A wise man once said....

"When you talk, you are only repeating what you already know. But if you listen you may learn something new." Dalai Lama

Friday, 30 December 2011

Frogs And Things

Been sitting around relaxing fora few days. Imagine if I told you I shared my house with a frog. You'd start thinking of all those old fairy tales of princesses and things. Well I was looking at our dining room table and noticed the side 'support' had sagged. There was a slight bump in it which I decided to examing. It's a frog. It had remained there for about three days. It was last seen up on the Buddha shelf. How it moved around I do not know but can only assume it keeps the mosquitoes away!

Tuesday, 27 December 2011

Christmas In Ban Muang

Rushed posting. Thought I would just upload these photos of our arriving home and finding a Christmas tree, outside fairy lights and the house ready for us. Meals did not include a turkey but we had a super bar b q and grilled pork so all in all a couple of very good evenings. video
Our dog Tiger was very happy to see us come back. Mem, Wanna's sister had been looking after him. Looking after him to well I can see as he is much too over weight. But he was excited to see us and has settled down and appears to have stopped running after our neighbours chickens, which you can imagine did not go down to well with them.
We plan to go up to Chang Mai tomorrow for a couple of days then down to Pattaya and Bangkok. All a bit hectic but we do seem to have a lot of people to get to see.
Tonight we take the Kids to the Khon Kaen night market for dinner and ice creams. Should be fun with plenty of activity and lots to see going on.
But for now I must leave posting Blogs and get back to my fishing....

Wednesday, 21 December 2011

A Few Fast Weeks

Been a busy few weeks. I went to Houston last week for a business trip. Was lucky enough to be there for an Office Team night. We all got to go and have an evening doing/undertaking a cooking course. We cooked (with help from three chefs) a three course meal. Was excellent, leak and salmon soup, stir fried prawns and then a beautiful poached fish and potato dish topped off with caramelised pears and sauce. No complaints about Houston...

Wanna meanwhile went off to a couple of staff parties of her own and judging by her photos seems to have had a really great time. Tells the ‘slight’ hangover added to the story to assure her it was worth the effort.

Finally after all that we bottled out first home brew beer last night. Neither of us are drinking much at all but the few times we have a beer it is normally at home. Drinking and driving is not worth the risk in Australia. Added to which it’s expensive and makes getting up in a morning hard work. Both hassles I can do without.

So possibly this is my last post before Christmas. Off to Thailand on Friday. Might add something while I’m over there. We’ll see time goes.
Have a wonderful Christmas and I look forward to you joining me on my journeys next year.

Sunday, 4 December 2011

Big event for me last night. First public guitar performance. One song. I had chosen "Sunshine of your love' by the Cream. A 1968 track, and still one of my favourites. Went down well. The slide show attached to this post shows about you that 50 people turned up for the annual Gladstone Guitar School event. Its a showcase from the school to the students and an opportunity where we all get to play a song. Some students were very good. I was surprised some were still students...
Acoustic and electric guitars and some were singing. The Teacher is part of a Rock Band so we were lucky to have the bank along as our very own 'backing group'. And they were very patient! All in all a good night. Yes, I was nervous. You play every day at home and have no real idea if you are improving or not. Me, I now think another 12 months and I'll fell confident to stand up and play a few numbers. Trick now is to learn the songs properly and remember them... Not easy as you get older....

Slide show. Thats me in an orange 'T" shirt all hunched up over a guitar.


Sunday, 27 November 2011

Another Lazy Weekend In Gladstone

It’s beginning to warm up and today should reach 31o Deg and climbing. Grass is brown and everywhere hot and dry. Having spent my youth in UK I can be forgiven for thinking Christmas time should be cold with everyone discussing the possibilities of a white Christmas. Well not here for sure, unless of course you are going to spent it inside a fridge!!! So imagine our surprise where we saw the real Father Christmas passing us by in a bright red fire truck. We chased after him and managed to get a photo. Still seems a strange setting!!!! But at least after all these years I can confirm he is alive and well and living in Gladstone, Central Queensland. And I’ve got the picture to prove it.

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Thai Flood Relief Dinner

I was a bit fast with the earlier posting. Just found out the local Newspaper 'The Observer' did an article on it which came out yesterday. So here it is. Again great evening and of course for those of you who read my earlier blog you are ahead of the game. My blog beat the local Newspaper by a day with a "World Premier Scoop". Watch this space....

Monday, 14 November 2011

Flooding in Bangkok

You might well ask why I am mentioning the flooding in Thailand. Well the local Thai community organised a fund raising event. Actually a dinner dance complete with a good array of Thai food, Authentic Thai dancing and a band to supply dancing music. I estimate about 200 people turned up and a good time was had by all. It was so good I treated myself to a couple of beers. no excesses but it did indeed add to the spirit of it all.

The food as I say was excellent. The three local Thai restaurants had got together and supplied what can only be described as a fantastic spread. Chicken, curry, pork, savouries and both steamed and sticky rice. We went with about 10 friends and it made for a great atmosphere. Most surprisingly to me was that over 50 Thais turned up. Gladstone with a population of about 50,000 means this is about 0.1%. That struck me as a big percentage. It was a fun evening. My only regret was I have my phone camera not a proper camera so crap photos. Sorry............. :( Hence my only adding one to this post......

To top off a really great evening we raised over AUD$ 7,000 for the Flood Relief effort in Thailand. A good effort by all. And I would like to say that AUD$ 300 came from Wanna's employers, Barney Beach Caravan Park. What a wonderful appreciation of her by them and what an amazing kindness. Someone in Thailand does not know how fortunate they are.

Saturday, 12 November 2011


Beautiful. We have been tempting these little fella's for ages to join us in the garden. Well today them finally decided our food was good enough. Some pork we had cooked up on the Bar B Q a few days back.

TGIF We Got The Fish..sort of

We did get to the fishing site. Met a couple of other anglers who gave us advice on how to tie the line, cast etc. We watched them bring in a 5 kilo Barramundi. And yes we to caught one. But it got away. I know the usual excuse but its true. I took a picture of the one the other guy caught. We'll be going back there in the next few days for sure.

After fishing, thirsty work as you know we stopped at the bottle shop for a few beers. Went to the beach and amazingly watched the moon come up. Beautify orange orb. My phone camera could not do it justice. Wanna pointed out he rabbit on the moon. If you look closely its sort of there. But I asked her 'How can a rabbit live on the moon if its made of cheese?". "What cheese?'. At that it was time to head home before we got even move stupid!

Friday, 11 November 2011

Flying Foxes

Gladstone has its fair share of flying foxes. They live just opposite the Gladstone yacht Club. In the day they just hang around in complete open view to every one. They stink..... And at night they are everywhere. Amazingly no one eats them In Seychelles Flying Fox is a delicacy and I've managed to have some. It tastes like pigeon. Very bony but in a curry I suppose I could be forgiven if the taste was somewhat over powered by curry powder and chillies!!!

Anyway here I'm told they carry disease and cannot be eaten. Strange but that is the way it is. Pity looking at all this protein just hanging there waiting to be 'plucked' from the branches....

Friday Night Fishing

Decided I'll go fishing this evening. Think I got the inspiration this afternoon whilst driving through the marina area. Saw a sign over the fishing tackle shop and thought. "I've not been fishing for ages". So maybe after work I should make the effort. I'll pick up Wanna and take her along to spot I've located just north of Gladstone. There is an outlet to the power station cooling water system which is accessible to the public. And I've been advised people are catching 1.5 meter long Barramundi. So tonight's the night!!!! Photos of super big fish to follow. Maybe tomorrow. Just hope I manage to get a good shot of the one that got away before it slips of the hook......

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Real Men Use Real Bar B Qs

As I've mentioned several times I won't discuss work in my daily (now seeming to be more like weekly) musings. However this I could not resist. Walking round the site this morning I came across a super Bar B Q. I ask you 'What more could a boy want but a trailer with a double Bar B Q on it with plenty of room for a couple of Eskies full of ice and beer ? Wonderful. Unfortunately for all the tradies there in a strict no alcohol policy on the site. Still think positively, it is nearly the weekend. All we'll need to do it hook up the trailer and off we go. Lovely.

Thursday, 3 November 2011

And Work Just Keeps Getting In The Way

I see this bike parked up on one of our job sites nearly every day. One day I'm not going tobe able to stop myself jumping on it and going for a ride. Just a lovely old Harley. And summer's coming.....

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Bettings Aussie Stlye

I was going to do a short note on the past weekends events. We along with 4 other families went to 1770 and Agnes Waters for a camping trip. Great fun, good weather and a generally fun time. But, come Monday morning we got back at work and lost on the office lottery. Seem to be making a regular habit of that. Hence writign about camping, again.

However the next betting event was for the Melbourne Cup. Normally I do not bet but office sweeps etc are fair go. Of course you ask.........................I came first.

Dunaden win in Melbourne Cup

2011 Emirates Melbourne Cup at Flemington race course., Race 7, 3200 metres. Winner No 3 Dunaden ridden by Christophe Lemaire by a short nose to Red Cadeaux ridden by Michael Rodd. Picture: George Salpigtidis Source: Herald Sun

IN ONE of the closest photo-finishes in Melbourne Cup history French stayer Dunaden took out the Melbourne Cup by a short half head over Red Cadeaux.


Monday, 17 October 2011

Garden Snakes

Well never expected to see a snake in my garden. I know everyone says they are common around etc but even so.  In my garden.  Its walled in and not so big. Kept clean and the grass cut every few weeks so...
Anyway there it was. Wanna shooed it away with the end of the broom stick while I got the camera... I’ve had it identified.  It is a Black Whip snake. Potentially dangerous to humans but it left us along....

Want to know more about eh little chap.  www.wildlifeqld.com.au/Lesser_Black_Whip_snake.html

Saturday, 15 October 2011

The Big Weekend

Been  a long week since I got back from Uk. Tired everyday due to jet lag.  I think possibly the worst case I've had. Slept at 4.00pm Monday 6.00pm Tuesday and now Saturday I'm almost back to normal. And need to keep awake for the match Les Blues againist the Boys in Red. So this evening my entertainment is sorted....

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

UK In October

Its been a hectic few weeks, actually its been months since I last posted. Been spending the time as you know in Australia working to earn a crust and then just now had 10 days in Uk. Seemed I spent most of it on a plane. I went on a Thursday to UK and got there Friday night then back took 2 days via Dubai and changed planes in Singapore and Brisbane. Add up all the ‘real travel time I lost 3-4 days in transits.

Still it was worth it. Caught up with Sarah and Vivi along with Fed. Then also dad, Mother and Owen as well as Charlie and Jane. So well worth the trip.

Started off with a couple of days in London. Had dinner with the girls and Graham and other friends. Some small place in Camden. The following day spent going round Tottenham Court Road area to the design building and coffee shops. Even managed to look as some guitars...Also spotted one of those ‘Smart Cars’. They really are great. Cute more like. Not sure what Jeremy Clarkson from Top gear would say about them. Don’t think I want to know as it will surely disappoint me..Then we walked down one street and came across a food seller. Chatted away with him in Thai. He has been in Uk a few years but happy to chat away in Thai. Amazing.

Stayed in a hotel off Bayswater road so well positioned. Colette booked it. So thanks. Worked out well.

Then up to Thetford and catch up with the rest of the family. Dinner with Dad, Gulshen and my cousin Cary and husband Jasper. All good fun. Charlie and Lynnie joined us. Fantastic weather for a Bar B Q. Trip in the country and saw some pig farms. My favourite animals and they looked happy in the sun.

Day out with Mother to Diss. Auction was on but did not buy anything. No point how would I get it back here?....

Then back to Australia. I had planned to get across to Ireland and see my cousin Mary but Mother did not feel up to the flight and I was not going on my own so next time..

Dinner at Charlie and Lynnies. He had to show me his model Thai Boat with food on it. We ahd a good Thia dinner. All good, complete with chillies..
All good fun. Now back to work and I plan to enjoy Gladstone. Just need to let you all know what we’re up to.

Sure I've missed out lots of stuff to write about but just keen to get back on line. See you all soon.

Monday, 8 August 2011

Camping Outside Gladstone

Another week and ... well been camping last weekend. Couple of 'phone' photos which show poor light for cooking using torches etc. Added a new dimemsion to evening 'Alfresco'! But it was good fun. Believe me. Some of the adjacent campers were well above our budget but that did not detract from our night out.

I went with some friends as Wanna is away in Thailand. They brough along their kids and of course, this upset a lot of the older campers trying to get an early nights sleep. I'm talking 8.00pm. These kids were running around shining lights into all the tents, highlighting people walking to the communical toilets etc etc. You get the picture. Beautiful spot. Will go again and next time be better oganised.

Thursday, 28 July 2011

Silence Is Golden

Seems ages since I last posted. In fact it is ages. Over a month. Why I don’t know except laziness and there always seems to be tomorrow when I’ll get round to it. Also life seems to have settled down into a daily routine of work eat and sleep. Something like real ‘Ground Hog’ days.
Well tomorrow has arrived. Time to write something.
We’ve been busy socialising and going out and about for dinners etc.

Spotted an old tractor frame on our job site. Interesting to see something over 100 years old.

Managed to add in a trip to a Country Music evening which was fun. Not the usual guitar and lonesome cowboy routine but complete with a full 17 man orchestra.

Then great excitement, we bought a new tent and fishing rod. So this weekend we are off to the mountains and of course taking our Bar B Q and doing a spot of camping. The tent shown here is in our garden. We had a practice night yesterday. Still a bit cold....

What else. We bought a Toyota Corolla. Lovely little run around.

Went to the Camel racing. Yes, Gladstone has a fully fledged horse racing track. Holds about 12 meetings a year. Last one was special, an addition called camel racing. We went along but...No camel were raced. Just a few walk outs by camels and happy riders. Seemed main purpose of the day was to just have fun, i.e. copious amounts of grog and good cheer. Not sure how everyone managed to drink so much as the queue to the bar was constantly 8 persons deep along the full length of the place time!!! You had bookies so bets could be taken on all Australian races, there was even a fashion show etc so all in all everyone had a great time.

Oh yeah. Hydroponics going well.

Then and only then can I start writing again.... God I’m lazy these days. Need to improve !