Last full day on HI

Our last full day before Four become just two ( three actually as we meet up with Colin).

We go into town to buy breakfast essentials and enjoy the views.

Kevin and I have a drive around and then walk the other side of the marina and also Bommie Deck, where we hope to go for drinks tonight.

One last drive up to one tree hill, then down the scary bit!

Over lunch there are a few tears and reflection on our time here, the memories made and for me the realisation that we are embarking on a new stage of our lives. Kevin is fantastic in how pragmatic he is, not to fight against these changes, but to embrace and enjoy!

Nina and Jay hired a boat for the afternoon and returned after 4pm to regale us with stories of doughnuts and beaching! They certainly had fun!

We all dressed up for our final night and headed to Bommie Deck, and we saw a wedding party there: what a wonderful venue.

To think that below the Deck last week, Jay proposed and Nina accepted, it seems a lot longer. Whilst sipping cocktails 🍸 there was wedding talk. No doubt there will be much more over the coming months.

We returned to Romanos for our last meal with more reflections and returned for our final night in the apartment.

This certainly has been a holiday to remember, with so many stand out memories and HI is a fabulous place and I hope we can all return, and I mean all!

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Six become four

Today Andrew and Lis were to leave us to go home, but before that, Andrew and I completed the HI parkrun.

We were cheered around the 2 lap route by the rest of the family. It was my first as a ‘tourist’ and what a place to do it.

We went for breakfast after our efforts and I probably undid all my good work!

My time came through and it was sub 50, which as I walked the whole route and with the heat, I was very happy with, and to see Andrew’s name there too was fantastic!

All too soon was the time I least like -saying goodbye. My intention to be brave and not cry never quite happens. I thought as we see them again relatively soon it would be ok, but no. In my head I can rationalise to be happy with having seen them, not dwell on not, but my heart seems to have a life of its own! ❤️

Returning to the apartment it was a bit quieter, and the remaining four made plans for the remaining few days.

Trip to the beach, walk around and watch some RLWC2017 was itinerary for the remainder of today.

Nina and Jay went back to one tree hill to watch the sunset, whilst Kevin and I ordered dinner.

I managed a few sunset shots whilst waiting.

Andrew and Lis returned home safely and were met by Bella their cat with meows of delight!

Sunrise to Sunset

An early start to catch the sunrise, another stunner.

We made our way to the beach 🏖 to kayak! Me , Kevin and Georgina went in one, and with a little help we were off. Have to say not terribly comfortable so we went back to the shoreline to move seats. This proved hilarious as Kevin ended a over t and in the water!

We tried again more successfully, but this time when we returned to shore it was my turn to end up in the water, as I fell over when a wave crashed in!

We shopped for dinner and lunch and the girls went for a massage, and the boys to play pool

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Refreshed, we all relaxed on the verandah, we showered and got ready to go to one tree hill for the sunset 🌅

It was quite emotional and with live music being played, it was a great experience.

We returned home for a BBQ and a toast for our week together!

Andrew and Lis go home today, but not before a Park 🏃. It has been wonderful to be together and I just hang out, as well as do stuff! There will be tears no doubt, but they will be over in April , so not too long🤗💕

Paddle boards, palms and a puffer fish…

Here we are on a paradise island, with some of the people I love most, and I have had the fog descend on me.

I have thought I could ‘just get over it’, but I have noticeably withdrawn. There is no rhyme or reason per se, but the kids noticed it.

After our beach trip this morning we returned back to our apartment for lunch, and I find myself crying. After a little while I get up to go for a walk to try and shake this off, and Georgina insists on coming with me.

It’s very hot and we shared how we felt: I have to learn to talk more about how i’m feeling, I have to remember people are not mind readers. I have written before about the ‘fog’, I can see it, others can’t, but they see the different, withdrawn person, who doesn’t engage.

I think I’m hiding it well, obviously I’m not.

We all went for a walk to the beach at low tide, and a couple of more conversations were had. I have been blown away with their kindness, concern and very proud of them all.

Walking through the sea lapping around our ankles, seeing fish , crabs, sea snails, with the level rising up to our waists, I almost trod on a Ray! A little further out and a with a helping hand the level dropped away again.

I suppose in some ways this is an analogy of how I can feel on occasion.

The walk was spontaneous, and all the more enjoyable for that. It also brought back memories of Maldon, Cornwall and Lunan Bay.

These moments are precious and I need to be less anxious, and not over think too much and just enjoy the present.

We all visited a local pool, to relax and drank overpriced strawberry daiquiris!

We prepared dinner at the apartment, where Lis shared with us her vegetarian journey and it has spurred me on to have at least on meat free day a week.

We watched the bats 🦇 fly over to their evening stomping grounds.

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peace with myself and I hope that I will be able to articulate more quickly how I feel when the fog descends.

Time flies and you find that your children have grown into sensitive, caring adults. How lucky are we. We have a few days left together until next year, so I have to make the most of that!

Just taking it easy

After the exertions of yesterday, tides was going to be a little more relaxed. The kids went to the beach after breakfast to tandem kayak and to do paddle boarding.

Kevin and I had a leisurely breakfast and took a walk up the hill to visit the white church we can see from our room.

Weddings can be held here Both inside and out, the views are spectacular!

We returned home to pick up the buggy and stopped off at the 🏖 just as they were leaving. There was an exchange of stories and they all want to return tomorrow!

After a trip to the supermarket, we lunched and then made our way to the nearby pool.

Today it was very hot and this provided a welcome respite.

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to play pool, and we got ready to go out for dinner: Mexican tonight!

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of choice, washed down with beer and margaritas! Churros was a shared dessert with the chocolate and caramel dipping sauces enjoyed!

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found out who had the keys to the buggy and apartment we made our way home.

Today was a momentous day as Australia voted by 61.6% for the legalisation of same sex marriage. Lis wore her ‘love is love’ tee shirt in honour of the result coming out.

Later in the evening we watched the Australian football team beat Honduras to qualify for the 2018 World Cup in Russia.

The reef police dismisseth us……

The Leith police dismisseth us,

They thought we sought to stay;

The Leith police dismisseth us,

They thought we’d stay all day.

The Leith police dismisseth us,

We both sighed sighs apiece;

And the sighs that we sighed as we said goodbye

Were the size of the Leith police.

A tongue twister came to mind today as we sailed out to the Great Barrier Reef so please excuse the randomness of it! Here is the photo that inspired its use

Today was our visit to the GBR and we had an interesting journey out to the pontoon. We certainly experienced the ‘ocean motion’ and got thoroughly soaked as we sat at the back of the boat. The ‘rock and roll’ of the waves were interesting!

After a couple of hours we arrived and there was a semi submersible, an underwater viewing area, snorkelling and sunbathing activities.

My first snorkel wasn’t great with water getting into my mouth and nose, and I literally only saw 3 fish.

After lunch, I had another go as I was determined to see the wrasse and the delicate, vibrant fish that live in and around the coral. This is certainly something to cross off the bucket list.

This was the primary reason for this trip for our Coral anniversary – to see the coral up close.

Everyone thought it was fantastic and it was so good to experience it with Andrew, Lis, Nina and Jay.

Another fantastic memory made on what us turning out to be an amazing holiday!

The journey back to HI was eventful with us just floating in the Coral Sea as the boat had electrical failure on three occasions, but the Captain kept us up to speed with what was happening and we returned safely to the marina.

A fish and chip supper and other things with chips made for a welcome evening meal. By 8:00 I was exhausted and bed was calling.

Monday and no work!

I was woken up early by Georgina, still overawed by the previous evening events.

We watched the sun rise together and talked about the proposal and the excitement generated. This has been something she has dreamt of for so long and their unbridled joy is just so touching.

We enjoyed a chilled day with us all doing different walks to the beach, drives to one tree hill, with the weather changeable.

Later in the afternoon pool was played and we all mucked in to prepare a BBQ dinner with various conversations about jobs, life etc rounding off another wonderful day here on Hamilton Island.

She said yes! 💍💕💕

For the last seven months, I’ve kept a very big secret (or not) from Georgina and family. It’s been hard, as I have wanted to tell people about the little things that have occurred over that time.

Jay choosing the right ring💍, Georgina changed her mind about style and Jay fretted about having one made, but needn’t have worried as his choice in ring, matches his choice of fiancée, beautiful in every way!

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ked Kevin’s permission a few weeks back, and Kevin almost blurted it out after a few days! Is this the same man who kept the trip from Andrew and Lis last year a secret for 5 months?

Andrew and Lis made a banner, after Jay told them, and brought bubbles of both varieties!

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as put so much thought into the event, wanting everything to be perfect for Georgina. The last few days he has been so nervous, not because he thought that Georgina would say no, but because it is such a momentous thing to do: a life changer. <<<<
gina was certain that Jay was the one for her, when she first met him, and she resolutely stuck by that. Two trips to Australia, one without Jay and one with, job changes, living with us and daily life with its nuances we arrive at their next chapter.

They are so good together and we are so proud of them as they plan their future and wish them all the love and happiness in the world.

May they remember today forever, I know I will! 🍾💕💕💕💕🤗💍💍

Hamilton Island 🌴

An early start, an hour’s flight and we arrive at HI.

We see Andrew and Lis’s flight arrive and we eventually meet up.

Our apartment isn’t ready yet, so a walk round to acclimatise is required.

When we get in the view is breathtaking, our home for the next nine days.

A visit to IGA and a few supplies bought, we eat, talk , laugh and Nina sleeps!

Daintree Rainforest

One of the reasons to come to the north east coast was to take in a trip to the world heritage site of Daintree rainforest🤗 and this trip didn’t disappoint

We first visited the wildlife park with obligatory koala pictures.

A wander through the rest of the park showed the diversity of this country’s fawna and flora. Highlight for me was to see a cassowary!

Back on the tour us and we drove up to cape tribulation, named so by captain cook on his travels to this part of Australia. Lisa, our guide, was informative, friendly also having lived in the rainforest herself.

We took the ferry across the river and Lisa, having tribulations herself with a door issue, remained calm and resilient. We made our way to the lunch venue, where Kevin and I enjoyed a kangaroo burger!

It was very damp and not clement at all, but all part of the experience.

Next up was a boardwalk, not as high up as I’d hoped (😉) and the heavens opened!

We swapped buses at this point and we stopped at a lookout and an ice cream shop!

Next up was a river cruise to look for crocs, but there were no shoes in sight! So much rain had fallen the night before, river levels were high!

A good journey back to paradise, and we packed for tomorrow. Dinner was a simple affair of 🍕, a walk home and a goodbye to Colin as he embarks on his outback adventure!

We are all up early (I’m waiting for the 4:30 am alarm call, as I write!) for a flight to Hamilton Island.