Christmas in South Australia

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Been a bit of an adventurous Christmas this year - I have found myself in the sleepy town of Goowla... South Australia.
Amazing the perspective and thinking you get when you actually have sometime to take a breath and spend time doing a bit of nothing, which is actually something in the end. Does that make sense?
Christmas in the US has been SO overrun on what we are getting someone, how many parties we are going to, what are we going to wear to those parties, How many lights are on the house - and on, and on - the stress is unreal, the money spent is ridiculous - the aura here is very, very different.
The lifestyle here is so focused on quality of life. People don't need many possessions, they buy what they need and spend the rest on helping others or spending it on a vacation or saving it for another day. EVERYONE is involved with some form of charity work - humans or animals, all tyring to help others. There is such little waste on frivolity - a lesson that has been fun to learn...
The weather has been a bit disappointing so far - Highs only 83 one day - but the beaches are stunning, the water is warm (compared to the frigid temps on the Northeast even n the summer), the people are so welcoming and have fun laughing at my accent - right... who has the accent?
Christmas day was church in the AM followed by a big picnic at the beach for the afternoon, with a pick up match of cricket among strangers... Tinsel on the pop up tent made it all very festive!
Highlights so far:
Shoes are optional here - everywhere - even in the grocery stores and banks... a bit odd but kinda cool.
My favorite saying so far - "FITH - F&*^ in the head"
I got to feed kangaroos and wallabies and pet kuala at a rescue farm... amazing. Photos to come :)
The wine from Currency Creek is outstanding - just 10 minutes away...
I have only touched 1 horse since I have been here, and am just now really missing my horses at home.
I have finally learned the rules of cricket... and yes, baseball is better.
Blunstone boots are not expensive.
NO ONE has "shrimp on the barbie" - lol!
Christmas - not 1 business is open - something I think the US needs to be better at.
Boxing Day is a great idea... a day to recover from Christmas!
Off to McLearen Vale on Tuesday to drink even better wine, from what I am told - my LONG journey home begins early Thursday AM from Adelaide airport, travel for about 30 hours to land back at the Orlando airport Thursday afternoon... Will be a long day. The farm at home will be in full swing - our winter camp begins on the 27th and goes until the 1st - that followed in 1 week by the first horse trials of the year - already...
Sadly, we have lost an incredible Owner of the OCET - Becky Broussard lost her battle with cancer on Christmas eve - She was a remarkable person and I am so lucky to have known her... Becky gave more to the sport of Eventing than many people will ever know and I am sure all are so grateful that they made the trip out to Rebecca Farm this year to help celebrate her passion. Her smile, wit and intelligence will be very missed. Big hugs to her family...
Off to watch more of the "Boxing Day Test Match" - really, the match will go for four days...
more soon with photos of the roos