Since I am now living on the other side of the world to my family and most of my friends this blog is about things I enjoy, things I notice, people I meet, people I miss, history, planning for the future, love and life in general! I guess it's about whatever pops into my head which I want to share with my friends and family... and who knows? I might make some more friends along the way!

29 September, 2008


Because I think about the differences between living in England and living in Australia on an almost daily basis I thought I'd do a random blog about the things that cross my mind from time to time...

Light - The light in England is much... 'softer' than the light in Australia. Even on the days that were (apparently) the hottest of the summer, I didn't get a sense of it being as bright as it would be at home, even on some of the not-hottest days of summer... At this time of the year, when the sun is setting and it's dark by 7pm (& no, we haven't finished daylight savings yet!) the sun sits lower in the sky. I have a sense that it's permanently late afternoon!
Roads - I have yet to come across a 'grid' formation in any town or city, let alone a village. Whereas in Australia much of our boom happened in the last 150 years, meaning that more planning of expansion of road trasport occoured - even in the days when that still meant horse-drawn vehicles and cattle drays - in England many of the roadways were originally footpaths and legal 'rights of way' from one village to another, possibly following a, now redundant, stream, or going the most level way. There are few roads which give you more than a few hundred metres of visibility once you are off the main motorways... come to think of it the main motorways often only give you a few hundred metres of visibility! The narrow, twisting roads from village to village are tretcherous, and I actually prefer driving on them at night when headlights give you an early warning if there's a vehicle coming (at up to 60mph/100kph) around the next sharp bend! The age of things! - In Australia we get excited about something that is more than 100 years old! I mean - that's almost half the age of our 'modern history'! Anything that goes back to convict days, or to the gold rush of the 1850s is remarkable! Here, it's pretty ordinary to see houses which have dates on them from the 17th & 18th century which are still lived in. The fact that parts of the farm house I live in are 200 years old is barely worthy of comment... In addition to the amazing age of current dwellings, there are churches which have Norman towers (like the one in Hadlow) and castles dating from around 1070 in their origins (as in nearby Tonbridge) and Roman ruins dotted here and there, not to mention truly ancient monuments such as Stonehenge or the chalk giant on the hillside at Cerne Abbas There is, standing about a 5 mintue drive from where I live, a place called Soar Old Manor which was built in around 1270 and is in remarkable condition today! and my own flickr set of photos: Traffic lights - There are many, many more roundabouts in England - and you will rarely see traffic lights at the end of an off ramp from a motorway, as you do in Melbourne. Granted there are many more traffic lights in London than in the country, but even larger towns like Royal Tunbridge Wells has more roundabouts and pedestrians crossings than traffic light controlled intersections. Somehow it works better too, although I don't think it would in Melbourne. To be honest drivers here are more patient and polite and will give way to folk waiting to turn, or show basic courtesy when there is a traffic jam. The state of some of the roads would cause accidents and public outcry in Australia, but people here accept that it's part of life, give way to someone else, and wait their turn.

So, there's a few of my little musings... I am sure there will be more, but I wanted to put these down while I thought of them...

Labels: , , , , , , , , , , ,

London Open House - part 3, The FCO

Having had an amazing experience with the modern architecture of City Hall, I knew exactly where I wanted to go next, and I decided to walk half way then catch the tube the rest of the way! I was glad I did the walking part coz I had known there was a big cycling event on in London today, and had seen clusters of folk on bikes, many of them in sponsorship safety vests, but had not seen any of the closed roads I had heard about... On my way to the tube I crossed an overpass and saw hundreds of folk on bikes taking over the streets of London! It was wonderful to see!

The event is called The London Freewheel, and this year it was sponsored by Sky Sports Chanel! I took some photos... naturally! It gave me a good feeling to see London's streets given over to bikes instead of cars, taxi's, motorcycles and buses!
More information on the London Freewheel event here:

Then on to the Foreign & Commonwealth Office! I had been told by several people that I would love it, and they were completely correct! When I got there I mentioned that so many folk had recommended I visit, and one of the security guards who works there told me he still gets goosebumps when he looks at it all! He, along with several others, also told me that it just keeps getting better and better as you go along!

Again - they were completely correct!

You enter the office through a covered drive in area, then into a huge court yard and to your left, where you enter the building up a marble staircase, with two huge carved firepaces on either side, and the statue of a Gurkha soldier in front of you.

Then through a humble looking doorway, on the other side of which is the Gurkha staircase, beautifully carved and the original site of the statue we already passed in the entrance hall. To one side of this lovely staircase was an alcove which contained three small recycling bins, I was tickled to think that this must be the most attractive recycling station in England!
We did not ascend the stairs, however, and continued along the same coridoor. All was very pretty and clearly the workmanship was top quality and had been carefully restored, but nothing truly remarkable, expecially to a girl from Marvelous Melbourne! For those of you who don't know it, Melbourne was, for a brief period in the 1860-70s, the wealthiest city in the world, on the floor of money coming in from the Victorian goldfields. The resulting wealth was displayed by banks who wanted to appear more grand and sturdy, or safe, to their prospective customers so some magnificent Neo-Gothic buildings were constructed. Many of them, along Collins Street and Spring Street still stand today, and Melbournians are proud of their rich, Victorian heritage. So, visiting a building of Neo-Gothic architecture, which was entered from the more humble areas, was wonderful and interesting, but not worthy of goosebumps... yet!

Along this corridoor we went towards the heart of the India Office, who's entrance we had just come through. Along the way the light changed from electric to natural, and there, on my right, was a magnificent courtyard! It was glassed over, making it an all weather space, and there were various displays in it, and despite the organised information it still felt extremely spacious.
The India office has some really lavish details to it, mostly because, at the time it was being built, India was bringing a huge amount of wealth into Britain and the architect of the interiors, Matthew Digby Wyatt, had pretty much a 'bottomless purse' to budget with. The next room I entered was The India Office Council Chamber, and I thought this was lush and beautiful. I was completely taken with the dark, mahogony surfaces, the rich, deep pinks of the curtains and carpets, and the huge marble mantel piece and carving above it. The whole room had been enjanced with much gilding of cornices, wall surfaces, cabinets and even minor details. It had a lot of natural light from the nearby Dunbar court yard, but was also lit by beautiful lamps hung from the ceiling.
As I dragged myself away from this lovely, warm and inviting, yet still business-like room, I mentioned to the guard that I knew what everyone was talking about when they recommended I visit today. He told me, "you ain't seen nothing yet!"

So, down some corridoors and through to another stairway, which we didn't ascend either, but which was accessible to a point so that the public could gaze upon the magnificent light well which was supported by several 'goddesses'. It was called The Muse Staircase, and the natural lighting pouring in was enhanced by the white figures apparently holding the glass in place.
Enthralled I carried on, and when I entered a corridoor which had vaulted ceilings and a deep, rick blue background to gold stars and supporting arches I stopped to take a photograph. The guard seemed amused, and I smiled at him, but a moment later I realised that in my enthusiasm for the narrow corridoor ceiling I had walked past double doors to yet another magnificent saloon. This was more breathtaking than any I had yet been in to! No wonder the guard smiled at my excitement for a mere vaulted ceiling!

The Conference Room of the Locarno Suite was where I had arrived, and I spent several minutes sitting and taking in the lavish interiors of this gorgdous space. The walls were hand painted and gilded with rich colours and patterns, the carpet and furnishings offset the rest of the room beautifully, and, again, there was lots of natural light to enhance the gorgeous, classicly shaped lamps which hung from the ceiling and were mounted on the walls. The most breathtaking aspect of this room for me was the ceiling, which was detailed with shape and gilding and paint and enhanced with lighting! I thought this must be the last room as it was so beautiful and I had been told that it kept getting better, but I was very wrong. The next room, which actually was rather small by comparisson and was a connecting room to two larger ones, was the official dining room of the Locarno Suite. This entire area, I later found out, had all been given false ceilings, the decoration covered up and partitioned off into tiny, artificially lit office spaces. It was now as opulent and rich as it had first been envisaged to be by the original architect, George Gilbert Scott. The colours were very different to the two adjoining rooms, and the room had a very different ambinace to the other two in the suite of three.
From here I entered a real masterpiece! The main, Reception Room of the suite had high, vaulted ceilings which were painted with various constellations and symbols of the zodiac. Their design had been lost long ago, and the renovators of the post-WWI 1920s had used pumice stone to remove most of the decoration in here. To the astonishment, and delight of the restoration team they had failed to complete the tast properly, and there was one section, which together with written descriptions meant they were able to restore this amazing room to it's original design as well. The light poured in through arched windows on both sides of the length of the room, and the effect was almost breathtaking.
This is the room where the the Locarno Treaties, designed to reduce strife and tension in Europe, were signed by all the involved parties, after being initialled at Locarno in Switzerland in October 1925. The only room considered large enough at the time it was rather shaby even then and lots of huge paintings and portraits were hung to cover the decaying decoration on the walls. Of course, this historical moment is where the suite of rooms gets it's current name. So I sighed a contented sigh and left what was surely the last of the magnificent rooms of the tour... but whilst correct in it being the last room, I was not prepared for the hallway and grand staircase beyond it! The magnificent Grand Staircase contains marble columns, a duplicated split staircase, rich, deep red carpets and magnificent murals all depicting different aspects of England as Brittania! The light in here is again a combination of natural and arificial. I really didn't want to leave after all of this, but I lingered around the sides of the upper level which the public had access to, stopping briefly to admire the informal sitting room of the Foreign Secretary, and then on down the staircase, feeling very underdressed in jeans and a t-shirt, and so out to the huge courtyard through which I had entered over an hour ago! This had been a visit well-worth making, and if any of you are ever in London and have the opportunity to see the FCO I highly recommend it!

... and of course there is a set in my flickr account here:

So on towards home, and most importantly after this weekend, on towards my bed!

Labels: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

28 September, 2008

London Open House – Part 2 City Hall

The next day, Sunday, I went into the city again, and this time I got to play ‘tourist’, although beening a volunteer gave me priority access to any place I visited, that is, I got to jump the queue… I hadn’t intended to, but when I got to the City Hall there was a queue for security screening, and I really needed to use the bathroom… well it worked out in the end, coz I was a volunteer!

The City Hall did not disappoint! I went straight up to the 9th floor where I was able to walk around the balcony which has an almost 360 degree view of the River Thames, the Tower of London, the Tower Bridge and the city skyline, as well as the surrounding residential developments and landscape. I was also impressed with the solar panels which covered the roof of the landmark building.
Of course I went a bit snap happy, whilst up there, but I was really anticipating the amazing, spiral staircase which leads from the 9th floor down to the 2nd floor and directly into the Council Chamber itself!

Unfortunately they were filming a segment for a political TV show in there when I got to this point, but I was informed that they would be finished in a few minutes, so I went down to the lower ground floor and enjoyed the exhibition of Olympics inspired art, as well as getting to see the Olympic Flag, which London took possession of just a few weeks ago in Beijing! I took photos… of course… On my way down, and when I was in the exhibition, I met a wonderful lady. Actually I was looking at some artwork on the way down to the lower level, and paused to take some photographs. This lady was chatting with some other people and I thought she had a lovely vibe to her. A moment later she was chatting with me and I realised she was the artist whose work I was photographing, and she said she was happy for me to do so! I was taken with her sculpture of two synchronised divers and we chatted for a while, she was such a lovely person, very warm and her work had really caught my attention, with its Art Nuevo and Art Deco influences in the lines and shapes, and the colours she had selected where colour was used. Her name was Ginger Gilmour, and although a native of the USA, she now lives and works in the UK. We really clicked in a short time, and I came away with a lot of pictures of her lovely work, as well as a catalogue of her beautiful creations, which we both know I can’t afford, but she wanted me to have the pictures in it anyway. Her website is here:

After admiring the work in the lower ground floor gallery, I went back up to the 9th floor for the sole purpose of walking down again! It was well worth the wait, and the trip into London on this particular weekend!
The whole building seems to reject any preconcieved notion of what a building should look like, and is non-symmetric, but flowing, and despite some really odd angles to it, it feels balanced and secure! The views from outside were wonderful – the view from inside was fantastical! From above it looked like a glass whirlpool, or water funnel! It seemed like I was walking down a staircase which was impossible! It didn’t flow in concentric circles, nor did it really go in circles at all, but rather in ovals and swirls… it reminded me of an apple peeling a little… I took so many photos, and I really love them! There is, of course, a sizeable set in my flickr account here: and some of my favourites are here besides! The fact that I have never really given modern architecture much consideration, but now feel I am rather passionate about this building, as well as London’s famous ‘gherkin’ (30 St Mary’s Axe) says a lot about the impact of this remarkable vision made a reality!
As you can see from these few photographs the curves and glass and light gave me so much inspiration to photograph people, and objects and space in very different ways... It was a photographers dream!

I know I mentioned the solar panelling on the roof, but the use of natural light also adds to the ecological aspect of the offices, and the wide, sloping ramps in the public areas make it extremely user friendly for those in wheelchairs, or with prams.

Labels: , , , , , , , , , , ,

London Open House - Part 1 Admiralty House

Last Saturday was the first of two days of the annual London Open House weekend. This is a non-profit organised event when people can visit buildings not normally open to them, with a view to learning about the architecture, and appreciating the history.

I first heard about the Open House weekend when I was exploring the city in July, and I wandered into the City Hall, on the south bank of the Thames, opposite the Tower of London. I remember being completely mesmerised with the modern architecture, which seemed to have completely shunned symmetry, straight lines and right angles. I spent over an hour in the limited public area, photographing it, taking in the exhibition on the lower ground floor, looking at the view from the public gallery on the 2nd floor and generally falling in love with London's modern architecture. At the time I was talking with a security guard about public access and he mentioned that if I came back on the weekend of 20th/21st September, the whole building, apart from offices, would be open to the public as part of 'Open House'. Intrigued I made a mental note to check this out on the net next time I was online.

Well, I went one further than that! When I checked out the website, they were looking for volunteers to act as guides and stewards at the many buildings which were open on that weekend, so I put my name down to do just that!

Saturday 20th was my stint as a steward at the former Admiralty Buildings and Admiralty House. This is a place steeped in tradition, and many significant moments in British history have occurred here. When I arrived I was given a quick tour by Charlotte Henshaw, the wonderful curator of the MOD (Ministry of Defence) who is based at 26 Whitehall (former Admiralty House) and had organised today's self-guided tours and the volunteers arrangements.

One of the highlights for me was being allowed into a couple of rooms that the public weren't allowed into! This included a small sitting room where we took our breaks and enjoyed coffee and biscuits, just as beautifully furnished as the rest of them!

I had a wonderful day, explaining about the history of the two buildings, which back onto Horse Guards Parade, and where the Admiralty has met for centuries. 26 Whitehall, which was built in 1725, contains the oldest boardroom, in continuous use, that is still used for the purpose for which it was built. It contains carvings which predate the building itself, and were rescued from the former Whitehall Palace following it's almost complete destruction by fire, and is still used today by the First Lord of the Fleet to plan marine operations. It has hosted British Government Cabinet meetings when 10 Downing Street has been renovated, and is still used by the Deputy Prime Minister for his cabinet meetings today. Incidentally, the building is no longer officially 'The Admiralty', but it does contain the offices of several Cabinet Ministers and their staff.
The dwelling and official rooms in a separate building which adjoin the older, official one, were really a treat! Built in 1785, the architect was Samuel Pepys Cockerell, and the design was inspired as it is really a very narrow building, but feels extremely spacious and light! It was squeezed into the space between the official Admiralty building and the Horse Guards, and in order to make the most of the limited space, it contains a marvellous staircase, which a split return and a lunette above to give a sense of space and light.

All throughout the buildings are works of art which are mostly of a nautical theme. Some render moments of historic sea battles, others are studies for famous works of art. There are many, many views of various famous seamen, and ships, in both sculpted form and in paint.

There is a table in the official dining room, which was roped off to the public (but which I was able to touch), which was noted by Winston Churchill to be his favourite writing surface. The Churchill's lived at Admiralty House from 1911-1913, and again from 1939-1940, both coinciding with the periods of his appointment as First Lord of the Admiralty. The Music Room which contained furninshing presented to Admiralty House by Lady Diana Cooper, was the scene of Harold McMillan's sumary sacking of 6 members of his cabinet, known now as 'The night of the long knives'.

At the end of the day I had enjoyed myself so much that I wanted to volunteer again next year! I was chatting with my fellow volunteer, Bridgette, as well as Charlotte, about my passion for history, and Bridgette suggested we wander down Whitehall to see if it was too late to visit another building she knew I would enjoy. The Banquetting Hall was only open on the Saturday of the Open House weekend, and we had missed the opportunity to see it, unfortunately.
On the upside, walking and chatting with Bridgette meant we discovered that we had some things in common, and without intending to, we ended up spending the next 3 hours together, wandering from Whitehall, via the Horse Guards and King Charles II street (near the Foreign & Commonwealth Office) to Westminster, across the bridge to the South Bank which we followed along to the Festival Hall and watched a free dance performance which Bridgette knew about. She showed me where to find out about any free or discounted activities in the Festival Hall, and shared some of her experiences as a singer, actor and photographer. Bridgette showed me where the Library of Poetry was, and I was able to aquire a free book from them! Then we headed over to the National Theatre, where she showed me more places to find out about free performances and opportunitites for special events, and through to the next building where we heard a friend of hers playing in a jazz trio, saw a terrific exhibition of theatrical photography, and a general art show, then back out to visit a food festival where I was happy to be able to shout her some food after all her time showing me the ins and outs of the theatre scene in London. One of the highlights, for me, was discovering the British Film Institue's Media Room where you can go in and book a screen for up to 2 hours and watch all manner of random things. The selection ranged from really old silent movies, to weirdly bohemian 1960 'art theatre' (the one with Germain Greer singing 'Do you Love Me?' will be burned into my memory forever!) to classic films such as 'A Room With a View' and others... commercials and shots from the cinema of the past, short documentaries and stand up comics are included in the collection, and it's all free!

After 3 hours wandering through the south bank of the Thames and reconnecting with my theatrical roots, I knew I had found a new friend! I had also found a wonderful source of food in Spice! A restaurant which had a booth in the food festival, and who's dishes were absolutely delicious! I can highly recommend them to anyone in London!

I headed home via the Merri-go-round near the London Eye, and across the Hungerford Bridge where I experimented with the settings on my Kodak camera and got some fairly decent night-photographs. I was really tired when I got home, but I had had a wonderful day! Unfortunately there was a strict no photography rule in the Buildings, which included the courtyard, but the previous week, and the next day, I took a couple of photographs of the building from the street. Such as they are, the set is here: and the rest of the day's photos are here:

Labels: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

27 September, 2008


Well, I just got home from spending a wonderful afternoon with cousins whom I haven't seen in at least 5 years...
Margaret is actually my Dad's first cousin, and she and her husband, Roy, visited Australia in 2003 so that was the last time I actually saw them, and apart from family correspondence, and a recent phone call, pretty much the last time we were in touch!

Their eldest son, Scott, was 17 last time I saw him, and was doing his A levels (VCE or HSC for the Aussie friends reading this!) and his sister Georgina was 15 and their 'little' brother Duncan was... err... younger still!

Today I met up with Margaret & Roy at the brand new home of Scott & his lovely wife, Philippa! They literally moved in this weekend! Roy was assisting Scott in wallpapering 2 1/2 year old Isabel's bedroom, while Margaret was looking after the children, Isobel and baby Daniel who is just 10 weeks old! I was in my element! I have missed babies and little children since coming to the UK! I absolutely adore the two children I nanny, who are 12 and 13 years old, but I miss the little people who are like sponges, soaking up each and every new experience and piece of information, and for whom every day is an adventure!
Isobel is bright and intelligent and has a gorgeous disposition! She really was enjoying having her Granny, as she calls Margaret, there as well as adoring her baby brother, and relishing her role as a big sister! Daniel is a settled and happy baby, and possibly having a growing spurt given the quantity of milk he consumed while I was there! We had a fun day of exploring the back garden, being shown around the house by Isobel, getting to know Philippa and catching up with Margaret and Roy.

On the sad side, Margaret's Mum, my Great-Auntie Dorothy, is very poorly and not expected to live much longer. They were cutting their visit short by a day in order to drive up to Stoke-on-Trent tomorrow and stay for the night then heading to Cheltenham where they live.

I have very fond memories of both my Auntie Dorothy and my Uncle Frank, who passed away a couple of years ago. I am sorry I haven't been to see my Aunt, but from what I hear she wouldn't have really understood who I was anyway...

All in all the day was lovely, though, and it was good to find that I connected with both Scott and Philippa well! They are such lovely people, and as you get older the age difference seems to matter less! I really hope they take me up on my offer to babysit sometimes, as I would love to help out and get to spend precious time with the next generation!

The weather has been gorgeous, by the way, and their garden has apple trees, and roses, rhubarb and beans and lots of other flowering plants as well! They are creating a wonderful environment to raise their family in!
Flickr set to check out:

Labels: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Why so slack at keeping in touch...?

I feel like I keep excusing myself for not keeping in touch better... if you knew how often I thought of friends and family in any given day you wouldn't believe how little I manage to write to them... one person in my life here suggested I stop making friends as I am too busy to keep up with the friends I already have, but that is a completely rediculous suggestion and he knows it! (It was said with his tongue firmly in his cheek!)

So here's my new plan! (why wait for the new year for resolutions...?) I will write blogs as often as I can - hopefully at least 3-5 a week, detailing my life and including pertinent photos with links to sets in my flickr account. I will send out a general email each week to my friends and family near and far, and give them the run down as well as this address and the address of my flickr sets!

I will phone my loved ones more often, and not just Frank either! And I will do this during the day and not last thing at night... I tend to phone poor Frank when I am dropping off to sleep and he doesn't always get a good conversation out of me... mind you, as an American, he pays to receive my phone calls before 7pm, so there's something to be said for phoning him later, rather than earlier!

I really miss the sense of connection I have with so many folk, I guess I am so busy living my life that I am not managing to share it with others, and since I moved to the UK pretty much all of my friends and family are in another country, another county or another city!

So, to those who live nearby, I will make a greater effort to keep in touch by phone, and by visiting. To those who live in Australia and the USA, I will make a greater effort to keep you updated here and via email and photgraphy. And to my precious family - both of my blood and of my heart - I will let you know how much I love you much more often than I have to date!
I truly miss you all and wish you were here to share my adventure with me! I love who I am, and where I am, and what I am doing with my life! I just wish you were all a little bit closer and we could share it together!

Love and hugs to you all!

Labels: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

23 September, 2008

It's about time...

It's definitely about time I wrote a new blog, especially since it's 6 months since I left Australia and over 5 months since I arrived to live and work in the UK!

My life has altered dramatically since I last wrote in here, and that wasn't even up to date! I was still trying to fill in the blanks about my trip to the USA last year, and now I have made 3 more trips to that country and am planning another one!
I have been living in Kent, England for the last 5 months, have enjoyed another summer, and am planning to visit Boston for Christmas with my wonderful man, and then head to Nevada for the marriage of two very dear friends of mine, and act as maid of honour for my precious friend, Lila.
I enjoy cooking! This is a surprise to me, as I have never had many peopel to cook for, and when I have had more folk around it's usually been in my mother's kitchen, so I never felt comfortable. Don't get me wrong, my Mother is an amazing cook, and her kitchen is well appointed, but I always felt like she was there, looking over my shoulder, or at the very least like I was in her way! I really like cooking risottos and pastas, but my Dad doesn't enjoy those things, so I rarely cooked when staying with my parents!

I used to cook for young children, but as I was always pushed for time, and never had the option of purchasing the ingredients for dinner, I was always managing with what I had, and what I had was usually limited. Alternatively I would have the choice of meal made for me, and worse still, if I varied it in any way I would be criticised for it! I have never felt truly able to select, plan, shop for and prepare a meal, except when I lived with Natalie... and let's face it, she and I both worked such long hours that cooking was a means to an end... eating!

I live in a beautiful part of England, about an hour from London, and in the countryside! We have lots of apple trees on the farm I live on, and I have just spent 3 hours picking blackberries this morning! Of course this leaves my hands cut and scratched, covered in nettle stings and even some insect bites, but I have 6 lbs of black berries altogether so I am happy and looking forward to making jam later in the week!

I miss my family, friends and especially 'my kids' a lot! The children in my life are very precious to me, and I have been involved with many of them since their infancy! I miss the little things we used to do, and I hope they know that I am thinking of them every day, even if I am not in touch as often as I'd like!
I miss my Frank in Boston! We met at Dragon*Con last year, and kept in touch by email, then by phone and finally, on my way to the UK, I visitied him in the USA. We spent 3 1/2 weeks together which was wonderful, and since then I have visited him for 10 days in late June. Unfortunately he was unable to join me at Dragon*Con this year, but I am looking forward to Christmas with him in just 3 months time! He is wonderful, talented, sweet, caring and generally awesome! His girls, Lucy & Maggie, two gorgeous dogs, have taken me to their hearts as well and I miss taking them for walks almost as much as I miss snuggling up with Frank in the evenings!
I love the pubs here in England, I love London with all it's rich and varied history as well as imaginative modern architecture. I love the green countryside and the wildlife. I love the people, who are generally very friendly, courteous, warm and polite! I love the supermarket I go to, Waitrose, where they have the friendliest, most helpful staff I have ever come across, and the food is fresh and in many cases, organic. The way it's laid out is spacious and light and yet it's much more environmentallly friendly than any supermarket I've visited in Australia! I love the little Fiat Punto I drive, and I love being so close to so many amazingly historical places including castles, houses, parks and manors! I love the tiny little villages so close to where I live, and I love the laneways I get to drive along every day!

I love the kids who are intelligent, imaginative, bright and talented. Both of them have skill at performance, especially acting, and I have a lot of interests in common with both of them! Their pets are cats, something I haven't lived with much in the past, but I am loving them as well as the half a dozen kittens which arrived a few weeks ago, thanks to Poppy!

I adore my employer, who is warm, caring, sensitive, generous, calm, organised, incredibly intelligent and a wonderful woman all round! She and the kids have made me feel right at home since the moment I stepped out of the cab from the airport!

I am going crazy about taking photographs of my daily adventures and uploading them to my flickr account. My flickr photostream is here:
and there are always new photos popping up there with sets of pictures along the side. These sets usually have some explaination of when and where they were taken and why I have decided to put them in a set, so if you want to take a look it's a good idea to click on a set, read the blurb and then set it to slideshow!
Here's a set just about Pear Tree Farm:

I will update my blog with information about my life and my photos more often as a way of keeping in touch with my friends around the world, and I welcome any new friends who read my blog to pop in and take a look too!

Hope you enjoy my renewed interest in blogging!

Labels: , , , , ,