It’s been a good break, and I’m even feeling ready to get back into the swing of my normal routine again. Today will be my first day in the office after two weeks of leave, and I’ve largely managed to stay away from work for that whole period of time.
The first four days of holidays was a time of studying for exams, and so it was a great relief to leave my last exam (Thursday), and go straight to the airport to head up to the Gold Coast. Unusually, I took only a book of cryptic crossword puzzles, and not a novel or two: I tried to limit my options, and try and build up an enthusiasm for the unread book pile that I left at home.
Sadly, the ten minutes’ refresher course on cryptic crossword puzzles that Roj gave me was not enough to tackle the (London newspaper) Daily Mail cryptic crosswords: I was only able to make sense of about 10 percent of the clues!
Kel met me at the Gold Coast airport, having spent the last three days on her own road trip, and spending a bit of time with her mum (about half-way between Sydney and the Gold Coast). From there, we went to a hotel, and wandered around the pre-schoolies-week streets of Surfers Paradise: it was a good spot to unwind, and finally stop thinking about exams and study.
The next day, we visited Kel’s grandmother, and then headed across to the Radisson resort (third golf course on the left) where we were to spend the next two nights. We were up there for the wedding of two friends, and it was great to see them tie the knot on a golf course across the road from where we were staying. I say across the road, but in fact it was a ten minute bus trip from one place to the other. Walking around the nearby streets of the resort showed what a market there is in the Gold Coast for gated communities near golf courses: there’s a choice of probably eight different gated communities within 2kms of the golf course.
We stopped to get some digital photos printed (somehow, this was the first time I’d ever done this), and to some extent, the rest of the trip was a process of delivering these photos further south.
For the rest of the trip, we stayed in a few different places: Yamba, a coastal town not far from the Gold Coast, then (after grabbing lunch with Kel’s mum, and coffee with laura) in Tuncurry, then down to the Hunter Valley for dinner at Shakey Tables – something of an anniversary dinner for us, and then back to Sydney where we had a night at home: it was great to be back in our own bed, after beds of varying quality, and various nights’ sleep.
Early the next morning, we headed south again: breakfast in Berrima, and then staying with friends in Canberra for their son’s first birthday party. Voting while in the ACT was a little bit of a challenge: the nearby polling place said “no, you have to go to one of these five places for interstate voting”: luckily, I was being driven around by a local, so it was all pretty straightforward.
Sunday afternoon we headed back home (pausing briefly at the Big Merino), and then I figured out what needed to go in the church service for that night, and we headed to church, and then back home to get ready for the week!
Today has been the typical first-day-back-from-holidays. I had somewhere around 500 emails to look through, most of which were just information, a handful involved doing some actual work. Tomorrow, everything will be back to normal.