So today was about catching up with old friends. We headed into the city with Al and Jen to return our hire car and low and behold we had to navigate our way through the preparations of the Santa parade. Where we had to return the car was in the cordoned off area with parking space reserved for all the floats including Santa’s sleigh. We offered the organizers our experience in caribou 🦌 management skills considering they come from Canada but were politely declined.
It was then off to find a super groovy smashed avocado hole in the wall to have some Saturday morning brekkie. Found a perfectly satisfactory establishment that met our needs and after all of that none of us ordered smashed avocado. Some of you might be wondering why we are crapping on about smashed avocado.
Apparently, the young over here are very upset as they feel they will never get into the hot housing market. They still insist upon going out to breakfast and having smashed avocado on toast with a latte and paying around $25-30 a time. Somehow they do not see the correlation between the two. So it has turned into a joke with the grey brigade.
Al and Jen dropped us off on the train where we hiked it out to a southern suburb called Atwell to catch up with an old work colleague of ours from the Calgary office. Bec was in Calgary from 2007-2013 during the great expansion days of the business of which she was quite instrumental. She returned to Perth with the same company after marrying Dawie who is South African but lived in Canada. He was very chuffed when we caught up with him as he had just sat his exam for his Australian citizenship. Like Di, he will now carry three citizenships.
They have since had a little girl Emmy with another parcel due in four weeks. It was great to see the guys again and had to laugh as Dawie said that no way was he ever going to return to Canada to experience a winter again. He reckons he has landed in God’s zone.
Al and Jane then picked us up on their way south to Mandurah which is about 70k south of Perth. We were off to visit Jens brother Rob and his wife Char who had invited us to a cheese and bickie tour of the Christmas lights on the canals of Mandurah. Guess this last sentence needs a little further clarification.
Mandurah has a few suburbs that have been built on man made canals with each house having its own jetty and access to the ocean. Now how to describe a cheese and bickie boat – this picture should help with the explanation.
Alas, when Rob tried to get her going her battery was flat as a tack so our cruise was cancelled. Not to worry, we got to enjoy dinner in their magnificent el fresco dining area overlooking the canal.
We have mentioned before how Australians have adapted this outdoor style of living with all the creature comforts and these guys put the maximum thought into this area when they designed their home. It was more than perfectly satisfactory. There were fans in the roof to keep you cool during a hot day; a gas fireplace for the cooler evenings; automatic shade blinds to protect you from any wind and the list went on.
We last met Rob when he was a 19 year old so a lot of water has passed under the bridge since then. It felt as though it was only yesterday that we last saw him and he and Char were most welcoming.
To our Canadian readers – we know what you are thinking as you suffer through another freezing dark winter – what the hell are you two doing living in Calgary when you could have a lifestyle like this in the sun!!! Our answer is, there is something about Canada that keeps drawing us back there and it has a lot to do with the people and the Rockies being our back yard!!!