Saturday, October 24, 2009


I am missing autumn this week. I am missing pumpkin doughnuts and cider and falling leaves. It's easier this year than it was last year. This year I am also so ready for summer. It's been a long winter and I am ready for some beach weather! But ... I am also missing autumn.

We finally booked our tickets home for Christmas. Took awhile because we each had to sell a superfluous internal organ to pay for them. Heads up Garcia family... our presence will be your present this year! We're lucky we have our own headphones for the flight, because I don't think we could afford the extra $2 to buy them! Sigh. Oh well... we are excited about a white Christmas with the whole family. Dan - I hope you are prepared for some serious Grinch watching!!

Lots of stuff going on here with work. My company is growing again and talking about opening a new office. I am busy strategising how that can mean more fun for me and less filing. I'll keep you posted.

I am making time this week to go into the city and visit the big brick building with CANADA on it's door... time to finally apply for the passport. I have been putting it off for nearly a year, but it will be much easier for me to travel home with it, so it's got to be done. Just have to go get the inevitably bad photo taken first. Joy.

Speaking of joy, I was awarded "Employee of the Month" at work last month, by popular vote, no less. (I know, shocking. Truly.) And my award was to pick a fun experience. I chose shark diving. No joke. So, on Nov 15th, The Husband and I will don wet suits and scuba gear and dive with nurse sharks and manta rays. I am a little nervous, but pretty excited. I'll post pictures. And maybe video. Maybe. Depends on how slimming the wetsuit is.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

big sigh

We are still alive down here... just insanely busy. This is the busy season for me at work and it's all I can do to make it through the day. Most evenings I just crawl home from the bus stop, eat, and cry. I keep telling myself it's only a few weeks to Christmas... only a few weeks to Christmas.

Speaking of Christmas... we will be in SSM with Gabby from the 23rd to the 30th. Hoping for a white Christmas! Actually, we are just hoping to make it there in one piece, since the only flights we can afford are on Korean Air. Scary.

The weather has been weird here lately... a warm day, a hot day, a cold day, a rainy day - you never know what you are going to see when you wake up in the morning. But the days are getting longer and it will be summer soon. I am trying to think positively about that, and not dwell on the fact that I am missing a beautiful Canadian autumn.

Monday, October 5, 2009

another year

Not much going on here... days and days of much needed rain. I am very happy to spend a long weekend in door reading and resting.

Happy birthday to The Husband... the best man a gal could ask for. You make my life so exciting. I am looking forward to another year together!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

A country of extremes

Last week we woke up to the wildest thing we have ever seen. The biggest dust storm Sydney has seen since the 1940s, shrouding the city in a choking powder and forcing flight diversions and delays. Air pollution readings for the region were the highest ever recorded. The storm was more than 500 kilometers wide and 1,000 kilometers long and blew about 75,000 metric tons of dust an hour over the city.
The city literally glowed red. It made for a nasty walk to work, that's for sure. While it wasn't pleasant, and we are still cleaning up after it... I'll admit that it was truly a sight to behold. A few days later, we drove to Canberra for Floriade, which is the annual flower festival, held in the ACT. It felt like we had arrived in a different world. While we have been enjoying very warm weather in Sydney, in Canberra it still felt like winter. We "rugged up" as the Aussies say and spent a chilly day photographing a couple million flowers. While we had a good time and the festival was beautiful, we couldn't resist the temptation to drive a few hours further south the next day. We had heard that the Snowy Mountains were experiencing a last season snow storm, and since we hadn't been to the mountains yet, we thought it would be the perfect time to go.
Wow, it is ever beautiful down there. For hours you drive through rolling fields dotted with sheep. Then the landscape changes... there are rocks scattered everywhere, like giant jelly beans. You start to see pine trees and the outline of the mountains rise in the distance. Then suddenly, there they are. No alps, by any means... but mountains still. Mt Kosciuszko, the highest peak in Australia, was covered in blowing snow, and a few die hard skiers were still on the slopes. It was freezing cold and super windy. But beautiful and truly a sight to see. Arriving in the National Park, we were told that we couldn't drive any further unless we fitted chains on our tires. Who knew? So we picnicked beside the Snowy River instead, and then wound our way home.
Australia truly is a strange, beautiful and extreme country. I am so glad we have these chances to see it and all it's beauty.