Fandango’s Provocative Question #184

Fandango is just back from vacation and this has prompted his question this week.

What was the best vacation you ever took and why?

This is not such an easy question to answer. I’ve had a lot of great vacations.

I’m going to narrow it down to three.

The first one, in chronological order, I can’t recall the exact year now but it was in the 80s. Naomi and I went to Sydney for a holiday together. We went by coach and stayed in a cheap holiday unit in King’s Cross. We had a lot of fun on that trip. We went to Luna Park, we went to the Blue Mountains, we rode on trains and ferries. We’ve done a lot of holiday trips together over the years but that was one of our best ones. My old photo reminds me that this trip was in 1985; I was twenty eight.

Vanda 1985

The second one was the big overseas trip that David and I took in 1990. We flew to Hong Kong and caught a train to Beijing where we stayed for a few days, then we caught the Trans Mongolian Express to Irkutsk in Siberia and the Trans Siberian to Moscow. We visited Leningrad, as it was still known at the time, and then continued by train from Moscow all the way across Europe ending in Hoek van Holland where we caught a ferry to England for a few weeks stay. Why is it on the list? Well it was our bucket list trip. Any railfan would want to do that. We saw Tiananmen Square and the Great Wall of China. We went to Red Square, we saw the amazing Moscow underground railway stations that look like art galleries, we saw the Exhibition of Achievements of National Economy in Moscow and I went to the Hermitage Museum in Leningrad. We went to Scotland and we rode steam trains in Wales.

Beijing 1990
Space Exhibit at the museum in Moscow
image author
Me outside our carriage.

The third trip would be the cruise that Naomi and I did to New Zealand in 2016. It was just a few months after David died and I really needed that holiday. I’d always wanted to go on a cruise and I’d always wanted to see New Zealand. I loved the ship, Explorer of the Seas, and New Zealand did not disappoint. I only wish I’d had more time there. My favourite places were Napier and Wellington.

Explorer of the Seas 2016
First sight of New Zealand
First sight of New Zealand


I was born in England in 1957 and lived there until our family came to Australia in 1966. I grew up in Adelaide, South Australia, where I met and married my husband, David. We came together over a mutual love of trains. Both of us worked for the railways for many years, his job was with Australian National Railways, while I spent 12 years working for the STA, later TransAdelaide the Adelaide city transit system. After leaving that job I worked in hospitality until 2008. We moved to Tasmania in 2002 to live in the beautiful Huon Valley. In 2015 David became ill and passed away in October of that year. I currently co-write two blogs on with my sister Naomi. Our doll blog "Dolls, Dolls, Dolls", and "Our Other Blog" which is about everything else but with a focus on photographs and places in Tasmania. In November 2019 I began a new life in the house that Naomi and I intend to make our retirement home at Sisters Beach in Tasmania's northwest. Currently we have five pets between us. Naomi's two dogs Toby and Teddy and cats, Tigerwoods and Panther and my cat Polly. My dog Cindy passed away aged 16 in April 2022.


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