We had such a great weekend in Sydney with Beth and James.
We chose to be flying in some of the worst weather NZ has experienced - on our first flight the pilot said "I have now taken this plane as high as it's allowed to fly, so you will just have to put up with a few bumps and if you're from Christchurch as I am you'll be used to bumps by now anyway!"
The wind was so strong and against us all the way to Sydney so we arrived almost an hour late. It was a fairly bumpy landing and the steward then said "The pilots are really earning their money today!"
Coming back though the wind was in our favour and the flight only took 2 1/2 hours rather than the usual 3 1/2. The final flight to Palmerston was the roughest landing we've ever had and the stewardess made us all applaud the pilot and then her as she'd still managed to serve us half cups of coffee!
Anyway the weather in Sydney was lovely a good few degrees higher than here. We got a family three day pass for the monorail and went round it innumerable times - Paul and Noah the most as they ended up doing a quiz about the monorail stops (On the last night this meant I took Lily and Noah back to the hotel while Paul continued a monorail journey to see if her could get the final clue!!)
We went to Beth's law office on Martin Place which was quite breathtaking, very plush- reminded us of 'Boston Legal" then we had tea in the food court underneath Myers - I could remember this from 15 years ago when we lived in Sydney for a while.
On Saturday we went to the fish market on the light rail (included in our monorail price) then went to Paddy's markets where I bought Beth a "Jimmy Choo" bag - the real Jimmy Choo shop is right near her office (along with prada, Gucci and the like) and the version I bought was a lot cheaper but with a worse quality zip!! - I cannot actually believe the market is legally allowed to sell rip-off merchandise, in Singapore markets they even hide some of the stuff away.
In the afternoon we went to the wildlife park at Darling Harbour where Beth informed me I was still able to embarrass her as I sang "Never smile at a crocodile" when I didn't even have Noah or Lily beside me!
We went to a lovely Darling Harbour restaurant called pancakes on the Rocks for tea,. Unfortunately we had to queue a long time for a table and we could see Lily wilting with tiredness in front of our eyes so we had to cut the visit short and miss out on the pancakes.
On Sunday we caught the train out to McQuarie university, where James studies and had breakfast at their fantastic local mall (which we again remembered from 15 years ago because there is an ice-rink there) then walked to their apartment. it was a lovely place and we got a quick glimpse of Beth's wedding dress which is beautiful.
We caught the bus back to Sydney centre and then went to Wicked which was fantastic - so many layers of meaning. James even thought it linked to his philosophy studies. It was about being different and how the way people are treated impacts on their choices, some of the words were fantastic - one song towards the end (click to hear it and read lyrics) seemed very applicable to families who have a child with DS, could be a new title song for our welcome pack!
"I've heard it said
That people come into our lives for a reason
Bringing something we must learn
And we are led
To those who help us most to grow
If we let them
And we help them in return
Well, I don't know if I believe that's true
But I know I'm who I am today
Because I knew you
Like a comet pulled from orbit
As it passes a sun
Like a stream that meets a boulder
Halfway through the wood
Who can say if I've been changed for the better?
But because I knew you
I have been changed for good"
Now back home I am rushed off my feet catching up with housework etc. Hannah has said she will not look after two pre-schoolers again unless we pay her a million dolllars!
Heidi has changed into a typical toddler-very demanding and touching everything and moving stuff from one place to another. She is very interested in phones and pretends all remote controls etc are phones. She gets into the garden (which is very muddy at the moment) if there is the slightest gap in the sliding doors. She's becoming very picky with food but will eat most things later from the floor!
She is about to meet the family member who is being approved as her carer so we will probably only have her for another week or two.
Which is more difficult?
2 hours ago