Monday, December 22, 2008

Dreaming of a White Christmas

We all braved the cold and wet and went to Carols in the Domain on Saturday. Despite the 'freezing' temperatures (I think it got down to 58F) and the damp from the previous downpour - we had a fabulous time with about 100,000 of our neighbours. This is a huge Chrissy tradition here in Sydney, and I kept reminding Dan that he was lucky to be part of it. I am sure he agreed.

The shopping is done and we are looking forward to our first warm Christmas. So glad to have Dan here and have a few friends coming over on Christmas Eve to eat and play Cranium. Wish you could all join us.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

A weekend on the road

A couple of weekends ago, Jon had to do some work on Saturday morning in Canberra. More specifically, he had to do some work on the Australian Forces base in the middle of nowhere somewhere near Canberra. So, we decided to make a weekend of it, and drive down and back up along the coast.

We started out early early after a late night out the night before at my company Christmas party. It was a gorgeous day though, and perfect for a drive. And after dropping Jon in front of a 15 foot barbed wire fence, I had a chance to drive as well - for the first time in Australia. It was a bit freaky, but I did well, and I definitely feel more confident about it now. You just have to keep telling yourself to stay left, stay left. Ha.

After Jon finished his job, we headed over the mountains and off to the coast. We had a fun afternoon of driving, stopping when we felt like it and exploring out of the way beaches and scenic overlooks. We had the best fish and chips ever in Batemans Bay for lunch. If you are ever in the neighborhood, be sure to check out The Boatshed! At the end of the day, we checked into a dodgy hotel (four stars here is barely tolerable) and had a dodgy dinner before falling asleep.

The next morning we started out in the little town of Berry, which I loved. We had brekkie in the morning sun and wandered through the little shops. I had a bit of a moment in a little quilt shop - I got a bit homesick and started crying, so Jon had to pull me away. That was a little embarrassing. heh.

As we reached the edge of town, we realised that it was their market day. How fun! We spent an hour wandering through the local market admiring the plants and fruit and homemade crafts and jewellery and everyone's dogs. We left just as it started to rain, and we drove towards the coast with the storm hovering behind us over the mountains. It was a pretty incredible sight.

After that, we were off to Kiama and the famous Kaima Blowhole. It's a coastal area with heaps of volcanic rock, thousands of years old. The ocean has worn a hole in the rock. When the tide is high, the waves build up pressure and when it gets too strong, it blows up and out the hole with a (and I quote) a "whoomp!" Except, we visited on a low-tide day, so there was no "whoomping" for us. But it was still beautiful. There was a sign about the first explorer who described the beach... about 200 years ago. Imagine how cool it would be to be the first person to find something like that! Pretty awesome.

Anyway - we enjoyed the trip and look forward to our next weekend adventure.

These last couple days have been pretty busy with holiday dinner parties and winding up work projects. We are both looking forward to a couple weeks off work. Jon and Dan are planning all sorts of fun stuff, and I will be off on my road trip in just a week!

Hope you are all staying warm back home!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

In the good ol summertime

Monday was the first day of summer here, officially. And I welcomed it in with a lovely case of sunstroke. Spent the day on the beach Sunday and - as anyone would expect from me - failed to wear sun protection of any kind. I am getting way to old for this.