A long time between drinks

Well goodness me – it’s been over a year since I last wrote a blog post.  You were probably getting a bit sick of me anyway – I know I was, hence the break.  Now I’m back on the eve of a new trip to Portugal and Spain with me Jenny and I’m sitting here trying to remember what the hell has happened in the past year.  You see, without this blog – I can’t remember a thing!

So here’s a little walk through the past 12 months – this is totally for my benefit, so feel free to scroll though or ignore it completely.

Our last post was August 2018 – Broome.  After that glorious few weeks I returned home to the freezing temps in Mandurah and had to dig out the warm clothes.


Next stop was meeting up with these Sheilas in Jurien Bay for a girls’ weekend full of home made butter chicken and our favourite 80’s movies.

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Me with my lovely cousin Chris & my gorgeous friends Shelley & Marie-Lou

We were also treated to the most elaborately decorated birthday cake (Shelley’s birthday fell around about this weekend, give or take a few days/weeks). Derek, from the Jurien Bay Bakery was absolutely wrapped when we asked him if he was able to do some decorating and he dug his tools out and created this masterpiece…. complete with the words “Mrs Birthday Lady”.  Derek – what a legend!

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Mrs Birthday Lady

There were beach walks (well, there was one) and Marie-Lou showcased all her coloured ponchos…

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There was even a bit of a search for wildflowers…

In October, Me Jenny and I took ourselves off to Singapore for a week.  We did things that we hadn’t done before like the Night Safari and catching the local train around all the outer neighbourhoods.  Then we did all the things you go to Singapore for – Gardens by the Bay and eating our weight in dumplings…

We even visited a cat cafe… I love cats, but I’ll be honest – it was a little dull – even the cats were bored.

Late October took us to the Midwest Charity Begins at Home Gala Dinner – an annual event that my cousins are involved in up in Geraldton.  A very worthy cause raising money for local families touched by serious illness.  Here’s Marie-Lou and myself in the frocks we purchased in New York for the event….. that’s right, you heard me – New York.


Me and the lovely Marie-Louisa PCD


x Cousins x

Then November hit and it was time to visit some special peeps in Brisbane, QLD.  This is my lovely friend and travel companion – Madeline, her son Archie and their faithful pooch, Chase.


Where plenty of walks down at Nudgee Beach were taken…


When I got back home I did a comedy writing course with Mr Tim Ferguson… cause, why not?  I’ve not written a single funny thing since this course, but enjoyed doing it.


Christmas time came around and we all headed up to Geraldton where most of my family live and had a big get together – always a hoot.


Not a bad looking bunch!



New Year’s Eve – we partied until well past 9.30pm…..  Dinner at Latitude with these lovely ladies, then we dropped Me Jenny home and headed into town to see what was happening – we were driven by my Uncle Bernard as we’d had about 3 drinks between us and he enquired if we remembered how old we were…. it was agreed that he indeed had a very good point and that enough was enough.  He drove us home before the clock struck 10.  Happy New Year – this is how you feel great on the 1st Jan!

Here we are – we’ve arrived at 2019 and with it came a new found passion for crochet!  With some excellent tutelage from my lovely Aunty Kris, and a Spotlight bag FULL of yarn and various sized crochet hooks, I was on my way.  2019 was set to be the year of the crocheted gift.

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Blankets….. beanies…. scarves….. more beanies

Then….. tragedy struck for Me Jenny – she tripped over (she DID NOT have ‘a fall’) and broke her arm and shattered her shoulder – resulting in a full shoulder replacement and a long road to recovery.


x bless x

A few weeks later, Me Jenny rallied and made it to my lovely sister, Jodie’s 50th birthday (where this photo above was taken).


That’s my sister at the top looking gorgeous with Madeline and our cousin, Kay (who, yes, is standing up straight)

May took us to the Abrolhos Islands for a few days which was lovely and we witnessed a whale feeding frenzy.


Sure, I know that one whale does not a ‘frenzy’ make, but the others were holding their breath when I took this shot as well as sharks and birds…


As a little birthday treat in June I flew back to Melbourne to see my sister, and two of my loveliest, oldest friends… Felicity & Tammy.  Felicity has her birthday a day after mine, so it always super special when we spend the days together.  We lunched in Melbourne (pics 1 & 2) and saw a show, then we drove down to Metung, where she lives and hung with her family (pic 3).  We went to an end of harvest wine tasting degustation with some more friends – Katie and Joel (pic 4), then We drove tot he Mornington Peninsula to visit our Tammy, her lovely husband Matt and their new baby – Alara (note the hat!) (pic 5) and I rekindled a relationship with my girlfriend Molly (pic 6).

Then July came around  and it was time to head north to Broome again to escape the cold.

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This year my school friend posse’ decided a little jaunt to Bali was in order and as the dates aligned with me being in Broome, I flew out from Darwin.  I’d never been to Darwin before, so this was the perfect opportunity to have a look around.  I hired a car and saw the sights, then spent some quality alone time on the beach before heading to the airport.

July/August – Bali
My gorgeous school posse’ consists of:  My cousin Chris, Michele, Kirsty, Shelley and Marie-Lou (missing from this pic – soz MLD) – such a fabbo bunch of ladies…


Marie-Lou & part of my face missing from this photo

This was a much needed catch up with some of my favourite ladies in the world.  We stayed in a villa in Seminyak, ate yummy food (thanks to Michele’s restaurant knowledge and research skills), partook in massages and other day spa wonders throughout the week, drank Bintangs by the pool and for a special treat drank cocktails at the Rock Bar in Jimbaran Bay – and were treated like VIPS thanks to Kirta’s friend.

Then at the end of the week Michele and Kirta peeled off and headed home whilst the remaining four caught a ferry to Nusa Lembongan… ’cause why not?


Very relaxing… and Instagram worthy.


Then, the last ‘away’ was back to Brisbane.  This time we were on a mission….. I had asked my mountain climbing friend, Madeline – who has climbed Kilimanjaro and Everest to base camp as well as trekking Kokoda, just to name a few things if she fancied doing the Camino de Santiago with me in Spain…. she countered with ‘what about we do the Kumano Kodo in Japan followed by the Olympics in Tokyo in 2020?’ and I said “Yep”.  So as she is really fit and I’m, well….. I’m um…. sure, not as fit as I probably could be, but like, who’s counting? The Kumano Kodo is about 6okms up and down mountains with 13 – 21km walking days.  I’ve never done anything like it before, but I am up for the challenge!  So this trip was to be an intensive training week up and down Mount Coot-tha in Brisbane.  There are a number of great trails to do – ALL of which are uphill and then, as Issac Newton once said – ‘what goes up, must come down’….. so the trails then went downhill – obviously as nature and gravity intended.  Yes, I’m aware that gravity doesn’t really have much to do with topography, but you get my drift.

I had already purchased my hiking boots when I was in Melbourne…

And I waited until I got to Brisbane so that I could have the full hand holding support of Madds and her trekking buddy, Tos, who has just done a section of the Camino in Spain before purchasing my back pack.  I chose the Osprey Stratos 34 and then we drank champagne to celebrate.

The first day we walked with Madds’ 5 year old son, Archie who has his own pack and is already an experienced hiker….. so he was teaching me all the ropes, like saying “water up” when you take a drink so that your hiking buddies remember to keep hydrated…

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… and also that it’s not a race and also that if you finish the walk – you’ll get scones afterwards as a reward.

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He was soooooo right!

In return, I taught him how to floss – although he assured me that he already knew how to do it…..

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So day one was hard, but by day 5 it was easier and I felt less and less like stabbing Madeline each time she suggested that we go up a 60 degree angled track…

I don’t know what number day this was, but I was pretty happy with myself – so much so I OWAF’d – normally I’m behind the camera for the OWAF (Oh What a Feeling), but today just felt right.

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So that pretty much brings us up to speed….

Now Me Jenny and I are heading to Portugal and Spain…..

Categories: Australia, Hiking, Mount Coo-tha, Travel


  1. What an awesome year Shell! I reckon the next one will be full of just as much travels and fun x


  2. Welcome back, looking forward to sharing your new adventures 🙂 xx

    Sent from my iPhone


  3. Stabbing??? Really??? Right, well then I will carry all weapons whilst on the track … 😉 Happy travels! X


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