Saturday, January 28, 2012

Chinese New Year

Saturday 28th January, 2012

This morning Tony and I took a trip into town and to the Central Market where they were having celebrations for Chinese New Year.

It was so hot and humid and there were lots of people crowded into a small area that they call Chinatown.  The street was closed off to traffic as they had a lot of food stalls and other variety stalls.  A stage was set up at one end where Chinese performers performed.  There was lots of  singing, dancing, instrument playing and firecrackers.

The thing I had come to see was the Lion Dance.  I don't think they performed the traditional Lion Dance as they were restricted for space, but I loved it anyway.

I don't know what this instrument is called but it's sound was so haunting.....beautiful!

The Chinese Association had brought out a Chinese man who makes figurines out of dough.  Because it was so hot and the dough would have dried too quickly he wasn't demonstrating his skill on the occasions we walked past.  There was also caligraphy writing in Chinese that you could try plus making a chinese lantern or a fish from a cardboard 'box'.

I bought these two figurines, so much detail has gone into them and in Chinese folklore they represent "Longevity".

We tried some traditional Chinese food that they sell on the streets in China, it was like jelly rolled in crushed peanuts.  Very sweet!  We didn't stay very long as it was too hot.  The Central Market itself was very busy too.  We ended up going back into the suburbs to do some shopping although we did get some Dutch 'Taai Taai' biscuits and  'Pepernoten'.

From the Lens.............

Good Luck!

Friday, January 27, 2012

Tori Flies Back To Tasmania

Friday 27th January, 2012

This morning I was up at the crack of dawn and ended up going into work with Tony.  We drove in because I was going to the airport to see Tori off.   She was going back to Tasmania.

I decided that I wouldn't drive to the airport, instead I would catch the Jetbus (J1 or J2) to the airport.  It leaves from just outside Tony's work.

Her plane was due to fly out at 9.30am and so I caught the bus just before 8am.  I got to the airport around 8.15 but there was no sign of Jodi.  I rang her and she was still around 30 minutes away.  I rang Dianne's phone and they were just parking the car at Ikea and would walk over.

After I had gone through security, I was taken to one side and asked to submit to an explosives test.  Fair I look like the type to make a bomb?  Anyway I know they're just doing their job so that was fine with me.  BTW no residue was found on my bag or person.

Tori finally arrived at 8.45.  She got her boarding pass and the plane was ready to depart on time. 

After Tori left, the others were going over to Ikea for breakfast and shopping. I didn't want to go so I decided to catch the bus back into the city.  As I walked out the doors the J2 bus came along but I didn't feel like running for it.  Shortly afterwards another bus came along and I swear it had J1 on the back.

I got on board, some other people came along and asked if it was going into the city, the driver said "No".  I thought, that's OK I'll go for a "tour" because it would either be going to Harbour Town or down to Glenelg and then coming back to go into the city.  Plus it was too hot to sit and wait for another bus, not knowing how long one would be.

Off we went.  The bus didn't turn off to go to Glenelg or Harbour Town.  I thought that perhaps they changed their route. It turned left into Henley Beach Road and shortly afterwards turned right into some other street.  I had no idea where we were. 

We were going along, I was looking for places that I might know when we came to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital and Port Road.  Turned left up the Port Road and I thought maybe we would end up in Port Adelaide.  Nope, we finally ended up at West Lakes.  Everyone got off and so I asked the driver if he was going into the city.  "No," he said "My shift is finished and I'm going home".

I got off too and luckily there was another bus waiting, that was going into the city and so I caught that.  What should have been a 15 minute ride from the airport to the city ended up being around 90 minutes.

When I got back to Tony's work we had a good laugh about it.  It has always been my fear with catching public transport, that I would end up on a wrong bus.  Well today my fear was realised and it wasn't as bad as I feared.

From the Lens..........

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Australia Day

Thursday 26th January, 2012

Happy Birthday Australia!  Today, being Australia Day, means a public holiday, bar-b-ques (lamb of course), concerts, fireworks, free breakfasts and some new immigrants being naturalised as Australian citizens.

I don't think we do it as well as the Americans do their Independance Day, but this year we seem to be showing a bit more patriotism.  I have noticed several cars flying the Aussie flag.  It's a start.

Then, on Tuesday we had this learned University professor from Perth, come out and say that she had done a study and people who chose to fly the flag on their cars were RACIST!   Whaaaaaat!!!!!!

"People who fly Australian flags on their cars have more racist views than the rest of the population, a new study has found.
Many flag flyers also support the now-defunct White Australia Policy and are afraid the Australian culture is under threat, researchers from the University of Western Australia say."

On reflection, maybe she has a point.  I think we are all racist in some small way, whether it be against a persons' nationality, religious views or culture.  I put my hand up, I know I am.  We are all Australian, therefore we should all be treated equally, not favoured because you were here first.

 We know we're Aussie because we......

* Believe that stubbies can either be drunk or worn. 
* You pronounce Melb...ourne as 'Mel-bin'.
* You believe the 'L' in the word 'Australia' is optional.
* You can translate: 'Dazza and Shazza played Acca Dacca on the way to Maccas.'
* You believe it makes perfect sense for a nation to decorate its highways with large fibreglass bananas, prawns, sheep, lobsters, oranges, and pineapples.
* You call your best friend 'a total bastard' but someone you really, truly despise is just 'a bit of a bastard'.
* You think 'Woolloomooloo' is a perfectly reasonable name for a place. 
* You believe it makes sense for a country to have a $1 coin that's twice as big as its $2 coin.
* You understand that 'Wagga Wagga' can be abbreviated to 'Wagga' but 'Woy Woy' can't be called 'Woy'.
* Beetroot with your Hamburger.   
* You believe that the confectionery known as the Wagon Wheel has become smaller with every passing year.
* You wear ugg boots outside the house.  
* You believe that the more you shorten someone's name the more you like them.
* Whatever your linguistic skills, you find yourself able to order takeaway fluently in every Asian language
* You understand that 'excuse me' can sound rude, while 'scuse me' is always polite.
* You know what it's like to swallow a fly, on occasion via your nose.
* You know it's not summer until the steering wheel is too hot to handle and a seat belt buckle becomes a pretty good branding iron.
* Your biggest family argument over the summer is about the rules for beach cricket.
* You shake your head in horror when companies try to market what they call 'Anzac Biscuits'.     
* You know how to abbreviate every word, all of which usually end in O, arvo, combo, garbo, kero, metho, milko, muso, rego, servo, smoko, speedo, righto, goodo etc.
* You know that there is a universal place called "woop woop" located in the middle of matter where you actually are.
* You know that none of us actually drink Fosters beer, because it tastes like shit. But we let the world think we do. Because we can.
* You have some time in your life slept with Aeroguard on in the summer, maybe even as perfume.
* You've only ever used the words - tops, ripper, sick, mad, rad, sweet - to mean good. And then you place 'bloody' in front of it when you REALLY mean it.
* You know that the barbecue is a political arena; the person holding the tongs is always the boss (well, us women let them think they are) because it is usually a man. And the women make the salad.
* You say 'no worries' quite often, whether you realise it or not.
* You understand what no wucking furries means.
* You've drank your tea/coffee/milo through a Tim Tam
* You own a Bond's chesty, in several different colours.
* You know that roo meat tastes pretty good, but not as good as barra, or a meat pie with dead horse.
* You know that some people pronounce Australia like "Straya" and that's ok. 

So Tony and I spent most of the day doing nothing.  That's what Australia Day can mean too.   After having a late lunch we headed off into town to watch the Australia Day parade.

This year it was much better than last years parade.  There were quite a few more nationalities represented and more people watched along the streets.  Maybe because it coincided with the finish of the days play of the cricket test at the Oval.

We wandered down to Elder Park where thousands of people had gathered for the Australia Day concert and the fireworks.  We didn't stay for very long. 

We ended up going down to Henley Beach and had some dinner at Zoots Cafe.  It got quite cool sitting outside while we were eating.  Even a coffee didn't warm us up.

On the way home we came back through the city, and parked the car along War Memorial Drive and watched the last of the fireworks.  It gave a different perspective seeing and hearing them from behind.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012


Tuesday 24th January, 2012

On Saturday while Tony was working in the garden I decided that the pot plant that was standing on the drive at the corner of the fence was no longer needed.  I was scared that when I reversed out of the garage I would side swipe the car with it being there.

Yes, we have got reverse sensors on the car, but once you are past an object they don't beep anymore.  We couldn't park the car on the driveway and open the back passenger door because it would hit this pot plant.  So, I decided, it had to go.

Tony lifted it up and then got me to help him to lift it to the top of the green's bin, and then we were going to tip the plant into the bin.  Well, we got the pot to the top of the bin and then it slipped out of my hands and cut my little finger.  Blood was dripping everywhere.  Tony went and got a bandage for me.  We also used some paw paw ointment.

It is healing nicely, but my poor finger is bruised.

From the Lens.............


Sunday, January 22, 2012

Happy Birthday

Sunday 22nd January, 2012

"Happy Birthday to me, Happy Birthday to me"........I'm another year older.  I had a great day.  Firstly Robyn and Bob came around and we went to Hahndorf and to the Old Mill for lunch.  Had a very nice smorgasbord, ate too much as usual.

When we finished lunch we went and put a few dollars in the Pokies.  Don't know when I last played them but they really don't hold much interest for me.  I came out with $20 and so we went and looked for a coffee shop to have a coffee.  It was so hot outside, the temperature was in the high 30's. There weren't too many people walking up and down the street.

We drank our coffee outside under the trees but it was too warm to sit around for very long.  By the time we got back home it was close to 5pm and we had to organise ourselves to go and pick up Rick and Dianne as we were going to meet Jodi and Troy at Wee Willies for dinner.

I had my camera with me this time and so Tanecia went and took photos of the toilet doors at Wee Willies for me.

Tony and I didn't feel like eating too much after the lunch we had.  Luckily they were slow in serving dinner, Tony and I were the last to receive ours.   We both just had chicken schnitzel.  It was a nice evening.  We got home around 10.00pm.  Normally I don't like all this fuss for my birthdays, to me it's just another day, but thankyou to Robyn, Bob, Andrew, Simone, Rick, Dianne, Jodi, Troy, Tori, Tanecia and Taylor for making it a lovely day.

On Saturday we did some cleaning up outside, Tony mowed the lawn and trimmed the tree, while I vacuumed out the back.  It was the first time using the new vacuum cleaner for outside.

When Tony was finished in the garden he gave the car it's first major clean.  It looked nice and clean and shiny.  After dinner we went for a drive down to the beach at Largs North for an icecream. 

From the birthday present

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Tori Is Back Home For A Visit

Tuesday 17th January, 2012

Today turned out to be another very hot day.  Predicted maximum was for 39 degrees with a cooler change later in the day.  It was quite warm when I got up at 6.30 am this morning and the wind was blowing making it uncomfortable.

This afternoon Tori was flying in for a 10 day visit and I had arranged to go and pick up Dianne and take her to the airport.  Jodi was going to meet us there.  We ended up going to Ikea as Tori was going to come across to there so that she could surprise Taylor.

It is also the start of the 2012 Santos Tour Down Under.  Today they were riding from Prospect to Clare, some 149 kilometres.  Gotta feel sorry for those bike riders riding that far in this heat, especially since nearly all of them have come from a Northern Hemisphere winter.  They still wouldn't be acclimatised to our hot weather.

                                                        taken from Adelaide Now website

I had arranged to pick Dianne up at 2.00pm and when I got to her place she informed me that Tori's plane had been delayed half an hour.  We left her place at the normal time, we thought we would go and have a coffee while waiting.

We got to the airport and Ikea just before 3.00pm and Jodi rang saying that she had just got out of the Dr's.  She had been there waiting for 3 and a half hours just to see the doctor to get a prescription.  Apparently her paperwork had got caught up in another patients papers and no-one realised.  Needless to say she was not happy.

Dianne and I went off to have a coffee and waited for Jodi.  Soon after Jodi got there we went downstairs to wait for Tori.   Jodi hadn't told Taylor that Tori was coming back for a visit, she wanted to surprise her and I think she did just that.  Tori came around 4.30pm. 

Dianne kept Taylor occupied by watching a movie with her.  Tori sat on the lounge behind Taylor, tapped her on the arm and when Taylor turned around to look, the look on her face was priceless.  She could not believe it.  It took several minutes for it to sink in that Tori was actually there.

It was great to see her again.   Even though she has only been away for 3 months it seemed like forever since we last saw her.

Dianne ended up going home with Jodi and I went off into town to pick up Tony.   We had some dinner on the way home and then called into the Village to do some shopping.  Thankfully the cool change had come in.  It was trying very hard to rain but all we got was a few drops.   They were so few that they didn't even wet the ground.

From the Lens...........

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Not Used To This Much Stress

Sunday 15th January, 2012

Friday evening saw us go and pick up Katie.  Geez, the last three weeks seemed to have gone by so slow and it felt like ages since we had last seen her.

We had to go back into work as Tony had left his mobile phone behind and then we went off to Vilis for some dinner.  Katie has a new favourite there.....marinated chicken.

Katie asked if she was going to see Taylor over the weekend.  I said I didn't think so.  She wanted to know what we were going to do for the weekend.  I said maybe a movie and the pool.   She wanted to know if Taylor could come to the movies with us.  I said no, she got whiney and so I said seeing that it's been so long since we last saw her Nanna and Poppa just wanted to spend some time with her.  We would see about Sunday and she was happy with that.

On Saturday morning we decided to go and see "We Bought A Zoo".  Firstly Katie wanted to go and look at a new school bag.  Last night we got her a new dress and she wanted to wear it today.  When she got in the car she  said, "Now, I feel like I really am in a limo with my new dress on". 

We called into the Village and she decided on a Roxy backpack.  Happy with that we went onto the Plaza and she wanted a protective screen put onto her IPod touch.  Then it was time for the movie.......12.20pm. 

We all thoroughly enjoyed the movie, even Tony.  I found it quite emotional, even Katie said she was upset when the boy and his dad were arguing.  I liked it much better than "War Horse". 

After the movie finished we went and had some lunch and a coffee and then went to Office Works to get Katie some stationary for school.  Holidays are finished in two weeks.  She was excited with her new backpack and her pens, pencils. rulers etc.  She said she is all ready for school now and can't wait.  This year she goes intoYear 5.

We called in home, dropped off the shopping and sat around deciding what to do for dinner.  We decided to go down to the beach.  As we were crossing the bridge over the Port River Tony's mobile rang.  It was Jodi asking us where we were and what were we doing.  I told her we were heading to the beach to have some dinner. 

She asked whether they could come too and if we had Katie would it be OK for Taylor to stay the night.  Apparently arrangements had been made for Taylor to go to Jodi's cousin, Rachel's for the night.  Due to whatever, those arrangemnets went out the window and Taylor was upset and so Jodi rang to see if it was alright for her to come over.

We headed on down to Semaphore and waited for them to come.  We didn't have to wait long and they arrived.  There were people everywhere.  Seeing it was a nice evening weather wise plenty of people were out and about.  There was also a Greek festival on the foreshore plus the usual carnival rides.  The girls wanted a ride so they had one on Ali Baba and then we went to find something to eat.  Jodi made Troy go on with them.

We walked up Semaphore Road and came across a pizza restaurant.  Jodi and Troy decided on that, which was alright with us.  Never again.....the worst pizza we have ever eaten.  Lucky I didn't get the name of it otherwise I would out them here.  The base of the pizza was raw, still doughy, and the only taste to it was some herb they used.  YUK! YUK! YUK!

Jodi and Troy had a seafood pizza and Tony said the smell of it turned his stomach.  They weren't impressed either.  Normally Jodi would go and complain about the food but they just left it.  We all vowed never to go back.

We walked back down to the beach and out along the jetty.  There were crabs and some Tommy Ruffs being caught.  It was starting to get really cool and so we headed back to shore.  The girls had another ride and then we decided to go back to the car and head home.  By now it was getting on for 10 o'clock. 

When we got home the girls went straight to bed and were asleep shortly after.  I was sure that Jodi said she would come around about 10am to pick up Taylor.  Anyway she didn't come but Troy rang closer to midday to say they would be over shortly to pick her up.  Taylor spoke to him and as Katie had already told her that we were going to the pool, she wanted to come as well.

Yes, she could go and she was so happy.  We had to call in on the way to get her bathers and then went down to Marion.  They were happy to be in the water together at first but when Katie wanted to go and swim in the deep pool and jump off the diving board, Taylor couldn't understand why she couldn't as well.  Trying to explain to her made no difference.  Tony let her get into the 3metre deep pool and hold onto the sides.  He stayed with her.  She was happy with that but realised it wasn't much fun after a while.  She didn't like it that she couldn't touch the bottom.

Katie then wanted to go on the water slide.  So did Taylor.  I wouldn't let her.  She thought that because she was the right height she should be able to.  But you also had to be at least 10 years of age.......she's 7, can't swim and would have no idea how to get to the surface after coming out of the slide.  She was happy to wait for Katie but soon realised that it wasn't much fun as you couldn't see too much.

Back to the kiddies pool she went and was quite happy "swimming" by herself.  Whether she was in a "mood" because Katie could do things she wasn't able to do, I don't know.  She didn't seem to swim with Katie too much after that.

At one point we saw Taylor go over and talk to the lifeguard.  She told him she couldn't find Katie.  She, Katie, was "hiding" from her.   OMG when the lifeguard called in another lifeguard to report a child "missing" Tony went over to Taylor and told her where Katie was and had to apologise to the lifeguards.  I could just imagine an alert being put out for Katie. 

I was never more happy to see Kahra and Darrin when they came.  I must say it wasn't a great time at the pool.  After saying bye to Katie we headed off to drop Taylor home.  She fell asleep and slept most of the way back to her place. 

It was so good when we got home.......peace!  Katie and Taylor love each other and love seeing each other but a couple of hours is long enough for them to be together.  This morning there was lots of bickering between the two of them.   Even in the car they argued over the songs they wanted to hear or sing to.  Grrr...... what a stressful day! 

Happier times during the day..........