Star Date: November 2004
Southern Australia & Off to New Zealand


Hello Dear Family & Friends!


"Happiness is a Decision!"

Pierre Beguin


Like a wise owl, our dear friend Pierre, recently flew away on his final adventure, off to join his Elizabeth who left us 4 months earlier. He was like a "hanai" father to us and we shared many warm memories together.  As a global citizen and able to speak 8 languages, he had a love for learning. He brought wisdom and joy into the lives of those around him. But most of all he knew that the key to life was humor.  His saying, above, which he lived by up into his 80's will remain with me always. Thank you for reminding us!!! We'll try.  No, We Will Decide!!  (see Reminiscences link)

After making the last desert crossing of Southern Australia we drove towards Adelaide.  One night while camping at the edge of a field we heard a great commotion.  A huge flock of sheep were being herded down the road.  We did a double take, because it looked as if the barking sheepdog hanging out the window, was not only riding in the truck behind them, but driving.  Modern times hit the farms!!  Later we passed through a small community on a Wednesday and everything was closing at noon. We had happened on the "Annual Pt. Pirie Smelter's Picnic".  They closed the smelter and the businesses for the day and hosted a large, exciting carnival complete with games, races, rides and food galore.  Top sellers were rides guaranteed to make you upchuck, a beauty pageant (Miss Smelter 2004), and 5 or 8 ft long salami sausages, purchased at a booth and draped around everyone's neck.  What a hoot!We didn't get our business done but we sure had a fun Wednesday afternoon!!


A year ago, November, we met Marcia and Stu along a beach on Eyre's Peninsula, S. A.  They invited us to come stay in Adelaide.  We had no idea what a lovely place they had.  We had our own cottage complete with a spa (renovated from the 1880's). They had retired early,  lived simply and traveled to 58 countries.  We had a lot in common and shared some lively discussions. We sold the "Blue Dragon" to a young British couple  so we walked to the beach, the library and shops, and caught the train into the wonderful ethnic downtown Market!!  Adelaide is a great city and from there we bid "Goodbye!" to the friendly Aussies, after a memorable year in Australia!


A 3 hour flight from Sydney brought us to New Zealand.  We stayed with 2 families in  Auckland who welcomed us with the warm spirit of New Zealand.  Within 24 hours we had bought an 87 Mazda van from a young Czech traveler.  Without a pop up top it makes things a little tight, but it's only for 3 months.  It has a big bed in the back complete with down quilts, new matching curtains, which I sewed, and a new coleman gas burner to cook out the back. It has been christened the "Blue Dragon 'Shaggin' Wagon II" Let the New Zealand adventure begin..........................



So dear ones take care until next month. Let's all make the decision to Be Happy!!   Keep smiling and keep in touch!


Love, xoxoox  Nancy & Joseph





Our 'Driveabout' in Australia:  Dec 2003 -Dec. 2004

























                                Southwestern Coastline along the Nalarbor.


A stubby lizard, one of our favorite little guys.


Annual Smelter's Picnic - that's one big salami !!


With our friend Marcia on Seaside Beach - near Adelaide.


Maori warrior at the Auckland Museum


One of these beauties is our new Blue Dragon II - Guess which one ??
Isn't that 1938 "motor home" a classic?




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