Wonderful night with friends…Fabulous restaurant…One day and counting…

Christine, Tom and I huddled together for a photo.

When Bob dropped us off in Manly, parking in a local ramp, we all walked out to the Corso outdoor mall.  We had a bit of shopping in mind.  We parted ways with Bob while Tom and I headed to the pharmacy for a few last minute toiletries.

I was on a mission to purchase a suitable black skirt.  Since I don’t own a single dress and recently tossed my raggedy worn black skirt I was determined to find something a little dressy that I could wear on the many formal nights on both upcoming cruises.

Tom with Christine and Colin, the fabulous friends we met on the last cruise.  We were thrilled to see them again.

Although I don’t own any dressy “tops” a dressy skirt could help me feel slightly more appropriate on the formal nights.  Once we got everything we needed at the pharmacy, we wandered along the lengthy boulevard in the Corso while I visited a few women’s shops.

Prices are high on clothing, shoes and many items in Australia.  As I perused a few items I winced over the how expensive everything was priced but remained determined to find what I wanted. 

Finally, at the popular Sussan store, I found the perfect skirt but again cringed over the price of AU $89.95 but when converting it to US dollars at $67.70 (tax included), it didn’t seem so bad after all.  I handed over my credit card and made the purchase.

As a big slab of bacon oozed out of Colin’s burger, he couldn’t resist taking a photo.

Then, of course, in typical enthusiastic shopper style, I longed for an appropriate pair of shoes that would work well with the knee length “pencil” skirt.  Stopping at a few shoe stores as we continued the walk on the Corso, my mission appeared hopeless. 

There was no time to go to a mall.  My only hope was to wait until our ship docks at a port of call on the upcoming cruise, maybe in Hawaii on May 9th. In the interim I’ll live with what I have on hand, one pair of high wedge sandals I purchased in Hawaii in 2015, the last pair of shoes I’d purchased, (except for one pair of Keds white leather slip-on shoes I seem to wear more often than not). 

Tom and Colin ordered the Bacon Cheeseburger which they thoroughly enjoyed.

Once we approached the Manly Wharf, we found a comfortable place to wait until Christine and Colin’s ferry arrived from Circular Quay in Sydney.  Based on the schedule and our early arrival, we had a 30-minute wait.

Both the people and bird watching entertained us sufficiently for the time to pass quickly and before we knew it, we spotted Christine and Colin searching for us by the entrance to the Wharf.

Hugging affectionately, we were all happy to see one another.  We’d said our goodbyes the day the ship disembarked in Sydney on March 13th. At that time we were preoccupied as we were faced with dreadful concerns about our “illegal immigration” status after we’d received a worrisome call from the Australian Department of Immigration while aboard the ship.

Tom, Christine, and Colin enjoyed their burgers.  Christine had ordered a similar burger with Halloumi cheese.

We walked across the road to the Italian restaurant Crinitis where we spent the next almost four hours, engaged in lively conversation, laughter and memorable good times.  None of us ordered wine or cocktails.  I drank mineral water while the three of them ordered sodas.

We shared the story of our immigration issues with Christine and Colin who were shocked by our peculiar experience.  After all these years of travel, none of us had ever experienced such a scenario and hopefully never will again in the future.

The grilled Barramundi and vegetables sauteed in olive oil and butter were delicious.  A red pepper aka capsicum in Australia was particularly delightful.

The time passed so quickly, we were all surprised when we finally realized how late it was getting. With limited bus service for us and ferry service for them, we decided to say goodbye and head back to our respective “homes.”

It was a beautiful day in Manly.  We arrived at 2 pm and were scheduled to meet Christine and Colin around 3:45 pm.

Our bus arrived nine minutes after we approached the stop and minutes later we arrive at our rental and embarked on the steep path to the house.  With his usual thoughtfulness, Bob had turned on all the lights for us. 

In no time at all, we were hunkered down on the sofa in time to watch yet another amazing David Attenborough wildlife story.  It was impossible to wipe the smiles off our faces over the enjoyable evening of good friends and good food. Watching wildlife in Africa didn’t hurt either.  Hmmm….

This swing activity for kids looked fun with an attendant on site who strapped the kids into a harness.

This morning we did a little more packing comfortable that by noon tomorrow when our taxi arrives we’ll be set to go.  Instead of preparing tomorrow’s post today which I usually do on the final day, I’ll have plenty of time to do it in the morning.  Easy peasy.  Life is good.

May life also be good for YOU!


Photo from one year ago today, April 21, 2016:

One year ago, Tom’s dinner aboard the ship including tender steak, broccoli, and fried potatoes.  In addition, he ordered a starter and a dessert.  For more details, please click here.

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