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Saturday morning

This morning I awoke at my usual ungodly hour, fired up the computer and began going about my habitual business by visiting UK’s national newspaper websites (I assure you, the ‘serious ones’ only). Later this morning I shall be going over the road – about 6.45am if I am on [...]

January 20, 2018 // 0 Comments

A brief trip to France

On Sunday evening I had flown down to Toulouse in France for an overnight stay and then – business done – flew back to Blighty last night. It was my first visit to the city and, although I could not claim that tourism or sightseeing is my bag, I found it just my sort of place. Seriously, if [...]

January 16, 2018 // 0 Comments


I have been critical of Sydney’s city but yesterday I spent the day exploring the harbour and coves and felt more positive. When I went to the ATM first thing I could see was Sydney was going back to work after the Xmas break: workers scurrying , lattes in hand, scrutinising their mobiles [...]

January 9, 2018 // 0 Comments


Daffers always says don’t trust a restaurant with panoramic views. To an extent you could say this of Sydney. As a harbour city, it’s up there with Cape Town, Vancouver and San Francisco. But there is a key word and that is Harbour. Go into the city and it’s an unhappy mish-mash of sky [...]

January 4, 2018 // 0 Comments

Sydney v Melbourne

You get the distinct  feeling in Melbourne that they do not like being regarded as Sydney’s poor relation. They counter it is the sporting capital. I have already listed its main sporting events but excluded the Melbourne Cup. They tell you what great food their restaurants  produce. They [...]

January 1, 2018 // 0 Comments

Al la Colthard

Melbourne is both bi-cultural and multi-cultural. The dominant cultures are American and British. The skyline is one of skyscrapers, there is a grid system of blocks. You feel you are in Houston or Seattle. Alongside this the Queen is on the coin, the Union Jack on the flag and there is colonial [...]

December 31, 2017 // 0 Comments


Yesterday proved a long day of travel. The party – after visiting two wineries – went to Blenheim airport, then a short flight to Wellington and from there a four hour flight to Melbourne with a two hour time difference. Bob’s visa application was messed up and at the check-in a [...]

December 24, 2017 // 0 Comments

Cheerio New Zealand

So after 8 days and nights the party moves onto Australia. We all have fond memories of New Zealand but, as they say, could not eat a whole one. The scenery is breathtaking, the people friendly, the wine and food of a high standard. The negatives are being 13 hours ahead of GMT and a definite [...]

December 23, 2017 // 0 Comments

Adieu Wellington, hello South Island.

Wellington describes itself as the coolest little capital city in the world and it’s not a bad description. Cool must be the most used word here. Our Weta guide used it  in every  sentence. It’s certainly little too. You can walk around the city centre in 10 minutes and it’s no bigger [...]

December 21, 2017 // 0 Comments

Hawke’s Bay

Yesterday we were taken on a trip of Hawke’s Bay on the east coast of North Island. New Zealand is a mountainous country with some peaks at 12,000 feet but you are never more than 80 miles from  the sea. We visited one such peak at Te Mata Park when legend has it the ancient god Te Mata bit a [...]

December 16, 2017 // 0 Comments

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