Thursday, January 16, 2014


We think summer may have arrived, at least for today.  It is supposed to get up to 38 (100) degrees today with thunder storms.  Marvin doesn't believe it one bit!  But we have had some very nice days this week, so we are enjoying it.  Southern Australia (mainland) has had record breaking heat of over 40 (abt 105) for the last 4 days and are suffering greatly.  The Australian Open (tennis) is being played this week and they had to postpone some of the games yesterday because the players were experiencing heat related issues.

Since I usually write about our escapades other than work, I thought I had better say a little about what we are doing at the Archives.  We have been imaging burial records and creating metadata for records previously imaged.  As of this week we have imaged 83,533 images since we started in October.  So we really have been working hard.

Every man needs his BBQ.
I finally said OK when Marvin found a BBQ for $12.00 in an after Christmas sale.  So, here is a picture of our little BBQ which really works quite well. 
We had to refresh our memory about charcoal brickettes and learn how to use Australian firestarters.  They don't sell lighter fluid in the stores.

Our latest trek has been to the most southern part (at least by paved road) of Tasmania to the Hastings Cave.
  It is a dolomite cave filled with stalagmites and stalagtites.  We took about an hour tour through the cave.  The walk to the cave went through a temperate rain forest that was amazingly beautiful.

 We also drove to Southport which is the last southern community in Tasmania.  We enjoyed a leisurely walk on the beach and picked up a few different shells. 
We have come to realize that not far south from Hobart, towns disappear.  There are homes and summer cottages but no real towns.  So much of southern Tas is bush and hills and dirt roads.  I guess that's what makes it so unique.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Happy New Year

Well, Christmas day was certainly different.  It started with a brekkie (breakfast)  barbeque at the Dowe’s home.  Tracey BBQed chicken, beef, sausages, and pancakes, and also served cold cereal and croissants.  We brought our traditional bubble wreathe. 

 There was good weather so we ate outside and enjoyed the warm sun.  For dinner, we ate with the family of Len and Cecily Watson and, again, enjoyed eating outside in their back yard.  During the day we tried to skype with Keith and Shari, but had difficulty getting our camera to work.  So, we saw and heard them, but they couldn’t see us.  We talked to Scott as well, and everyone was expecting a great Christmas day.

On Boxing Day, a national holiday, we decided to take a tour of Bruny Island.  We took the 7:45 ferry over to the island and drove it from the north to the southern point.  Most of the island had dirt roads with lots of holes.  We had scheduled an Adventure Tour which was a 3 hour boat tour along the eastern and southern shores.  We really enjoyed it.  Here are some of the pictures which we took.
This is really a narrow neck of land.

We all wore these red "dresses"

At the northern tip of Bruny Island.

Jurassic Dolomite cliffs

A great blow hole.

Lots of Australian and New Zealand fur seals.
Cape Bruny lighthouse

We had another warm day so we decided to go up to the top of Mt. Wellington which overlooks Hobart.  It is at about 5,000 feet and from sea level  it really looks high, but we realized that it isn't even as high as our home in Heber.  The drive up the mountain goes through beautiful eucalyptus forests but at the top there is hardly any vegetation at all.  And the wind up there is very forceful. 


 There were two activities being held downtown between Christmas and New Years: Sydney to Hobart Sailboat Race and the Taste of Tasmania.   Both were being held in the same area at the wharfs.  Here the street next to Salamanca is closed off and artificial turf is rolled down the middle of the street and tables and chairs and flower pots, etc are placed there.  Food vendors are along the street
as well as inside the huge building at the left.


  After lunch on Monday we decided to go down and see if we could see any sailboats come into the bay and over the finish line.  We were able to see the Qingdao boat cross the line.  Qingdao is the same place where Harold (Marvin’s brother) and Pat Rust are teaching in China.  What a coincidence!

This is dedicated to our grandson, Jordan, who is getting baptized this Saturday, Jan. 4, 2014.

My Baptismal Covenant
As I am baptized to day
   I make certain promises to Jesus Christ
And he makes certain promises to me.
   I promise to always repent of my sins
He promises to take away my sins
   I promise to take upon me the name of Jesus Christ
He promises to put my name in his Book of Life.
   I promise to stand as a witness
For Him at all times
    He promises me that I shall come forth
In the First Resurrection.
   I promise to love my fellowmen
He promises me Eternal life with him in
   The Celestial Kingdom
I promise my Savior that I will do
  All these things
He tells me, I the Lord am bound when ye do
   What I say, But when ye do not what I say
Ye have no promise.
                          --Mary Milham 2001, Hamilton, New Zealand

We are proud of you, Jordan.

Word of the week:  Fairy Fluff = cotton candy