a group of Aborigines and Colonial soldiers. Australia was discovered by the British in 1770 and became a penal colony for Britain with the first convicts arriving in 1788.
After I said goodbye to my new Australian friends we went to the supermarket in Goolwa (the nearest town to Vicki's home and where Vicki works) to buy some groceries. I learnt another Aussie word. 'Snags'. It is on the specials advertising board on the supermarket wall but they spelt it wrong there. And what is Berri and Kleenex, Arnotts Creams and Spree? Gee these Aussies speak funny.
When we had finished shopping we went to go home and Vicki's car wouldn't start so we sat and watched all the other people in the carpark.
Vicki's car started shortly after and we went home.