On the Beach

Delia and Pat in Australia


Delia and the Indian Ocean on the Bathing Beach

A day in “Freo”

“Freo” being Fremantle, abbreviated in true Aussie fashion of course. A change from the beach or country towns – Fremantle is the main port for WA. Yet it remains a place that tourist flock to – in no-covid times at least, our visit was pretty quiet. As a dock, shipping-stuff dominates, container cranes and ships, cable laying behemoths and maritime industrial views. There’s a jail to visit as well as museums of shipwrecks and a maritime museum that is designed to look like a yacht on it side (my first thought was that this would be the shipwreck museum but no). Art galleries of course, fish themed restaurants and wherever there is sunshine, there is ice cream. The port’s “control tower” with the Maritime Museum to its right. Us Flash apartments a crane and containers Delia on the defense The Art Gallery Basilica Apartment conversions “Colonial” style   A tiring day and home by train to catch the early crowds for a football match in Perth Stadium. Covid safe just means that the stadium can only be half filled and the players exist in a kind of bubble where they are isolated form the rest of the world and so can tour most of Australia’s stadia with relative safety. I might have given the impression that all Delia and I have done is swan aroung touring. Though we did visit the Swan Vally when we went to Guildford, for the most part we do our touring at the weekend. Delia

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Inland Western Australia

Another late blog, this seems to be my style at the moment – sorry.  You would think that because I’m not working that I would have time, but alas no.  In my defence, I did spend the weekend in pain and on pain killers as I have had to have a tooth removed!  But since our last blog we have done a few things.  We went for another Friday evening walk, which was great, really enjoying doing these walks.  I also went to the hairdressers for a cut and colour – woo hoo – loving the colour and the fact that my hair is actually growing. Pat and I also went and had a day out.  We drove to the inland town of York – the oldest inland town in Western Australia.  It was lovely to spend a few hours just meandering through a small town with a few art galleries and antique/bric-a-brac type places.  Our day did start with a stop in Mundaring to have coffee and a look at the Mundaring Arts Centre – which had an exhibition around the theme of wool – interesting.  We then continued our drive out to York, the first place we came to was the old Mill – which had a bric-a-brac type place and a café out the back so we chose that for lunch and it was warm enough to sit outside.  Unfortunately, all the spots in the sun were taken, but we had a nice place to eat and

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Perth and Burns Beach sunset

As Delia mentioned in the last blog, we went into Perth for an interview and other stuff. Whilst she was busy I wandered around and took some photos. Mostly around the station and the Commonwealth Bank square. We did also see our old quarantine haunt “The Westin” as well as the illuminated advert we kept seeing from our elevated vantage point. It is interesting to see it for real – brightly coloured and ever changing.  Oh there were also shoes. Meetups have started up again here, venturing away from the less sociable zoom online gatherings. We joined a walking group at Burns Beach – a group accepting of dogs. The walk started just after 5pm and essentially we walked in one direction for 30 mins and then back. This was about 5kms and a pleasantly sociable experience. Some 14 of us mixed gender and background. Some regulars and we look forward to next Fridays walk (this time instead of South then North – it will be North then South). Below I have a few phone snaps of the beautiful sunset our walking group enjoyed.

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Sun, rain and wind

Despite the weather, there has been enough sun over the past week to get us down to the dog beach for a couple of walks.  Some only just missing the rain, others in glorious sunshine.  It has been an interesting week, we’ve had things to do.  I had an interview in town on Thursday, which being my first interview for over 6 years I think went well.  Not sure if I will progress to the next stage but that is fine.  However looking for a job in the middle of a pandemic (even when Western Australia isn’t hard hit) is not the best thing.  Pat and I did use the opportunity to have a look around Perth a bit more (see Pat’s blog next week).  I had a gallery I wanted to check out, but unfortunately, they were in the middle of changing their exhibits so they weren’t open.  We did come across this wonderful green wall in town with a pigeon in the water pretending to be a duck! This past weekend we had lunch out with my dad and his girlfriend, it was our first meeting with V and it went well.  We had a lovely meal overlooking the sea, dad and I had gnocchi and Pat and V had fish and chips!  Undoubtedly though you were paying for the view.   Pat and I had a little stroll along the beach front after lunch watching the sun over the water.   Sunday morning we went down the dog

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Guildford (or Gillford as they say in Aus)

It was time to try out the new car and be tourists We had visited Guildford before with Auntie Barb to collect a birdbath and I reckon we visited on one of our past trips to Aus. But this week we decided to make a proper job of it, take the camera and sight see. We parked near the old courthouse which was now the tourist agency, got some info on where to walk and off we went. Past Taylors Cottage towards the old Post Office with its distinctive clock tower. Click on the image of the information board to read it. We then headed across the busy railway line – every half hour it seemed. Note the somewhat disturbing warning to not get killed by trains when having your wedding photos taken! As an aside we saw a surprising number of planes flying over – Guildford is not far from Perth Airport – probably internal flights taking tourists north to the beaches (all in WA). I thought the streets were wide (though not as wide as Kalgoorlie apparently to allow camel trains to turn, so Delia says).  There is quite a range of building styles but I am going to have to get used to a more compressed, granular history where decades are notable as opposed to the centuries Brits might be used to. Oh and the postie drive a peculiar bright yellow electric thingy. We wandered amongst bric a brac stores – all of the proprietors enjoying the

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We’ve got a new old car

We’ve bought a new second hand car – yah. Starting to feel like we are settling in to our new life and we now have a little car to run around in. It’s a Honda Jazz, bright red and 10 years old, however it has low mileage for its age. We’re very happy with it and planning on keeping it as clean as possible. We’ve already got a cover for the back seat so that Siena’s dog hair doesn’t get everywhere (that and the beach sand). Job hunting in this Covid19 world is difficult, I’m still looking, which is a surprise to me as I thought I would get a job much quicker than this. Due to the time factor it has made me realise that I needed to sign on for unemployment benefits, which I have now done. Hopefully our first payment will be this week. One thing I have been doing is a sewing course, this is on Monday nights and this week is week 4 (it’s a 6 week course). Absolutely loving it, and my sewing knowledge is getting much better. So far I’ve made a sunglasses pouch, a cushion cover (with a zip) and a reversable tote bag, tonight we start on a jacket – which is what our last three classes will cover. Looking forward to it as we will be covering patterns and how to read them and making a jacket. I’ve also been trying to do some art, I dug out a painting

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Morning Walks

I am pleasantly surprised how green and bushy the surroundings here are. I especially enjoy my morning dog walks of which I seem to have come down to three choices, depending upon whether I need to be back home especially quickly or not. Delia’s mum lives across from a school with a large playing field (where if school is not on, I can run Siena if I want). The block that the school occupies is shared with a bush reserve area, part of which is easily accessible with footpaths. The whole reserve is called Cadogan park.  I have various 25 minute routes taking in most of the possible routes around the park and then walking around the block passing two side ot the quad where I sometimes let Siena run. The bush reserve is delightful, nothing park-like about it though, seemingly “raw” bush burnt tree trunks and all. The next, and longer, walk, I discovered was down to Lake Goolelal. There is a line of lakes (fwiw along a geological boundary parallel to the Darling Range) of which this is one. There is a well paved cycle and walking track that runs from Greenwood Station – I think I described the walk from the station previously(?). It is a leafy walk that I access via an “alley” between houses from Delia’s mum’s place up a steep slope to the top of a ridge. This east-west trail leads (east) to the lake up and down to another preserved bush are but

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Wow things are happening

Hello all, so what has been happening with Pat and I this week? Well I finally got my drivers licence and medicare card – so that was good, the admin is progressing. I’m still applying for jobs, not had much success so far. But we are keeping ourselves busy. We’ve been down to the dog beach a number of times, one day after a storm and there were so many blue bottles (a type of jellyfish) along the shore. Most had dried out, but Siena decided that eating them was a good idea! Thankfully she learnt that it isn’t a good idea as she threw everything up very quickly. But we are now careful with her on the beach. We also went out to Guildford this week to help my aunt with the pick-up of her new birdbath – which is lovely. We also did a few other running around type things, I even picked up my new sunglasses – which I love. That night we also went to dinner with one of my cousins – who had made a rather nice beef ragu – I liked it so much, I asked for the recipe and I’m cooking it for dinner tonight. On Monday I started my beginners sewing course, which was informative and fun. I did have to go and buy some material for this weeks class – and I found a lovely red and white striped fabric with French things all over it. I’ll be learning to sew

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House hunting in the bush

We drove up to near Yanchep to visit one of Delia’s cousins. We went a rather roundabout route to visit several of the many new housing developments along the coast. To be honest this made me a bit depressed, so many lovely houses so much money. By the time we could afford anything we were so far north as to almost be in Singapore. OK I exagerate but too far to consider the commute for Delia. Still some lovely coastline. When we got to Christine’s it was lunchtime and suitably plied with wine and having had the grand tour we could tuck in to a grand spread of cold cuts and a lovely pumpkin soup. Their several acres (2?) of land had been sorely tested during the bush fires of late 2019. The blaze narrowly missed their home, by the grace of wind direction. They did have a decent firebreak from their house but if the fire had approached closer it wouldn’t have been pretty. No power for a while of course. One reason we had gone was the offer to borrow a ute (a pickup truck with 5 seats for you non-Aussies). Sounds like a tractor but drives fine and it’s very handy not to be reliant on Delia’s mum and her car – I think she feels the same. So back to Kingsley in convoy. I have to admit to having fun driving the tractor, high up and feeling invulnerable – “make the most of it I think

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First two weeks

Hello and welcome from Perth, this is my first blog about Perth since we’ve been back. It is interesting, after coming from France where we were under such a strict lockdown, to here where we are able to have meals out. On Friday after visiting my (new) Oncologist to have my 6 month follow up Pat and I walked around Elizabeth Quays and sat down to have lunch with a glass of wine overlooking the quays – it was lovely. Now that we are out of quarantine, we have spent the past two weeks doing things to get ourselves established, things like getting our bank accounts sorted, driving licences exchanged, Tax file numbers sorted, medical things sorted, there is so much to do when you move countries. I’ve also had to get myself back on the electoral roll. I’ve also had an interview with an agency about finding work, so hopefully it won’t take long to get a job. We have also hung some paintings in our bedroom to help make it feel a bit more us – I doubt this will be surprising. I’ve also slowly been catching up with various family members, this has been nice and most people have been very generous with helping us with various things (like lending us cars – especially so that Pat and I could get his new 2nd hand desk to mums). We’re continuing to sort out the admin and catch-up with people this week. Hopefully the main bulk of the

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