Bob and Pooh Say:

Be eccentric now. Don't wait for old age to wear purple. No one is in charge of your happiness but you.

     

      Pam's Journal For July 2011

     
  Friday 1st July 2011  
 

I did some washing and a few chores in the morning. The washing received a heavenly rinse but as it was only a sprinkling I didn’t worry too much. In the afternoon we had a drive out to Howard Storage, Telstra Shop, Caravan shop & Johnny Appleseed. Alice was quite well behaved but as usual, Alice gave us some sightseeing along the way.

Telstra shop was a waste of time. We have been told our wireless modem plan has changed and will cost us more each month. The Telstra man was as much use as a chocolate fireguard so we left, not happy chappies.

Howard Storage did not have want I was looking for, so the afternoon was turning out into a bit of a dud. We decided we needed refreshments so we made our way to the Coffee Club where the young girl was having a few senior moments of her own. Time was marching on so we hurried along to the caravan shop which wasn’t very interesting.

The last call of the day was Johnny Appleseed who specialises in GPS’s. How mean are we? We made Alice take us there to buy her replacement. Once the purchase was made we then asked Alice to take us home with the new Queen on board. It was quite late when we arrived home so there wasn’t much else to do but pour a glass of red.

 
     
  Saturday 2nd July 2011  
 

Pete Mate reorganised the car and we had a short walk. Apart from that it was knitting, computers and crosswords.

 
     
  Sunday 3rd July 2011  
 

We went for a short walk. I discovered a wonderful shop in the rear of the hardware shop. How wonderful, blue and pink things together. The back shop was like an Aladdin’s cave with handbags, shoes, ornaments, jewellery and much more. Methinks I will have to return for another look.

We called in at the Organic Café for coffee & tea on our way home. Boy was that busy, people of Newmarket are obviously into organic food. Adjoined to the café was a supermarket which was equally as busy.

Once home my day panned out pretty much the same as yesterday. Pete Mate, however, played with Alice 2nd which responds to voice commands. People walking past the caravan might think my name is Alice and I sleep a lot because all you could hear over and over again was ‘Wake up Alice’. Eventually PM took Alice 2nd for a drive and to add insult to injury he took Alice 1st along also. He returned declaring that Alice 2nd was the better of the two. All the treasurer can say is, thank goodness for that.

 
     
  Monday 4th July 2011  
  Not a lot happened today. Pete Mate took Alice back to Johnny Appleseed to check out the maps.  
     
  Tuesday 5th July 2011  
 

We went for a short walk. On the way we called in at a medical practice to see if I could make an appointment. Not only could I make an appointment but the doctor would see me there and then. As I didn’t have the relevant paperwork I made the appointment for later that afternoon. We continued our walk, called in at some shops; paid Gloria Jean’s a visit before heading home.

Our new chairs have arrived but PM had to take the car up to the office to collect them. The packing was not adequate and one of the chairs has a scratch on it already. Apart from that we are pleased with them and have found them very comfortable.

In the afternoon I walked back to the doctor who saw me on time. I walked out of there into the pathology place, had a blood test and returned home all in a short space of time. Amazing service.

Friends from Tamworth, Tarranne and Neil, joined us for happy hour and then we walked up to the pub for dinner. It was lovely to see them and we enjoyed their company immensely. They are on two weeks holiday, travelling the coast of Queensland.

 
     
  Wednesday 6th July 2011  
 

We said goodbye to Tarranne and Neil as they went on their travels. The cold wind is still with us, which is a shame as the days are lovely and sunny. If only we could find a sheltered spot we could sit outside.

We walked up to the doctor’s for my test results. I think, in future, I will give all doctors a wide berth. Afterwards we walked over to the shops and - of course - Gloria Jeans.

 
     
  Thursday 7th July 2011  
 

Lay day.

 
     
  Friday 8th July 2011  
  I did some washing and cleaning then in the afternoon we went for a short walk. As per usual we found our way into Gloria Jean’s for a coffee. It was a beautiful day and the cold wind has dropped so we sat outside for some of the time. We were joined by our neighbour, Jill, for Happy Hour.  
     
  Saturday 9th July 2011  
 

The cold wind is back so sitting outside today was not really an option. Pete Mate took the sink unit out of its home because it was leaking into the drawers. There was a lot of huffing and puffing and very bad language.

Apart from that we amused ourselves with our hobbies.

 
     
  Sunday 10th July 2011  
 

A quiet day, Pete Mate was not feeling the best. He seems to have gone down with the bug I had a few days earlier. What can I say? I am a sharing person. He spent most of the day in bed and I was able to sit outside in the sun for a while before the wind returned.

 
     
  Monday 11th July 2011  
 

PM says he is feeling better so we decided to go and have a look at this huge shopping complex called Chermside. We needed a Telstra shop as well as one or two other things. Telstra, at the moment, is taking years off our lives by sending us bills for $700. Their mistake, not ours, but getting it corrected is like pulling teeth.

Once we were at the shopping complex, PM did not feel so good so we sat a while and drank coffee and ate food. Once he felt better we decided, after walking through the whole length and breadth of this huge place, that we would do a supermarket shop. That went well, no problem stocking up and giving Woolworths a big chunk of our pension.

Now the fun began, PM said with great conviction that if we left the complex by this door and just walked around the other side we would find the car. How wrong can a person be? We found ourselves walking around car parks that had nothing to do with the shopping complex. We pushed this damn trolley, which had a mind of its own, along the road, up and down dale. Eventually, 45 minutes later and after asking the way twice we found Billy. The biggest mystery is how we actually managed to be on the wrong side of the road to the shopping complex? It beats me. We were so glad to get home, I put the fridge things away and then we sat outside for a while with a cool drink recovering.

Later, much later, when all the rest of the shopping was stored and we had had a wine, I decided to cook the fish for dinner. It was too cold to cook outside so I lit the gas inside and promptly set alight the wrapping paper around the fish. This melted the cling wrap I had covering the vegetables and life was suddenly very scary. Pete Mate quickly realised this was fast becoming a blue job and took over, putting the flames out and cleaning up. Our wonderful smoke detector, the one that goes off as soon as it smells a whiff of toast, remained silent.

Only one thing left to do; pour another glass of wine.

 
     
  Tuesday 12th July 2011  
 

Another beautiful sunny day has dawned but the chill in the breeze is still with us. We drove out once again to Tamborine Mountain, this time to meet up with friends Fay & Ken. We had a very pleasant few hours with them chatting, eating and drinking. All too soon it was time to say our goodbyes and return home. Hopefully we will be seeing them again very soon.

Once home we poured a glass or two of red, one of which I knocked into Pete Mate’s laptop. He called me a few choice names and started to clean it up. As he did, he knocked my wine into my laptop. Fortunately no harm done (apart from the waste of perfectly good wine) but methinks we should keep our wine well away from the laptops in future.

 
     
  Wednesday 13th July 2011  
 

I had a mammoth wash day; at one point a lady asked me was I taking in washing from the rest of the park.

Whilst walking between the laundry and the washing line I noticed an unusual cloud formation in the sky. It stretched right to the horizon and had a small rainbow in the middle of it.

 
     
   
  A most unusual cloud with a patch of rainbow in it.  
     
 

It is a good feeling when all the washing is done. In the afternoon I sat outside in the sunshine, knitting, whilst Pete Mate mended a leaking tap. I thought it was best to stay out of the way as the language tends to flow freely. When it was all done we sat outside with a glass of red until the air became too chilly.

 
     
  Thursday 14th July 2011  
 

Another beautiful sunny day has dawned. We had a drive out to the lookout at Mt Coot-tha and had a very nice relaxing afternoon. The views from the lookout were of Brisbane and Moreton Bay. We took lots of photos, some not of the views, and then enjoyed a cup of coffee in the café. It is a well-planned place with a tourist shop and restaurant in addition to the café. The many placards gave the information we required about Mt Coot-tha which is derived from an Aboriginal word meaning honey.

 
     
   
     
   
  Left: A view of Brisbane (and Pete Mate in his photographer's pose).
Right: I love this picture.
 
     
 

We drove down the long, winding road to the Botanical Gardens and had a wander through but some of the area was closed due to construction work.

 
     
   
  Some pictures from the Botanic Gardens in mid winter.  
     
 

Wherever you look in Brisbane there seems to be some sort of construction work going on. Do you think maybe an election is looming?

Once home we enjoyed a glass of red sitting outside the ’van watching the most beautiful sunset. It was stunning.

 
     
  Friday 15th July 2011  
 

I woke up in the middle of the night with a migraine which was not at all fair as I had not eaten any chocolate. Anyway the day was a write off as any fellow sufferer will know.

 
     
  Saturday 16th July 2011  
  It poured with rain all day so it was a reading and knitting sort of day.  
     
  Sunday 17th July 2011  
 

The rain has just about gone and we again have blue skies. We travelled out to Wellington Point to some friends’ home for lunch. It was a lovely day and we enjoyed very much meeting up again with Chris, Peter, Helen & Paul. The meal was scrumptious, the red wine delightful and the company excellent. Add the lovely warm sunshine to the mix and what else could make a more perfect day.

Just before we were considering our departure a surprise visitor arrived, an old work colleague of Peter's whom we hadn't seen for about 25 years and we have to admit to not recognising him. I am sure we, too, must have changed somewhat in 25 years. Anyway it was an added bonus to see him again and hopefully when we are this way again we will also be able to meet up again and with his lovely wife, Sandie.

 
     
  Monday 18th July 2011  
 

We decided not to be beaten by the Goliath Chermside Shopping complex and returned for a second visit. All went well; we parked at the right entrance and walked through the mall to Telstra. We reckon we were in Telstra for over an hour so they could - very slowly - update our plans and give us new phones. By the time we escaped the clutches of the very nice Telstra lady we were in need of sustenance in the form of coffee and food. We found ourselves once again at the Coffee Club, not I might add, Gloria Jeans.

Once we left Chermside our next point of call was Spotlight which also happened to be next to Harvey Norman's. I quickly made my purchases in Spotlight and met Pete Mate in HN’s. We were looking at buying a new television and dual tuner set top box. Plus we were considering a hub thingy to link the two computers. We left there after saving a whole heap of money . . . by not buying a thing! By this time it was getting late and Bunnings would have to wait until tomorrow.

Off home we went to a wonderful glass of red and a happy hour where we patted ourselves on the back for saving so much money.

 
     
  Tuesday 19th July 2011  
 

The morning was spent doing chores such as washing and then in the afternoon we went to Bunning’s. Pete Mate is looking for a 'buffer' for the car and caravan. The first Bunning’s store we went into did not deserve to be in business - their customer service was nil. We left there quite disappointed but on the way home we found another Bunning’s store and dropped in to test their customer service. Talk about chalk and cheese! These people were in the business of selling and sell they did. We left there with the tool Pete Mate wanted, another new toy to play with. No one can accuse us of not contributing to the recovery of Queensland’s economy.

It was again drawing towards 'that' hour so we made tracks for home.

 
     
  Wednesday 20th July 2011  
 

We were up, packed and ready for our ‘holiday’ quite early. We set off for Burleigh to have a look around and have lunch before continuing to our destination. Well, we enjoyed the hills of Burleigh but never actually found the beach. We toured at least two shopping centre car parks and generally had a good look around. Only problem was we weren’t where we ought to be. When all else fails, ditch the plan and head to somewhere else. And that is what we did.

We enjoyed a very pleasant lunch at Palm Beach before continuing on to our friends, Fay & Ken. We didn’t have any problems finding their place and received a very warm welcome on arrival.

We enjoyed afternoon tea sitting in the sunshine. Once the sun started to fade it became chilly so we retreated indoors where K & F lit a wood burner which soon warmed us up helped by lots of red wine. We were treated like royalty, waited on hand and foot and ate an enormous amount of yummy food. It was so lovely to sit and chat until bedtime. Pete Mate and I retired to a rather large sized bed that was also very high. PM said he needed a GPS to find me.

 
     
  Thursday 21st July 2011  
 

We both had a good night’s sleep, not always possible in a strange bed. We showered and dressed and descended the stairs to find a full English breakfast waiting for us. These people could open a B & B. Once breakfast was over and cleared away we four drove into Coolangatta and Tweed Heads. Pete Mate and I stood either side of the border of NSW and Queensland. We walked along the board walk and enjoyed not only the company but the place and the whole holiday atmosphere. We chatted to an Aboriginal artist whose paintings were very good and if I had the money and space would have purchased at least one of them. We wandered back to the cars and then took off to another delightful place where we had lunch and then it was time to say goodbye to Fay & Ken.

We drove home with the sadness we always feel when we say goodbye to friends. Once home and unpacked it was back to normal for us, our holiday over.

 
     
  Friday 22nd July 2011  
 

We again decided to go and spend some money in Harvey Norman’s, this time for my birthday present, an IPad. I have wanted one ever since I watch our friend Bev use hers. I first went into Spotlight to get some more knitting supplies and whilst I was in there it suddenly dawned on me; what would I actually do with an IPad?

When I joined PM in Harvey Norman I asked the very nice young salesman to show me all that an IPad can do and I came to the conclusion that I didn’t need one. So once again we left Harvey’s having saved a lot of money. We need to go there more often, we save so much money.

Pete Mate was not happy about the saving because he reckons I did it on purpose to make his job of choosing a birthday present more difficult. No pleasing some folks is there?

 
     
  Saturday 23rd July 2011  
 

Get ready day is always a busy day with the packing and cleaning. I must have had a senior moment because in the midst of all of this I did the ironing, made a lasagne and a batch of pea and ham soup. I was pretty pooped by the time the red flowed, I can tell you.

 
     
  Sunday 24th July 2011  
 

We managed to get away from Brisbane just after 10.00am, pretty good for us. It was an easy short trip up the coast to Maroochydore.

Once here the welcome I received in the park office was one of the friendliest we have had. We unpacked, set up camp, had some lunch and then went for a walk. We started on the beach but my dickie ankle does not like soft sand. We found a path and walked along it to the Maroochy River estuary. It is all very beautiful with blue skies and white surf crashing down. Lots of people were out and about enjoying themselves.

 
     
   
 

The man with his back to us was cleaning fish he had caught, periodically throwing scraps to the birds.
The far pelican neatly caught a scrap and the closer pelican gave its impression of, "Not happy, Jan!"

 
     
 

Once back at the caravan we sat outside for a little while and met our neighbour. As soon as the sun starts to set it becomes chilly so we retreated inside to the warmth of the caravan.

 
     
  Monday 25th July 2011  
 

I did all my chores then sat outside in the beautiful sunshine, knitting. I called to Pete Mate that I was going to the loo. Much, much later I came back. He asked why I was so long and I had to admit to getting lost and found myself way over the other side of the caravan park.

After lunch we went for a walk along the foreshore, I find it easier to walk on the path rather than the beach.

 
     
   
  Over on the far side of the river was a woman paddling her surf board with her dog.  
     
 

We reached the turnaround point and walked back, called in at the Coffee Club for coffee/tea and then walked some more.

Whilst checking out the shops at Cotton Tree we spied a library and Pete Mate wanted information about the area. He went off to the library whilst I browsed in some more shops. Having told him which side of the road I would be on, I finished browsing and sat on a bench and waited and waited. No sign of Pete Mate so I walked to the library and described him to a lady there. He had left some time ago. I then decided enough was enough and I would walk back to the caravan. Who should I meet coming the other way but Pete Mate looking for me! He had looked for me on the wrong side of the road and decided I must have gone back to the ‘van. When he didn’t find me there he came looking again. I wouldn’t mind but the Cotton Tree shopping area is not much bigger than a postage stamp!

Once home I returned to my post outside the ‘van and continued to knit.

 
  Tuesday 26th July 2011  
 

The day was similar to yesterday in that I did my chores then knitted outside the caravan and we went for a walk. I first had to unpick the knitting I did last night whilst watching the television. Not happy, especially when after doing the unpicking I made the same mistake again. We walked a little further today, no we didn’t get lost we are just trying to get some much overdue exercise.

 
     
  Wednesday 27th July 2011  
 

We walked for a while again today before finding our way to The Coffee Club. I read, knitted and Pete Mate played computers. The sun was shining but the wind has returned.

 
     
  Thursday 28th July 2011  
 

Today panned out pretty much the same as yesterday except the walk was a short one as I had to go to the hairdressers. I had a very good cut for a very cheap price; I could do with more of these bargains.

 
     
  Friday 29th July 2011  
 

We had a very pleasant day out at Bribie Island with our friends Jan and Ross. After a coffee and catch-up chat we walked to the nearby bowling club for an excellent lunch. We then strolled along the front. We ended up in an excellent museum that not only had interesting artefacts, but our guide, Desley, was fascinating in the way she told us the stories. Bribie has so much history attached to it including Matthew Flinders. All too soon we had to say our goodbyes and travel home. It was as I said before a lovely day with two of the loveliest people.

 
     
  Saturday 30th July 2011  
 

Today was a shopping day, mainly for a birthday present for me, but we also had to do the boring old supermarket shop as well.

The shopping centre was huge so Pete Mate took Alice with him and bookmarked where the car was. We walked and walked browsing as we went, mainly in jewellery shops. Eventually Pete Mate made his purchases and we went in search of lunch. We then had to find Woolworths which was way over the other side of this giant complex. I went to do the shopping whilst Pete Mate went to the camera shop, then in search of the car. The idea was, instead of pushing the shopping trolley up hill and down dale again, I would wait with it and he would bring the car to me.

I finished the shopping and sat outside waiting and waiting. I then saw a pack of batteries in the trolley that I hadn’t paid for. Back inside I went to pay for them. The assistant must have thought I was as mad as a hatter because I'd been through the self service checkout and had to keep asking for help. Now I was back again admitting to shoplifting.

Outside once more I waited and waited and eventually Pete Mate arrived but without Billy. He had found Billy but could not find his way back to me. He bookmarked the car park in Alice and took off again to get the car. A short time later he arrived. We loaded the shopping and went home. Thank goodness it was happy hour.

 
     
  Sunday 31st July 2011  
 

It was market day in downtown Maroochydore today so we wandered over and had a browse. I bought one or two things including a new hat. The Emu Oil chap gave Pete Mate chapter and verse as to why he should be taking it and I had a hand scrub with some very nice smelling grit.

We went in search of a Chinese restaurant as friends, Liz and Nev, had phoned us the night before and suggested we have dinner there. We walked up and down the road a few times asked a couple of people and then decided that to try the Tibetan takeaway. He sort of confirmed that his place used to be the Chinese but said his food was better. Maybe it was but it would have meant us eating in a place that resembled a kitchen and there would be people in and out all the time. Not so good for having a chat.

We walked over to the Bowling Club and checked that out. It was nice and the staff friendly. When Liz and Nev arrived we had a vino - as you do  - and then walked over to the club. We had a lovely time catching up as we hadn’t seen them since 2006. The food was good as was the wine, and the company was excellent.

Again all too soon it was time to say our goodbyes. Nev and Liz drove home and we wandered back to the caravan. Well, actually one of us staggered back and it wasn’t me!