Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Another grave as well as fish and chips

Our flight from Townsville to Brisbane was quiet and peaceful which is typical of most Aussie flights. Boarding and disembarking is much more peaceful and less 'pushy' than flights in the US.

We had organized a rental car in advance and it turned out to be a Toyota Corolla. As usual I walked around it and took photos for insurance purposes. The reason why you see this photo is that Robin used to complain that we always were given a boring white car. This is not boring!

I never thought I visit both of my grandmother's graves in successive days. The grave is in Lutwych Cemetery and I usually visit it if I go to Brisbane. Over the years, the metal lettering has started to fall from the grave stone, so I brought along a tube of superglue and we glued any letters we found back into place.

Meantime, Brisbane was extremely hot with a temperature of 100 degrees or 37 Celsius. This is in September! If you are in Europe or the US, this is the equivalent of March. Fortunately it was much cooler in Urangan with a stiff on-shore breeze.

We then drove the 200 miles up to our Airbnb in Urangan which was quite peaceful. Most of the cars drive at the exact speed limit in Australia. Police use hidden radar cameras and fines are steep.

For a simple dinner, we decide to get some fish and chips so I drove to the shop near the jetty and ordered a $20 package for two. While the f&c were being cooked, I walked over to the nearby jetty which now has some lighting in the first few yards.

Back to the shop where I have been going for years, Each time there seem to be new owners.

Two large crumbed sweet-lip that were pretty good as well as the usual somewhat soggy chips. I despair that your typical Aussie fish and chip shop will ever produce good crisp chips like they used to when I was young.

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Two walks, two graves and two gelati

After a delicious pasta dinner and plenty of good wine, we slept well but I rose early and went for a walk in the other direction from the day before.

Australian cities really encourage people to get out and exercise.

There was just a slight breeze and it made for very pleasant walking.

I thought I would take some photos of the houses along the way. Houses on stumps are very popular in Queensland and the idea is that the breeze goes under the house and helps cool it.

More modern houses tend to be low set.

This is a huge tree. 

A park with play things for children.

Not all houses in this expensive neighborhood are spiffy. I suspect that if this one comes on the market it will be torn down.

Typical quiet street, lined with houses.

Marianne had been doing research on where my grandparents were buried in Townsville and found the location so we went to Belgian Gardens. We knew that they were graves 126 and 127 in section D3 but it was difficult to find them while we walked around the section.

However we did find them supporting a hose for the nearby water tap.

Both of my grandmothers died before I was born. I have only vague recollections of my grandfather including being burnt by his cigarette and meeting him in Sydney.

I was pleased to have gone there and we cleaned off the weeds that were laying on top.

Curiously there was a vase with four dead stalks. I wondered how it had got there.

We amused by this nearby grave with a teapot.

So if any body in future generations of the Perry family want to find the grave, just keep going down the road past the D3 sign and stop when you come to the second water tap. It's immediately on the right.

Castle Hill which is the main landmark in Townsville.

We then went to Kissing Point which used to be a fort overlooking the harbour. Some of the land is still under the control of the Army and this is where the Senior Military Commander in the region. Much of Australia's Army is located in and around Townsville.

A curious statue that plays a recording of the history of the area when you step into the space. 

Apparently $40 million was spent in turning this area over to the public. At least it appeared to be well used.

Magnetic Island off in the distance. It was named by Captain Cook when his ships compass was affected.

Part of the fortifications.

Of course the old cannons are still there.

We headed back to the Strand which is the stretch of beach by the city.  

It was very pleasant with a cooling breeze coming off the water. There are no waves in this area because of the Great Barrier Reef.

However, you still need to swim between the flags for safety reasons. From October to April, the beaches are closed so that you don't get stung by the deadly jelly fish and stingers. The shock of the pain can kill you.

There were lots of families strolling along enjoying the Sunday. The local football team had won the night before and was going to the Grand Final next weekend so everybody was happy.

David and Jane had arranged to meet us here while they went to the supermarket.

We sat in the shade of a palm tree eating our gelati and looking out at the water. There are worse things in life to do. I had a threesome of chocolate, blood orange and passionfruit. I really liked the blood orange.

We then went to a nursery to buy a couple of plants for the garden. I don't like gardening but I enjo looking at the leaves and flowers.

So we had an enjoyable morning. On return to the house it was pool and beer time, then lunch and wine time and of course, then long nap time.