Thursday 31 October 2019

The Road To Chooyblues, Part Three. The races.

No visit to Bathurst is complete without a visit to Mount Panorama race course. I had timed our visit to coincide with the big car race. A real selling point as far as Tony was concerned.
I could bore you with loads of pictures of cars, but I won't.  As you know we stayed with Janice and Mick at their house. Look, you can see the mount from their front door.
The race is not a one day event, on the Wednesday there is a parade through the town of all the big team transport trucks, all polished and tooting their horns. Next came the race drivers, all perched on convertible cars waving to the crowds, and there were crowds. Janice got a picture of Tony and I at the barricade. 
Later on the same day, we visited the National Motor Racing Museum.
Tony and I did take lots of pictures inside, but I like this one, that Janice took outside.
Inside I found a connection to the Isle of Man, my home for 45 years.
This helmet belonged to one of the most famous TT riders who ever visited the Island.
I had no idea he had raced in Australia.
The following day Tony and I visited the Mount again, spending quite a bit of time exploring the viewing areas around the track and planning where to watch the big race on Sunday.
We took a shuttle bus up to the top. There were some beautiful views of the town and the surrounding countryside.
It was a beautiful day.

Then the clouds rolled in, it got cold and it was time to go.
On Saturday Tony and Mick were at the race track while Janice and I spent some time in town. 
We visited Anni Downs store. 
One of the items on my list of things to do while visiting.
Yes, I met Anni, but I forgot to take photos of the store. It was a delight though, with many things to see and be inspired by. I was very good and only bought three things.
Anni was good enough to sign my book for me. 
After all that excitement, Tony and I spent Sunday at the races.  The crowds were much bigger than on previous days and even though we got there early we were lucky to get a spot at our chosen corner.
For once Tony didn't take lots of pictures! And neither did I.
It was another beautiful day, we were careful and neither of us caught much sun, keeping hats on, sleeves down and using plenty of sun block. 
The race was fun and even though we could only see one corner of the track, there was a giant screen behind us, which showed the whole race, just like watching it at home on tv. LOL
So lets recap the list of things to do...
Visit the Sydney Aquarium. ✔️
Get together with our friends Janice and Mick again.  ✔️
Visit Anni Downs store. ✔️
Visit The Dish at Parkes.  ✔️
Watch the big Bathurst Supercars Race.  ✔️
Finally meet Chookyblue.  ❌

Maybe next time......

Thursday 24 October 2019

The Road To Chookyblues Part Two Bathurst

Our rail journey from Sydney was wonderful, we had great views of the mountains and the countryside. At Lithgow, we had to disembark and hop onto a coach for the rest of the journey and we arrived in Bathurst after 6pm. Janice and Mick were waiting for us at the station.
They were the perfect hosts and made us feel very welcome. 
 They are also the best tour guides, and took us tripping about in town,
 The fernery was lovely and peaceful after the hustle and bustle in town.
 The route back to the car took in some interesting murals. (Murials, to those who know!)
 Mick was very obliging when the call for models went up!
 There were also trips out of town.
 We saw many more murals.
 These ones were in Eugowra and tell the story of the Escort Gold Robbery.
Tony took lots of pictures.
An important thing on our list of places to see was The Dish, at Parkes.
For those who don't know, it is the very same dish that received most of the television pictures of the moon landing, back in 1969.
We were surprised to find that entrance to the visitors centre was free. 
That almost made up for the swarm of flies!
Mick joked that I would be an honorary Aussie if I swallowed one.
I guess I'm an honorary Aussie then......
And here we all are, after I spat out the offending fly!
I know, I know, Bathurst.....October.....Motor Sport....
Next time.

Monday 21 October 2019

The Road to Chookyblues. Part One Sydney.

Chookyblue and I started blogging within a few months of each other, twelve years ago!! A lot has happened in that time, for both of us. Some good, some bad, some wonderful. We have crafted and blogged our way through many adventures. Reading each others blogs along the way.
Recently we finally got to meet in person. But I had some other stops to make first.
I told Tony that I wanted to visit Australia for my 50th birthday, and he agreed, I knew I was onto a winner when I suggested that we go in October instead of August (My actual birth month),and visit Janice and Mick while we were there, but more about that in another post.
First stop, Sydney.
We left home in New Zealand on a beautiful warm sunny Sunday afternoon and drove to Christchurch where we booked into a hotel, but only for half a night as we had to be up just after 3am in order to catch a very early flight to Sydney.
 The plane landed at about 7am local time on Monday, so lots of time to wander around. Tony hadn't been to Sydney for about 20 years and was a little disoriented, as he said, he used to start in the docks, not mid town! He soon found his bearings and we made our way to Darling harbour where we visited the Maritime Museum. Tony was excited to discover that we could visit both a warship and a submarine. They brought back many memories for him of his time in the New Zealand navy.
Inside the museum I was fascinated by some sculptures made entirely from rubbish pulled from the oceans.
There were many pieces suspended in the entrance foyer,
 And even attached to pillars and walls.
We spent quite a lot of time at the museum before heading back into town and looking at the shops. The only purchases made were a sun hat, as I had left mine at home and some head ache tablets. 
It was a long day so after a look at the shops we had an early tea and an early night.
On the Tuesday morning we visited the aquarium. That was my treat, I do love to visit the fishies.
We got there twenty minutes before the doors were due to open, in the hopes of missing out on the long queues. We were not the only ones who thought of that, but luckily didn't have to wait long. Tony took LOTS photos. I didn't, I was too busy watching the fish.
The Dugong was very friendly and hung out at this window for quite some time. As it turned out, we had arrived at this window just before feeding time.
 We also hit lucky and turned up just on feeding time for the eagle rays too.
 If no one was waiting, a staff member would bang on the structure near the surface and very soon a ray would appear and leave very shortly after with his jaws working away at whatever had been popped into his mouth.
 It was wonderful to watch, of all the fishies I think rays are my favourites.
 They look so graceful flying through the water. Such beautiful creatures. Not just eagle rays, but all rays, large small, what ever. Love them! 
 Of course there were dozens of species of  other fish and sharks too. There was also a sea turtle, but he didn't want to pose nicely for Tonys camera. It was fun to see him though.
Last of all, a trip to see the penguins. I think they may have been Tony's favourite judging by the number of photos he took!
We spent most of the morning looking at the fish and I made sure to go around the ray tank twice. 
After lunch in town, we headed to the station, to begin part two of our journey.
I'll blog that next time.