Sunday, November 22, 2015

Out of New Zealand...

It's getting to be near the tail end of my trip - only a few more days left before I have to go home. But I have gone on to Australia, where I will be facing the only 'real' business part of the trip. My artist-in-residency with Ali George, which I won last year for being a star-recruiter for SAQA, and which consists of printing sessions in her studio. That's going to be starting tomorrow.
Right now I am spending a long weekend with my pen-pal of 38 years (yes! that long! and we have been communicating by facebook really for a a few years now), and her wonderful family before moving on to Brisbane tomorrow.

Shauna could not pick me up at the airport because of family issues, so I got to experience the Sydney airport train on my own. I loved these signs along the platform.

And of course the train system would make a good pattern for a quilt. Much less complicated than the over-complicated European ones!

The most interesting moment was when I was trying to buy the ticket - no cash on hand! - and the machine was not accepting my debit card for my NZ bank account. For a moment I saw me stranded at Sydney airport without any monetary means, and not even a chance of getting in touch with my friend as my phone card had just told me that it was low as well, I could not send any text messages, as I had not thought of topping it up before I left NZ. However, the ATM machine was more gracious than the EFTPOS of the train company and I got cash, and I bought a ticket, and I could buy a new phone card and all was well!
I have learned that the 'always sunny in Australia' is a hoax - there is no such thing as sunshine in Australia, as far as I can tell. We've done a sightseeing tour of Newcastle.

And a bush walk to a beach, where we actually saw some dolphings just beyond the surf.

We found these wonderful blue berries and I wondered how they could be used for dyeing, but, alas, no chance to try out!

Lots of interesting things to see along the way!

Here's looking at you, kid...

Nest? or growth?

So is this inner ring from a bush fire that scarred the tree?

Paper bark
We're preparing a barbecue for later this afternoon - introduction to Australian cuisine ahead!


  1. Oh Somehow I never connected that you were going that way because of the SAQA prize! Well done you! Enjoy the week.

    1. Yes, I might not have stopped over in Australia if it hadn't been for that prize. And for a while, after I had arranged everything, I even was a bit undecided whether that was the right thing, because it shortened my time in New Zealand considerably. But it was absolutely right to do it. I'm really happy to have come!