Summer on the Downs

Downs

Whilst the official start of summer in the UK isn’t for a few weeks, I always think that June 1st has a symbolic, start of season feel to it.

And, as if in agreement with this sentiment, what a glorious day it was – warm, but not too warm and accompanied by a gentle breeze to propel the fluffy clouds across the sky.

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Two years on

Qantas

Today it is March 28th – a date that will be forever etched into my mind.

The reason is that it was the date, in 2012, that I zipped up my suitcase and headed off to Sydney airport for a flight to the UK … only this time, clutching a one-way ticket and lugging all my remaining possessions with me.

It seems like it was only yesterday.

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Bluebells

Bluebells

Living in Sydney, October was probably my favourite time of the year.

It was then that the colder, wetter weather of winter would be safely consigned to the past and the skin-searing heat of summer would be yet to arrive.

This in-between season was usually warm by day and mild by night.

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My local team

The rooks

One of the joys of returning to live in the UK, is the opportunities it provides to fuel my lifelong passion for football. In real time.

No more having to stay up until midnight or set the alarm for 5am to watch Premier League games from my Sydney couch.

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Birdsong

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Most mornings in Sydney I would be jolted from my slumber by a loud sound right outside my bedroom window.

Sounding like a cross between a baby crying, a protesting drunk being evicted from a pub at closing time and a member of the Australian cricket team appealing for yet another LBW (not the current team, obviously), it had a uniquely raucous timbre.

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Commuting

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Whenever I am in touch with old friends from Australia, they are always keen to hear how I am getting on as I settle back into life in the old dart after so long away.

As the result of many conversations, both online and offline, I’ve noticed that a number of common questions (FAQs?) keep recurring.

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Goodbye 2012….thanks for the memories

new year 2012

As 2012 draws to a close, every media outlet seems to be putting a considerable amount of effort into producing their own definitive ‘review of the year’.

And by general consensus, 2012 has been one hell of a year.

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Horse and hound

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When I was much younger, my Dad was a keen horseman.

He owned a big grey horse which he kept at a nearby stables and he rode it most weekends.

He would also occasionally disappear off on riding holidays overseas to places like Portugal and South America for “some serious riding”.

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