Australia Adventure


1 IN = 2.54 CM
1 FOOT = 30.5 CM
1 YARD = .914 METERS
1 OZ = 28.3 GRAMS
1 LB = 454 GRAMS
1 PINT = .568 LITERS
1 GAL = 4.55 LITERS
TEMP F = (9*C)/5 +32
TEMP C = (5/9) * (F-32)
10C = 50F
20C = 68F
30C = 86F
40C = 104F


Newsletter 1


 We have arrived in Adelaide Australia after a month of travel. You can send mail to us at the following address

 Dr Cathryn Shuler
Renal Unit
The Queen Elizabeth Hospital
28 Woodville Rd., Woodville South
South Australia 5011

 If you have access to the internet you can send Email to We are 19 and a half hours ahead of you. They are a half hour off the rest of the world here. Instead of trying to figure it out we just set our watches to their time and go with the flow. We found a place to live until jan 15th. We hope that by then we'll know more about the area and more people. That should make finding another place easier.

 The climate here is going to be dryer and hotter than we expected. Right now it's beautiful in our 80's with a nice breeze. They tell us that will change and it's normal to be over 100 for weeks at a time. Now they tell us.

 They are going to have a grand Prix race here in a couple weeks. It seems like a big deal so maybe we'll try and watch it. People tell us we're lucky to find a place to live with that going on. We did luck out on the place we found. The owner is going over seas (much like us) and didn't want to move much of his stuff out so this is a win - win deal.

 Cathy went in on Monday to see the dept mgr and he asked if she was expected. Then we went to the medical board to get her temp license when the good luck bad luck started. Our bus (we are now public transportation people) let us off right at the gate where we needed to be at 1:05, however the sign on the door said out to lunch from 1 TO 2. So no big deal we would go next door and have lunch at pizza hut. The sign on the door there said open at 3:00. As the Australians would say "No worries", we found a chinese restaraunt where we were the only customers (This made us wonder why). The food was good so that worked out ok. After lunch we went back to the Medical board and Cathy started filling out a mountain of forms that would allow her to work at the hospital (for free). The bad news came when they told her there was a $300 fee to work for free. We're still working on that with the hospital.

 Right now we're staying at the guest accommodations at the hospital. Its hard to believe but Australian TV has twice as many commercials as home and half as many channels. We got a kick out of watching old serials such as My Three Sons and Green Acres. More later,

 Butch & Cathy

 Hi from Adelaide Nov 6, 1995

 We're doing well. Last weekend we moved into the place we rented until Jan 15. We rented a car for the weekend to make moving easier and allow us to go to the store and stock up on supplies. Our friend Brenda told us about a place that rented older cars for $25 dollars a day. What a deal since a new car is around 69 dollars a day. We picked up the car Fri pm. With map in hand we headed for home. The car gas gage was well below empty so first order of business was getting gas. We put $12 worth in and found out the gas gage didn't work (which explans why the lady said don't worrie about how much gas is in it when you bring it back). The gage not working upset Butch but Cathy said she would figure out how far the $12 dollars would take us by guessing how many miles a gallon the car would get, then convert litres to gallons and kilometers to miles. Butch wasn't impressed. Then the next day we packed the car to move and the passenger door lock stuck in the locked position. Poor Cathy had to climb in over the drivers side. The rest of the weekend she got to sit in the back seat telling Butch where to go (she kinda liked be chauffered around).

 Our new place was built in 1875. It has been converted to a condo and has 1 bedroom in a loft. The guy we rented from is a student and has gone to England. He was not mr clean so we had some work to do but the place is small and has everything we need to get by fine. Monday we got the phone changed to our name. The number is 08 (area code) 361-8832. If you want to call us you'll need to ask an operator how to call Australia. Remember the time difference. We're about 5 hours behind you (really 19 hours ahead but that's to hard to keep track of). Please don't call us in your morning or we'll return your call in our evening.

 This next weekend there is a big Grand Prix race here and the town is really starting to jump. They're expecting 100,000 people to come to town. We're looking forward to seeing it.

 More later or as they say here Cheers

 Butch & Cathy

 Update from Adelaide! Nov 10 1995

 The weather down here is really strange. One day it is beautiful, the next day its warm and muggy and now it feels just like winter. Fortunately it is supposed to warm up for the Grand Prix race on Sunday. At least we hope so since we've already got our tickets!

 Cathy is learning dialysis the Australian way which is more time on the machine and less time with the doctor. They also live longer than patients in the U.S. - imagine that. They use "telemedicine" - an audiovideo computer link allowing them to interview patients screen to screen. You have to make sure you look OK before calling them! The high tech stuff hasn't spread to my office. They claim by next week that I'll have lights and a 386 computer.

 Butch, eager to get started on his Delphi work, bought a 486-100 computer. The one he selected had a transferable warranty but had to be built. The plan was to install his tape backup unit on Tuesday and bring the machine home on Wednesday. When he called in on Tuesday to see if things were progressing as planned he was told - "no". Seems they were short handed and behind schedule, therefore a few more days before it would be ready. This is when Butch said he would have to cancel the order. They immediately reconsidered and decided that they could have the machine ready on Wednesday. Butch figures that when he showed up on Wednesday they started slapping the machine together. He had made tape backups of the applications he figured he would use here. Part of the computer deal was that they would install the tape backup. They installed it, but it didn't work. When it was finally finished it required the services of an Aussie cabbie to get it home. Once home, he started to work on figuring out why the tape drive didn't work. In doing so he found that the mouse didn't work and it locked up frequently. So the next day with his tape backup in his backpack and the main computer case in arms he caught the bus to town. He dropped the computer off where he bought it and took the tape backup to Brendas (our internet friend). At Brendas Butch got the tape backup working and the computer store said they fixed the computer. We should be getting under way now, just load the backup tapes and load windows and everything ought to work fine. Not so. Tune in next week and see if there is a happy ending to this story.

 It's nice to to be someplace where the people are so nice and friendly. It's strange being the one with the accent. What's strange is they can tell if someone is from England or some other british country even though they all sound the same to us.


 Butch & Cathy

 Hello from Adelaide Nov 16,1995

 Well the town was in a Grand Prix frenzy last weekend. Sunday was a sellout with over 200,000 people attending the final day. We were downtown on Saturday and Butch and another guy were selected from the crowd to help a juggler with his act. The juggler used a chain to tie up one of his legs. Then he put a chest on a rickety stool and had Butch and the other guy hold the chest while he climbed up Butch's back, stood on his one leg and juggled knives right over Butch's head.

 On Sunday we went to the Grand Prix. The weather was a little warm but overall a really nice day. The best way to describe the Grand Prix was that it was a "happening". There were sky divers, air shows including one with several old military planes, bicycle racing, and the harley motorcycle club (gang). They also had several old military tanks and trucks on parade (we hoped that wasn't their state-of-art equipment). As for the race itself, unless you have the $450 dollar tickets you can't really tell whats going from trackside. We ended up watching most of the race from a big screen TV located at the concert area. The neat thing was the sound around effect of the cars racing around the track. The race was followed by a concert featuring Bon Jovi. The evening ended with a fire works display. Things almost went as planned. Cathy thought the fireworks started at 9 pm so at 8:20 we stopped at an outdoor cafe for dinner. In case the fireworks started while we were eating we got a table outside. The fireworks started at 8:30 at which time we found that our plan had a slight flaw - a seven story building between us and the display. We were able to see the top portions of some of the more spectacular fireworks.

 On with the saga of Butch's computer. His plan was to load his new hard disc from his backup tapes. He would then load windows. Windows would then identify all his applications and set them up for him. (Bad plan) To do it correctly he should have backed up his windows from his old system. This means he needs to buy a CD rom for his computer. The smart thing according to Butch was to buy the CD rom from the same people who built his computer. In that way it would be covered by the warranty. On Tuesday he picked the system up all ready to go. As soon as he started to load his software the hard drive died big time. Not wanting to waste anymore time he immediately called a cab and returned the system along with the software he wanted installed. Wednesday morning he called to find out if it was ready. Apologetically they said they would deliver it that afternoon. By 4 pm he hadn't heard from anybody so he gave them a call. When he found out that they couldn't get to that day he asked them to send it home in a cab. The salesman said he didn't think it was possible but he would talk to the boss. Butch said that if the boss was in he would like to talk to him. Within 2 minutes the salesman returned and said they would be happy to send it in a cab. After a week and returning the system 3 times it finally here and working. (We're keeping our fingers crossed).

 Butch and Cathy

 Hi again Nov 26 1995

 Time to update our newsletter. Last Saturday we went to Cleland. It's an animal park where you wander through the open areas with the kangaroos. We bought some Kangaroo food - but when it came time to feed them Cathy just poured some on the ground. This didn't much interest the kangaroo. Butch (wanting to show how macho he is) put some in his hand and found a small kangaroo to feed. The kangaroo was really helpful holding Butch's hand with his front paws while he ate. The wilder animals were in pens. They had some Dingos which are wild dogs. They also had Tasmanian Devils which are the size of a pit bull and even less friendly. We got to pet a Koala Bear. They just sit and eat or sleep.

 This week Butch built a internet home page. You can view it at

 Thanksgiving was pretty low key with no turkey or pumpkin pie. We've met another American couple from Florida. They came over to our cottage on Thanksgiving and we went out to a Mexican restaurant. When we came out it was raining. That surprised us since there wasn't a cloud in the sky when we went in.

 This weekend we rented another rent a wreck. Butch picked up the car by himself. He was able to find his way to the hospital without a single street sign to guide him. I guess they don't do street signs here because a street will change names every few blocks. After picking up Cathy we checked out the Aquatic Center. It's huge with a least 5 pools, spas and saunas. We'll probably be spending some time there when it gets hot here.

Saturday morning it was time to restock our food supplies. By the time we were through shopping we had the car pretty well full. New on our shopping list is water. Dumb us - we believed our landlord when he said that the tap water was drinkable. We're learning to appreciate a lot of things we take for granted at home.

Saturday's adventure was a trip to Carrick Hill. It's a 100 acre estate, now run by the government, and is located in the hills above Adelaide. This was one time that missing the turn paid off. We ended up at a small park overlooking the city. The view was really great and there was also a geological trail with informative signs. We did finally end up at the Carrick estate. It is a very large English style home with lots of gardens surrounding the house with a view over the ocean and city. They offered free tours of the house - we were the only people in the 3 pm tour. We took the long way home with a drive along the coast. Today we're off to Glenelg to post this newsletter and watch a parade.

Butch and Cathy

 Hello from Adelaide, Dec 5,1995

 In the past week we've been playing tourist again. Wednesday we took the fast ferry to Kangaroo Island. The ferry left at 8 am so we had to get up early at 5:30. The ferry ride takes about 2 and a half hours. We were told that the boat had computerized stabilizers. The ride over was so rough that we think the computer broke down. We didn't eat anything because of the rough ride so we ate a couple of muffins when the boat landed. We then boarded the bus and found out that our first stop was lunch. We made a loop of the island seeing sea lions, rock formations, an arch formation be the sea and a lighthouse. Next we went to a park area where the animals roam free. At first the other tourists were timid of the kangaroos but they were small and Butch (being macho again) started petting and feeding them. The last activity on the tour was a sheep dog demonstration followed by a sheep shearing show. The trip home was much smoother and we sat on the back deck watching the sunset.

 Saturday found us exploring museums in Port Adelaide. The first one was the Maritime museum. It demonstrated the lives of early sailers and the transport vessels in South Australia. Next we went to a lighthouse that had been moved from a desolate island. We climbed a long spiral staircase but Butch got stuck at the top entrance because of the backpack on his back. Then we went to the train museum. It seems that Australia built railroads with tracks at three different widths so that people had to change trains in towns where the tracks changed. The museum proved educational for Butch because he learned how track switches worked. In fact he pulled the handle to switch the tracks and the handle came off. (This was quite funny for Cathy)

On Sunday we took a tour of St. Peters Cathedral. It was built in the 1860s and is a large beautiful stone church with lots of stained glass. The guide explained how Saint Peter was given the keys to heaven. Now Butch understands why all the getting into heaven jokes have Saint Peter at the gate. Then we went to Colonel Lights lookout over the city. He originally designed the city and a mighty fine job he did.

 Monday Butch went to a local Target store (because they had a 15% off sale) to buy a fan. The store was packed and in the checkout line he worked his way to next in line. The credit card computer went down leaving all the customers stranded. The store couldn't void the transactions so cash customers could buy their things. Managers came out of the woodwork but they couldn't do anything but apologize. Next they came up with the idea of having people put their goods on layaway. Butch gave them is name, phone number and left the fan. The next day when he went to "lay by" to pick up the fan they showed he had laid away a fan and a barbie bra (what ever that is). The lady couldn't find either one so Butch got a new fan off the shelf. Of course it needed assembly and the instructions didn't match the fan.


 Butch and Cathy

 More From Down Under Dec 12, 1995

 This week found us looking ahead to when our rental unit runs out Jan 15th. We had some Ansett flight tickets that we are using to make a three week trip (Butch says take our show on the road). It's subject to change but for now it looks like we're going to Brisbane on Jan 19th, Sydney on the 25th and Melbourne Feb 1st. Cathy is going to visit dialysis units in each city as part of her research. We hope to store some of our stuff and travel light for the trip.

We rented a car on Thursday for 4 days. The weather forcast was for 80 to 90 degree weather so we headed for Victor Harbor. It's a small seacoast town 50 or so miles southeast of here. We started our trip by going to Mt Lofty - the highest point overlooking Adelaide. Next we went to Hahndorf, a town settled by Germans in 1836. We walked around and looked at the dates that each building was built (pretty exciting). The real excitment came when we tried to get back on the freeway. It seems the Australian highway department had an off ramp for Hahndorf but no on ramp. It only fooled us for half an hour or so (until we found ourselves heading back to Adelaide on the freeway). We finally got turned around and made it to Victor Harbor.

 Once there we found the local information center and they suggested several things to see. One of them was the penguins on granite island. The guy said they come ashore around 6pm. We walked across the foot bridge around 4:30 and took the foot path around the island. We didn't see any sign of penguins. Around 7:30 we asked a guy that was fishing about the Penguins and he said they come ashore well after dark. Tired and thirsty won out over seeing the Penguins.

 We rented a room with a jacuzzi tub and a view of the ocean. We bought some wine, had some pizza and soaked. What we didn't know is the hotel we were staying at had a live band that played pretty loud. We hope they were better than they sounded from our room. Saturday we planned to see the coast between Victor Harbor and Adelaide. Well as things go, our 3 hot days turned into 1 hot day and then we found ourselves in a bit of a storm. We made really great time looking at the beaches and were home by noon.

 Monday Butch took the car back. We had 400 km worth of free miles because you get a 100 kms a day. Butch figured since we were going to rack up the kms anyway we might as well keep the car longer since its $.20 a km if you go over. When he got it back to the rental place the trip odometer showed 409 and the gas gage on empty. (The car is on empty when you get it). When the guy figured up the mileage it came to 493. What a suprise that the trip odometer and speedometer were racking up miles at a different rate (especially since the guy had already reset the trip odometer). Butch told the guy he was relieved because he was afraid that the car had gotten really lousy gas mileage.

 More later
Butch & Cathy

 A Christmas Card From Down Under

Ho Ho
Ho j Ho
Ho * * Ho
Ho j * j * Ho
[] [] || [] []

 Ok give me a break it's not easy drawing in DOS. I'll give you a hint [] are presents, j are candy canes and * are stars. I was going to string some popcorn but we ate it before we could find some string.

 This is our attempt to help out the post office by sending our cards electronically. So don't expect a real card.

 In an effort to fully experience Australia, we decided to try the other Mexican restaurant on Melbourne Street. We both selected menu items under the entree heading. We should have been suspicious when the waitress asked us if we were also going to have a meal. Being naive, we told her that the entree would be enough. When the order finally came, Cathy had 2 small chicken flautas and Butch had two shrimp on a stick. Well we racked up twenty dollars due to cultural differences. In some cases (not all), entrees are really appetizers and chips and salsa are not provided. It's unusual to leave a Mexican restaurant hungry!

 On Friday night we went out to a movie with our American friends, Bob and Nancy. This was the first time we had been to a movie theatre in Australia. You would think that buying movie tickets would be a no brainer. Wrong. There were two ticket windows open so Bob went to one and Butch went to the other. The cashier informed Butch that he would have to wait his turn at the end of the other line. (Which was Bob) By then Bob was done and Butch laid his twenty dollars on the counter. That cashier said thanks, but it's 22 dollars. We saw the American president and it turned out to be well worth the money.

 Saturday was in the mid 90s and dry heat or not, it seemed hot to us. This morning we woke up to the roar of thunder that was continuous for over a half an hour. But it's much cooler and fresher today. As the weather man would say - it's "mainly fine".

 We wish everyone a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year,

 Butch and Cathy

 Hi All Sunday the 17 was a warm sunny day and so we did some more touristy stuff. We went to the South Australian museum and the Art Gallery of South Australia. This was about as much cultural stuff that Butch could handle in one day. Then we took the tram to Glenelg where we did the E mail thing and visited with Brenda. While in Glenelg we tried the famous pie floaters of Adelaide. It's a meat pie (upside down), covered with pea soup and topped with tomato sauce and vinegar. They were good enough that we might try another one. They're only sold out of mobile food vans that are only available at night. Next we went back to Adelaide to attend the Carols by Candlelight. This is an outdoor concert downtown in the park by the river Torrens. The concert was quite a sight when the sun set and everybody had their candles lit. When the sun set the wind picked up and of course here we are in our shorts and T shirts (remember it was warm when we left home).

 Adelaide has a casino - we stopped by once before but we didn't meet

their dress code of long pants and shirts with collars. Friday Butch went all out and put on the one pair of long pants that he brought and met Cathy for lunch at the casino. The casino is above the train station and is a stately sort of place. They have a unique Australian gambling game called "two up". Basically someone throws two coins and you gamble whether they will land as both heads, both tails or odd.

Thinking ahead to when we return from our 3 week trip to Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne, we went to a vacation rental agency in Glenelg that our American friends (Bob and Nancy) had used. We tentatively have lined up a place in Glenelg that's only a block from the beach and has air conditioning.

We've rented a car over the long Christmas weekend (another rent a wreck). This car runs on natural gas so it was another whole new adventure at the self serve gas station. Instead of sticking a nozzle in the gas tank, you screw on a fitting. Butch thought it was a good deal though because it was 29 cents rather than 82 cents a liter. They have Boxing Day following Christmas so we're looking forward to a 4 day weekend.

 More about food - we thought that we would try some authentic Australian toaster biscuits. But when we asked, nobody had ever heard of them. Cathy tried Vegemite - a brown-black gooey substance that is yeast based and salty. They use it alot on sandwiches. It's really terrible tasting stuff, apparently you have to acquire a taste for it.

Butch and Cathy

 Happy New Year to ALL 1/1/1996

 Here we are at the start of a new year. The time of year when we reflect on who we are and where we're going in the next year. The first thing to reflect on is NO watching football bowl games here on New Years day. Guess thats an American custom. So much for New Years customs and philosophy.

 Christmas was a lot of fun we went to Brenda and Sharon's for tea (dinner). The dinner was great and a friend of theirs, Michael, came too. He's from Perth and is a computer hardware and network expert. He had several good stories about trips overland from Perth to Adelaide through the outback. They gave us an Australian calendar and box of candy. Cathy drew a line down the middle of the box and put her name on one side. She misjudged Butch's will power because she ate all hers and now has to be nice to him so he'll share his.

A big holiday here is Boxing day. (It's the day after Christmas). We asked several people why they celebrated Boxing day and nobody had a clue. On boxing day the episode of Mash was based on Boxing day. Seems in old England on that day the masters and servants traded places. We had thought that maybe Boxing day was set aside to return the boxes of stuff you got for Christmas.

 Saturday we got out our bus passes and ventured on the O-bahn. It's a bus that runs on concrete tracks so it can go fast and not have to worry about traffic. (It also can run on the roads like a regular bus too.) The track follows the river and parks and ultimately takes you out to a large shopping mall. It could have been a mall anywhere in the States - food court and all.

 On Sunday the 31st we walked down to the river to ride on the "Popeye" boat. The boat runs a short distance up and down the river Torrens through the city. While we were on the boat an unexpected thunderstorm broke. When we got off the boat we made a mad dash to get on the path that went under the bridge. Several other people had the same idea so we had a nice time visiting with the local Australians. They enjoyed our story about buying a box of fine wine to bring in the New Year. Finally the rain quit and we headed for home.

On the way home, we found that one of the local restaurants had blocked off the street and put up tents for a New Years Eve party. We stopped and enquired about their program for the party. For $40 per person you get a five course meal, live entertainment with a couple of stage shows and a live band. With a deal like that we decided that our box of fine wine could wait. The food was good, the music was enjoyable and Mother Nature sent the Year out with a thunderstorm bang.

 Happy New Year,
Butch and Cathy

 Hello 01/08/1996

 Friday we took a tour to the wine country in the hills north of Adelaide (called the Barossa Valley). It was an all day bus tour, which meant we needed to get up an hour earlier than usual. The first stop was at the Whispering Wall. This is a dam that has unusual acoustics. From either side you can clearly hear someone talking from the other side. Next we visited our first winery. We didn't buy any wine but we found a real gem (the opal that Cathy had been looking for). We went to the wine tasting room but found it difficult to drink much before lunch. The good news is that we went to lunch next. The bad news is......lunch. (It didn't amount to much) Next another winery and we were ready for some serious sampling. This place seemed to have a smaller selection and they were the dry sour variety. The last winery was where they made ports. The tour guide said that they market a 100 year port for 1500 dollars a bottle. If we can get it through customs you're all invited for a sample (ha ha). We really enjoyed the day.

 Sunday we stopped at the Migrants museum in downtown Adelaide. There we learned about a dark side of Australian history. A great number of people migrated to Australia with great expectations only to find conditions not much better than where they had left. Immigration has always been tough for people without blue eyes and blond hair.

 We're looking ahead to our trip around Australia starting Jan 19. Butch decided to return home a couple of weeks ahead of Cathy. He will get back the 28th of Feb. He says that it's so he can get his business restarted, the mail sorted and taxes organized. Cathy thinks that it's so he can make it back in time for Elizabeth's birthday.

 Our home state of Oregon made the local news here. Not for the hurricane or record rains, but because "Free Willy" is moving to Newport. The Australian news correspondent on site trying to do a live update was nearly blown away. A great show of Oregon weather.

 The Wises down under

 Hi Everyone 1/15/1996

 This weekend we discovered the real meaning of if you don't like the weather just wait 15 minutes and it'll change. Saturday was hot in the high 30's. About now you're confused. What are they talking about. Well 30 degrees C is 86 F. Saturday night it only got down to 28 C. Sunday it got to 42C which is 108.5 according to Cathy. About 4 pm the temperature dropped 8 degrees C in 20 minutes. Sunday night saw the temperature drop to 17 C which is around 60 F. Today was great at 25 C. That's probably more than you ever wanted to know about the weather but we didn't do anything special last week or weekend. Soorrry.

 We've been working on our trip. It starts Friday when we depart Adelaide for 3 weeks. During that time we should be able to check our mail from other cities. Can't promise what kind of response we'll be able to give but it will be good to hear from you anyway. More about the trip. It's a combination vacation and work (I know you've heard that before). We'll visit 5 hospitals to gather data for Cathy's project. We should still have plenty of time to see the sights.

 Life is busy this week because we're leaving north Adelaide and will be living at Glenelg(where the internet cafe is) when we get back. Our friends Brenda and Sharon will keep some of our stuff while we're gone. They also get our pet tomato plant. Its not the grand kids or Tom the cat but it really liked all our attention.

Hope this finds you happy and well.


 Butch & Cathy

 Hi (insert your name)

 Well we're on our trip. The first 2 days we visited the Gold Cost south of Brisbane. We rented a car at the airport (not a rent a wreck). It felt good to have power everthing in a car. We really liked the Gold Coast. Lots to see and do. The water is warm and lots of sandy beaches. Our only problem was we hadn't set aside more time to spend there. Sunday we returned to Brisbane to settle in for the week. Our hotel was in the heart of the city so we had no trouble going to the water front and the mall. We took a sight seeing bus around town and got the low down on the city's history. Cathy had a couple Hospitals to visit for her project. While we were there we took a dinner river cruse on a paddle wheel steamer. It was a lot of fun until the rain started. We found Brisbane humid. Unlike dry heat - when it's humid getting in the shade doesn't's still hot.

 On Thursday we went to Sydney. This is the biggest city in Australia - around 4 million people. Out travel agent had set us up in a high rise hotel. Our view is great - overlooking the harbor. We're on the 13th floor (didn't know hotels had a 13th floor) and we figure by the size of the room that the Japanese must have built it for themselves. Friday the 26 was Australia day which was the day that the first settlers arrived. The town was packed and had something going on all day. The Brithish red arrows flying team did an air show that was great. The had a open air concert followed by fire works. On saturday we took a train into downtown and rode the monorail around to the harbor. We also went up to the observation tower that gives a view of the whole city (like the Seattle space needle). Sunday we took the Beach Bus and went to Bondi Beach just south of the city. The beaches were just packed with people enjoying the sunny day. It seems like in this part of Australia nobody has to wear anything above the waist on the beach. There are a lot of sailboats here and it was fun watching them catch the wind. Butch thought that he'd built up a pretty good tan on his face but found himself pretty red faced at the end of the day.

 On Monday it was time to roll up our sleeves and see some patients at the Blacktown regional dialysis center. This involves setting the alarm for 6:15 and taking a 45 minute train ride and a 10 minute walk. They were quite short of staff at this center so Cathy had to evaluate patients and collect specimens. One of the samples was the drained dialysate bags that the patient collected over 24 hours. At this point Butch discovered why he was invited on this trip. He pitched right in and weighed and drained the bags and collected the pooled sample. They supplied him with a plastic apron, face mask and gloves. It made him look like someone who knew far more about what he was doing than he really did.

 On Thursday we put our tourist hats back on and headed for the city. We took a 2 and a half hour ferry ride around the harbor. On this tour was Cathy's most memorable moment in Sydney. A guy stepped out on a rock wearing nothing but a smile. The tour guide then announced that we were passing Sydney's nude beach. But seriously, the harbor tour was beautiful and the weather was perfect. Next we went on a tour of the Sydney Opera House. The building houses 4 separate theatres and took 14 years to build. For a long time people in Sydney called it the white elephant but it was paid off in only 18 months (about 110 million dollars!) by a lottery. Seems that Australians really like to gamble.

 Melbourne was the last stop on our tour. Our motel room had a view and was much larger than the one in Sydney. The Melbourne area is green with a river running through it. There is a free tram that circles the city both ways and comes by every ten minutes. On Saturday we visited the Old Melbourne Gaol ("jail") and also the Queen Victoria Market. It is a very old market site that is huge and has a variety of meats, vegetables and dry goods. Sunday we took an all day trip on the Great Ocean Road south west of Melbourne. The coast line is beautiful with various rock formations such as the 12 apostles and London bridge. This coast line is also known for its great surfing. The main Melbourne shopping center has a unique clock. It is shaped like a pocket watch and on the hour it opens up and marionettes play Waltzing Matilda and birds sing along. For a lift we went up to the observation deck of the Rialto Towers. From there you get a spectacular view over Melbourne.

 We have now returned to Adelaide and are settling into our beach side apartment.


 Butch and Cathy

 Hi Everyone

 Since getting back to Adelaide we've been in a beach vacation mode. Our place is only a block from the beach and 3 blocks from the main drag at Glenelg. Glenelg is a typical beach town of 8 blocks of shops, restaurants and etc. The tram runs down the main road and adds a colorful addition to the place. The Grand hotel is at the foot of Jetty road (name of the main drag). It's the place to stay (if you have money) with views of the ocean and several restaurants and bars.

 We've felt more like we're on a vacation than when we lived in north Adelaide. Most days we take walks in the surf (it's more like a bay than ocean). The beach is sandy and the water isn't too cold and the weather has been on the edge of hot - 30 to 38 (80's and 90's). This brings out the sun bathers in force. The nights have been staying warm in the low 20's (70's) so we've spent a lot of time walking around enjoying the sunsets, lights and breezes. We're glad to have settled here for the end of our stay.

 Every year Adelaide has a big arts festival in march. Before the arts festival they have what is called a fringe festival. It seems to be all the people who are on the fringe of the arts put on a parade. Anyway we went to the parade last night. What a blast. The mall street was full of music and acts. Then the parade started. All the theater groups dress in all kinds of weird costumes were in it. The place was just packed but the night was warm and everybody seemed to be in great spirits.

 Next Tue for Cathy's birthday and Butch's last night we're going to dinner with Brenda and Sharon. Brenda has turned out to be a good friend. They have made our stay much richer and we thank them.

 This side trip in the journey of life is coming to a close. I'm wondering why I'm in a hurry to get back on the freeway when I could just keep putting along down here.


 Butch & Cathy
 Link to our home page beam me there Scotty
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