Here I am in Townsville, in North Queensland. You may have heard the news that a large crocodile was spotted on the Strand ( the foreshores) in Townsville this week. How did I happen to be here still smiling with this huge reptile. Well .... We came up here on Wednesday morning, 4 March to surprise my mother on her 84th birthday. This is a special birthday as this is her year in the Chinese calendar - the Year of the Ox. My sister invited our mum to lunch at a coffee shop near her home, and we "gatecrashed " their lunch. I think she is still getting over the shock, and can't believe that she didn't have any idea that we were coming. Her first words were "How did you get here?" The simple answer, " By plane, Mum." Amazing that no one else in the family who were all in on the surprise didn't drop any hints whatsoever. We have had a few lovely days up here - eating out, shopping and gathering more information to help Jim write our family history. Yesterday, we went to Ayr, a small town south of Townsville , where my grandfather used to own a shop. Coincidentally we met a woman in the Court House who remembered going to the shop as a child, and also picking potatoes from my grandfather's market garden. This has been a great break, but are hoping to return home after the weekend, if the cyclone warnings don't ground air traffic. I also attended an International Women's Day function with my sister - Happy International Women's Day to the very special women and girls in my life - friends, colleagues, and my family.
Now back to the crocodile ... I can't claim to be the female version of Crocodile Dundee even though we are celebrating the achievements of women on this International Women's Day. - This "concrete" monster was about to be placed in the lobby of a new hotel. Jim ( my husband) and I happened to be walking past as it was being unpacked on the street. Great photo to show the grandchildren, though .