Here are just a few I’ve encountered and written down so far…

1)”torch” not a flaming stick…a flashlight
2)”give way” not a donation…words on a yield sign
3)”boot” not something you wear on your foot…the trunk on your car
4)”trolly” not a bus one rides in…a shopping cart
5)”spider” not a bug…what we call a float ie: root-beer float
6)”float” not an American beverage with ice cream…sewage
7)”third agers”not like “new age”…what we call Senior Citizens
8)”bloke shack”…what we’d call a Man Cave
9)”biscuits”not non-sweetened baked flour breakfast items…what we call cookies
10)”sponge”not a cleaning item…what we call cake

The time on my phone still shows Shanghai time. Yes, my American friend’s, it is August 1st here, now. You all are still in my yesterday.
And no, I didn’t fall off the face of this Earth, gravity held me on here too! Lol

Also, by the way, the toilets in Libby and John’s home have a knob on top of the tank one pulls up, and the water has too much force to spin. I therefore
L filled the sink to see it drain…clockwise. Mystery solved!

John has had some interesting conversations with me related to architecture. I’ll write about this later.


I had some energy so I took a long walk challenging myself. It was early so I crossed a footbridge over the creek near Libby and John’s and walked North, then East, then South & further East. I checked out a “Sally” Thrift Store. I mostly looked through hats and shirts for local teams and sports. There were some fun items too large to purchase for a traveler’s purpose. I did pretty fair for what I bought. Amazingly, my debit card worked just right. I’m saving my US$ for East Timor rather than trade them in here.
After “Sally’s” I walked Westward to the creek then North. Libby had sent her phone. It rang “One Love” as she wondered if I was lost. I was on track on the walking path to return. I had passed the Salvation Army chapel on the way, also.
We had tea and crumpets, while listening to Libby’s favorite music, and talked over the plans for the day.



We drove out to Torquay and to some beaches further west known internationally for surfing, especially around Easter-time. We had Antarctic winds blowing across the ocean towards us. I had picked up a corduroy jacket which helped with the chill.
In town, young, uniformed children were getting off of the buses and trying to cross the busy streets. We stopped at a surfing shopping center with Rip-curl, Billabong, Roxy and Quicksilver brands. There was a “Great Ocean Road” book and some nice photographs of surfing and beach scenes on card-stock which I purchased. The prices on items are the price tax included, unlike the US where you pay an extra 6 percent or more, depending on the city or state tax laws. In MN, clothing, as well as, food are tax-free. ND, clothing is taxed but not food, unless it is prepared.
A quick stop at the store for groceries, then we are back to warm up and relax.
While we were at the ocean, there were mostly people letting their dogs run and play. One hearty, brave, dedicated soul challenged the waves with a surfboard and a wetsuit.










We went downtown in Geelong and to the bay where we placed our foot prints into the sand. We then crossed the river and went to Ocean Grove, a surfing beach on the Pacific Ocean. I stood in the water as it rose up to meet me. It is winter here, so the beaches are empty aside from a few joggers and dog owners.
Afterwards, Libby and I went to a rustic coffee shop for a couple cups of cocoa and a lemon meringue tart.

Now we are back home sharing some “bubbles” as we watch the Olympics.


Walking along the bike path near her home, Libby and I looked at the gum trees and the Macau and other birds, in the high trees, and the stream near her home. There are many artistically twisted and weathered fallen trees, I’ll be photographing later. We were passed by some other bike riders on “push bikes” and people with their pet dogs saying “G’day!”
Yeh, I am officially here! There was an old Chapel and cottages in which Senior Citizens live. Here, they are called “Third Agers.” They even have a “Man Cave” built for the older gents which is called a “Bloke Shack.” Further on we saw a couple guys, fencing in Renaissance gear. Libby said they are out there ofttimes practicing dressed like that. We walked for a ways and saw three partial rainbows during our walk. Liz and John, unlike their neighbors, have an arched opening between their backyard gardens, and the park. It is winter in July here. It was Sunday. I lost Saturday on my journey here.
The landing was greeted by Qantas, an Australian airline, with a kangaroo symbol on it’s tail. A sign in the entry bragged, “Welcome to Melbourne!!”
I met the off-duty Border Patrol gentleman as he purchased items in a duty-free shop, saying, “I made it!”
Next, lines going through to Australian Customs and Security. I received my second stamp in my Passport, entitling me entry and a stay in Australia. Another serpentine line brought all of us foreigners to a black Labrador retriever hired by security to sniff out drugs from the purses and luggage. Then, we were cleared to go through a doorway. I was visiting with a Danish man which two different guards had assumed we were “traveling together.” He and I parted as it walked to the left opening of the fence of awaiting friend’s and family and he strode to the right. I scanned the faces, as I walked around the fence. Libby and I both recognized each-other at the same time and hugged each-other in an embrace as only long-lost lifelong friends could do. Such happiness! What took us so long! Libby introduced me to her husband, John, and he greeted me with a kiss on the side of both cheeks.
My baggage was placed in the trunk of their Ford, and I sat in the front left seat as John drove sitting on the right. Beautiful land with hills off to the right and houses up on smaller hills to the left. Their home was an hour away. Various sites and current and similar family topics were introduced and discussed. So far from my home, yet our family values and culture match. Some ways do seem more proper and “cultured,” as many Americans are so casual in their manners.
Their home is beautiful! Stone tile floors, large windows, beautiful pictures, photos, and cloth from time and travels. Bookcases of books, a blend of old and new. Many friendly sitting areas, including a central open patio, and a back patio. A great room with a kitchen bar, more leather seating. A long, dining room table accented by a large vase of irises and lilies invited the diners to the “Green Room” where I joined Libby, John, and her sons, Jordan and Zav for some lasagna, after tea-time, and a gift exchange. I brought little items including an ad about nurses and children from the 1950’s, Hardanger fancywork, and a crocheted purse. Also I brought an official American Veterans US flag, which they are going to hang from their open raftered ceiling. Libby gave me some sweet tea-towels and a mug with kucaburros (sp?). A real, lemon tree which grows in their back yard provided freshly picked lemons for my tea.
We went to a gear shop where John and Libby’s youngest son, Jordan, works, for some gear, much like our Scheel’s or Cabbala’s. In the regular season, the pool in front allows customers test-ride their kayaks.
At another stop, Libby ran in to get a “sponge” for me, explaining that it was a speciality, cake shop. Next stop, Wooley’s (Woolworth’s) for a shoulder of lamb, a pumpkin, green beans, cauliflower, and other grocery items for a late dinner.
The lamb was prepared with lamb seasoning and red cooking wine, turned and re-seasoned halfway through the roasting time. It was served with gravy and mint sauce. The pumpkin was cubed and baked with whole potatoes. The cauliflower was “poached” in a white cheesy sauce, and the beans were boiled. A lovely, appetizing dinner shared with Zav’s friend, Bre.(Breanna)
Earlier, Zav, Libby and John’s other son, proudly showed me his 20 year old metallic grey sports-car he had rebuilt, with a finely tuned engine and specially ordered and installed American black leather seats.
Jordan showed me his American themed room, with a flag, US license plates, and a Route 66 sign. Jordan, had already lived in WA state as an exchange student. His American friends keep in touch, and have come to visit. I promised I would send a ND license plate to him.
Some of Libby’s decor alludes to a desire to see Paris. I have also decorated similarly with many Paris street scenes. We both like the colors Orange, Green and Purple.
An added note: The Olympics 2012 started Friday in London. I watched the opening ceremonies on jumbo-troms at the Beijing airport, and now some of the events here in Australia. Also, John and Elizabeth have a favorite Australian rules football team they root for.
Exhausted, I showered and went down for the night, and slept in, resting my 56 year old bones in my “guest” room, enjoying the aroma of a fresh, floral bouquet on a cute, vintage dressing table. Time to get up, stretch, and start my day with a cup of tea.



Guest room and passage in a
book from shelf.

Shang Hai’ed

During the two hour flight a polite, young, gentleman studying engineering in Australia, named “Morning” in Chinese, visited. He told me many interesting cultural facts during this short flight. “Best Wishes” and “Good Fortune” to him wherever he may be!!
He was switching to a flight to Sydney.
I mistakenly thought since this was the plane I was to continue on, I could stay on the plane. Wrong!
I had to get off and go through security and customs, converting me from Domestic to an International passenger. An Off Duty Border Patrol Officer guided up through the “sifting” and transformation. I couldn’t just say “Beam me through, Scotty!” There were forms to fill out and lines to wait in.
After the clearance, I absorbed some of the shops, no souvenir thimbles for me nor shot glasses for my eldest son. I took several photos on my camera, the Chinese name artist was gone, yet it took a photo of a framed “Elizabeth.” I used my debit card for some silk for my grand-daughters and the little, yet to be born grand-baby.
The boarding announcement aired as I completed the purchase, and hopped on the plane through the ramp. “Michelle,” a Commerce student in Melbourne was sitting next to my seat. She had white snowflakes embossed on her blue, painted fingernails. she visited some of the time and talked about movies the rest of the time. Very sweet young Chinese girl who was very pleasant, intelligent and goal-driven.
I slept as much as I could. The stars were brilliant, and the approaching sunrise burnished the lakes in the landscape a bright, fiery, crimson.


The overseas flight which I called an “Abyss” continued. I eventually moved from my window seat. Whenever I needed the facilities, I had to have Mr. wake up his Mrs., then he would stand up and she would scoot her knees back a few inches between her seat and the back of the seat ahead of her, so I had to balance myself so I’d clear the gap and slide through…the same sitting back down.
I visited between naps with a Phd. from Mississippi State in the US. He was checking out various locations in China’s agriculture.
Beijing, I moved with my group through the customs to get my first Visa stamp in my passport. My layover was 10 hours in the Beijing airport. Most of my photos will be down-loaded later, some are on my previous post.
Where we all first walked a fence was lined with people holding signs with names or password of the person they were picking up. As soon as I walked past the fence a man aproached me, “You need a Taxi? I’ll take you to the Great Wall, I’ll bring you anywhere!” and he pointed to a well-worn card with English script & tourist sites in Beijing.”You have plenty time, I’ll take you there, lots of places, any of these, I’ll get you back in time!!”
As much as I wanted to see the Great Wall…I am aware that scams are everywhere. I was determined to follow through with my decision to stay safely in the airport during the entire layover, “Come Hell or High Water!”
I purchased little. The money I exchanged bought very little. A deck of Beijing playing cards from the Olympics four years ago, three scoops of Hagen Daas ice cream, served with ice water, a glass of grapefruit ice tea, and a couple “Emergency Chinese” picture books.
I changed clothes and freshened up in a “family restroom.”
The staff person was yelled at by another as she advocated for my to access the room. No one answered and a Burger King employee quickly exited as she opened it, and his cigarette fumes infiltrated our air.
Unzipping the suitcase, it expanded instantly. I changed, and held it together again, compressed the contents, zipped it back together, and was good to go.
There was free WiFi in the airport, but I couldn’t get enough assistance to send a message out. All of the Internet Websites were in Chinese.
Checking through security no one could decide if I was considered Domestic or International. Going to Shang Hai, I was Domestic, yet to Melbourne, I was International. Some clerks were friendly and willing yet not able to help. Others, just rolled their eyes, as if the confusion was “all my fault.”
Moving on, I went to a gate where an Air China agent assigned another gate on my boarding pass. The escalater went down to the level of that gate. There were no facilities on that floor level, and only a stationary stairway to go back up. I did so, and freshened up for the flight. I visited with a Melbourner, and a Melbourne Soccer team, who had just won a championship cup trophy in a “Great Wall Cup” tournament. I had witnessed a Manchester England professional team walking through the airport.
A shuttle bus took us to the open airplane on a runway. All passengers climbed up the stairway into the plane.


I’m on an Air China flight heading to Beijing. The flight from Denver was slightly delayed, cutting into the layover time needed to connect with my next flight. I was directed to take an escalator down and hop onto an “A” bus to the International terminal at LAX. I was near the arched, space-age style structure shown in countless California movies. I found someone who was also looking for the same bus and flight. The bus we needed skipped by us on the other side of the street and reportedly had dine so twice before as a group pod us had formed and continued to wait. I decided to walk to the terminal, and “low and behold” I saw the bus stopped further down the street. I crossed and stood in front of the parked bus until I could board and tell the driver about the others waiting. I didn’t see my newly found friend who I had visited with.
I scrambled to the agent for my final boarding passes, checked into the TSA area, slipping off my shoes, found gate 25 where the plane was already boarding with a line growing like a water straw snake before my eyes. I joined the line. As I approached the gate a familiar riveted black purse lay on a chair where I had put my shoes on. “Nice save!” my onlooking American travelers exclaimed, as I rescued a purse at LAX. 20 some years ago, at LAX, I had a purse stolen from my bathroom stall. Fortunately, I had my tickets and good insurance which replaced most of my loss. My phone had died on the previous flight, now I discover that there are plug-ins on the plane.
Lunch was served, beef noodles or chicken and rice, salad, and tea, and if one chooses, Beijing beer. Most of the travelers are asleep, as we cross the Pacific Ocean.




Aussie wine from stewardess for my birthday, up in the air to China, and Beijing photos.

Today, I Fly

I hope and pray…
That all goes well today.


My granddaughters, my son and I went swimming in their outdoor pool. It’s a nice, sunny, breezy day. Charlee chattered away with a girl close to her age. The girl’s mom and a three month old baby brother visited and joined us at the pool. Charlee and the girl, Marina, plan on having a “play-date” some day, soon. The water was so refreshing! With the distance, lack of funds, work, and school, this Grandma hasn’t enjoyed days like this very often.
I cherish each time we can enjoy!

“Here, Grandma! Eat! Thank you, Grandma! Happy!!” Layla will be two in September. She’s growing up way too quickly.
I wrote down my contacts and some addresses for sending postcards. I’m leaving here for the airport at 3:15pm, so for an early check-in. I’m carrying a purse, a travel pillow, and one carry-on. My trip back, I’ll check my luggage.
Trying to be organized so nothing gets left behind. I “weeded” down a few clothing items so all would fit into the carry-on. Might not get a chance to blog till I get “Down Under.” Wish me luck!
Have to call my mom in Madison, MN & my daughter in Seattle, WA.
Tah-tah, readers! Thank you for all of the birthday wishes from my FB friends!
Just a funny thought…Had I booked my flights better, I could’ve lost today and I would’ve stayed 55! Lol!


My daughter, Kaira, in Oregon, at Paul Bunyon’s foot! Cute!!