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A selection of jams

We're home now. The last two days of our Brisbane trip involved a lot of driving but not always much movement. On Wednesday we arranged to met Sis and her family at Robina Town Centre, a massive shopping mall. That meant a drive down towards the Gold Coast along the same motorway we'd driven up along. What should have taken an hour took twice that due to the holiday traffic along the 3 and 4 lane road. Lots of people taking the turn-offs to three of the "Worlds" (Wet'n'Wild, Movie World and Dreamworld).  The Town Centre hosts Artvo , a trick photography gallery where you use perspectives to make subjects look like they are part of the artwork. It was surprisingly fun, despite the aversion of we males to being the subjects of photos. Afterwards we had a long chat over lunch, which was sourced from a variety of eateries. I had roti and chicken curry from Roti and Buns . Passable, though the curry was more laksa like. We later took Sis to Daiso and she and her h
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Sis at South Bank

It's been over four years since I last saw my sister and her family. In that time that family has grown is both size and number.  In fact, she was the reason for this trip. They drove south from Rockhampton while we drove north from Sydney. We arrange to meet at the Queensland Museum across the river. The regular museum exhibits are free, including the preserved giant squid, but we pay extra for the Sparklab science centre and the Magic of Disney exhibition. And so arrives that challenge of wrangling four adults, two teenagers, three children and one stroller around a busy museum. Sparklab is pretty fun, nothing we haven't encountered in science centres before but a good selection demonstrating a range of scientific principles. The Disney exhibition is pretty disappointing unless you are obsessed with their animation techniques through the ages. Very little interactivity. Starving this late in the day, we walk across the South Ban

Boxing Day in Brisbane

No post Christmas recovery for us. We walk up to Queen Street Mall again in search of breakfast. The Boxing Day sale crowds were building as the shops began to open. Brisbane's city centre feels large and impressive, but also a bit like some of the more modern parts of Singapore. The tropical heat and humidity certainly assists with that impression. The others eat McDonalds for breakfast, I had a slice of Christmas cake in the hotel. We buy some clothes from Uniqlo, browse a few other stores, hunt for a Malaysian cafe that turns out to be too fried to eat now. After more shopping and wandering it is now vaguely lunch time, so we try Roti Place. The roti is crispy and sweet, the curry salty, the har mee spicy, the Hainanese chicken okay. My favourite is the oatmeal chicken. On the way back to the hotel we stop by bookstores looking for the next book in a series for Alex. On the third try we locate a single copy. It's back to the hotel room for an afternoo

Up to Brissy for Chrissy

It's Christmas Day. We are celebrating it alone as a family, the presents were opened yesterday, our lunch was leftovers turned into a salad and our dinner was Hungry Jacks. But the tiny Christmas tree from home sits on the hotel room desk, wrapped with colourful battery powered lights. There's pudding and custard, cherries and mangoes, plus lots of chocolate. And we are on holidays! Outside the hotel room window is a view of the Brisbane River, with bridges and buildings on the Southbank lit up in Christmas colours. There were crowds of people admiring the tree and lights out the front of the Brisbane Town Hall. I expected the city to be dead on Christmas night, but no, it's buzzing. I'm exhausted after the drive north. I had a rough sleep, dreamed I was flying and swimming in the South Pacific. Then I cracked a molar while eating Christmas cake! This is totally unfair because I just had a lower molar repaired earlier in the week. Th

Nelson Bay

A relative's wedding right in the middle of the spring school holidays ruined our chances for a decent break away. This was especially disappointing after being stuck at home with covid last holidays. All we could manage was three nights up at Nelson Bay to escape from a house that is also the office. I am not a fan of the drive north out of Sydney to Newcastle. Too many lane changing, tailgating idiots with massive utes or luxury cars and a route that demands that you are in the correct lane without sufficient warning. So it was this time. The Monday night wedding left us exhausted and we departed quite late in the day. We made it to the Morriset turnoff for a lunch of KFC, then through to the nightmare of Hexam, before turning off at Tomago, thus breaking with our last few drives north. The traffic in the opposite direction was horrendous, jams stretching for kilometres. I had already planned to take a different route home. I was very glad to finally reach our accommodation, the