Now to click our ruby shoes as our time in Oz comes to an end – Saturday – 03 January 2015.

I’m sitting in bed on a cold, grey and rainy day here in France, listening to the radiators ‘tic’ as they get warmer. Pat has braved the weather to take Siena for a walk while I’m writing this (he also bought me a cup of coffee before he left). So we are back from our wonderful holiday, we even got the opportunity on our last day to go to the beach and go for a swim (after watching my niece in her swimming class). Our trip home was uneventful; I got around 5 hours sleep on the plane which is amazing for me. We were in the top level of the A380 which was great as it meant that we had two seats just for us.

Breakfast spot-1Our last week in Australia was spent doing various things, mostly family related. We went to the WA Museum to look at the exhibition Afghanistan: Hidden Treasures with my mum and aunt and then we had a lovely dinner at my aunt’s, just chatting. The exhibition was fascinating and incredible. We also went to breakfast at Hilarys boat harbour on Tuesday morning, which was great overlooking the harbour and very good food (bad coffee however, the first time on our trip that we came across bad coffee).

We also got an opportunity to experience the after Christmas sales, which enabled me to get a couple of items that I was looking for. But I did spend a lot of time over the last week trying to sort out the stuff I had stored at mums. It is very hard to go through a lifetime of photos and try to decide what to do with them. Some I have photographed so that I have an electronic copy of them, others I have kept as they were major events – like my 21st birthday. Also still had my first wedding dress – all boxed up and in perfect condition, at this point it is scheduled for going to the Salvation Army, unless anyone wants it?

Fremantle PrisonOne of the best days in our last week was a trip to Fremantle Prison with my sister’s family. The tour was fascinating and insightful. We then had a lunch of fish and chips on the harbour (well I had a Greek salad and chips). We then wandered around and visited the markets (which were heaving as usual) and bought a few souvenirs as gifts. It was just one of those nice enjoyable days spent with family.

I must admit, I did find Perth exceptionally changed. The suburbs just go on forever, the city skyline was very different but I think my biggest surprise is the cost of everything in Perth. It has become a very expensive city, compared to what it once was; I would think it is on a level with somewhere like London and south-east England which I found odd. It is also a shame, because like places in England, young people are being priced out of the housing market and people who moved away cannot afford to move back. However, I did love a huge amount about being back in Perth, obviously being around family again is wonderful, the sunshine, the lifestyle, the beach, and the food options – things like being able to buy spelt bread, the choices of unusual foods, the variety – it was all fantastic.

So now I have to get myself back into the routine of being back at home. Of walking the dog daily (it was so good to see her and she remembered us) of having the cat sleeping at the end of the bed (this is incredibly unusual and I think he missed us – see pat’s blog for more). Back to my French lessons, work and my art classes, back to the jobs around the house and planning my garden (need to move a few plants around while it is winter). I’m looking forward to 2015, and our continued adventure in France.

Happy New Year everyone.

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