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A Special Week

One more week to an overseas stint away from the routine in Wollongong.

I started with a lovely , relaxed lunch with a buddy who had just came back from a sojourn himself, with both of us sitting in an old-fashioned balcony overlooking one of the town's shopping and cafe streets. We exchanged views with each other and listened intently to what we had been doing for the past few weeks.

The week had partly offered some personal goodbyes and a departure from what I have taken for granted. We had gathered to ostensibly mark the leaving of someone I have known well for another country, albeit temporarily,but we all knew this rite of passage was important to accept the moving-ons from a cultivated past to an exciting future. Another came to let me know personally her leaving the office. They are at an age when they can make choices, know they have to do it now instead of waiting and acted with their heart.

The weekend before, in just a single day, I drove 346km. I also had the opportunity of accompanying JJ, the lovable Labrador of a cousin in Baulkham Hills, for a 2km walk. This was refreshing to me on a cool early evening after a hot summer's day. Earlier in the afternoon, I had climbed 100 steps from the beach to the cliff top road. That morning I had woken up at 650am, and commenced the long drive to a Sydney suburb.

Karson and Salina, together with 9 year old son Brayden and four year daughter Annsley (whom I met delightfully met for the very first time, had arrived on the Sunday night before from a Qantas flight into Sydney. I had not seen the parents for years and I was so happy that I could have a late supper (yes, Sydney does have restaurants open in its Chinatown past midnight) and then, on a lark, drove all of them across the Harbour Bridge and then returned to the cbd via the Harbour Tunnel. We all had free rein on the city streets at the unearthly hour of 2am.

It was also great to visit and know that Aunt Doris was recovering well.

And nothing is complete with some food experience. What about soft crabs, duck and fish done in a regional Thai style at the Papaya, in suburban Croydon. The ambiance was tropical relaxing, though quickly filled up with customers by 730 in the twilight. Joyce and I found the taste not totally authentic and there were hints of modification which may suit the clientele in Sydney's lower north shore.

Best of all, after along day at work and dinner out, we still were welcomed by Charmaine and Chris for home made expresso coffee with a kick, even if it was rather late on a school night. All of us could just be ourselves - the most relaxing state. This summed up the common thread in my most special week.

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