last Australian day

There are a few more vacations days with pictures that I want to remember that I have not posted. I’m going to retro-post the entries. This post is written on 14 August.  I do miss the loveliness of an Australian winter day.

086DC97A-78F3-4719-8223-0965A701034EThis was our last full day in Australia and we packed in as much as humanly possible into our hours.  We started our morning at Taronga Zoo.  It was so easy to hop onto the bus a few steps from our cousin’s house, we could have been home. One of the sweetest things about re-visiting a travel city is that each time we returned to Sydney–we had three stays of varying lengths–we grew more comfortable.  Certainly, there was still lots of the city and surrounds that we did not experience, but because of our cousins’ and friend’s personal tours and our own wandering, by the end of our travels, we moved around the city easily. Continue reading

sydney fish market

0F168454-ADA7-47FC-8B57-83EBB5DD85C8(Written 26 August 2018). 

On Monday, we visited the Sydney Fish Market and just typing those words, my mouth begins to water.  It isn’t that I haven’t been to wonderful fresh fish markets on the east and west coasts of the US but midwesterner that I am, my trips are few are far between.  Reminding me somewhat of Seattle’s Pike Place Market but the Sydney Market was all about the fish.  Busloads of Asian tourists pulled up and emptied out ready for lunch.  So were we!  We ate outside on a deck overlooking the water.  Sea gulls competed for our sushi which drove Julia a bit nuts.  After our sushi, Steph suggested we get some very big shrimp, cooked and ready to peel.  I didn’t think we could eat any more but more than a dozen of the shrimp disappeared very quickly.  Continue reading

friday the 13th


Steph, cousin and hostess extraordinaire, has been showing us bits and pieces of this glorious city that we might not have spent time in on our own. As much as I love exploring places on my own, it is always possible to miss the gem in front of my face because as a first time visitor, I lack context. Steph and Scott, the cousins we are meeting through them, and my friend Marianne, have provided so much rich context for which I am so thankful. Yesterday, Scott and I talked a bit about how we connected- his meeting David’s folks when he was a high school exchange student, David getting in touch with him as his interest in family grew just before his death, Cheshire meeting Scott when he was traveling in NYC, our meeting at Rita’s wedding, and the larger faceboook family group.  Serendipity played no small part, small pieces of a moving puzzle that needed some magic to connect. And then, here we are!

Continue reading

beach day


Time is crazy.  I’ve been chatting with Cheshire and some friends back home.  I think it is last night.  I look at the dates on this blog and they are not necessarily reflective of when I posted.  Not exactly.  I acknowledge how tied I am to clock and calendar.  How would I do in a Star Trek universe? Jumping galaxies, condensing and expanding time. I’m overthinking.  I am inclined to hold the time differences in my head—it doesn’t work.  I write, I post, I text.  I just hope I haven’t woken anyone up. Continue reading

Travel challenges

2FEE176F-2829-4F02-91AE-FC2715000860On the train from Umina Beach to Sidney Central and then Randwick, traveling from a quite northern suburb of Sydney to the center.  There is a lot of water to see, quiet water and surf beaches.  I am enjoying the water. Marianne took us up Mount Ettalong to view the beaches that flank it—Pearl Beach and Umina Beach.  Later, we walked one of the beaches. So much of what we will see in the next weeks hugs the coast!  I need time to just sit and stare at waves. Continue reading

Sydney: ferry and art

7FCDCE73-EFB4-49A9-A290-1156B9930136Back to Sydney!  Staying with my friend, Marianne, in Umina Beach which is north of Sydney.  We took advantage of a Sunday special, Family Fun Day, on the trains and ferries. $2.70 for the entire day. We took a regular ferry under the landmark bridge and past the Opera House, the Maritine Museum and Luna Park.  Later, we walked into the old Customs House.  I was particularly struck by the carved face of Queen Victoria.  Younger than most that I have seen. I can’t imagine what it is/was like to be a person whose image is such common currency. Continue reading

Sydney 1


Wonder Woman finds a friend.

Sydney.  Randwick is the suburb where our cousin, Steph, lives and is our first home base here.  I was admittedly pretty grumpy in awakening. Jet lag is the probable culprit. I woke up too early sure that I had under packed abommitably.  When Steph picked us up the previous morning, the outside was freezing and this second morning was cold enough for Julia to put on all her warm clothes at same time.   Just as I had read and been advised, the daywarmed up, we stripped off layers and I dug out sunglasses.  After breakfast, I wanted to walk and Steph took us to Coogee Beach. We have many Australian beaches in out travel plans but the first sight of the Pacific was magnificent!  Sun, blue skies and waters, white caps, jagged mock outcropinngs, white sand and many people reveling in the lovely day.  Julia couldn’t wait to be on the beach today although we resisted taking shoes off and letting the waves run over our toes.  We were still cold and the wind whipped our hair.  There were a number of swimmers, all without wetsuits which encouraged the belief that we too would be in the water soon. Continue reading