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Archives for posts with tag: sand castles

CLAIRE , PAU,, MONICA AND SOOTY AT THE ENTRANCE Every January my parents would pack the car with beach chairs, umbrellas, clothes, food, cricket balls, bats, monopoly and other games, and my father would drive the over loaded vehicle which also included, my Mum, brother Paul, sister Monica, Grandmother and I, north of Sydney. Yes, this was our annual holiday, 2 weeks in a house at The Entrance. We loved it, 2 weeks of being spoilt by our jolly Grandmother, 2 weeks of swimming and building sand castles and playing cricket, going roller skateing and fishing and having our Dad all to ourselves. Two weeks of what we saw as freedom. It was a chance for all of us play lots of games and to enjoy each others company. We ate meat pies and cakes and ice cream, it was heaven! One year we took our new kitten, Sooty with us. We children had no intention of leaving Sooty behind and thinking about this now I wonder just how traumatised Sooty must have been. We didn’t have a cat box so she fitted into the car where she could and as I remember, was quite vocal for the full length of our journey. At one point she vomited, car sickness, something Sooty and I had in common. We had our regular toilet stop about halfway to the Entrance and let Sooty out. She did a runner and we all had to do what we could to corral her back into the car, even Grandma joined in. We loved Sooty, she was our first pet. It was decided after that trip that it was probably best to leave Sooty at home and get a neighbour to feed her rather than to relive another traumatic trip. A photo of, my brother Paul, my sister Monica, me and Sooty from the 70’s, outside the holiday house at The Entrance.

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Finally we are getting some perfect Sydney weather. This is one of my most favourite places in the world, Balmoral Beach, in Sydney. Although I have been back in Sydney since September today was my first visit to this very special spot. Balmoral is usually one of my first stops when I come back to Sydney. It’s a place I hold in my heart a place that has so many beautiful memories. As a child growing up in Sydney my parents would pack a picnic and my brother, sister and I in the car and head for Balmoral a harbour beach about 20 minutes drive from home. We would spend the day playing in the sand, building sand castles and swimming. We would also be encouraged to chase seagulls for seagull pie a game my parents invented to keep us entertained. My parents were inventive when it came to games especially my Mum who managed to invent a game for every occasion. She even had a game for us to play when making our beds at home. Balmoral continued to be a favourite as I grew into my teenage years and well beyond. However there were times throughout my teenage years when I abandoned  this pretty harbour gem for the big surf of the Pacific ocean and the bleach blond haired surfers with tanned muscular bodies who adorned it. Such is the distraction of youth! I came back though, could not resist it, how could you. Coming down steep the hill from Military road the view across the blue green water through the Sydney Heads is breathtaking. Stepping onto the grass in bare feet is the first thing I do before making my way down the sandstone stairs and onto the golden sand with its crushed shell texture. The rock formations and rock pools are so inviting and the crystal clear water and feeling of the sand between my toes and under my feet grounds me. Matthew enjoyed sharing this special place with me today. Sydney Harbour at its best!

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