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Something of my ABOUT PAGE

17 Jul

PLANNING ON MOVING?

A few years ago we saw in a brochure that a house close to Goulburn Railway Station was for sale. It was also near a shopping centre, even an ALDI store was within easy reach. What more could we want if we planned to move to a more rural area?

We saw our dream come true, namely to sell our present dwelling, buy the new place and end up with something like fifty thousand Dollars saved in the bank! People told us, but Goulburn, this is a bit out of the way, isn’t it?

No, we said, not at all. There’s the Railway Station close by. We hop on the train and are in Sydney in no time. The pensioner excursion trip from Goulburn to Sydney would still cost us only two Dollars and fifty cents! We can even go from Goulburn to Newcastle for our two Dollars fifty!

But you cannot do such a long trip that often, was the objection. We were asked, how often we were then going to see our children. How often do we see them now? We asked back. We pointed out, that we more or less only saw them for birthdays and Christmas anyway. We could still see them on these occasions, when we lived in Goulburn.

So we were all set to make the move to Goulburn, when it suddenly dawned on us, that we could not possibly move to the new place without doing some renovations first. The new place would need some renovations to be done to it! Renovations? You are kidding! Who would want to do renovations at our age! If we paid someone to renovate for us, we’d probably end up with no money left in the bank.

This is the end of the story. We are not going to sell our home and we are not going to move to another place.

March 29, 2013
Yesterday I found this page. I think it was in draft. I was curious what it contained. After reading it, I thought, why not publish it? So here it is.

END OF STORY?

May be it is and may be it isn’t. Basically nothing much has changed since I wrote the above.

= = = = = = = = =

Today is the 17th of July 2017. I come back now to the above story that I published a few years ago in my ABOUT page. Well, over the past years we realized more and more that suitable properties in the Goulburn area would be a bit too dear for us and not worth all the troubles of moving. However, that idea that we could perhaps live in a country area somehow stuck with us. For a while our inquiries were set on Cootamundra, a town in New South Wales, also with a Railway Station on the Sydney to Melbourne line. Quite likable properties were significantly cheaper than comparable properties here  a bit to the south of Sydney. We checked out quite a lot of properties on the internet. Once Peter and I even stayed in a hotel in the main street of Cootamundra. We did get a very good impression of that little town. People there seemed to be all very friendly towards strangers. We thought that this was a place that we could definitely like. We thought it was feasible for us to live there. But in the end it turned out we were really not determined enough to initiate some steps towards moving.

A few years have passed. Since both Peter and I are past eighty now, should we really stop thinking of moving to  a different area? And a country area at that that we are not used to at all. So, we are in old age now. But we still  love to travel, We also love to go for family visits. However, with each year we may find it a bit harder to do all this. For how long can we  keep it up really, all this moving about?

We have just been on a visit to Benalla in Victoria, seeing our son Martin who recently moved to Benalla. This is a beautiful thriving little country town, also on the Sydney to Melbourne train line! Properties are less than half the price of the properties here in our area in the Illawarra! Of course, alone the likelihood  of being  able to purchase at a reasonable price a good property in Benalla , and that our son lives there now in his own house, made us think that maybe we could move there too.

Yes, we could, and we could not. Medical facilities, yes they are available. It  would however be  a question whether they would be the right kind of facilities for the treatments that Peter requires. We would have to find out. Also, we would need a lot of help with actually moving and sorting everything out. Of course, we could afford to pay for a professional removalist. Maybe we would have to get rid of some  of our old furniture and things that we do not need any more. And then we could buy something new for the new place. Could we cope  with all this? Is  it worth it to undertake a move  like this at our age? The more we doubt, the more years pass, and in the end we’ll really be toooo old for all this!

In the meantime we had another great-grandchild, a boy called Carter, He was born on the 21st of November 2016. He is the son of granddaughter Roxy and of Scott. Yesterday we had a family celebration at the Illawarra Yacht Club. Little Carter was there with his mum, grandparents, his cousins and lots of aunts. Carter is a very huge and very friendly baby. The family celebrations were for Lucas, who is going to be five tomorrow on Tuesday. Alexander, the younger brother of Lucas, as well as Lucas did like to play with their cousin Carter. It was lovely to see the three boys together.

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Some presents arrived for Lucas at the Illawarra Yacht Club.

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Back to my Diary

6 Jul

We had arrived in Benalla two weeks ago on Wednesday in beautiful late afternoon sunshine. I was very happy that we had found our son’s new place straight away and that we had made good time on our a bit more than 600 km trip. We had left Dapto early in the morning as soon as it got a bit light and we made it to Benalla before it got dark. In Benalla the air was fresh and cool, but the sun still warmed it a bit. Martin, our son, said that during the night the temperature could drop to freezing point. First thing in the morning he would look outside and check whether the birdbath had been frozen over again. In Martin’s house it was warm and cozy. A cup of tea was very welcome. Later on we had an excellent home cooked dinner.

Martin had bought a two bedroom house. We were given the spare bedroom. It was similar to what it had been like when we used to visit him in Essendon in Melbourne, where he had rented a two bedroom place. Before Martin left the place in Melbourne, he had given away most of his furniture for he was in the lucky position to take over the Benalla house with all the furniture and other things in it. This is furniture, I might say,  is absolutely great to have and very tasteful. On top of it it saved Martin quite a bit of moving. Still, he had to get rid of his old furniture in Melbourne, which was not all that easy, I guess.

The stuff that he had to move to the new house some 200 km away he packed into a hired  van. He had to return the van the same day after having travelled the 200 km to Benalla and back. Martin is 57 and not used to lifting heavy things. He’s only used to office work and a lot of walking and he even did quite a bit of running in the past. In Melbourne he did not need a car. He could walk everywhere or use public transport. For travelling he often hired a car.

Now, in Benalla, he’s already used to walking the few minutes into town. Still, he says he might perhaps buy a car sometime soon. But he’s not sure yet. At the moment he has  problems with sitting. With all that sitting at the office his back was vulnerable. Now with having had to lift a lot of stuff to clear his place in Melbourne just a few weeks ago, his back became very painful,  still is very painful  when he is sitting down or lying down. He can never sit for very long. He does most things standing up. Walking, he finds is very easy for him. So he feels fine walking. But lying down is difficult and he has trouble sleeping through the night.

Peter and I were lovingly looked after by our son as always. For the four nights in Benalla we stayed in Martin’s spare bedroom, which is the Japanese room. I show here some pictures of it:

In that bedroom there was also a large built-in wardrobe. And a heater was set up for us. We never felt too cold in Benalla.

My Diary

4 Jul

To be writing regularly, oh, I find it is not so easy to get around to it at all times. I always intend to write, write, write. I seem to have lots of things to write about in my head but somehow before I have a chance to write it down, it is gone again. Maybe I should at least take some notes, that is, get into the habit to write some notes down. Maybe, what is a bit of a diary to me, is, when I take some pictures of persons and places. Looking at the pictures, it is easier to remember some of the things in my life.

Recently we have been visiting Benalla in Victoria.  Unfortunately, because of bad eyesight, I cannot drive anymore. So  Peter had to drive to Benalla and back all by himself. We were driving to Benalla to visit our son Martin and to see his new place. Door to door it was about 600 km only, whereas when the son lived in Melbourne (Essendon) the distance was about 800 km.

Since we are in the midst of winter now here in Australia, daylight hours are only about for ten hours, namely from ca. 7 am to 5 pm. Well, Peter had no problem driving the distance within daylight hours. However, I suggested that on the way back we could stay in a motel in Holbrook  for one night to interrupt the journey, and that would give us the chance to look around a bit and familiarize us again with some things in the area. But oh no,  Peter insisted on driving straight home. I like to call it ‘homeritis’!

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On our last day in Benalla, a Saturday, all of us went for lunch to the Art Gallery Cafe. We were very happy that our Grandson and his wife and two daughters could meet us there.

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On the way to the Cafe

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Here grandson Tristan arrives with his family to meet all of us.

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Son Martin having a rest in the park.

 

Son Martin took these pictures of Peter and me on the terrace of the Cafe.

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View from the cafe’s terrace 

It was a bit too cold to sit out there. It was better to have lunch inside.

Here is some of the food that we had.

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This is grandson Tristan.

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Kia

 

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Jak.i

After lunch we had a look at some of the pictures in the Art Gallery.

 

It was lovely to see great-granddaughters Kia and Jaki again as well as Tris and Steph. And now I include some more pictures from another park nearby that we took on another day.

 

 

 

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Nato Exercises in Romania

26 Jun
Our second stop on the way back from Ballina, Victoria, was at Gundagai, NSW, Then started the long, boring drive to Goulburn. This stretch of road is less than 200 km, but as I said, it is absolutely boring! I had trouble getting a station into the radio that was close enough to listen to without disturbances.
Finally I found an ABC News station. The woman News reader had what sounded to me a wonderful clear voice, . I had just started listening to her, when she said something about  Nato exercises in Romania.. I asked Peter, who was sitting beside me and was driving, could he hear these news. He couldn’t. I asked, did he have his hearing aid switched on. Yes, it was on. So I thought I’d have to turn it up a bit more so he could understand what was being said on the news.
It turned out, he did  not want to listen to this ‘terrible’ voice.  HE JUST DID NOT LIKE THIS VOICE. Before I was able to turn the volume down, he SCREAMED at me, It was such  a big scream. It made me feel absolutely devastated. Not only did I find it hard to cope with this news about Nato but on top of it I found myself blasted with this enormous screaming. How on earth would I relax now? I just did not feel like sitting in the front of the car any more, eyes open all the time, not being able to listen to the radio, not being able to talk to Peter.
Well, I know now, it was wrong of me to turn the radio on at all. Before we had reached Gundagai I had been able to always get some station in that was close, First we listened to this:
http://www.abc.net.au/radio/programs/australiaallover/, ” Spend your Sunday mornings with Macca as he travels around Australia, speaking to Aussies at home and around the world.”
 Later on we found a station with some country music.
Of  course I switched the radio off immediately when Peter screamed at me so horribly. I never dared to turn it on again on the whole way back  to Dapto.
I have been concerned for a long time about what is going on with NATO in  Europe. None the less,  I cannot help getting more and more concerned. Just now I googled “Nato Exercises in Romania”.  Voila, there were about ten different publications about it!
These entries are from different sources all dated from recent weeks.
How about this one:

 

 

Books by Australian Author Liane Moriarty

18 Jun

I just copied a review of a book by Liane Moriarty and published it here:

https://auntyuta.com/2017/06/18/what-alice-forgot-by-liane-moriarty/

In the review it was said that the novel “What Alice Forgot” is going to be made into a movie to be released in 2017. I have already read this novel and I do hope that I soon may be able to see this movie, when it comes out this year.

Apparently there are also some other books by Liane Moriarty that might be made into movies:

https://www.popsugar.com.au/celebrity/What-Other-Liane-Moriarty-Books-Being-Made-Movies-43410408#photo-43410406

So far the only other book by Liane Moriarty that I’ve read is:

Truly Madly Guilty

The following is taken from a review about Truly Madly Guilty:

“IF ONLY THEY’D SAID NO…

Clementine is haunted by regret. It was just a barbeque. They didn’t even know their hosts that well, they were friends of friends. They could so easily have said no.

But she and her husband Sam said yes, and now they can never change what they did and didn’t do that Sunday afternoon.

Six responsible adults. Three cute kids. One playful dog. It’s an ordinary weekend in the suburbs. What could possibly go wrong?

Marriage, sex, parenthood and friendship: Liane Moriarty takes these elements of our lives and shows us how guilt can expose the fault lines in any relationship, and it is not until we appreciate the fragility of life that we can truly value what we have.”

You find the review here:

https://www.qbd.com.au/truly-madly-guilty/liane-moriarty/9781925481396/

In both books by Liane Moriarty that I have read so far, Liane depicts people that live in contemporary Sydney. What she writes about the characters’ Australian lifestyle seems very true to me. It makes me think about the way we live and what our priorities are. I am quite a bit older now than most of Liane’s characters. And I am a migrant to Australia who settled here nearly sixty years ago. As migrants my family had overall somewhat different lifestyle experiences from Liane’s characters on the North shore of Sydney. Still, a lot of the problems she describes in her books, problems that families may come up with, seem to be universal. I think the author herself is a young married woman with two young children. She would know first hand how demanding but also joyful marriage and the raising of young children usually is.  Often in a young marriage there is a lack of time to do the things together that bind together. And all too often the stresses of modern life may lead to divorce and great upheaval for the children.

 

 

Berlin in 26 Days from the 4th to the 30th of June 2016

17 Jun

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I just noticed a blog about our first Sunday in Berlin in June 2016:

https://wordpress.com/read/blogs/24843910/posts/11404

There is a video that was taken in the Volkspark am Weinberg.

I did write the following:

We had arrived on Saturday, the 4th of June. Ilse’s sons had come to Tegel-Airport to pick us up and drive us with all our luggage to our apartment in Rubensstrasse. It was so good to have the two cars waiting for us. Klaudia as well as Ilse and Finn had also come along and we took off on the Autobahn that took us from the airport to our apartment in just a few minutes! Once we were settled in our apartment, we were given huge amounts of food, especially Ilse and Finn had brought a lot of food along. So all of us stayed together for quite a while, talking about lots of things and having a nice meal.

Strangely enough we did not feel too tired to go out to the Brandenburg Gate after our Berlin family had left us. So it was the five of us from Australia, namely Martin, Caroline, Matthew, Peter and me, exploring Berlin on our own on our first day in Berlin after we had only just arrived after our very long trip all the way from Australia.

The following morning we went out for breakfast. Die “Wolke” was just around the corner. They were doing pretty good business on a Sunday morning. We noticed a constant stream of customers. So we had a good breakfast sitting down in the Wolke Cafe.

PETER LOVED THIS BUN

Steak tartare is a meat dish made from finely chopped or minced rawbeef

I seem not to have taken any pictures from that afternoon we spent near Brandenburg Gate (Brandenburger Tor) and where we had gone to by public transport.
But on Sunday the five of us did – also by public transport –  go to Alexander Platz and from there on the U-Bahn to Rosenthaler Platz to meet my niece Corinna and her son Carlos for lunch.

After lunch and coffee at the place that had been a cindema in the past,  we were heading for Volkspark am Weinberg. where – as Corinna promised – there would be some dancing on display together with great swing music from the 1940s. Carlos had made his good-buys in the meantime. (After all, it is only a certain amount of time a fifteen year old is willing to spend with the ‘oldies’!)

Peter and I found the music quite electrifying. It reminded us of old times and the swing music that we used to like. During the 1950s, when we would often go dancing, swing was still quite popular.On that Sunday afternoon in the park inspired by the music  Peter and I actually tried a little bit of dancing of our own. To our amusement, somebody videoed us while we were doing this! (See video at the beginning of page) We found this absolutely hilarious. Later on we watched for quite some time the dancing of the very young people. They seemed quite familiar with this type of dance music and danced very well indeed. A lot of these young people had dressed up in the 1940s style. There was even one young guy who had dressed in something that reminded us of the post WWII period when the young Americans of our occupation forces looked in their  uniforms a bit like this guy did. Quite amazing!

The above is taken form my post from Jul 26, 2016 with this URL:

https://wordpress.com/read/blogs/24843910/posts/11404

First thing when you go to this URL there is this video that was taken in the Volkspark am Weinberg. I think Matthew was the one who made this video of us and titled it “Adorable Dancing Couple”

Photos from June 2016, Berlin Memories

17 Jun

Quite a few years ago this place used to be a cinema. Now it is a cafe with lots of books for customers  to read.

 

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Among people at Berlin Alexander Platz  on the first Sunday in June 2016

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Here is Peter with our son on the left, next to him our daughter, and the daughter’s partner on the right

Yes, this picture is taken by me, also at Alexander Platz. The five of us had arrived  from Australia only the day before! After our first night at the apartment we all went to a nearby baker for breakfast. We talked the other day about what had been available there  for breakfast. One very memorable thing were the bread rolls  with fresh raw minced meat!

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I think we had an early breakfast at The WOLKE, WHICH WAS A BAKERY and also  a coffee shop. Later on we went by S-Bahn from Bahnhof Friedenau to Alexander Platz. Did we have a Curry wurst at Alexander Platz? We definitely had something to eat and a drink. Then we went by U-Bahn to Rosenthaler Platz where we met my niece Corinna and her son Carlos. So, we went with them on a tour of the neighbourhood. This district, called Prenzlauer Berg, is popular with  tourists. Actually, this is the district, where Corinna went with all of us to have coffee in that converted cinema. Before that we went with Corinna and Carlos for a Mexican lunch. Then after coffee we went to a park where there was music and dancing. By that time Carlos, who was already pretty grown up, 15 I think, excused himself and went off somewhere else, probably to spend time with his friends.

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Here we came out of the underground.

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The above pictures are taken in the park where the music and the dancing was. Oops. I forgot the pictures from our Mexican lunch. Here they are:

 

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Peter with Corinna and Carlos at the Mexican place where we had lunch.

 

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