The Holidays Begin!

Jackie arrived yesterday 🙂 and there are 3 days to go before my holidays start and we (the fam and Jackie) head over to Bali for Christmas. It’s been a busy and fun past week and I am very much looking forward to some shopping, tanning, diving and generally relaxing by the beach.

Last Tuesday night Keiren, Dad and I went to meet President Xanana Gusmao of Timor Leste and see him talk at Parliament House. It was a very interesting evening and I came away impressed with President Gusmao. Despite poor English, he came across as warm and genuine. I found him to be very honest about the situation in Timor Leste, and also willing to accept some personal responsibility for the problems that Timor Leste is experiencing. President Gusmao also managed to bring some humour into his talk, joking about how Singapore’s model wouldn’t work for Timor Leste since the ‘Chinese are not human. They are humanoid. They can work, work, work. We are use to working 6 hours…a week.’ Dad almost stumped him with a 3 part question on whether it was easier to be a freedom fighter or head of state, what countries he looked to as role models, and his thoughts on and suggestions for Hamas.

On Friday night I had our office Christmas party (well, technically it was the Salmat – who now own VeCommerce – Christmas party. The VeCommerce party is while we’re in Bali) at Dockside at Cockle Bay Wharf. It had a masquerade theme, so there were some funny masks around. There were only 4 people there from VeCommerce, but with free alcohol, mingling wasn’t a problem and we all had a fun night. For some reason Lote Tuqiri (a Wallaby’s Player) was presenting the raffles prize – what a job, being rented out to present prizes at corporate events 🙁

On Saturday night I briefly (sorry I didn’t stay longer Alph) stopped by at Alpha’s birthday before heading over to Carla, Al, Jess and Em’s Red and Green Christmas Party. I decided I would go in a ridiculous outfit (see the photos) of short green shorts, a red singlet, a green hat, a light up santa tie and green thongs. I was impressed that a lot of other people were looking silly too! It was a fun night and I didn’t get home till after 3, which meant I was a little tired Sunday morning for my much anticipated trip to the airport to get Jackie!

Yesterday morning I was up bright and early to head to the airport despite being a little tired ;-). Nothing could have kept me in bed – it’s wonderful to have Jackie here, even if it’s only for a few weeks (hopefully till January 15th when I go back to work and she heads home to start her job). Sorry to her family for stealing her for Christmas 😉 At the airport, it was really busy and so it took Jackie an hour and a half to get through the airport. Luckily that did give me a chance to have a coffee and a red bull to wake up a bit 😉 After a brief stop at home, we all headed down to Bather’s Pavillion for brunch to celebrate Jackie’s arrival. After a good feed, we went home, Jackie unpacked and we then got ready for my bbq by the pool. Luckily the sun was out for the first time in what seems like ages!
The bbq was great fun. We just lazed by the pool all day swimming and drinking Pimms and beer, and even doing some actual bbqing every so often. Everyone left by 9, so we cleaned up a bit and watched some tv before bed. You would have thought that I was the jet lagged one since I could barely keep my eyes open 😉

Today, I’m back at work, although it’s hard to get motivated with just 3 days to go before the holidays!! Jackie is spending the day with my brother and possibly some other friend’s of mine, Rory and Shell, so she is in good hands. Tomorrow we are having our family Christmas dinner so we don’t have to take presents with us to Bali, and then Wednesday night we’re going to the open air cinema in Centennial Park. If I don’t get a chance to write again before Christmas (There isn’t much internet in Bali), Merry Christmas! I’ll put up more photos whenever I get a chance, although don’t be surprised if that isn’t till we get back from Bali on New Year’s Eve. Enjoy the photos from the green and red party and the bbq yesterday.


3 thoughts on “The Holidays Begin!

  1. Wow Ben,
    Now I know why you sounded like you did when I called you so early in the morning on Sunday. You sure know how to party I think I’ll be in trouble when I come to visit. Enjoy the holiday. Lots of Love to you and your family xoxo Bonnie

  2. dear ben, you are an jerk!!! you think you are all coy and cute with the whole “stealing jackie from her family” with a lame ass smiley. i feel like this blog isn’t up to par…well, they never are…but this one was particularly bad. boooo!!!! get a new blog or get a new stalker

    peaaace out bia

  3. Hey Ben,
    Say hi to Jackie for me, and MERRY CHRISTMAS.

    Just arrived in Bolivia.. my christmas will be spent here.. and new years probably in Aregentina.



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