Brisbane, QLD

Friday, January 30, 2009

Bernie at Summer Bay

Bernard Curry, Sonya's partner. He is a budding Australian actor and has appeared in many TV shows and movies. Sonya and Bernie at the Sydney Film Festival. He is a lovely young man but I think his generation use different terms like "hunk" or "hottie".  He has been offered a contract with the soapy "Home and Away."
He plays the part of Hugo the dive instructor.
Home and Away plays in the town of Summer Bay. It is actually filmed at Palm Beach in Sydney.
Home and Away is a long running soap opera geared towards young people. It is not our type of show but I guess we will be watching some episodes now.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

PNGAA Members Enjoy Lunch in Brisbane

There are people all over Australia who used to work and live in Papua/New Guinea. Some of them have joined the Papua/New Guinea Association of Australia.. We sometimes get together to rekindle friendships, reminisce and discuss ideas for the future.

Colin (Mr Mellow Yellow) organised a lunchtime get together at Sofitel Hotel in Brisbane. He arranged for us to meet in the Whistle Stop Bar at Central Station. He gives Murray and ........ a warm welcome.
Joseph, Phil and Keith (from Sydney) arrive and...
......Richard shows Paul his new belt buckle. Richard loves boys toys and Paul is not sure about it. Then we adjourn to the restaurant for a buffet lunch.
There were 16 of us and the company was great. Paul, Murray, Bill, Keith, Josephine and Richard.......
Katherine, Joseph, Henry, Colin, Diane, Bill, Peter, Margaret, David, and Phil.

When we all had our fill we went to the coffee lounge and discussed ideas about the future objectives of our Association. Among other things we would like to strengthen the civil relationship between the people of Australia and Papua /New Guinea. After coffee it was time to roll our big bellies home.
We hosted friends Peter and Margaret from The Hunter Valley in NSW. It was fun having them stay for a few days.

Saturday, January 24, 2009


Since the girls have left home, Bill and I live in an empty nest so we turned their rooms into guest rooms. Recently we have had a few visitors including the birds who flew the coop and their mates. I happened to mention to Bill that it would be nice to have something on which to put the guests suitcases. So he went to Bunnings Hardware and bought some timber and screws. I heard sawing and sanding going on in the garage but didn't think to take pics until he was nearly finished. He went to an upholster and bought some webbing and finished the job.

He has made the frame and stained it.
Now to tack on the webbing and I was called to help but I took pics instead.
There you go one bag rack. Then he made a second one.

There they are ready for our next guests who arrive on Tuesday.
Bill may not be much good in the garden but he sure is very handy with timber, hammer and nails. He also made the twin beds and bedside tables in this room. I think the fact that his father was a carpenter may have something to do with it.

Thursday, January 22, 2009


Last Monday I received news that my brother had died in London. We went to our favourite nursery, had lunch in their cafe, a lovely whiting fish salad. Then we bought a tree to plant in memory of David. It is a Callistemon, a bottle brush tree, but we are going to call it the "David Tree."

Here it is a little bottle brush tree. 
These are the beautiful flowers it will have. There are all different kinds of Callistemons and I am trying to get a variety in my garden.
I called Bill to help dig the hole.
Then I added some good soil from the compost heap.
Unfortunately it looks like it has been in the pot too long. Hope the roots spread. I pulled them apart a little but natives don't like their roots damaged.

Lots of water. The temperature today is 35°C
I hope it grows to fill this space in my garden and produce beautiful flowers. Every time I see it I will remember my brother, David.

Monday, January 19, 2009


My brother, David, passed away (this morning Aust time) last night in London. He was diagnosed with liver cancer only three months ago. Here is a short tribute to his life.

David was born in London in 1937. His proud parents were Florrie and Len.
Like all little boys he liked to help his Dad start the truck.(about 1938/39)
He enjoyed his Mum reading him stories. (1940)
In 1942, I came along. He was 5.
A rare photo of us playing during the war. There was a shortage of photographic paper.
We were lucky to survive the war but life was miserable in England after the war so my parents decided to migrate to Australia. We went for a trip to Yorkshire to say goodbye to our grandparents. (1948)
We were on an exciting adventure on the ship going to Australia. It was harder for David as he was a young teen and had to leave friends in London.
We lived in Sydney and life was tough for our parents, working hard and building a house on weekends but occasionally we had trips to the beach. Cronulla Beach 1950.
David went to Sydney Technical High School and played Football (Soccer). (He followed football right up to his death. Arsenal being the team that he supported.) During this time he had to look after me while our parents were at work. I could always rely on my big brother if I got into fights with my schoolmates. However we also had quite a few sibling dust ups too.
But in 1956 when he was 19 and I was 14 he got a job in Papua/ New Guinea and he left the family home for good. It was sad to see him go but we were all excited for him in his new and challenging career. I didn't see much of him after that.
His job was that of a Patrol Officer in the jungles of P/NG. He was one of many young Australians who were given the task of bringing law and order and civilisation to the primitive tribes. His stories were of adventure and danger and we were very proud of him.
He would return home on leave once every two years. It was an exciting time for us. In 1962 he was sent to the Australian School of Pacific Administration in Sydney for a training course. It just happened to be the same year that I was accepted by the same school to do a Cadet Education Course for P/NG. So I was lucky enough to spend a year sharing a flat with him and his new wife Ann and baby Michael. The next year they all returned to P/NG, while I continued at the school for another year, before I went to P/NG to teach. However, I was posted to the town of Pt Moresby and David was in Daru so we had very little contact.
In 1967 we were all on leave and had a rare Christmas together with our parents. Elizabeth and young David were with us too. 
David and me in Sydney 1967. Although we both worked in P/NG we were rarely in the same town except for a short time in Pt Moresby before I left to live in Switzerland with my new husband, Bill, in 1970 and then settle in Brisbane in 1971.
Back in P/NG, David had been working hard and progressed in his career as a District Officer and finally he became the Deputy Clerk of The House of Assembly. (the interim government before independence) Here his son Michael is on his knee.
He worked with John Guise, the Speaker of the House at the time.
David was a representative of the P/NG govt. in talks in Indonesia.
In 1975 P/NG became independent and David's job no longer existed so after working for the people of P/NG for 19 years he and his family decided to try their luck in England for 5 years but they enjoyed living there so much that they stayed there forever. Consequently, I didn't see much of him.
He came to Brisbane to visit us in 1977. A rare time for the family to be together.
David's daughter, Elizabeth also moved from Australia to England and was married there in 1983. Her brother, David, lives in Victoria. Aust.
David visited us again for Christmas in 1984. He found it hot after UK.
At home and happy in the UK. in 1992.
In 1992 we visited him in London. This is outside his home.
In 2004 we met in Paris for a weekend.
David and Ann enjoyed cruises in their retirement. They went to visit their son Michael, who lives in St Lucia in the West Indies.
David and Ann in their kitchen. David enjoyed cooking.
David and Ann often went on cruises with this same group of friends.
David turned 70 in 2007.
Carol and David lived very close to David and Ann. On this particular day in 2007,  Sonya, was in London visiting at the same time as  Michael was visiting from the West Indies. It was the first time the cousins had all met .
Only 4 months ago, while we were on holidays in Europe, David and Ann came to Switzerland to join us for 6 days in Spiez. We had a great time together and it was very hard saying goodbye. Somehow we both felt this would be the last time we would be together.
We had a long chat on the ferry on the beautiful Lake of Thun (Toon) and I am so lucky that this is how I will remember him. When he returned to London he had to have a check up, because he had had a melanoma removed. When I returned home in late September, he rang me with the news that the cancer had spread to his liver and he only had a few months to live. He felt well at the time but it didn't take long for this dreadful disease to take him from us at the relatively young age of 71.
He was my big brother and a good bloke. Rest in peace David. All our love and sympathy to his wife Ann and children, Elizabeth, David and Michael and his grandchildren, Adrian and Oliver.