jenn jay tales

Jennifer Johnston shares her travel tales; life adventures; observations, photos and random thoughts


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Straddie – Gotta love it

Straddie – my holiday experience

Share my recent Straddie holiday over on my travel blog.

North Stradbroke Island - South East Queensland

North Stradbroke Island – South East Queensland

Family holiday fun

Family holiday fun

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Sunset so sweet

Sweet Sunset

In a simple twist of light, colours explode across the sky at sunset.

Fairy Floss Sunset Waikiki

Fairy Floss Sunset, Waikiki Beach, Oahu

My semi- frequent sunset posts, may indicate I am partial to a sunset and yes it is true – I am!  With the cloud looking like fluffy, pink fairy floss – I am instantly transported back to my childhood.

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Sweet, sugary fairy floss.

I treasure each sunset and enjoy the magical transformation as the light meanders through its subtle changes.  And I am not alone in being a sunset-worshiper:

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Sunset-worshipers gather on Waikiki Beach, Honolulu, Hawaii.

Enjoy!


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Always a Winner

Conga Don entertains Brisbane

When a good friend of yours gets up on stage with a professional musician and his band to play an instrument, in front of a sell-out crowd of 1,500,  you have to admire their tenacity and guts!

Conga Don Cattanach took to the stage last Saturday night at the Tivoli Theatre in Brisbane with Pete Murray and his original band The Stonemasons. Pete is currently on his Feeler – 10 Year Anniversary Tour, celebrating the re-release of his album “Feeler.”

Don and Pete at the Tivoli

Conga Don and Pete Murray perform together on stage @ The Tivoli

Pete Murray and the Stonemasons @ Tivoli Brisbane 22.2.14

Pete Murray and The Stonemasons rock The Tivoli, Brisbane

A clever few people in our group of friends have managed to compile this you tube clip with Conga Don accompanying the polished sounds of Murray and band in a crowd favourite: Always a Winner.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C2MYqzr0b5I

Pete you are a generous man for giving Don the opportunity – but you would never have asked if you hadn’t believed in his musical ability.

Thanks for the special treat on the night – and talented Conga Don, I hope this is just the beginning …………………

Conga Don

“I did it, I did it!”

Pete Murray, sis and the older groupies

The man himself, always happy to flash a smile!


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Kookaburra sits

As I was taking this photo and watching this Aussie icon watching me – I regressed to my childhood and recalled this verse from the Australian song:  The Kookaburra Song by Marion Sinclair written in 1932.

Kookaburra sits on the old gum tree,

Merry, merry king of the bush is he.

Laugh kookaburra, laugh kookaburra,

Gay your life must be.

It doesn’t seem to matter how old you are, some childhood memories linger and come back to you in a flash.

Or they become slightly refined with the next generation.  The version my young sons take delight in saying:

Kookaburra sits on the electric wire,

Jumping up and down with his pants on fire,

Ouch Kookaburra, ouch Kookaburra

Hot your tail must be.

Kookaburra front

Kookaburra side

(ok so its not a gum tree, but it is a kookaburra!)


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Fashion from the past – is not for everyone

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1950’s Fox fur wrap

These photos show a couple of “furs” – considered “fashionable” from an era far removed from my own.  Out of the deep, dark recesses of her storage cupboards my mother dragged these once fashionable items, to show us something different. I have no idea why she has been hanging onto her mother’s furs for so long – certainly never to wear them herself.  I am guessing my mother (a self-confessed hoarder,) is at the stage of her life where she wants to de-clutter a little – or get some mild entertainment from shocking the kids!

I am actually a lover of animals in their alive state. So what was my reaction at seeing a couple of dead animals, meant to be draped around your shoulders for warmth and as an example of the height of fashion?  I looked at these two preserved creatures with a mixture of hideous distaste as well as incredulity.

As an advocate of anti-animal cruelty, my reasons for posting these photos on my site, is not to glorify what many consider cruel, but to allow a peek at fashion from just over a half a century ago. A fashion, once considered “glamorous” and “desirable”.

My grandmother wore her fox wrap in Brisbane in the 1950’s. It was purchased on a trip travelling through England.   My mother recalls as a child, attending ballet and theatre with my grandmother. “All the ladies would wear their furs and I clearly remember the smell of napthalene flakes in the air,” my mother said, “To preserve the furs.”   Hmmmmm, now that is an interesting childhood memory.

Looking at these poor critters, joined at the nose – roused revulsion in me.  It was a challenge to even pick them up, to touch them.  Let alone imagining wearing them.

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Another of Grandmother’s fur wraps

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preferring my synthetic warmth

What a difference a few generations, society and fashion cycles makes.  Give me my polar fleece and synthetic woolly scarf any day!

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Hmmmm – these draped around your neck for warmth?


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There are some amazing places out there …..

Arctic Circle – a sight to behold

A  friend of mine who lives in Breda, The Netherlands felt her Travel Bug Within and decided to chase the Artic Circle’s Northern Lights.  As many nowadays do, she shared her journey via face-book, including the obstacles she met on the way.  For those of us not as (yet) lucky to have the opportunity (or the chance) to see the phenomenon in “real life” – take a look at these really incredible images Rob posted on FaceBook.

In her words, “In the next few days I will make a decision to stay in Sweden an extra few days, to take a train to the Arctic Circle and back.  Best place (to see them) is Abisko (Sweden) but there is no place to stay there,” Rob, Feb 13.

For the rest of the story please go to my travel blog: travelbugwithin.com.au

Looking at Rob’s and Peter’s photos, yet another travel destination has been added to my list!

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Some of Rob’s images – spectacular

Northern Lights teepee

Northern Lights and Teepee

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Peter Rosen image

 

 

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