23 Aug 2013

Night in…

The pitfalls of spending a Friday night in with the boys, and playing with a 'Face Juggling' app....

Gold Coast / Sunshine coast

I also spent a week on my own on the Sunshine Coast (north of Brisbane) and the Gold Coast (south of Brisbane) doing a bit of property research for Paul who is too busy at work at the moment. And at the weekend, he got down for a few days and we spent them at Amanda’s parent’s 14th floor unit at Burleigh Heads, south of the Gold Coast. A beaut way to end my stay on Australia’s east coast – somewhere I’ve not spent a lot of time. So many people / so much traffic compared to Western Australia and my little part of France!

22 Aug 2013

Sugar Mill

It’s been a hectic couple of week and I’m currently in Perth, heading back to France next week. One of the things that Paul and I did together (he was working during the week) was visit the Farleigh Sugar Mill.

Thank goodness it wasn’t a particularly hot day as all the old machinery is under a tin building, but it was pretty hot anyway. Some of the machinery = circa 1883. As the guide said, “if it ain’t broke.....”.

It’s so far from cutting-edge, but the sugar/syrup is only extracted here, and then sent to high tech refineries to turn it into the finished products. Interesting to learn that all the snakes and cane rats go through the crushing process but we’re assured that ALL the impurities are filtered out and ‘you wouldn’t know they’d been there....’

This is the residue from the crushing - mud, dirt, squished animals ......

Some of the parrots that wait for sugar spillages from the trucks heading to the refinery.
This is the residue from the crushing - mud, dirt, squished animals ......

9 Aug 2013

Sarina Show

I took myself off to the Sarina Show the other day – the first agricultural show I’ve been to for years Sarina is about 30 km south of here - a small town of about 3000. The show is quite an event for the area. I got there early to beat the heat and the crowds and it was .... interesting. Except for all the cowboy hats, it could have been the show in Albany from years ago.

The local volunteer fire fighting brigade
Vegetable competition 
The baking section - all under plastic to keep the flies off!

4 Aug 2013

Mackay, Australia

A post from the other side of the world – I’m back in Australia visiting Paul in Mackay for a week or so, and then a couple of weeks in Perth.

It’s been rather nice to get away from France’s heatwave too. Winter temperature here at the moment is low 20s. Parfait. Yesterday weather conditions were good – so we headed out in the boat to a spot where there was ‘definitely good fishing’. More than 160 kms in a very long day - the ‘spot’ was 80 odd kms off the coast.

And we did catch some fish – but most were on the small size, one or two would have been ok but they all went back in to live another day.

HOWEVER, there is a tale to tell. The absolute highlight of the day – and a little unexpected (although it is migration time) - was all the whales we saw! Unbelievable. We came across four lots – one group of 4 or 5, one group of 6 or 7 and two on their own. And they came so close it was a little unnerving .... You’d hear them spouting, turn around and they were on the other side or behind you.

And I actually saw once breach entirely out of the water, completely vertical, and then fall over sideways. Paul only saw the almighty splash after I’d yelled out. That happened all so suddenly, not a chance to get a snap of that one. What a special day.....

Moving sideways

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