When I was at the U of I, Kathleen was one of my neighbours and a great friend who worked at the study abroad office. She decided to take three crazy Aussies home for the Easter holidays. I was blown away when I first walked in to Mike and my room – it was so welcoming. On the beds were towels so perfectly folded and a lovely small soap and yummy chocolate. It made a big impression on me and I’ve done that for most of our visitors staying with us ever since. It was also very interesting cause her dad Jim didn’t know what we would drink so he bought us ‘Fosters’ which we had never had before – it was such a fun weekend. Sister Audrey and brothers Jim and John were always so welcoming – We didn’t need any excuses to go back and visit – it was always so much fun. I didn’t actually study with Kathleen’s good friend Sarah but she would come down to uni to lots of our parties and she stayed with us in Melbourne for a while so already knew Sandy. Such fun to hang out again. It was brilliant for the kids to meet the family and put faces to some of the stories I’ve told them. It was great for Sandy to meet Kathleen’s mum Ann and see where i got the hospitality inspiration from!
Kathleen and Audrey are my baba’s friends from university. Actually baba went to university with Kathleen and Audrey is her big sister. We also met up a lot with their other friend Sarah.
First thing we did with them was go to Audrey’s house and we found Audrey who just got home from work. She let us grab some bicycles from her brother’s nearby home a ride down to the beach where there was a park and places to ride. I haven’t been on a bike for ages so it was lots of fun. We ate amazing cooked grilled chicken with salad and fruit. It was very very yummy. They were so generous that they even gave us ice cream with a bowl of sprinkles each to dip it in. Kathleen said that ‘everything tastes better and life is better with sprinkles’. Their mum and dad Jim and Ann also came for dinner to meet us. When my dad was at university here, Kathleen took him and his friends Mike (from Perth) and Steph (from Sydney) home for Easter to meet her family. They’ve been friends ever since. We had such a good time the first night that we saw them again. We even met Kathleen, Audrey and Sarah downtown after work one day and they took us to an amazing place for dinner – I can’t remember what it was called but it was kind of like a grocery stall or a mall. You could just choose whatever you we liked and they just weighed it. Kathleen bought us dinner which was so nice of her. We had a dinner that’s kind of like a Buffet breakfast but dinner things instead- we could choose things and put them on a plate and they just weighed it when you pay. By the time we were eating dinner it got extremely cold and we had only summer clothes. Only Yasi had a long sleeve. So we got hot chocolates to warm us up. They were quite extraordinary. They were a normal amazing hot chocolate, then they put whipped cream on top and usually they put sprinkles on but they didn’t have any left so they put chocolate sauce on top. I drank all of mine and Kalika didn’t like hers so I drank hers as well but she had taken her lid off so it was getting colder – but it was still so good. I talked a lot with these girls. I even learnt a few things about NBA such as since Miami Heat were flogged in this year’s final their best player Labron James (who’s considered by most people to be better than Michael Jordan) has moved back to his hometown basketball team. When he originally moved to Miami the people in his hometown were so mad they were tearing up pictures of him. His contract had ended and he just wanted to go back home to play. Also I think he wanted to help his home team out.
Those girls were really fun to hang out with.