Traveling Nancy

Traveling around the world as far as I can go.

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Perth on October 7th and 8th

I am a few days behind schedule for posting.  There has been no WiFi or cell phone coverage for the past couple of days.

As we were leaving Alice Springs, I realized that I was saying, “Goodbye,” to the Ghost Gum trees. I really loved those trees and am sure I will miss seeing them.

We arrived in Perth at about 12:30. It was so nice to be picked up from the airport by Jan. Sadly, Rose is still  not feeling well. Jan made an appointment for her at a local doctor.

Jan’s garden is quite lovely. The Wisteria is absolutely beautiful.  There are many plants and even an orange tree.  I only took a couple of photos.


These are flowers from Jan's Yard.

We did laundry in the washing machine and hung it outside to dry. Then we took Rose to the doctor. The doctor prescribed an anti-biotic and cough-medicine. So we went to the pharmacy.

Lyn’s prepared leg of lamb dinner for us at her house.. Jan’s sister, Margie, and a friend of Lyn’s, Lea, joined us for dinner. The meal was delicious and we had a lively discussion including politics. Great fun.

The food and people at Lynn's house.

Rose stayed at Lyn’s house and I stayed with Jan at her house.

The weather is quite a bit cooler in Perth.   In the morning Jan and I took the bus into town. Rose stayed at Lyn’s to rest another day. We walked along the south side of the Swan River and caught the Ferry to the city.

Here are some of the things we saw today.

A bird that Jan thought might be a called a Shag. It is a kind of Cormorant.


Black Swans. The river was named after the Black swans.

Two Kookaburras were sitting on a light post.


I had a good laugh at myself when I started singing, “Kookaburra sitting on an old gum tree,” and realized that I had never realized that a gum tree was actually a Eucalyptus.

Here are a couple of photos of the river.



Jan showed me a couple of Paper Bark Trees along the shores of the Swan River


It absolutely poured on us just before we got onto the ferry and our pants were soaked. We dried off as we walked through the city. We passed through a courtyard with these sculptures.


Jan showed me this beautiful Morton tree. I liked climbing up on the fabulous trunk for a photo. The size of the trunk was amazing.morton-bay-whole-treemorton-baynancy-climbing-morton-bay

We walked through Kings Park Botanical Garden: The 17 hectare Western Australian Botanic Garden showcases around 3000 of the states 3500 plant species.

I only captured a few plants in photos. I will try to label some of the ones Jan could identify for me (not necessarily in the correct order of what we saw).

Growing in the swampy forests of the southwest, the Scented Boronia has been used traditionally during ceremonies, celebrations and special occasions. The fragrance has inspired commercial production in southwest Australia and other states for cut flower, perfume and confectionary industries.


These are called Banksia.  They come in a variety of colors.


  • The bottom middle photo is of a sculpture and mosaic depicting the leaves of the Banksia.
  • The bottom right is called a Honey Eater  who is sucking the nectar of the Banksia.

These next photos are some Eucalyptus plants.


  • The top photo is Eucalyptus juvenile and mature leaves together
  • middle one is Eucalyptus nuts and flowers
  • lower one is unopened Eucalyptus flower.

We passed by a couple of Magpies playing with each other.


I learned that Wonnil Peppermint leaves contain the aromatic scent of peppermint. When crushed and inhaled the scent helps relieve fevers.   The leaves were used as antiseptic and the saplings made good spear shaft and digging sticks.


The next photo is of Everlastings  (not opened) and a Smoke Bush.


Below is a  Gija Jumulu (Boab Tree) that was moved 3200 km from Telegraph Creek, near Warmum, North Western Australia. The 750-year-old (estimated) Gija Jumulu was planted on July 20, 2008. This was the longest land journey of a tree this size in history. The construction of a new bridge in the great northern highway would have required the tree to be cut down. The Gija people of East Kimberley gifted the Jumulu to the people of Western Australia.


On the way back to the city we walked down a road lined with Kari Trees. The Centenary Committee planted these trees in 1929. There is a plaque by each tree with the name of the person who played to have it planted.


We decided to go to a movie in the evening so we walked back to the theater in Perth. On the way we stopped at the Stable Bar just to look at Sables Bar. It was built on the site of the original Perth police stables. It looked like a fun place to get a bite to eat although it was quite expensive.   The waitress told us that the four-course dinner (for a minimum of 4 people) was a good deal. The cost would only be $45 per person. Jan and I found this sign posted on the way into the bar very interesting.


Luckily the theater added on another showing to start 10 minutes after the showing of Perfect Strangers ((an Italian movie) because the show-time we wanted to attend was sold out. We went out for a pizza before the show. Pizza was good and the movie was quite enjoyable.

We walked to the bus stop and took the bus back to Lyn’s house to check on Rose. She was still not feeling well.

I loved spending the day in Perth with Jan.


Interplay: Campfire at the Heart -Day 4

What a morning.  I am again struck with my inability to form into words the wonder of this experience.  I am also aware again that these posts are actually my personal journal. So, into my world you have been invited.  Some of it may make sense,  Some of it may not.  I didn’t take photos in the morning today.

Today began with the element of  Air.  That was the element I chose yesterday.  We started the day with breathing in and doing various things (sigh, yell, hum, yum, quiet, roar, etc.) as we breathed out.  Betsey called it BIBO which she learned from Soyinka Rahim (a grassroots Spiritual advisor)

We had many movement and breathing experiences this morning.

Betsey invited each of us to find a contemplative body movement which leads us to a word or a phrase of prayer or affirmation.  It is unusual for me to engage in something like this and actually come up with a phrase.  But it worked.  Then we found a partner and shared our movement and phrase with them.  Our partner then repeated our movement and phrase.  Next we got in groups of 4 or 5 and did it again.  Finally we formed a circle and each of us taught our movement and phrase to the rest of the group.  It was a very powerful experience.  By the way, my phrase was/is “I am a lovable, energetic part of the interdependent web of life.”

One of the things we did after our tea break was to hear Susanna tell a story  about the process and steps she experienced in the past couple of years.  This will have very little meaning to those reading my journal/post, but to remind myself and am writing these words:

  • intuition
  • pomegranates
  • symbols
  • Saying, ‘”Yes”
  • Acceptance of a possible, “No”

I learned a new word (used in Susanna’s story).  It is “whinger” and it means a person who whines.  So a whiner is a “whinger.”  I love new Australian words and phrases.

In one of this morning’s  activities,  I found myself being very still.  This is not a usual place for me to be.  We shared our feelings in small groups of three.  Our triad played in the grass on our backs and put one hand into the air. We danced with our hands.  Sometimes my eyes were open and sometimes they were closed.   I loved looking at leaves of the trees waving above our hands.  When my eyes were closed, it was relaxing to just sometimes feel the others’ hands and sometimes just move in and out of them.

Betsey reintroduced a poem (she had sung it earlier in the week) called, “We Dance Wild” by Joel McKerrow.    Although I don’t personally relate to all of the “Christian” references in these words, I am sharing them to help me remember the experience.

We dance. We dance wild
Not a two-step, structured repetition. We dance large.
We dance flailing arms.
We dance the erratic and the wriggle,
the blunder, stumble and fall with no need to get back up again.
For our fumbles are our dance
and our dance is our rebellion and our declaration and our surrender.
Our falling to the floor is a knowing that it is only in the places
of dust and grime and footprint, only in the failed step and the rusty body, only in the falling
that we can ever truly meet the holy and the sacred.
We meet God on the floor.

So we choose to not rise too quickly,
to not keep ourselves together,
to not think we have this nailed,
this life, this God, this mystery, this question.
Our dancing is our stumbling and our stumbling is our dancing
and how disorderly we may seem,
and how undignified and messy,
we dive headfirst into not having the answers,
giving ourselves to a more spacious rhythm.
The song that is heard only in the silence,
only in the listening ear,
only in the unexplored landscape.
The whisper at the edges.

We find ourselves
when we lose ourselves.
The wilderness and the wild.
The Christ who gathers.
The Christ who descends.
The giving up of control.
The smallness of humility.
The largeness of the mystery.
The immensity of seeking the sacred in everything.
Never running from life
but plunging ourselves more wholly into her.
We dance and we feel our lumbered bodies begin to move.
We dance and we feel the heavy begin to take flight.
We dance to find liberation.

We dance to bring redemption,
the untwisting of the beautiful,
We dance to the new rhythm, the ancient rhythm, the holy rhythm,
the rhythm that holds it all together.
We dance to bring space.
We dance to hold hands.
We dance and we dance and we dance and we dance
until we are dizzy and falling.
We dance. We dance wild.

We are the Holy Disorder of Dancing Monks.
—Joel McKerrow

Betsey handed out a few copies of the poem to us and asked each of us to rather quickly pick one line that spoke to us and create a movement for that line.  We were in groups of 5 to 7 people.  We each danced out our movements as we each spoke our line.  Everybody in the group repeated our movement and words. Then each of the 3 groups had a chance to show their combined dance with the other groups.    Here is one of the other groups.

This group is dancing

My line was, “We dance to find liberation.”

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