travel

travel around Australia

Sunrise is a temporary thing…

My gypsy life is almost dormant this year, but I did have one fortnight outback adventure that I thought would be appropriate to re-blog here. I hope you enjoy following me into the red centre…

Living in Paradise...

To see a sunrise means being in the right place at the right time. That golden glow is a temporary thing as the sun moves steadily upward and the day begins.

So to catch that special moment as the sun lights up Uluru/Ayers Rock we roll out of our warm and cosy camp beds at 4am. Jake has coffee and toast ready for us. It is cold. I think it is about 4C and I layer up with plenty of clothes including jacket, gloves, scarf and of course the beanie…

Jake takes us to a private spot he knows. We have the moment to ourselves, no other tourists. It seems to take so long for the sun to make an appearance. I walk around and stamp my feet trying to keep warm, anxiously watching the horizon.

Then the sky slowly lightens and the imposing bulk of Uluru rises out of the plain.

outback tour uluru pc 157_4000x3000The light…

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Categories: travel | 14 Comments

Tribute to a Wheelbarrow

I’m reblogging this second post as I am still having difficulties getting my new blog working. I’m not sure how it appears as I changed the theme for these posts but both seem different. To be honest I’m beginning to think it may go in the “too hard basket” I’ve spent so much time and not enjoying the experience… I’ve found how to put a like button on, but now the comments appear to have disappeared… “agh”…. ok back to the drawing board.

Living in Paradise...

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Today I would like to show you my tribute to a wheelbarrow, my workhorse through 17 years of sweat and construction as we dug and designed, mulched and watered to create our dream tropical garden. It carted rocks by the hundred, mulch, compost, prunings and weeds and helped us change an uninspiring expanse of rather scruffy lawn into the garden we love.

Wheelbarrow A small watercolour painting I did of my faithful wheelbarrow. Calligraphy is another art form I am working on and I love this quote I copied. I put them both together using Photo Shop.

It was not without some trauma. A few years ago the tyre burst. It couldn’t be repaired or a replacement found, but the barrow still had many more years of life left. So not being one to throw anything away Jack stuffed the tyre with old rags and tied it together with  rope and the…

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Categories: travel | 11 Comments

Closing Down…

I am no longer a gypsy, wandering where ever the whim takes me. It has been a fantastic few years but my lifestyle has changed and my blog “Gypsy Life” is no longer relevant.

So I am starting a new phase of life and with it a new blog. “Living in Paradise”.

https://retiredfromgypsylife.wordpress.com

I have written a post and published it. At least I think I have. I’m finding it very difficult navigating the setting up of a new blog. I don’t recollect it being so difficult in 2009 when I started my first blog. So it is definitely a work in progress. I may have to call on the “happiness engineers” for help…

I do hope all my lovely blogging buddies follow me over there and I will be fine tuning the layout etc over the next few days.

So over and out….

Categories: travel | 28 Comments

How I interpreted Scale…

 

Darling Harbour

The huge cruise liner dwarfs Sydney Harbour Bridge, showing the scale and size of these floating communities.

Goanna

Intricate camouflage patterns of the goanna

Thinking outside the square the scales on this goanna create an intricate pattern.

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This model village in Hobart needs people in the photo to show the scale and size of the models.

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It has been a long time since I participated in the “Daily Photography Challenge”, but the theme this week appealed to me. Go here https://dailypost.wordpress.com/photo-challenges/scale-2/ to see more interpretations…

 

 

Categories: travel | 17 Comments

Jacaranda time again

Memories are made of this

jacaranda lr-3_2033x1525The glorious purple haze of the Jacaranda are once more bursting out with exuberance. Reminding me that it is just a year since I achieved a long-held dream to visit Grafton at Jacaranda festival time.

I did mention the visit just as I shut off for a year. I did say I would post about the experience soon!!!

(See that promise here …. https://pommepal.wordpress.com/2016/12/24/time-has-flown/ )

The world-renowned Jacaranda Festival is held annually in Grafton, Northern Rivers New South Wales, from the last weekend in October to the first weekend in November.

Inaugurated in 1934, this was the first of Australia’s folk festivals and celebrates the magnificent spectacle of the hundreds of lilac-blossomed trees that grow in Grafton’s broad tree lined avenues. Henry Volkers introduced the first Jacaranda trees to Grafton and each year the trees are celebrated, although it has changed over the years to adapt to today’s society, this traditional…

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Categories: travel | 23 Comments

G’day, from a very hot springtime in Australia

As I am not travelling so far and wide this year I will be using my “memories” blog to record my activities closer to home. This is the first post for over a year but I hope to be around more often now.

Memories are made of this

garden experimental 004_3888x5184The year has flown by and past experiences are falling into the shadowy recesses of my mind. As I grow older the ability to remember the details of what happened and when grows dim.

We are encouraged to live in the now, savour the moment, and I do. Life is so busy and full of activity, but my aging brain struggles to recall the details of past happenings, and there has been quite a few (I think!!!)

Now what where they…

In my quest to try different artistic activities, with varying degrees of success, I have even stopped taking many photos. That reliable record of dates and things done.

Here are just a few of the sketches and paintings I have done during the past year…

So what about the “year of the artistic endeavour”? Oh my, that sounds rather pretentious. Well I’ve discovered I am definitely no Renoir or…

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Time has flown…

The year certainly has flown by. Where have the 5 months disappeared to since I last put my virtual pen to paper. It is hard to believe that it was July since my last “goodbye and see you soon” post. Now it is the day before Christmas.

In this tropical summer climate the Poinciana tree is in full and glorious colour…

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And the delightful, sweet scent of the frangipani drifts around the garden.

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Have I done all I planned???

Well sort of.

I’ve let my creative juices try to flow, trying to connect to my right brain. I’ve spent a lot of time watching “how to” videos on you tube. Deciding I will never create that masterpiece, but having fun trying. I’ve always known I am a left hand brain person. So the latest craze of “Zentangle” suits me.

It has been a magnificent growing season and the garden is flourishing. So lots of time spent pruning and creating large heaps of steaming mulch.

I’ve read more books in 5 months than in the past 5 years.

One short 4 week house sit to satisfy my “gypsy genes”, and a glorious weekend at the Grafton Jacaranda festival. (will post about that soon).

So I will wish all my “blogging buddies” a very happy and peaceful Christmas, where ever you are in the world.

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Categories: travel | 65 Comments

Time for change…

I arrived back home from extended travel in January, that was 6 months ago, now I’m sleeping in the same bed every night. My days and weeks have become structured. I have enjoyed watching the garden change through the seasons.  See the garden in its summer glory hereIt is now mid-winter, but in Queensland that means slightly cooler days and nights and no humidity, ideal for working in the garden.

Back in January I planted vegetables and tomatoes in pots.

The tomatoes have done very well and kept us in a steady supply.

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But, annoyingly,  the birds also found them. A bird net over them solved that problem.

I keep the salad greens and herbs in pots so I can move them around to follow the sun. They are now down the far end of the garden in a sheltered area, protected from the winter winds, and they get all day sun.

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The raised bed for herbs, in the front garden keeps on keeping on.

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So that is my vegetable supply and my entry into Jude’s (earth laughs in flowers) weekly/monthly garden photography challenge and for July the theme is “the edible garden”

But while you are here I will take you for a garden walk to see what is happening in July in my garden.

Today winter has arrived it is a rather grey and dismal sort of day, showers are forecast and the temperature is only about 18c degrees, but until this week we have had some warm sunny days and this flowering shrub is bursting into flower. I inherited this shrub when I moved in and don’t know its name but it has a most beautiful soft scent and flowers twice during the year.

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I wonder if you remember the bat plant, the most unusual plant in my garden (see it here) It is a true tropical plant and look at it now.

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It certainly does not like the cooler temperatures. (this is for you Sue)

The compost bin is full and quietly decomposing. It has been a busy time of pruning and mulching as this year there has been plenty of rain and the growth has been phenomenal.

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After that wander around the garden I would like to invite you inside ( joining Ailsa’s Travel Theme, Indoors), through my front door. (Joining Norm’s “Thursday Doors” challenge)

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Come into my very untidy “studio”. That is possibly a rather pretentious term for where I now like to indulge in my new passion.

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So for a while I am going to be loving and leaving you all.

I took my first tentative steps into  the virtual world of the blogosphere in 2009. Since then it has become a major part of my life, journaling my daily and weekly happenings, joining in challenges, searching through thousands of photos in my archives to find the perfect submission for the themes. Taking photos with the ever-present thought of “will that be suitable for a post”, and, of course, making many dear friends from all over the world in this wonderful virtual world of Word Press. Enjoying the connection of “chatting” and commenting with other bloggers and the community spirit of friendship.

Now I want to take a break, spend more time practising art, trying and learning new techniques. Immersing myself in the flow of creativity, reading more books and of course spending time in the garden.

I’m sure I am going to have withdrawal symptoms, 7 years of regular posts is a major commitment, so I will occasionally pop by to say “G’day” and keep in touch with my blogging buddies.

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The hammock hangs forlorn and unused waiting for summer.

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Maybe I will find time to do some house-work, but I will not disturb this spider I think they do a good job of catching mosquitoes.

So that’s it for now. I hope you all have a really great weekend. Bye for now…

 

Categories: Australia, garden, Garden photography challenge, indoors, photos, Thursday Doors, tomatoes, travel, travel theme, vegetable garden | Tags: , , , , , , , | 100 Comments

Thursday Doors : Teavine House…

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A friend told me about this restaurant. It is in the country and not a place that you would just stumble across. I’ve never seen it advertised, so it is one of those places that survive on word of mouth. It would have to be good.

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I liked the look, Queenslander style with large open decks.

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The door was open with 2 elegant inlaid panels.

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We were welcomed by Chris, the smiling and friendly owner of this delightful French Provincial Teahouse. It specialises in high tea. The range of teas was impressive, 15 blends from all around the world, a page of choices. I chose Peony tea because I had never heard of it before, it was light and flowery, quite delicious. Served in delicate, exclusive fine china on lace table clothes it was an impressive start to our meal.

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We also ordered lunch and while waiting I looked around.

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It wasn’t long before guests started to arrive.

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I think it was a celebration.

Our lunch arrives and a photo is worth a thousand words…

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Notice Jack is straight into his stuffed chicken and flower salad. Mine is a vegetable stack piled high with a variety of goodies, I found asparagus, mushroom, capsicum, kumera, courgette, onion and egg plant, home made pesto, fresh salad, small roast potatoes and crusty bread.

This is just one of the deserts that tempted us…

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But we resisted them…

After lunch we looked around the garden area.

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This looks like a very special High Tea function. I checked their web page and this is what it said.

History of High Tea

According to the legend of Queen Victoria’s ladies in waiting, the Duchess of Bedford is credited as the creator of Afternoon Tea.  At first, the Duchess had her servants sneak to her chambers with a pot of tea and bread.  The Duchess then invited friends to join her for an additional afternoon meal.  This menu centred around small cakes, bread and butter, sandwiches and assorted sweets and of course tea.  This practice was quickly picked up by other social hostesses.

At Teavine House, we specialise in the experience of High Tea “a cup above the rest”.  For centuries, Tea Houses have been important venues to socialise, for special parties and to conduct special business affairs.  We believe the experience of High Tea opens up conversations and helps people to connect.

Our dedicated team at Teavine House are committed to making your special occasion memorable.

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I loved the attention to detail that made the atmosphere quite special.

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A boutique gift shop next to the restaurant beckoned, so I had a look around.

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After a memorable meal it was time to move on to the next stage of our day out.

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Thursday Doors is a weekly feature allowing door lovers to come together to admire and share their favorite door photos from around the world. Feel free to join in on the fun by creating your own Thursday Doors post each week and then sharing it, between Thursday morning and Saturday noon (North American eastern time)

Categories: photos, Teavine House, Thursday Doors, travel | Tags: , , , | 40 Comments

Travel Theme : Eye to Eye…

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A few months ago** (See footnote) when visiting the Brisbane Art Gallery I took a photo of this life-size elephant sculpture. It is rather magnificent, but a bit puzzling. Why is he standing on his head like a giant book end? I checked Google when I got back home…

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“More than a million dollars was spent on this single piece of art,  commissioned by an artist who doesn’t live in Queensland or Australia for that  matter.”

Ms Bates insisted her comments about government waste were “not a smear on  the artist or the sculpture” but argued the state funding would have been better  spent helping the Queensland arts sector.

The sculpture was funded by the state government’s art+place Queensland  Public Art Fund and the Queensland Art Gallery Foundation.

Parekowhai was one of three  internationally acclaimed artists shortlisted to produce a sculpture to be  located between GOMA and the Brisbane River.

The Queensland Art Gallery argued the proposed sculpture responded to the  cultural and historical significance of Kurilpa Point.

“A life-sized bronze elephant, which on closer inspection is revealed to be a  bookend, is flipped on its head. Its eyes gaze directly into those of a kuril,  the native water rat that gives Kurilpa Point its name,” the gallery  said in a statement to the ABC earlier this year.

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On that day I only looked from one point and had not seen the “Kurilpa”. So decided that next time I went to the art gallery I would look at the other side. This weekend I went back to the art gallery

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Look what I saw…

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A footnote to this story: I did not take my camera, so for the first time I pulled out the IPhone and was very surprised, on an overcast day, at the detail the phone captured. I think I am a convert…

A second footnote: When I checked back I was astonished to find it was three years** since I took the first photo. Unbelievable! Where did that time go…

A third footnote : I am linking this to Ailsa’s (Where’s my backpack) “travel theme” of “close”

Categories: art gallery, Australia, Brisbane, close, photos, travel, travel theme | Tags: , , , , , , | 31 Comments

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