I’m very happy to say we have landed back on Aussie soil, and although I’m still in Sydney airport, with a 2 hours wait for the flight home to Adelaide, I thought I’d better catch up on some blogging! To say we have had a frantic time is probably the understatement for the decade (for us), and this picture is only part of what I’ve been up to.
For me, the very best part of the holiday was actually being able to meet the other founders and Board members of Dementia Alliance International (DAI), as we attended the Alzheimer’s Disease International 29th conference in Puerto Rico. And thanks to social media, many of you were there with us! We have made life-long friendships, and have put together plans for building this group, as well as meeting people from other countries wishing to become part of it.
I truly this is a particular moment in time that will become history for people with dementia, towards reclaiming their basic human rights and full inclusion in society. DAI had a professional booth in the Exhibition hall, and all members attending presented on topics of great importance to living well with dementia, at least once. I am extremely proud of what we have collectively achieved in such a short time, and will blog more about that soon.
Prior to the conference, we had 6 nights in New York City, my first time there, and to the USA. I did not enjoy it as much as I had anticipated, as found the crowds overwhelming and also tiring, and this trip, it took me three days to recover from jet-lag. I’m loathe to think how long it will take to get over after this very long trip home, but no need to plummet into PLOM disease, it has been fun, and we are so lucky to have been able to go.
NYC was really exciting, and very tiring. We went to Chicago on Broadway, which even Pete loved, and also to see Romeo and Julio at the New York Philharmonic Orchestra, also wonderful. The obligatory tourist bus trips giving us an overview of the city were great, albeit rather cold and I became a Sarah Lee; we needed many layers outside, but had to peel them off inside! I especially loved the helicopter ride, and for some strange reason, the free ferry ride to Stratton Island. The visit to Ground Zero was deeply moving for Pete, as I had expected it to be for me, but my emotions have changed, and so it was quite a different experience. We both loved the Guggenheim, and I could have spent a month in the Met!
As we didn’t have a honeymoon when we married due to our young Brady Bunch and not wanting to leave our boys at such a new stage in their young lives, we made up for it in NYC by spoiling ourselves and staying at the Waldorf Astoria. The history of this hotel was incredible, and although we were not invited into the Presidential Suite, I can very well imagine what it must look like! Our room in contrast was probably very ordinary, but we loved it just the same. The photos of Presidents and musicians and celebrities adorning the walls was interesting, and impressive! The older lady who was our guide for the tour of the hotel had been a young woman at the same time many of these people either lived the hotel tower, or simply spent their leisure time their, as it was in its day, the ‘place to be seen’. She was a wonderful example of living well into old age, and looked to be at least in her mid 70’s, and mentioned she still goes out dancing at night.
I promise there’ll be more news of our travels soon, and more regular daily blogging now that we’re are almost home!