Leaving Australia…

img_6660

It’s going to be a wrench, leaving Australia.

We’ve been here nearly a month and that’s the longest time we have ever been away from the UK. It has been a wonderful time. The star of the show has been the little lady in the buggy, above, and in the photo, below – our Granddaughter, Alice.

We’ve had time to really get to know her and we’ve become friends, not just relatives. It will be a while before we see her, again, but we have the miracle of Facetime and Skype to renew the friendship across the miles.

We’ve one final trip to do. To celebrate a family birthday, we’re off to the Barossa wine region, a short drive from Adelaide. We have a final overnighter in a B&B, then it’s a short, return to the family home, then a taxi to the airport, to hang in the sky for an unreasonable length of time, while we, literally, travel to the other side of the world…

alice-packing-for-barossa

Alice has done the packing of her most important things, as you can see from the photo above – the blankie and the left shoe…

It’s been a wonderful trip. We’ve had time to get to know Adelaide and its nearby seaside resort of Glenalg, with its fine esplanade.

glenalg-central-pier-back-to-town

We’ve developed a great fondness for Stirling – the lovely small town just down the hill, in which we’ve had endless goes on the kiddie swings and done most of the family shopping, giving our two hard-working doctors a rest – and a hot meal when they come in from their long shifts in the A&E Department of the city’s hospital.

stirling-centre

We managed to fit in a just-us anniversary weekend in Melbourne, a fascinating and eclectic city an hour away by plane.

melbourne-tower-bw

We’ve spent a lot of time in airports and planes. By the time we get home we will have been on fifteen different flights. But that is the nature of travel in such a large country. To be honest, flying in Australia is so easy that you can’t really believe how big the land is…

My personal highlight was Urulu – the Aboriginal name for Ayers Rock, right in the middle of the red desert at the heart of the Australian continent. I’ve covered our experiences there in other posts. I won’t forget this harsh but magical place – nor its deep connections with the guardians of the land…

urulu-from-start-of-walk

urulu-eyes-of-cave

Another set of planes saw us arrive in Brisbane, a very vibrant and cosmopolitan city, where the Brisbane River dominates the landscape and offers transportation for both work and leisure.

brisbane-city-and-leisure

Our farthest point was Fraser Island, just North of Brisbane and a forty-minute ferry ride from Hervy Bay, the nearest point on the mainland. We’ll never forget the uniqueness of this beautiful sub-tropical paradise – nor its challenging ‘roads’!

And then it was back to Adelaide to recover… to spend some time, at Bernie’s request, in the famous Botanical Gardens.

It’s a superb Botanical collection, spread over three locations, though, due to the high fire risk at this time of year, two were closed and we only got to see the main one, in Adelaide’s centre.

We’ve faced some challenges; not least of which has been life at forty-one degrees as the car instrumentation shows!

forty-one-degrees-said-the-car

The ‘Birthday Barossa’ beckons. Then, all too soon, we’ll be at the airport, checking in and beginning the long journey home, to be reconciled with Misti and Tess, our cat and dog, and a freezing Cumbrian winter.

adelaide-airport-control-tower

Thank you, Australia… we’ll be back.

Advertisements

22 Comments Add yours

  1. Ritu says:

    Aw! Well we will welcome you back with open arms! My parents spend a few weeks at a time on Finland to bond with my nephew. That time together had formed a bond which they too keep strong with Skype!!! It’ll be a little tough initially but you’ll be in tough with your grandad daughter lots!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Barbara Walsh says:

    blockquote, div.yahoo_quoted { margin-left: 0 !important; border-left:1px #715FFA solid !important; padding-left:1ex !important; background-color:white !important; } Safe journey home .Happy birthday to Matt , hugs to all Enjoy the vino xxx

    Sent from Yahoo Mail for iPhone

    Liked by 1 person

    1. stevetanham says:

      Thank you 😊 we all send love ❤️

      Like

  3. Michael says:

    Glad you have had such a wonderful time Steve. Australia is a magical country I’m sure you’ll be back again one day. Good onya mate!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. stevetanham says:

      Thank you, Michael! We will.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. It looked like a wonderful trip! Pleased you had such a good time and safe travel home 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. stevetanham says:

      Thank you, Samantha.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. jenanita01 says:

    Sometimes I am glad we have all this technology, and these posts of yours reinforces that. Keeping those newly created bonds alive will be so important for all of you. I have enjoyed the trip, and it was a pleasure to meet Australia and your family…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. stevetanham says:

      Thank you for being there with us.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. willowdot21 says:

    We will be delighted to have you home and grateful that you took us all with you. !
    Obviously you will miss your DRS and little Alice but I can vouch for the wonders of Skype , WhatsApp, Hangouts and Messenger all excellent and all great substitutes for the real thing. Welcome home. xxxx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. stevetanham says:

      Thank you, Willowdot. We have just got back to Manchester airport after 24 hours in the sky. Currently buying food essentials before collecting the dog and cat and crashing!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. willowdot21 says:

        Take some time to regroup!!

        Like

  7. Piglove says:

    Sounds like a fabulous trip ! XOXO – Bacon

    Liked by 1 person

    1. stevetanham says:

      It was, but knackering! Just back after 24 hours in the sky.

      Like

      1. Piglove says:

        OMP! I can only imagine that trip. It’s wonderful after you get there but that flying has got to be such a pain. XOXO – Bacon

        Liked by 1 person

  8. Mary Smith says:

    You packed a lot into what’s been an amazing trip. Hope you don’t get too badly hit by jet lag. And turn the heating up!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. stevetanham says:

      Heating definitely up. Now going into exhausted sleep mode at home. Thank you for all the comments, Mary.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Our Adventures and Explorations says:

    We have been in Adelaide for 5 months now and we are loving every minute of it. The Barossa and Glenelg are our favourites although we still have a lot of exploring to do. Our situation was similar to yours, saying bye for now to our grandparents last month. They have gone back to the UK, North Wales….Thank goodness for FaceTime! Sounds like you had a fantastic time here.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. stevetanham says:

      We did. And it was great to get to know our granddaughter. We hope to return, soon. Thank you for commenting.

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s