It is bitterly cold here again so I tried a trick I had seen and heard about, freezing bubbles. I made bubble mix then braved the -20°C temperature for a few minutes at a time to blow bubbles in our snow and ice covered back yard.
Most bubbles shatter while they are in the air or as soon as they hit a surface. Some float in the air long enough to freeze before they land on the snow.
I am staying with my parents in the Blue Mountains, west of Sydney at present and the area is in the midst of a bush fire emergency. When I returned to Australia last week I was looking forward to experiencing many of the Australian sights, sounds, tastes and smells I have missed over the thirteen years I have been in Canada. I had no idea I would encounter anything like the current bush fire crisis.
Driving home last Thursday, October 17th, I took the following photos:
When we arrived home we talked to my parent’s neighbour about the closest fire. He assured us that it was not travelling in our direction nor would it when the wind changed later that day. The damage caused by that fire and the many others still burning is extensive. Hundreds of homes have been lost. There is a constant smell of smoke in the air and the sound of sirens and helicopters close by. The view from my parents home on Thursday is below. When I looked out today it was no longer so dramatic but the threat is still serious as the temperatures and wind speeds forecast for the next few days are very high. We have spent time clearing the yard and roof of dry leaves and preparing for a possible evacuation.
There are still over 60 fires burning in New South Wales so please pray for an end to this crisis and for the safety of all those involved.
I am in Australia for a few weeks visiting my family. To help me get over my jet lag I went for a short walk in the sunshine on my first day here. As it is spring many of the gardens are looking colourful. What I am enjoying most, though is seeing plants I haven’t seen in eight years, like the bottlebrush above. I was also amused by the sign below.
We are enjoying some sunny warm autumn days this week, perfect weather for a picnic in Gatineau Park. My parents are visiting from Australia so we enjoyed an afternoon in the park snapping photos and enjoying each other’s company. While eating our lunch we were treated to an impromptu concert at an adjacent picnic table. First the musician played a couple of pieces on the erhu then packed it away and pulled out a trombone!
Yesterday Andrew and I went skiing not far from home. Andrew is keen to ski; I am willing to ski but find the whole stopping or turning thing a little tricky. It was beautiful in amongst the trees after two big snow storms. I wanted photos but the temperature was minus 10 °C so my fingers complained every time I pulled them out of my mitts.