Friday, 25 March 2011

New Tattoo!!

21st October
Well I finally got another tattoo. I had wanted a southern cross tatto for some time (and no I don't care if you think it is 'boganish'). I happen to like Australia and the stars of the southern hemisphere. So, I thought now was the perfect time to get a new one. Whenever I look at my foot (lol) I would be reminded of home... I love my tatto because I designed the whole thing, and it has meaning - the 7 small stars represent family (mum, dad, sister and 4 grandparents), and the dots represent my friends... all (well most) of whom can be found under the southern cross, at home, in Australia. The colours are just because they are pretty lol.
Just finished!
 Once it was finished I had to walk 20 mins home (I had to walk quick so I was home in time, as my break finished, so it probably only took 15 mins). The next day it was AGONY walking on my foot, and it was lucky I had a pair of shoes that didn't cover any of the tattoo as it was so tender. As you can see from the pic my foot swelled quite a bit, but after a few days it was alright again.
 Then the ITCHING set it. As it started to heal, it got itchier and itchier. I had to use a toothpick to scratch around the scabs! And of course, it was most itchiest at night, just as I was trying to get to bed :(
Half healed - attractive, isn't it?

Canal Boat Holiday and Other Outings

20th - 26th August
Haven't even been with my client a week and we are going on a holiday! My client, her husband, son and two grandsons were supposed to stay until the 27th August on the canal boat, but the weather was wet and miserable, so we decided to come home a bit early. It was new experience for me having to navigate through locks, but it was good not having to cook (back home I would be cooking up to 3 different meals, pretty much every single night, except for the rare occasion). Travel on the canal boat is very slow, but very relaxing, and the fact the boat was wheelchair accesible is great! It also meant my client could sit up the front of the boat (which was raised) by using the lift :)

Our boat for the week - 'Diana'
 Other things I did with my client were:

Trips to the ballet - I went to the ballet twice with my client and her husband. We saw 'Sylvia' and a double feature 'Les Patineurs' (the skaters)/'The Tales of Beatrix Potter'.

Musical in London - We saw Oliver! The set and lighting were amazing! Better than any highschool production I have ever seen :P (but then the ticket was probably about 10X as much as a highschool production).

27th September
I also caught up with G&A a couple of times when I had a longer break. My breaks normally went from 2 to 5 in the afternoon, but once a month my client had to go to King's College Hosptial to get her baclofen pump refilled, so I generally got a longer break from 1pm. We usually went out for lunch on these occasions, and for a walk afterwards. One of our trips out were to National Trust location Emmetts Garden, which featured some giant red Toadstools, just like the kind you think of in fairy tales!

Tuesday, 22 March 2011

New Clients and a bit of sight-seeing in between

9th-13th August
I had another short term client in Aylesbury. My client, had a ginger cat with only 3 legs. His name was Humphrey (hump-three, as my client liked to call him). My client was quite a large man, and prone to falls. To get him back up required a call to 999 (UK emergency number) and the paramedics would use an inflatable cushion to slowly ease him back to his feet. The first time he fell and I had to call 999 I was soooo nervous. It was my first experience with calling the emergency services. By the 13th I had called 999 in excess of 10 times, and was quite confident about it too! All the paramedics knew my client quite well as he was a regular.

15th August

Another National Trust visit. This time to Chartwell, which was Winston Churchill's home. This was another historic place surrounded by beautiful gardens and land.

16th August

Yay, Finally!! After 1 month in England I have a permanent client. I have hand-over today, and then tomorrow I am by myself. My client lives in Orpington, which is just 20mins from G&A, so I can still catch up with them on my breaks. We are going for a holiday on a canal boat in a few days, but that is for my next post! :)


8th August

Off to the prime meridian today! G&A, their Friends and I arrived before midday to see the 'timeball' drop at exactly 1200hrs... but we missed it! Our watches weren't on the right time, I think :P. There is a nice view of the city and Thames from the grounds just outside of the royal observatory (where the time ball is, and the meridian passes through).

From there we went for a walk through Greenwich Park to the Old Royal Naval College, which was previously the Greenwich Hospital. We had a look at the Painted Hall, and the chapel, both very beautifully decorated.
View of London - the two 'symmetrical' buildings in the middle are part of the Old Royal Naval College

The Painted Hall

The Chapel

Inside the chapel


7th August

Another National Trust Location (I got annual membership at Ightham Mote, as it cost 11GBP for one visit or 22GBP for unlimited visits for a year - so have already made my money back!). This is one is called Knole - it is a 'house' on a large area of land. There were some fairly friendly deer (especially if you had food) and some very annoying wasps! The wasps had a sweet tooth, and were getting into the jam on our scones :( These wasps are WORSE then blowflies, and they also like meat, which makes it difficult having a bbq - lets jst say i have never seen anyone spray water into a bbq to shoo the wasps away, like they did at the bbq I went to a couple of days earlier. I also got sunburnt at this bbq, which was a bit embarassing, being Australian and all hehe!

Romney, Hythe, and Dymchurch Railway

6th August

Took a steam engine ride through the English countryside today, although we only went from Dymchurch to Dungeness (see map). We (G&A and their friends and I) had lunch at a pub - fish and chips of course. Before lunch we climbed the lighthouse, which gave a good view of the surround area. There are actually 2 lighthouses, a new one had to be built because the land was expanding, and the old one was too far away from the water to be of any use!

View of the new Lighthouse from the top of the old one

First Job

26th- 30th July

I had my first short term job in Letchworth. On one of my breaks I went for a walk along one of the many public pathways and found some giant bumblebees!

A day out in London!

23rd July
Caught the train into London today. Saw the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace. There was LOTS of people, and it was pretty funny when the band started playing ABBA songs! Afterwards I went for a walk through St. James Park (this day I did lots of walking, and a few tube trips too). In the park there were lots of squirrels, and they are sooo cute :) Keep walking to Trafalgar Square and the National Gallery (didn't stay long there - it was a bit boring :P)

In the afternoon I went to the Science Museum. Only had 2 hours there, and didn't even see half of the place. Will definitely need to go back to see the rest of it- and considering it's free, there is nothing stopping me, except finding the time to go :)

Monday, 21 March 2011

First Week

17th July
Gran and Angus (G&A) were looking after a friends' dog, Becky, so we went for a walk through foot's cray meadow.  It is a pretty place, with a stream and pond. There was a family of 9 swans (imagine having 7 kids :S). The name of the bridge is 5 Arches because there is... well 5 arches. 

In the afternoon, we went to a National Trust location - Ightham Mote (pronounced something like 'item', the ight, is the same as in light), a 700+ year old house. And yes, the place did have a moat! Just not a very deep one :P.
18th - 22nd July
Caught the train/tube into London and then onto Hatfield for Training. Training was quite typical, and we learnt all the health and safety stuff, manual handling, etc. I met some lovely girls at training, and still keep in contact with some of them (especially Vicki). Most nights we went up to a traditional English pub for drinks (Pimm's and Lemonade or Apple/Pear Cider mostly). On the walk home from the pub on the first night some f*&kheads (they were really!) through a cardboard cup of something out of their car window as they drove past, and hit poor Laura square in the eye. Gave her quite a shock (understandably) and she was lucky not to be seriously injured, or the contents of the cup were not more sinister - Vicki and I were worried that it could be something dangerous from the way she fell to the ground almost instantly, but I think it was just watered down softdrink. The rest of our pub experiences were much more pleasant, and on the final night of training we all went there for dinner.


I decided to do a travel blog! Yes, it's a 'little' late (haven't been here 9 months yet :P), but I figure better late then never. I'm planning on starting from the beginning, and hopefully catch up to 'today' before I go to Turkey (I've got 1 month exactly!).

15th - 16th July, 2010
My bags were finally packed, so it was time to head of to the airport for my 11.45pm flight. Mum and dad both came to see me off at the airport. Soon enough it was time for the 7 hour flight to Singapore. I slept a little on the plane and 'rested' at Singapore airport. I only had to wait 3 hrs in Singapore for the big 14 hr flight to London. I think I had my nose to the window for the most of the last few hours of the flight, and definitely for the landing into London. My first impressions were that England wasn't as green as I expected - though it was the middle of summer when I arrived and most of the crops were ripe, making much of the landscape a golden colour.

After 'arriving' in London 20 mins early, we then had to circle around for 20mins, waiting for a landing spot to open. I did get a good aerial view of the city and surround areas though! After finally landing, I was amazed at how quick it took me from getting off the plane, retrieving baggage, and going through customs took - less than an hr! It was easier to get into a foreign country then it was getting back into my own country! Gran and Angus met me at the airport, and whilst I tried to keep my eyes open for the trip to their house in Sidcup, it proved impossible :) That night I had an early dinner and straight to bed.