Brisbane, QLD

Thursday, April 25, 2024


Today is ANZAC DAY, the day we remember the Australian and New Zealand members of the armed services who have fought and lost their lives in all the wars since WW1. We have a national holiday and many services around the country with huge parades in the cities.  We have our little parade and service followed by morning tea in our village. Residents invite their families along too.

Our flag flying over the village.

Residents who have medals and family members of those who have inherited medals wear them with pride.

 Then they march around the village to the community centre where there is a service held outside in front of our little memorial and flag post. 

The residents lined the streets and clapped in appreciation.

Then everyone found a seat for the service.

Ian, our chairmen tells the story of the brave ANZAC soldiers.

Brendan, husband of our managing director, Chiou See reads the ANZAC poem.

 Then wreaths were laid for all the different armed services and others who have participated in wars.

 Then we have a minute's silence and the flag is raised from half mast.

A photo of the ex-servicemen who live in our village plus Chiou See and Brendan.

Commerarderie in the community centre

Monday, April 15, 2024


Byron Bay is a famous beach town on the north coast of NSW. It is only a few hours drive from Brisbane. It has beautiful beaches and a rainforest hinterland. There are lots of activities for holiday makers. It is loved by surfers, scuba divers, backpackers and international celebrities. It has amazing restaurants, resorts and million dollar houses. 

In 1770, Captain James Cook named the cape Byron after  Vice Admiral John Byron who sailed around the world in 1764-66. He was Lord Byron the poet's grandfather.

(Photos from website)

However, it hasn't always been like this. In early days it was a timber town, then a meat processing place and a whaling station. When I visited with my parents in 1956 it was a very smelly place but after whaling was banned the town became a camping destination.  

When we visited Byron Bay in 1956 my parents and friends went up close to a whale on a flatbed rail carriage  waiting  to go to the processing factory. It was very smelly. I stayed back and took the photo with my new Brownie box camera.

 In 1985 we took the girls for a camping holiday there. It was a sleepy holiday destination with beautiful scenery. We went swimming, horse riding and played golf but it was all undeveloped, quiet and peaceful.

Later it became a hippy and alternate life style place to be. These people have stayed and introduced yoga and wellness stays. It had huge music festivals although this year festivals have found it hard to survive.

In 1999 we visited Sonya (our daughter) who was living there and working as a barista in between Stage managing theatre productions.

Cape Byron Light was built 1899-1901 and the architect was Charles Harding. It is an active heritage-listed building. It was automated in 1989 and it now has a museum inside giving information about Byron Bay's history and stories of shipwrecks. The view over the township and the beaches is amazing.

In 2015 we stayed again in Byron for a reunion of friends from PNG.  Now we have been to the most easterly point, the most southerly point, the most northerly point and almost to  the most westerly point of the Australian mainland.

Some of our group walked out to the tip of the most easterly point of our continent but not Bill and I (the aging process had started.)
We did do the Lighthouse walk, which was strenuous enough.

Saturday, April 6, 2024


 Our youngest daughter, Sonya has been looking for a career change. She has been involved in Stage managing, production managing and operations manager for theatre and circus for thirty years. During that time she was often responsible for work place health and safety. She was getting bored with her job and she studied more university courses on WPHS. She made a few applications in Victoria in different industries but wasn't successful. Just for fun she applied for one in the Arts industry in Brisbane. The Queensland Performing Arts Centre was very keen to employ her as she knew the theatre industry well. She wanted to withdraw her application because she didn't want to uproot her family from Melbourne.  However, QPAC was not going to let her go. They offered her a good salary and pay for the removal from Melbourne to Brisbane. After discussing it with her family she decided to take the job and the family would move to Brisbane. 

How Happy Are We ???

They are coming to live in Brisbane, hooray.

So Sonya flew up a few times to find a house to rent, which is not easy these days. There is a shortage of houses and besides that she wanted it in the catchment area of Kelvin Grove State College because that is the school she wanted the boys to attend. She has remained friends with some she made when attending university here back in the nineties in Brisbane. They have been helping her decide on schools and finding a house. Finally, a friend found a suitable place to rent until they sell their house in Melbourne and buy one here. So they packed a huge truck with their household stuff and Sonya flew up to meet the truck and supervise the unloading. Bernie and the boys stayed in Melbourne. He is preparing the house for sale, he has done a lot of renovations and is building a back patio. The boys finished the school term and now are waiting for Bernie to load them and the dog into the car with a trailer of more stuff that didn't fit into the truck and drive them to Queensland. It takes two days.

Sonya has been amazing unpacking all the boxes and putting together a king sized bed and renovating an old pantry for the kitchen. She also drove us to drop our car into a repair shop after I crunched in the front driving into a garden. She also came and picked us up and drove us to see her house. It is an old Queenslander type house but quite nice and in a lovely area close to everything but in a quiet street. The best area is the back deck high amongst the trees.

Bill makes himself at home.

They will be a half hour drive away not a two and a half hour flight away.
We are so proud of her.