It has been a long time since the last posting here; because nothing very much has happened. We have continued on in our usual lives, appreciating our existence more after last year's problems with Alison's heart. (It is now 6 months since operation and she is entirely back to normal). Our Melbourne lives have been rather more hectic than usual as Alison has been going to circus twice a week - on Wednesdays and on Thursdays - to get her fitness back to the way it was.
She has certainly succeeded in this. And we continue to do a lot up in Castlemaine; we are partway through turning the old driveway into a path through garden, and in the process altering the fall so that water runs away from, rather than into, the house. Though we've had only one decent fall of rain this year; for the first 10 weeks of the year there was not a drop.
The other Castlemaine house, "Finsbury", has hosted a gathering of the Thomas family; daughters and further decendants of Bill Thomas, who built the house in 1932, and then lived in it until the 1960's. It was lovely to see the family appreciating the history; and fortunately they were happy with the renovations we made to it. They even presented us with a framed certificate of appreciation at the end of the day!
And - we've made more plans. After a short trip to Lord Howe Island in June (the middle of winter - but we hope it will be marginally warmer than here) we are going to Madagascar, via Mauritius, in July - on an organised "hike and bike" tour for 2 weeks in Madagascar, followed by 5 days recovery in Mauritius. And we have thoughts of going to walk the Kepler Track in New Zealand in November or December.
The only after effect of Alison's surgery is that travel insurers want to charge her more to cover her. This, despite the risk of my heart misbehaving is much higher than hers, which has been so fully investigated and nothing else been found wrong!