A luxury escape in Sri Lanka before hugging the family in Canada - 27 April 2018 to 10 May

Gatineau Park - 21 May

May 21, 2018  •  Leave a Comment


Up and at 'em - thought that we might be able to walk Luskville Fall Trail before MCAJ hit the trail - got half way up before rendezvous at Pink Lake (after almost getting lost in the park).  Pink Lake is not pink - named for one of the early farmers in the area.

Early spring green foliage is so vivid - can't wait to see the colours of autumn later in the year.


Luskville Falls

On the trail - challenging this one

Chipmunk enjoying breakfast

View from Lusk lookout over Ottawa Valley - Ottawa R. in the background

Top up snack for A.

doing Poppa?


Spring Sunshine in the Canadian Capital - 16 and 17 April

May 17, 2018  •  Leave a Comment

Ottawa has turned on the spring sunshine at last so a walk in the park was called for - 16th off to Ottawa Greenbelt and a 5.5km walk on Old Quarry Trail - old quarry has filled with water and bullrushes - smelly but pretty and lots of birdlife.

Fallen trees throughout from April ice storm

Ok - if you would rather make out with the other guy, I will go and sow my seed elsewhere!


White breasted nut hatch (?)

And more spring sunshine on 17th so off to Major's Hill Park for more tulips!!

National Gallery of Canada

Basilica of Notre Dame

Houses of Parliament

I have been chastised - apologies for duplication of photos - put it down to sunstroke! 

Our home street for two weeks


Ottawa - Mother's Day and Tulip Festival

May 14, 2018  •  1 Comment

Special Mother's Day with two wonderful mums and for Matt, the first with his WtMM in 11 years - very special brunch at The Village House - La Peche.

Grumpy A didn't want to be in this pic.

Followed by an amble across the Wakefiled covered bridge

Plenty of snow melt in the Gatineau River

Followed by Tulip Festival on 14th - each year the Netherlands sends 20,000 bulbs to Canada as a continuing mark of gratitude and friendship for providing safe haven to members of the Netherlands royal family between 1940-1945.

But first a "walk in the park" with A .....

Very particular about the sunglasses - one real cool cat!

Lunch - hot dog all gone, but vege spring roll will fill any gaps

Royal wave from the Canadians

While J slept through it all

Yes this is a tulip and colour so intense that the camera sensor had some difficulty with it

Specially bred in the Netherlands for Canada 150 - 2017 - red and white and a hint of orange?



Yala National Park - 6 May 2018

May 06, 2018  •  1 Comment

Sprang from bed at 5 am for 5.30 depart to park gates along with a stream of safari trucks to enter the park at 6 am.

Some beasties large and small graced us with their company .......

Eurasian spoonbill

Spotted deer and water buffalo

Salt water crocodile - 3-4 m long

Juvenile peafowl with breeding plumage

Painted stork- not in the least perturbed by the buff.

Wild boar (or sow?)

Crested serpent eagle

Asian elephant and Elephant Rock

Green Bee-eater

Mum(s) looking after the kids

If I turn my back I can pretend that you are not there!

Or I can ignore you and have a nap anyway.


Looks like a chook, walks like a chook, talks like a chook, but is really a Sri Lanka Jungle Fowl

Ceylon Tea Trails - 4 May 2018

May 04, 2018  •  Leave a Comment

Well what do you know - it is thundering and raining (again) - had planned a walk through the tea plantations this afternoon but has rained solidly for the last 2 hours! Bandara (our butler) says it only rains for an hour - ha ha!

This morning was 1.5 hrs drive each way to tea processing factory - hadn't realised how much goes into producing the perfect cup, different types and different grades, not to mention low, medium and high altitude teas.

Contemplating another strenuous day .....

You don't know the meaning of hard work until you watch these ladies plucking up to 50 kgs per day for 1000LKR (AUD8.00)

As the (male) overseer barks out orders!



Modern fire protection systems have been installed in the factory.

After withering and grinding and before fermenting

The consensus was that most of this equipment is at least 50 years old.

Fermenting tables.

Workplace hygiene is paramount.

56 kg bags of the finished product.

Does anyone else find the juxtaposition amusing?

What story here - a Christian grave - perhaps family of the colonial tea planters?

So the rain stopped and we walked - late afternoon, cloud on the mountains and setting sun