Sunday, February 04, 2007

home again

Yay... I'm back home again after an incredible journey and a fabulous time. More about that when I have a chance to collect my thoughts a little better. For now, here is a brief precis of the trip...

On Tuesday I flew to Sydney and hired a car to drive to Armidale. It took a lot longer than I expected... 9 hours including numerous stops along the way (Stop. Revive. Survive) and I was especially appreciative of the free upgrade from a small car to a super duper brand new Subaru Forester! I also love the Australian countryside and find gumtrees to be beautiful, statuesque trees, so I drank in the scenery, mostly watching the road of course, and enjoyed the drive.

In Armidale I spent three days at the University of New England, learning counselling skills. A lot of them I knew already, but I need lots of practice in developing them! Especially the skill of silence... that one doesn't fit anywhere in my counselling tool kit!

The University was lovely, set on the edge of the city, I met lots of nice people and generally had a great time. This picture is of one of the University buildings - I think the original? Not sure, but it was a nice building. Our classes were held in a rather non-descript portable building from the 1950s... oh well, still a place of great learning!

On Friday I drove down Thunderbolt and Bucket Ways to Newcastle, my former stomping ground... the drive was absolutely gorgeous (I've promised to take Frank back for an extended visit exploring the mountains).

Friday evening and Saturday were spent catching up with family (Luke included) and friends (thankyou Robyn!), meeting the potential stepmother and other such exciting and challenging events.

More important than any of that was the swim at a warm beach! OK, it wasn't really more important than meeting people, but it was so delicious to stand in water and not freeze - pity about the waves that kept knocking me over.

I forgot to put sunscreen on, so didn't dilly dally getting knocked around, instead wandering around remembering my past life and eating yummy ice cream from the New Zealand Waffle Shop.

And today was the homeward journey - driving to Sydney, goodbye to the very nice car, struggling through crowds of people all trying to book in their luggage and hello Frank, I'm glad to be home!

I've had a ball - a holiday without it really being a holiday. All ready for work tomorrow.

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At 5:55 am, February 05, 2007, Anonymous Sandy said...

Welcome back Cecily. The picture with what looks like a weather station on the cliff at the beach. What is it? I saw this before. I saw the picture on Luke's site too.

Glad your trip was great. I'm getting so tired of all the grey around here. I love your photos, gives me hope spring will arrive soon.

At 6:40 am, February 05, 2007, Blogger Cecily said...

The weather station is called "Nobby's Head" and it sits at the entrance to Newcastle harbour. It used to be a light house but I don't think they use it as that anymore. The public aren't allowed access, but you can walk out on the break water that runs past and behind it. I didn't have time for that this time, so just took a few photos. One of my favourite places in Newcastle.

At 7:51 am, February 05, 2007, Anonymous luke said...

Actually, the lighthouse is still used (you can see a smidgin of light coming out of it in the photo on my blog), and in the near future the whole site will be turned into a restaurant + accommodation. I can't wait!

'twas nice to see you on Saturday night Cecily. A little too brief, but it sounds like you'll be up again soon so it's all good :-) Have fun getting back into the rigmarole.

At 3:50 pm, February 05, 2007, Blogger Robyn said...

It was SO lovely to see you! I need to coax you guys into moving back up this way :)

At 4:20 am, February 06, 2007, Blogger merry said...

Glad you're back, and that you had a good trip! My car is a 2004 Subaru Forester :)


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