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Howie & Alice's Travel Page

Welcome to our Travel Page. Here is where we will be keeping a record of our travels for all of you to read. Please feel free to leave a comment for us. If we have time in between discovering new places and meeting new people we will reply to them!

Diary Entries

Monday, 01 October 2007

Location: Lille, France

We can't believe that it is our two year wedding anniversary already. Spent a romantic weekend in Lille (Northen France). Travelled via the Eurostar.
Had a lovely time, even ate a few snails :)

Saturday, 15 September 2007

Location: Cardiff Wales, UK

Went to Cardiff in Wales to watch the rugby. Had a fantastic time. Australia won. Aussie, Aussie, Aussie ..............

Thursday, 30 August 2007

Location: Various countries., Europe

had a fantastic two week holiday abroad.
We flew to Rome and spent four nights there exploring the city. It is an amzing place. Just so unbelievable how old the place is. We went to the Vatican City while we were there which was great.
From Rome we caught the Eurostar to Florence.We stayed in Florence for one night and saw the staue of David (replica) and some beautiful bridges. From Florence we joined a busabout tour (It's where you can hop on and off at different places on their route).
We stopped at Pisa and saw the leaning tower. We only stayed there for a couple of hours as that was the only thing there to see.
From Pisa we bused to La Spezia on the Italian Riviera. It was absolutely amazing. We stayed there for two nights and considered spending the rest of our trip there. We walked the Cinque Terre (which means five villages) It is a beautiful walk along the coast line.It was quite difficult and mostly up hill. We stopped at some of the beaches along the way for a rest and to cool down. The walk in total took us 7hours. We started from the North near Genova and headed south and back to La Spezia.
From La Spezia we bused around the Nice in France, stopping at Monaco on the way. We only spent one night in Nice a a dodgy hotel. It was very similar to the Gold coast.
From Nice we bused to Munic in Germany. in munic we spent some time at the Houfbroughuse, which is a famous beer hall. Howie had a stein that was the size of his head. The shopping was great. We stayed at the wombat hostel, which was fantastic. We definately reconment it.
From Munic we went to Lauterbrunnen in Switzerland. Howie and i fell in love with the place. The owner of the restaurant we ate at was from Young in NSW, he has married a swiss lady. We went to Lucern and to Litchenstein. We will definately go back there. There is plenty to do. lots of walks and climbs, white water rafting, sky diving, skiing, etc...
From Switzerland we went through Austria and then back to Italy we we stopped in Venicefor two nights.
In Venice i bumped into Dean Frazer i guy i went to high school with. He is now living and working in London and doing alot of travelling inbetween. Venice was also really amazing. You have to go there. Everything is very overprice there though, we just kept getting ripped off.
From Venice we caught a train to Milan. We stayed in a beautiful 5star motel there. Milan was on holidays so there wasn't much open. We didn't mind, we were happy to spend most of our time in our room resting.
We flew out from Mialn back to London.
Our holiday was for just over two weeks. Howie went back to work the next day and i still have three weeks of holidays left.

Monday, 30 July 2007

Location: London, UK

Accepted job at Sacred Heart in North London. Have worked for three weeks, just filling in and organising myself for the new school year, which starts in September. i will be teaching a year 3/4 class. It takes about 30minutes on the tube to get to work.
Will be on six weeks holidays soon.

Saturday, 30 June 2007

Location: London, UK

Another busy month.
Went for a few walks around Hampstead Heath with some firends. (a huge park in North London - can see the whole city from there, will take photos and put them on the site). Had a picnic there. Saw Gerry Halliwell (Ginger Spice) with her baby. There are ponds which have been made into swimming pools. There is a mans pool. You can't see the pool through the bushes, but outside the bushes, there are only men lying around in their bathers. The same thing happens around the women's pool.
Met up with Claire in Baker Street (i went to uni with her).
Went out in West Hampstead for Katina's Birthday at a pub called 'The Lion'. Had lots of fun.
Celebrated my birthday. Howie and i went out for dinner at a nice pizza place at St Paul's Cathedral. Later we went to the 'Lion King'. It was fantastic! thanks to everyone who sent through birthday wishes. :)
Went for an interview at a school in North London. Sounds like a great school. i have worked there a few times on supply and it is very nice to teach at. If i accept the job. I will be put through the university of Reading to get my Qualified Teacher Status (QTS), taught Spanish as there are alot of spanish speaking parents, have my own laptop and my own Teacher Assistant (TA) who will do all my photo copying, marking and wall displays and group work within the class - every/most teachers in the UK have a TA.
We went to Buckingham Palace to watch the royals go down the Mall for the Queen's birthday. Saw Prince Will and his Dad, also Camilla. Saw Prince Andrew and his daughters, Princess Ann and the Queen and her husband. We don't have any photos of it because we filmed it. Sorry, maybe next year.

Thursday, 31 May 2007

Location: Various / London, UK

It has been a very busy month.
Howie went to Edinburgh for work.
I fell over on the wet path and split my knee open.
We went to the British Museum.
Went to Trafalgar Square and had a picnic since they had covered the square with grass. We took a bottle with a cork and left the corkscrew at home. Very disappointing, until we discovered that the people next to us had done the same thing so we were all searching for one and eventually found one. Phew!

Saturday, 28 April 2007

Location: Dover - Folkstone, UK

We spent a wonderful weekend in Dover camping with some friends - Alice & Craig. The White Cliffs were amazing. I never could have imagined that chalk could be so strong. We camped right on the coast in a place called Folkstone, which had just had an earth quake only hours before our arrival.
On the way we stopped at Canterbury. Canterbury was full of crooked houses and buildings (see in photos). We also went through a place on the coast called Sandwich and stopped at Deal the have lunch.
On our way home we went to Hastings and had fish and chips on the pebble beach.
Had a great weekend away!

Saturday, 21 April 2007

Location: Hyde Park, UK

Stumbled upon a Royal Salute in Hyde Park. It was fired by the Kings Troop Royal Horse Artillary on the occasion of H.M. the Queen's birthday.
It was a 41 gun royal gun salute. It was absolutely amazing. The ceremony started by the army band marching along the pavement. Some guy was marching behind them, which was hillarious. He looked just like Mr Bean.
Afterwards 6 soldiers marched onto the grassed area and marked out posts. Then about 50 horses came towards us at full gallop - a team of 6 horses pulled 1 gun, the noise of the thundering hooves combined with the creak of leather and well greased wheel bearings must be a sound akin to the modern mobile armoured artillery (tanks) the horses and the handlers barely slowed and men had jumped off their horses and off loaded six 11lbs guns and swung them round in the marked postitions, the two or three handlers then turned their team horses in an impossible tight circle and thundered off to a safe position about a half mile back. you can certainly see why the British Army was a force to be reckoned with as this unit was lighting fast as it could deployed and in action in around 20 minutes to devastating effect. the guns were 13 lbs commissioned in in 1904 and were extensively used in both World Wars
After all the soldiers were ready they started firing the guns. It was staggering. You could feel the noise of the rounds reverbrate through your body and the echoes were heard after each shot, the guns spat long tounges of fire followed by foul smelling white smoke, the whole park was at times blanketed by this mist and it added an eerie atmosphere as it filtered the sunlight to a different shade of yellow. After the last rounds and before the rolling thunder of echoes the familiar sound of thundering hooves, creak of leather and squeal of wheel bearings came to us. the spectacle of a team of 6 horses arriving at full stretch throwing up clods of dirt behind them and little puffs of dust from the pounding hooves was amazing. Impossibly the handlers bought the team to a halt, the footing of the horses slipped as they tried to steady themselves. The gunners spun the 13 pounders around and hooked it on as the heavy breathing and impatience wild eyed horses litteraly chomped at the bit. The whole outfit then mounted and spun around again in an impossibly tight circle throwing up rooster tails of dirt from the gun wheels and clods from the horses hooves and raced away. the setting of the guns and the retreival of the guns was lightning fast and efficient.
As impressive as it was to see, the other end of the guns would also have been impressive but on the other end of the scale.

Wednesday, 18 April 2007

Location: London, UK

Another busy month.
We moved out of our place in Willesden Green and moved over to Hackney into Mungo and Mandy's place to house sit for them while they went holidaying in Australia for a month.
Over the Easter weekend we went to Suffolk with Lucy to visit Fay (Howie's dad's sister), Chris, Stewart, Geraldine and family. We had a really nice time.
After the weekend in Suffolk Howie got back into work and because i was still on holidays i went i up to Yorkshire and spent a couple of days with Grandma. Grandma, Hannah and i went for a walk through the Yorkshire moores. It was lovely. All the daffodiles where out.
When i got back from yourkshire, i just started house hunting. On the 14th April we moved into our new place in Maida Vale. A one bedroom apartment. It is a great size for us and is in a fantastic location (Walking distance to hyde park).
It is awful moving all our stuff from place to place. We used public transport for most of the moving, got a taxi for the really akward stuff.

Saturday, 14 April 2007

Location: London, UK

Our new address and contact details are:

46C Saltram Crescent,
London, U.K. W9 3HR.

Alice phone number: 001144 7722687088
Howie phone number: 001144 7982683155

Sunday, 25 March 2007

Location: London, UK

Well it has been a busy month.
Last week i worked at the same school for the whole week. I had a year four class. They were hard work, but i managed. The principal approached me on the Friday and offered me a perminant position at the school start in september. I don't think i will accept, but it was really flattering to be asked.
Grandma was also in London this weekend. We caught up with her at her friend Anne's place in Hampstead Heath. We went for a walk through the health. It was really lovely. It has absolutely amazing views of the city.
St Patricks day was on the weekend. We had planned on going into the city to get amongst the celebrations. But Craig our flatmate gave us tickets to the opening of Wembley Stadium, so we went to that instead. It was pretty amazing. We watched a game of football (soccer) and then headed into convent Garden. It was so crowed that we decided to go home. I have also been suffering with a cold.
Howie was also given tickets from work to see a film from the Austalian film festival. So we went to see Ravenswood with our new flatmates who are Brittish. It was fantastic. After the film, the actor came out and spoke with the audience about his experiences through the making of the film.
We found out this week that the place we are living has been sold and we only have 4 weeks to move. I'm really glad that i will be on holidays for two of the 4 weeks, but really sad that we have to move from this nice place.

Sunday, 25 February 2007

Location: London, UK

Well we found a really nice place and moved in on Monday. It was hard work using public transport to cart all our bags around. Anyway we are so lucky to have found such a nice place. It is a four bedroom house with four couples living. We all have an ensuite so the only sharing in the kitchen which is huge and the conservatory with the TV. All the other couples have a TV in their room except us, so we are usually the only ones that are in there.
One couple in slovakian and they both work at night so we rarely see them, there is another couple who are moving out next week. She is sweedish and he is Italian, they both work nights as well. Then there is another Australian couple. He is the project manager at Wembly Stadium and She is a school teacher and her name is Alice.
We are fenced off from the road with other houses. Within the fence we have a lovely garden, gym, indoor heated pool, suana and jacuzzi. I will have to take photos. It is almost like living in a motel.
Howie started work on Thursday and i had my first day on Friday. Howie seems to think that he will enjoy his work, but i'm not sure about me. I had a shocking day on Friday. Yr 5 class, two fights, just out of control. Students with diagnosed mental disabilities and no aid. I just hope it gets better!
Saturday we went to the Portobello Rd Markets. I had the time of my life. I could have spent the whole day there. Howie was so bored. The markets were just huge. You need to get there early so you can see everything. I will definately be going back.

Sunday, 18 February 2007

Location: London, UK

Well some very exciting news.
Howies interview on Monday went extreemly well and he found out on Tuesday that he got the job as a relationship manager. He will be working in migrant banking and dealing with Australian, NewZealand and South African Expats as well as English people who wish to migrate to Australia.
I attended my seminar in Victoria and found out some really good information. I will need to be working full-time to get my QTS so that probably wont be for another year or so. But i need to get it within four years of working as a teacher here. The great advantage of getting your QTS is that you will be recognised world wide and the pay scale increases.
We have been house hunting and seen some horrendous places. One place we went to scared us half to death. We have decided to up our budget now we know Howies income as well and only live in places in zones one or two.
Howies 30th birthday was yesterday. We celebrated with Chinese and beer. We also had a really lovely day at the antiques market in Angel, where we are now staying at a bed n breakfast.
More exciting news. I met up with Katherine, who i lived with at uni. She has been here for the last couple of years working as a radiographer. It was great to see her after so long.
Con gratulation to Liv and Aaron and Pete and Chippa who got engaged. Times that you wish you were back home.

Sunday, 11 February 2007

Location: London, UK

Well i worked all this week and last week. I was so relieved to find out that no other school is like the one i taught at two weeks ago. I have had a lovely week teaching from Nursery to year 6. They are only 3-4yrs old in nursery and very cute.
All the schools this week were Catholic Schools. Each class has a TA - Teacher Assistant who does anything for you - mark work, make you coffee, call the roll. It is unreal. Also black boards are not used in the classroom. Teachers only use the interactive white board which is all done through the computer. It is wonderful.
This weekend we went to Buckingham Palace hoping to see the changing of the guards. It is on every second day and we went on the wrong day. But we were able to walk up to Downing Street and watch the changing of the Horse guards. We spent most of the weekend in the city just walking about. We walked through Hide Park. It is really look beautiful at the moment. All the daffodils and tulips are out and the trees are starting to blossom.

Forgot to give you our address last time:
8 Honeyman Close, Bronsbury Park, London, NW6 7AZ.
Feel free to drop a note.

Sunday, 11 February 2007

Location: Beverley, UK

Well we are definately moving to London on Monday. Howie has got a job interview with the Commonwealth Bank in London and i have organised with Hays to start work when we get there. It will be half-term break from school so we will have a week to find accomodation.
We have booked a motel in Gloster Rd for four nights, so i'm hoping we find something quick.
On Wednesday i have a seminar to attend. It will give me information on how to obtain my QTS (Qualified Teacher Status) to teach as a recognised teacher in Europe.
So fingers crossed that everything works out.

Thursday, 08 February 2007

Location: Beverley, England

Well i had my first day of work today at Beverley Minster School in Beverley. I taught a year 6 class (only 10 & 11 yrs old). They were so well behaved and so motivated to work, i couldn't believe how lucky i was. They were very facinated with my accent. Only two of them guessed that i was Australian and only two children knew people who lived in Australia.
Beverley Minster School was also the school that Charlie and Eddie went to when Tom & Sally & the boys lived in Beverley with Granma for 6 months (about 10yrs ago).
I have to say that it was no different to teaching in Australia. Except it was an extreemly well behaved class and the work for me to teach was left for me.
This week Granma's twin brother Bill and his wife Nancy have been staying here. They are visiting from Kent in the south of London.
We have been to Hannah, Ian, Sam and Will's (aunt, uncle & cousins of Alice) place for dinner several times in Nafferton which is only about 20min drive from Beverley.

Friday, 02 February 2007

Location: York, England

We went to York today. Which is the captital of Yorkshire. it is a beautiful city. There is a wall that surrounds the city and it also has a Minster (meaning: important church), except it is alot bigger than the one in Beverley. There are only five Minsters in the country and we have now gone through two of them and seen three. (Beverley Minster, York Minster & WestMinster Abbey)
We walked halfway around the wall until we reached the castle area.
The castle was a small cylinder shapped building that was build on top of a man-made hill. It was pretty cool, but not at all like i exspected a castle to look like. You will see in the photos. On the way to Filey on Monday we stopped at a mansion called 'Burton Agnes' which was amazing, but i forgot to take any photos of it.
We have now had a chance to up load our photos, so check them out.


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Recent Messages

From George
Howdy!!
Thought i'd just check that you two are behaving yourselves. turned 18 last month!! its insane!! have hit up most night clubs in sydney with the pommy gap students. awesome fun!

i'm currently sending out my resume to schools in england applying for a gap year!! those dirty pommies have persuaded me that england is pretty bloody good!

i really want to get in london though. mainly cause of the nightlife (apparently) and so i can catch the train to france!

anyways have a merry christmas!

From Beck and Rhys
hey great to hear about job - I am also teaching next year full time at ......Lutheran would you believe!
I am really enjoying being a mum second time round Indy is just gorgeous and is so easy to get along with. enjoy your time love all of us.
also need your address - Xmas card
From willa
Hello. I havent seen you in soooo long! Anyway I got home from school yesterday. I have finished my first year of boarding school. Major achievement in my life! I hope everything in England is good. I will go there one day when I'm older maybe. I just saw this on mum and dads email so that is why I am sending this message. Anyway I hope you have a good time in England and have a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.
Love Willa
xxxxxxxxxxxxxx
P.S When are you coming to visit
From Tracy & Lachlan
Happy 2 yr anniversery for last month, we have just had ours also!! Love the pics!! When are you coming home for a visit?
From Tom
So you've got around a bit. i'm jealous, see you in May
Love dad
Response: Looking forward to seeing you. Great talking with you today.
Alice
From Maggie Robinson
Howie/Alice, great to hear ye are having a great time. I haven't read your diary from start to finish but from what I have read ye have taken in a lot of countries. Have ye been to Ireland yet?? Rusty and I had a little boy last April. Moving to the Gold Coast in Dec, handed in my notice today. Sand, sea and ......baby no 2......
From ian robinson
where are the party shots....? I need something worthwile to interupt my work! Is there another website that is uncensored? What about the nude girl across the road from work?...
From Christie
Oh WOW guys Im SO jealous Ive always wanted to see Venice...By the way Happy Anniversery xxx
From Som
Hey Al and Howie, looks like you are still living it up having a great time. I love your house, it looks really cute. All is well here, saw Min and Sarah last week. They were on a little trip up this way. I'm now 20 weeks preggas and we found out it is a little boy! Only 20 weeks left now, can't wait to meet him! Take care, Som and Ian
Response: That is so exciting. Have you named him yet?
Cute is a good word for our house it is very small.
From beck and Rhys
Just read your latest entry about the job that is fantastic I had to read the bit about the TA twice - what is left for you to do? Does that mean you have a bigger class rather than the 25 we get here?
all is well here 13 days until we get to meet our baby (hopefully) otherwise I am giving up and just sitting on the lounge all day watching movies.
Love looking at your photos
Take care
Beck and Rhys
Response: Ha Ha Great to hear from you. Well i hope your baby arrives on time :) I can't believe your pregnancy has gone so quick.
Yeah there isn't much to do but teach. I will have 30 in my class. All programming for english and Maths is done. We only have to program for Topic. Our topic this term will be Ancient Egypt. I'm on holidays now for six weeks. Will update you in the next entry. Love Alice
From James
Nice to see those photos, I'm sure they'll be updated with pic's from the green sometime soon. That being said, I need to make an update as well. My photoblog's are here:

http://Jameswoodlock.bebo.com
or here
http://picasaweb.google.com/jameswoodlock?pli=1

Take it easy

James (from St G's)
Response: Thanks james.
I just found out how to view my messages.
Alice
From Sommer
Hey Mr and Mrs Smith!
I have just been catching up on everything by looking at your site. It loks as though you are having a great time. Congrats to Howie for getting a great job- his stint as the stay at home husband didn't last long! We will definately have to come and visit in the future- it loks very cool. Everything looks so "English"!
Not much news over here in Oz, the rest of the country is starting to get cold meanwhile we are still sweating in Cairns! We have decided that we are going to try and have a baby soon so I'll let you know how that goes, you may have a second cousin on the way sometime next year. If you have a phone number email it to me so I can give you a call one day.
Take care, Som and Ian
Som & Ian,
Great to hear from you and all your good news. Our contact details are: 001144 7722687088
46C Saltram Crescent,
London, W9 3HR
From Auntie Pete
Thank you for sending us the link again. I have enjoyed reading your diary and catching up on your news. We are very happy that you are really taking advantage of your opportunities over there. I absolultely loved my time in London. All is well here and Grandma sends her love and best wishes. Phip says Ruby Jane is sweet and behaving herself. We visited Rachel in Alice Springs recently and met Arthur Digby and he is a gorgeous baby too.
Much love to you both. You are not forgotten. Auntie Pete xoxoxoxxo
From Tracy & Lachlan
Guys love seeing the pictures and seeing what your getting up to... Cheers TLC
From Christie
Love reading your page guys..Keep up the great sense of humour xx
From Tanya and Mick
Hello to the both of you,

Sounds like your doing heaps good on you thats what its all about. I hope you have had a session at one of the locals as well and met some real characters. (Like us ha)

All is well back here left Hayes street and living on the new place love it. It has huge potential in time!

Well i was due to have the baby on Sunday but still nothing. Really over it now so keen to see it is healthy and what it looks like. It has been the longest time form start to finish.

Anyway this is short but just wanted to touch base thinking of you both keep in touch and take care.

Luv
Tan and Mick
From rhys and bec
So nice to see photos of your adventures yu look so happy bet you are having a blast life is great in australia and teaching lots at lutheran tummy getting bigger everyday - we like it lots! any way we hope to get over there before you get back (are you coming back?) keep sending photos it will encourage us more
take care beck and Rhys
From
Happy Birthday for the 17th, Howie... do you have an address for mail yet?? lol

Love reading up on all your news. Photos are great..

All going well here..
Cheers,
Tracy Lachlan & Charlotte
From Sarah
HAPPY BIRTHDAY HOWIE!!

Hope you guys are well, Love u
From Leanne Wakefield
I hope you are both having a wonderful time. Alice I was a referee for you today for a job overseas. Goodluck!
Best Wishes
Leanne
From Som
Its great to hear that you are safe and well. My friend had a web site like this when she travelled. It was really good to hear what she was up to, so keep up the good work with these entries and photos.
I hope you are well and truly over your jet lag now and loving it! I started school today, the kids are back on Monday.
Hope you are both well, keep in touch, love the Johnsons
From Liv and Aaron
Hi guys!! How are you both? Hope you're feeling a bit better Al. We have just been to Beechworth for two nights where we stayed in a gorgeous little building (for two) that was built in 18something, little B&B. Explored Beechworth Brewery yum yum and wandered around town very relaxing. Bit hot here. Having a 'bbq on the turf' with a few others tomorrow before heading to the races for Australia Day, it should be a great day I bought a new frock Lisa Ho HALF PRICE!!! . Pete and Chipper are heading to the mountains with the horses this weekend (Pete left a msg on my fone) because I invited them to the barbie - I;ll have to catch up with her another time. Did you go and grab a few freebies at the shipwreck? I'll be watching ebay.... Abby and Drew's wedding was lovely great night bloody hot 40+! Nothing else to report...theres been two dead bodies found in the river in as many weeks other than that we hope you are successful in securing some employment. Thinking of you, wishing we were there.
Love Liv and Aaron xoxo
From
hi you guys it is mick cath and char and flynn we are moving back to wagga we are looking forward to catching your nextemail as we have such a great social life with kids have a great time and if you want me to check your unit while away give me a yeii
cheers
mick
From Auntie Pete
Wonderful to hear from you. I read your note to Grandma this afternoon and we enjoyed your update. It all sounds wonderful apart from being ill that day Alice. Your descriptions bring back memories from 1967 when I first went to London.
Great news of Russ. He is powering along.
Love from us all. Auntie Pete
From Danny
Sounds soo exciting, maybe u should have went to that ship wreck and got some stuff. Hope all goes well with job hunting and looking forward to seein photos.
Dan