Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Australia Day 2009

This Australia Day we went the whole hog and had not one, but two celebratory events; first on Saturday, 24 Jan at the work premises of T&T Power Generation in the industrial area and the second, a brunch at our house in the leafy suburbs of Araluen.

Tori and Trevor, owners of T&T Power Generation provided a wonderful dinner of king prawns (shrimp for those of you from North America) followed by a barbecued steak with a variety of salads and dressings, all washed down with a variety of spirits, beer and wines.
A large number of people attended even a few kids, these ones at left being aptly outfitted and a good indicator that our traditions will be carried forward by the coming generations. I might add that the little fellow was drinking soft drink ... we want our kids to

follow our traditions, but some of them we don't want adopted too soon or too vigorously.

We took our photo record early so we could get it out of the way and focus on the real events of the evening. Here is a photo of you-know-who in our Australia Day paraphernalia ... not the sort of stuff you'd wear on any "normal" day.

A bit over the top eh?

We managed to have a wonderful evening of eating, drinking and socialising renewing friendships with a couple of people whom we had not seen for years and made a few new friends.

As has been our family tradition for as long as I can remember, we had a brunch at our house for family and a few friends.

My father's birthday was on Australia Day and he had me convinced for at least a few years that the National holiday was in honour of his birthday.
By the time I'd turned 25 I realised that he'd been pulling my leg for all those years. If he was still alive, he would have
turned 91, which is far too old for anyone, even my father.
We set up outside in our covered area which was pleasantly warm with a gentle breeze. Excellent weather for Australia Day.
Chris, the master of the kitchen, slapped together some waffles for the first course, served with boysenberries, treacle, cream, or strawberry topping, whatever one preferred.
I made a flask or two of coffee, a cooler flask of cordial, and cranked up our barbecue for the traditional sausages, bacon, eggs on toast, tomato and mushrooms. The last photo is one of our son Dale finishing off the mushrooms.
If you'd like to see more photos of our Australia Day celebrations, you can find them here

Robin and Christina

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Goodbye to a Good Bloke

On Sunday, 18 January 2009, our friend David Hansen died at his home in Al Ain, United Arab Emirates. David and his wife Linda were part of a group including Christina and me, for whom one of our other friends had coined the phrase "Group of Eight". We travelled to Jordan, Syria and other places together and had many memorable times enjoying each others' company.

I took the above photo of David on ANZAC Day, 25 April 2008, at the old Al Ain Golf Club. ANZAC Day is the day each year when Australians and New Zealanders remember those men and women who gave their lives for their country in various theatres of war.

We had only known David for a few years, but it was long enough to know that he was a "Good Bloke". A good bloke who will be remembered with great fondness.

Goodbye mate, we hope you have found a better place.

Robin and Christina