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Of lasts and firsts….

Today is my last day at work for 6 weeks, the longest time I’ve had off from work since I became a full-time lawyer.

Today is my last day (and night) in Melbourne, Australia, one of the greatest cities I’ve ever lived in.  

Today is the last day I will post on this blog…


Today is the first day I am officially on Facebook.  (Yes, after years of gurumbling about the failings of Facebook and the happiness of my non-virtual life, I’ve decided it’s too darn hard to keep up with a global network of friends without Facebook.)

Tomorrow is the first day of an international adventure to New Zealand, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Thailand, Vancouver, WA, CA, CT and NC.

Tomorrow is the first day I will miss Melbourne, and look forward to the journey home.



Yo ho, ho ho, a pirate’s party for Steve….!

Is started as a joint birthday party, and evolved into a dress-up party after Holly re-told the story of Dave’s childhood dream to have a pirate party (but his mum wouldnt let him!)   So for his 30th, and for the October/November birthdays of Steve, Holly, Sarah and Meghann, we got our pirate on!

(Mel, Claire and Casey)

(yep, thats 15+ 30somethinsg yos dressed as pirates…)

(Grace & Claire)

(S&C pirate crew)

It’s race week in Melbourne!

We went to Derby Day on Saturday with Barry and Sarah for an afternoon of picnicking and champagne, and maybe a few wayward bets… (I won $20 on Wall Street!)

The thing about the races is that you are at the mercy of the weather gods.  They must have heard my prayers for a few days of sunshine before we head back in to winter, because we ended up with an absolutely splendid day:  sunny, warm, light breeze.  It was Melbourne weather at its best, so we just sat back and soaked it in.  (‘Course all these pictures look overcast but it was sunny, I swear!  I’ve got the sunburn to prove it!!)

(the whites in white (and black…))

(What do yout think:  is this (A) a campaign ad for Heineken, (B) a print spread profile of a politician looking pensive or (C) a really tall Irishman??)

Barracking… it’s an Aussie thing.  You “barrack” for your favorite footy team.

Barack… is officially an American thing for the next 4 years (at least, according to the latest breaking news networks).

So it seemed fitting to declare on the blog what I’ve been declaring all day on the red, white and blue pin I’m been sporting:  

i barrack for Barack!


What I’m listening to this week:  A variety of songs that remind me of the great journey that awaits us, and our return back home…

Way back home, String Cheese Incident; American Girl, Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers; Travelling Song, Passenger (feat. Gabrielle Huber & Cameron Potts); America, Simon & Garfunkel; On the Road Again, Willie Nelson.

Any suggestions for my mixed playlist?  I need a little variety – this playlist has to last me 6 weeks with many, many, many hours spent on trains, planes and in automobiles….

What a way to spend a halloween — at a murder mystery night at our favorite cocktail bar in Melbourne, 1806.  Sarah, winning best dressed for her stunning red flapper dress, even got a book with all their signature cocktails! 

It was surprisingly fun to dress up like 1920s Chicago gangsters, and surprisingly exhausting to stay in character all evening. At the end of the night, we all survived…

(Sam and Serena Siren, the well-connected Sicilians)

It’s been a whirlwind of a few months that felt like weeks, and the time warp is unlikely end anytime soon.  Sorry folks that you havent heard much from me lately, but I suppose it’s about time to get used to it.

Steve & I are leaving this great continent in only 2 weeks, setting off for an international backpacking adventure in NZ, Vietnam, Thailand and Hong Kong before we, after 2 long years, arrive back in the good ol’ US of A just in time to spend Christmas with our families.

Blogging requires purpose, and my purpose has been to keep friends and family back home informed of all the cool things we’ve been up to the last 2 years in a land far away and down under, and to share my general passion for the life, the outdoors, food and all other things that tickle my fancy with anyone kind enough to follow along.  It’s been a really great experience, and I hope that I will find a new blogging purpose upon our return to the United States.  Somehow, an American in America just doesn’t quite have the same ring…

In any case, I’ll be posting a few pictures of our going away festivities in the next few weeks before our formal send off from the great city of Melbourne. Let’s call it one last virtual hurrah!