Life after work and the trips of a lifetime

"We are judged by what we finish, not by what we start." - Anonymous

Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, martini in the other, your body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming, "Woo hoo! What a ride!..attributed in this form to either Maxine Cartoon or anon

Monday, September 20, 2010

What this recently retired "lady" has been doing these past few days


this is an example of "before" and was over a fairly large area of our 1 acre garden. It was here that I found  and killed the tallest dandelion and the largest thistle ...EVER!

and a few days later..a work in progress..and yes, I'm stiff and sore.....

yup, you're right a veggie garden in the making and there's enough room for 3 more like this one..but...start I'm not biting off too much quite yet.

Learning a language
As well as being Farmer Jane, I'm also learning Italian.  One to one and was told that what I got through in my first 2 hour  lesson was the equivalent of what a group would do in half a term.  It helps that I know a bit of French, German and Swedish and that I spent 7 weeks in the country unknowingly absorbing words, emphasis and pronunciation.  My next class is later this week, then there'll be a bit of a gap which will allow me to consolidate my learnings.....

Hospital visiting
This I could quite do without, but at least Phil is coming home in 2 days time and I can finish this particular chore.

Road national this coming up weekend...something I'm totally unprepared for and will have to hope for long standing fitness to come to the fore.....

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Yet more road signs

  Working out EXACTLY what these 2 were  advertising occupied me for quite a few kms

(shot through the windscreen and a great speed and no I wasn't driving!)

which?....a sex shop or a  sexy souvenir shop

I was sad to discover  a bimbo is a baby boy

and finally we've all seen them...directional signs that clearly give you wrong/contrary distances, but these 2 push the boundaries more than somewhat.  Found at a T junction they are about 10m apart. 

Aaaah!  Italy, I just gotta return next year.

Monday, September 6, 2010

The trip home


the "last AND final" (this quoting a PA announcement in San Fransisco) part of my holiday has been and gone, all I have left are jet lag, great memories and a tiny bank balance.

After Austria I drove to Geneva, parted company with my car and flew to Manchester as part of the requirement of my Round the World ticket..I loathe Heathrow and so opted for Manchester since it was was the next best option. In the 60's I trained and worked in close neighbour and equally grimey Liverpool and so wanted to get back to that "dirty old town" to see how it had changed.  It had and it hadn't...the general lay out was the same although some streets were pedestrianized  but sadly the place was filthy..the pavement was so disgusting that  nothing would persuade me to use the 5/6/10 second rule for dropped food.  The museums at Albert Dock on Slavery and the work of customs were fantastic.

The Liver birds (pronounced to rhyme with "I've") are still sitting very,very statically where they always have..on top of the Liver building...legend has it they flap their wings when a virgin passes by.

Here's a closer pix of  this fabled and smart bird  just to see what it  looks like...

 I had hoped that the 88 euros the Swiss charged me for my bike, cos it was an oversized article of luggage was a one off...but no...UK charged me 135 pounds to get across the pond to the US and then THEY charged me $US 200 to get it home.  The weight was not an issue..just the size..and the need to make money. Am freighting them next's bad enough travelling with them, but having to pay extra for the privilege....forget it.

My stay in San Diego had  to be shortened from 7 days to 36 hour to allow me to  get home to ensure Phil's recovery from his # neck of femur was managed in the best possible way.  He arrived in the rehab hospital the day before I got home and was about to be assessed by his Physio when I went and saw him on my way home from the airport.

So for 36 hours I met up with track

and road buddies

and had a great time..the weather was very kind although here is proof that  California isn't always sunny

one of the trips was to the Wild Life park section of the famous  San Diego Zoo where one of the many great sights was this deer taking it's courage in both hooves  challenging a rhino for first go at the feeding trough ...brave or just stupid?
I'm not sure what the highlight of the 36 hours was: meeting with friends, the hike, the zoo but honourable mention just has to given to the following....
  • an "extreme" rated ride in a Kawasaki buggy to see a horse..beautiful horse as you can see from the pix... but the ride...well that was something else!
  • actually getting to see a road runner. (heard the coyotes..just HAD to see a road runner).

The flight  home was fine and I even scored an upgrade between Auckland and Melbourne.

So that's it folks...I now have to settle into the life of a retiree:
? book club?
? gardening?
? flower arranging?

One thing's certain, I'll be spending many hours  planning for next year's adventures.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Random signs

USA.....San Diego to be precise where  bunnies are literate and avocados do not sprint

Switzerland..where apparently poverty has resulted in a campaign to encourage people to eat  twigs and logs

UK..where this sign outside Liverpool Lime Street Railway station tells it as it is

and finally Italy..La Bella Italia where street traders of  all types of luxury goods such as  "Gucci" are allowed to carry on their trade unmolested by officialdom and yet.......

guess it's lucky my skill level in detecting fake goods is so high

 just checking, 'cos my eyesight's not very good.... can you see any??..maybe they're just around the corner, over the brow of the hill perhaps??