2002-03 (MARCH, 2002)

Su-bi - Sydney, Australia

Su-Bi came to stay with us before her three month trip to Thailand. She was with us for ten days, but was, like Mark & Neil, pretty much left to her own devices as Andrea was in need of full time care. Su-Bi and I did get out for dinner a couple of times, though!

Bobby Comes Out To Play - Sydney, Australia

Fresh from his trip to New Zealand, Bobby, Andrea's Dad, arrived in Sydney and immediately took over the job of caring for our one-armed charge. Our first diversion was an 'all dayer' in the pub on St Patrick's Day. Su-Bi, Dave and Jenny joined Bobby, Andy and myself and we began with a full Irish Breakfast and a pint of Guinness down at our local Irish pub (The Welcome). By lunchtime the girls had drifted home and left the boys to it. The rest of the day is a bit of a blur, but did involve a pub-wide potato juggling competition (instigated by Dave) and a Rude Mr Potato Man episode. We left the pub at 22:00 (i.e. 13 hours after arriving). Sweet!

Our next adventure with Bobby was a weekend in the Hunter Valley. I met Andy and Bobby up in Newcastle (they went up to explore the area during the week). The next morning we blatted out to the Hunter Valley, parked the car at our B&B, and joined a rather impersonal tour for a jaunt around the local wineries. We drank some good wines - much better than we were expecting - and had some great food. We dined out at the pick of the local restaurants that evening and retired relatively early. The next day we drove back to the coast and had a proper explore around Newcastle and its beaches before trundling back to Sydney.

Bobby's final adventure was the participation in a treasure hunt around Sydney that I had organised for himself and Andy. It took them four days to complete and the prize was a plain envelope addressed to Bobby (Andy was not happy!). Inside the envelope was a letter requesting Andy's hand in marriage and another envelope (the second envelope was to be handed to Andy should my request be granted). Andy was duly handed her envelope (she was till in the dark as to what was going on) and she extracted yet another letter and yet another envelope. Her letter asked her to marry me and the third and final envelope contain the place-holder ring (I wouldn't dream of choosing one without her input!). Fortunately, she said "Yes!". Cool! We went out for dinner at the very exclusive 'Cadmus' to celebrate.