Saturday, July 18, 2009

After a Long Absence

I'm not sure if this post represents my return after a long absence. Ever since Facebook took hold as a way of hearing people's updates and seeing people's pictures, I've stopped reading other people's blogs.

Perhaps, occasionally, I'll have reason to post a long note or a long series of pictures (with comments), in which case I'll blog. During my Fiji/Australia/New Zealand trip the urge to blog was present every day.

Every day is an experiment.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Obama rally

Tonight I listened to Barack Obama at a rally in Eugene. I went to get more information.

I'm still undecided.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008


I visited Sydney on December 17 and 18.

I was surprised that no one was stopping to look at these quotations; the sidewalk memorialized famous writers, some Australian-born and some who mention Australia in their writings. I read about 30 of them and didn't notice a single person at the very crowded Circular Quay who stopped to read. The quotations were very life-affirming to me, and they gave me solace when I was alone, lonely, and homesick.

No visit to Sydney is complete without a visit to the opera house.

Bondi Beach was the other must-see place, but the ocean looked too dangerous to take a dip in. The only ones braving the surf were surfers. Nearby was a pool which for $5 allowed you to swim in a pool alongside the ocean. I loved swimming laps while waves crashed over me. Certainly, yes, it was warmer to swim in the oceans of Palm Cove or Mission Beach, but here in Bondi I enjoyed the novelty of the ocean trapped in concrete. After swimming laps, I had a lovely sauna and then a shower. For $5 it was all plenty worth not getting caught in an undertow.

That night I went out for drinks with two guys from Cork, Ireland, Joe and Tommy, and one guy from England named Neil. They shared the hostel room with me, and we hit it off very well. Now I regret not getting their last names or e-mail addresses. The next morning I left our hostel room while they were asleep and flew to New Zealand.

Melbourne Family, Part 2

You read about my first visit to Melbourne, perhaps. I arrived there on November 1, spent a week; it was the first time I'd ever met my Australian cousins. In mid-December after Mission Beach I went to Palm Cove, another beach town. From Cairns I flew back down to Melbourne, to reconnect with the cousins again and also to meet Henry and Carolyn, whom I hadn't met before. Henry is the oldest of the generation of kids born in Melbourne to the Holocaust survivors. He and Carolyn have four children and two grandchildren.

They have a gorgeous apartment in a Melburnian high-rise, overlooking the town.

Before spending the night at their other house, which is at Cape Schank on the Mornington Peninsula, I stayed again with my cousins Nathan and Linda and their adorable kids Phillip and Eva.

We went to dinner at Fed Up. I enjoyed the restaurant and had the flounder. I was especially warmed by the name because my uncle, who would also be related to Henry, when he first arrived to the U.S., enjoyed a meal, sat back, rested his hands on his stomach and said, "Well. . .I'm fed up!" We've been teasing him about it ever since. I, of course, had to tell Henry and Carolyn the story.

I wasn't expecting to see the entire flounder! At the end of this fish, boy was I fed up. ;)

I wouldn't complete this entry without the view from Henry and Carolyn's award-winning house at Cape Schank.

Catching up: Mission Beach

From the 9th to the 12th, I hitchhiked from Airlie Beach to Townsville and finally to Mission Beach. Featured in the following photos are baby wallabies, fan palms, a cicada, and my wonderful hosts Minke and Greg. Greg is the one wearing the bug.

I'll post a series of travel photos to catch you up with the December part of my journey. I arrived in Mission Beach around December 11.

You can see in the last photo how talented Minke and Greg's daughter is. Her name is Joseine and she painted her backyard. It's not the typical house and flowerbed picture. She included a picture of a cassowary, which is a rare giant bird. It's spotted quite often in Mission Beach, however. It is as tall as and sometimes taller than humans. And, it attacks by jumping up and kicking out. Also pictured is Mats, the little boy with the half-on Santa suit, who wouldn't change out of his Santa suit. And, it was sometimes 90 degrees Farenheit.

Mission Beach was one of my favorite places to visit, not just in Northern Australia, but in considering my trip as a whole. Minke fosters baby wallabies, and her husband and three children were delightful to be around. In the state of Queensland, I encountered such foreign-to-me behavior, such as racism, so I appreciated being around people who reminded me of Eugeneans -- open, trusting, kind, and caring of plants and animals and people.

Friday, December 21, 2007

To Answer Your Question

Jen, aka "Benevolent Being" in the comments section, asked when I was coming home.

Feel free, just for kicks, to check the tentative itinerary in one of the first entries. My trip ended up being nothing like the one in the itinerary, which I'll explain later (if people are interested in knowing).

Anyway, the Coming Home date is the one thing that's remained the same: 28/12.

That's the 12th day of the 28th month, or for those of you keeping up with life in the Antipodes--and nearly everywhere else in the world--that's 28-twelfths, or 28 parts of 12.

I love questions and am happy to answer any and all.

Friday, December 14, 2007

I'm homesick.