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The Year of 2001 AD and what it had in store for us...


Written: 22 December, 2001 by Rich -  ...

Well, first of all, apologies if you have joined the Flat Earth Society in the belief that we must have sailed off the edge of the known world whilst attempting to find Australia early this year. We did successfully find Australia and have simply been utterly useless at finding the time to send email as we should. My job now seems to revolve around email and so after a long day at the office it is not the first thing I want to do when I get home - somehow a cold beer always seems to win preference!

So ensure you are sitting comfortably and catch up.....

After arriving in Melbourne in January, we spent the first few weeks staying with our great friends Dex and Nic whilst we found ourselves an apartment to rent. We have a similar apartment to our previous Melbourne jaunt, inner city suburb with good facilities (outdoor pool, tennis court, gym, sauna, golf net etc.) close to work with the city centre just a 5 minute tram ride away. Follow the link to see the Current Surrounds Photos... I am of the opinion that the level of the apartment facilities has a lot to answer for, especially Sues reluctance to find work. I started in my job at IBM/Telstra just a couple of days after we arrived, but somehow Sue has kept busy without working (or indeed looking for work) thus far !

As it was the middle of Summer we managed to spend most weekends in the first couple of months down at the beach - Aireys Inlet on the Great Ocean Road, about 1 hours out of Melbourne. There is a fine golf course, which kept us occupied - a good shot can hit one of the many wild kangaroos that roam the course and I proudly struck one on the head recently (although it did prevent my ball reaching the green !). The local pub also played a surprisingly major role in keeping us occupied, together with frequent attempts to regain my surfing skills - Im not sure if they departed with my knee ligament or if I only ever imagined they were there....

During the early months we also did a significant amount of shopping, furniture for the apartment, together with a new PC, new car (Freelander) and various other bits & pieces. Eventually our shipment from the UK arrived and we were able to make our surroundings homely although we did struggle to fit everything into the 2 bed apartment.

Sportwise I have had a fairly relaxed time, probably watching more than playing. I have been playing golf regularly, escaping work early one afternoon a week and getting another weekend hit. I have been given an official handicap of 23 but I am now playing inside this and need to submit some competition cards to get it brought down. I only played about 8 hockey matches all season and my apathy has kept me safely away from training, although the third team I was playing with achieved a fabulous Grand Final win - whilst (or perhaps because) I was sidelined with a back injury !

Sue achieved a massive one game of hockey before a knee injury stalled the return. Having now also succumbed to the golf bug she is making fast progress in her stated aim of only wanting to beat me... She hit her first birdie yesterday and with new clubs for her birthday and two sets of lessons under her belt I am having to work hard to stay ahead. I am however looking forward to travelling the finer parts of the earth to watch her playing the Professional circuit in a couple of years time.

Its been a quiet year for us on the holiday front, a short hop back to the UK for Aileen and Daves Wedding in July gave us the chance to catch up with our new niece, Molly, but was a real rush and we missed seeing most people we would have liked to. We stopped in Egypt on the way back for 6 days and had a really good time, seeing all the tourist bits and a few non tourist bits too. The temples, tombs, Nile, and of course the pyramids were incredible. Follow this link for some Egypt photos.
In this area, we had a very enjoyable bit of travelling during October when Rich and George visited - 'Melbourne and Surrounds - the Touring Delights of Victoria'.

Work has been going very well. As usual it is very busy, but Im enjoying the many challenges the Project seems to be providing. The team I work with is excellent but who knows if we will choose to stay beyond January when my contract is up ? There are several avenues we will be considering and right now I wouldnt like to guess where in the world we might end up - even the UK is a possibility! In the time between now and then you can be confident we will be partying, sunning ourselves, drinking, sporting and occasionally working (well one of us will be!). As a sales pitch - the news will be posted here as soon as we know for certain what we are doing - so watch this space in early January ! If you wish to vote on this issue please feel free to pass your opinion through the Feedback Page...

I think that just about covers our year. It has been as hectic and fun as usual, plenty of things we should have done but didn't and a particularly poor one in communication from us... I feel a New Year Resolution coming on...

For Christmas we are off to Lakes Entrance on the coast where we will be sharing the family of our friends (does that make sense?). With New Year at Airey's Inlet, the surf, beach, golf course, barbie and pub will feature heavily - having said all that I still  believe that Cold Christmas's are Real Christmas's so don't be too envious !

It only remains to congratulate you on managing to read this far into my dribbling account of our year and to wish you and yours a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. To family and friends, near and far, we miss you and look forward to seeing you soon,

Until then...
love,

Rich and Sue.