Monday, December 21, 2015


Not here. There are no fleas where I am!

We flew to Melbourne from Darwin on Friday and arrived in the early evening. Jess had volunteered to meet us and take us to Lindsey and Ian's flat in East Melbourne (Lindsey and Ian are in Tokyo). Poor Jess had to circle the airport several times before meeting us in the pick up place - our luggage took at least 20 minutes to turn up. Bad show QANTAS!  But the pick up points are brilliant. You tell your collector which lane you're in, they swing by and pick you up and off you go. No parking fees, no trekking off to the farthest reaches of the multi-storey because that was the only parking space available, no worries. Although I think we will park in the car park on Wednesday when we come to collect Lindsey and Ian. I no longer know my way around the airport well enough to circle it till I get the nod that they're in one of the pick up lanes!!

We braved the heat on Saturday to head to Lygon Street for some last minute Christmas shopping, although we took the tram rather than walking. Later in the day we took the tram into the city to buy another pair of shorts each and to look at the Myer Christmas Windows. By then it was not only very hot, but the wind, which earlier in the day had been pleasantly cool had now changed direction and was also very hot. We returned to the (air conditioned) flat and stayed in for the rest of the evening.

We came to Mount Martha on Sunday for lunch with Stella and Tony. Wendy, and Matt, Belinda, Sage and William came too. So, in the mid-afternoon, did a much appreciated cool change. All the other visitors went home after lunch but The Builder and I stayed over. We had a pleasant stroll with Tony round the complex once it had gone dark, to admire people's Christmas lights. And here we remain, on Monday morning, supping our breakfast tea and admiring the rather pleasant, much cooler morning.  We'll head back into the city later in the morning.

What's that? Ah yes. The fleas.

Tabitha, Gareth and Cally headed out to our place on Saturday, intending to stay overnight and to check the house out. They walked in to what they described as a tropical greenhouse! We had left the heating up quite high, not realising that the Derbyshire temperatures were going to lurch towards spring-type levels. They turned the heating down. Then went upstairs to find a marauding army of titchy, tiny,  teensy and VERY hungry baby fleas colonising the upstairs. Once the very hungry fleas noticed that food had arrived downstairs, they made for the stairs, engulfing a very alarmed Cally in their way down.. We assume that the high level of heat in an empty house had encouraged flea eggs lurking in the carpet to hatch out. They don't get much of a chance when we are there. Henry the Vacuum Cleaner keeps any fleas that decide to hatch under control. And Gareth has gone into battle against the marauding army of tiny fleas, first with Henry and later with masses of flea spray. It will be a brave flea that tries to form a new army!

And just in case you are still considering the idea of wandering by and emptying the house while we are away - the House Minders noticed very quickly that there were people in the house. They'd be bound to notice something as big as a removal van :-P

Melbourne Town Hall, prettied up for Christmas

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