Monday, July 28, 2008
Farewell party arranged, renovations almost finished, house sitter has arrived, am fully packed, all I gotta do is get on the plane.
Well there's a few bits and pieces to do, but nothing that won't be done in time, or isn't actually urgent - like painting walls etc. Hazel has, after a few days of bonding with my house sitter Cate, worked it out. She knows that if she goes off for a walk with Cate then I might not be there when she returns. So she's like a shadow at the moment and very clingy. Who says dogs ain't smart?
One week to go.....
Tuesday, July 22, 2008
Yesterday morning the builder turns up, having lost my phone number and wanting to arrange a start date! Well I thought it was Monday. Anyway, he will be there to start tomorrow. At 9 am I ring the windows people to ask just when on Monday they will be turning up. Shocked silence. Tomorrow, 10 am. Great, now we have a Tuesday start.
Last night, builder rings up. Sorry, still got work on current job, will start first thing Wednesday. No worries, at least the windows will be here by then.
This morning 10 am I get a call from the window people. They can't come till first thing tomorrow!!
Tomorrow, wonder what day tomorrow will be.......
Saturday, July 12, 2008
The Fiji trip has thrown me a bit as far as the exercise regime is concerned, but am back on track after a decent massage and manipulation on Friday. We're now up to daily walks, minimum of 2 hours duration, plus stretches and exercises specifically focussing on strengthening my legs and back for carrying a backpack. Pulling weeds is pretty good exercise too!
In the meantime I am desperately practicing my Indonesian language skills, that five hour drive to and from Perth was perfect for listening to lots of tapes, but after a while the concentration goes and it's time to listen to a bit of music instead. Might pop em on the ipod and take them walking as well, nothing like multi-tasking.
Lastly, it's that time of year again when I fall asleep in front of the telly every night watching the Tour de France - go Cadel!!!
Thursday, July 10, 2008
Wednesday, July 9, 2008
Tuesday, July 8, 2008
Being one of the Aussies, I always approach these trips with some trepidation. There are afterall only 2 types of Americans: really nice ones and absolute pains in the arse. There is never any middle ground, and in the strict confines of a dive boat, even one of the latter can ruin a trip. Trust me, almost every trip has one.
Yes, although there are lots of painful aussies, they rarely cough up the cash for an expensive dive trip so the likelihood of meeting one on a boat is pretty remote. Luckily, most divers are on the democratic side of politics (or smart enough to keep their conservative mouths shut) so there are rarely alternative opinions voiced about the fool currently holed up in the White House.
Having a fellow Aussie on the trip allowed us to undermine the american lingo so that by the end of the trip we had them all speaking in a passable strine accent. "Best trip evah" became the catch phrase after Eleanor returned from one of the early dives ecstatic over the beautiful coral and fish life to exclaim in her best strine: "best dive evah!!" The dive sites only got better and better, so you can imagine the increasing refrain as we returned to the boat after each dive. There were declarations over which schiff driver was the best evah, that the crew food was the best evah, and of course that the kava was the best evah. Occasionally Eleanor had to be slapped for descending into a poor imitation of a yankee accent but she otherwise did a fine job of our plan to take over the USA as the new superpower (under King Kevin ha ha!!).
The diving was an eye opener for me. Having spent the last 3 years diving in Indonesia where the biodiversity is amazing I wasn't expecting too much. I've dived the Pacific (GBR, Vanuatu, Lord Howe Island) before, unlike most of the Americans whose only diving has been Cozumel and/or the Carribean. But the coral reefs were so healthy, so colourful and covered with fishlife, and the sheer enjoyment of every new discovery by my diving buddies made this a really memorable trip.
Then there was the boat and crew. What an amazing family the crew of the Nai'a are, I feel like I made so many new friends and was made to feel so welcome. They sing like angels, they have fierce kava faces, and at the end of a kava party when only the australians and fijians are still going strong, all conversation turns to football - rugby union and league that is!!
So did it all end in tears? Yes, lots of them. Tears of farewell, tears for new friendships, and tears for the wonderful warm hearts of every Fijian I met in those 10 beautiful days in that little piece of paradise in the Pacific. I'll definitely be back!!
You may have to wait awhile for the underwater video though........