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Mrs. Sally Ghilarducci. (who is on maternity leave)

Submitted by bugsly on Tuesday, June 13, 2006 - 22:56 Australia | Car | Foreign Language and Music Study | Life Sciences | Physical and Health Education | Subway | Walk

Today we arrived in Sydney. Our hotel is nice and right on the harbour. We went for a walk to see the city and eventually caught a really good meal right on the bay. The fish was fresh caught and cooked right away. It was delicious.


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Traveling from Burleigh Heads to Parkes
Submitted by bugsly on Friday, June 9, 2006 - 19:42 Australia | Car | Core | Foreign Language and Music Study | Life Sciences | Physical and Health Education | Walk

For the last three days we have driven all the way from Burleigh Heads on the coast, to Parkes, inland. The first day we drove to a town called Ben Lomond where we had our first night of freezing temperatures. We stayed on a farm called Silent Grove and had a wonderful time there. We got to feed some of the animals in the morning before we left.

The next night we stayed at a Bed and Breakfast called Roseneath in a town that is called the “Koala Capital of Australia”, Gunnedah. It was a great old Victorian mansion and we had comfortable beds and a really good breakfast in the morning.

On the way to Parkes today, my Mom saw a Koala hanging (asleep) upsidedown in a Eucalyptus tree. She was so happy to see one in the wild. We made our way to Parkes to stay at a Bed and Breakfast that my Dad stayed at several years ago. The owners, Helen and Mal Westcott, are wonderfully nice and we are going to be very comfortable in their home. We had a great dinner with them and went to sleep.


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Port Douglas, Mossman Gorge & Ellis Beach
Submitted by bugsly on Tuesday, May 30, 2006 - 02:24 Australia | Car | Core | Foreign Language and Music Study | Life Sciences | Physical and Health Education | Walk

Today we rented a car to do some more exploring. We headed north, and ended up in a town called Port Douglas where we had lunch. We got to have Mexican food and then we headed off again to check out the rainforest.

Daintree National Park is a rainforest that is huge. We went to a part called Mossman Gorge where there are trails overlooking streams and rapid waters. The rainforest was humid and hot but if you looked around you could see small bugs and many different kinds of colorful plants.

One of the main attractions of Mossman Gorge is a large suspension bridge that hangs over the rapid waters. They only allow 20 people at a time on the bridge because it is narrow and moves a lot. It was fun to sway on the bridge and look out over the water.

After the Gorge we had ice cream. I had a 99 cent Flake just like in England. It was refreshing after being in the humidity.

On our way back to Trinity Beach we stopped at Ellis Beach and I waded hip deep in the water. The water was comfortably warm and felt great.


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The Great Barrier Reef and Scuba Diving
Submitted by bugsly on Sunday, May 28, 2006 - 02:21 Australia | Boat | Car | Core | Foreign Language and Music Study | Life Sciences | Physical and Health Education | Walk

After traveling on a boat in choppy waters for an hour and a half, we arrived at the Marine World pontoon in the middle of the ocean near the Great Barrier Reef. Mom and I donned our scuba gear and after our orientation, we ventured down the stairs to a landing under the pontoon. We went over what we needed to know one more time, then made the descent into the colorful waters of the Great Barrier Reef. Being that it was the first instructional dive, we linked arms and swam together. There were lots of colorful fish and coral.

My favorite coral was spikey like a porcupine with dark blue “quills” with neon blue tips. It reminded me of a pincushion. We knelt on the ocean floor in the sand (did you know there is a beach under the ocean?) and got to look at and gently hold a sea cucumber. We also got to be very close and touch a big fish called a Maori Wrasse. After having our photos taken a couple of times while holding the sea cucumbers, we swam off to continue our time under the sea.

We swam back to the pontoon eventually, left the water, and relaxed and had lunch. Lunch was great, vegetarian lasagna, corn salad and many other good dishes and treats.

After lunch we snorkeled and explored the Reef. There were lots of colorful fish to see and so many amazing kinds of coral.

At about 4:00 we boarded the boat again and made our way back to the wharf in Cairns.

We had a fabulous day and the feeling of this tired was great.


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Intense shopping and bargaining
Submitted by bugsly on Saturday, May 13, 2006 - 23:14 Car | China | Core | Life Sciences | Physical and Health Education | Tea | Walk

Today was our first day in Beijing.

Our driver, Mr. Cmoe Qiu (pronounced “Cho”), picked us up and took us to the Friendship Store in central Beijing. We browsed through the store which had interesting as well as odd things in it. We finished up there and made our way to lunch with our new friends, Iris, Stellar, and Claire, Stellar’s seven year old daughter.

They ordered lots of good food for lunch and we had a great time getting to know each other. I taught Claire how to make cootie catchers and she really liked that.

After lunch we went to a clothing shop called SZBR that had locally designed and made jackets, pants and shirts. I found a great jacket and can’t wait to wear it!

After that, we went to the YaShow Market, which is a very intense experience. It’s four floors of presumably copied brand-name items. I bought myself a Paul Frank teeshirt and a skirt. My brother got two Ferrari shirts and my Dad got frames just like his own glasses. We had fun but were glad to get out of there.

By the way, nothing is the price that they say at first. So, be sure to haggle with them!


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Santa Croce and A Room with a View
Submitted by bugsly on Wednesday, March 22, 2006 - 13:27 Car | Core | Foreign Language and Music Study | Italy | Life Sciences | Physical and Health Education | Walk

Today we visited Santa Croce. Inside the church there are the funerary monuments of Galileo, Michelangelo, Dante and Machiavelli among others. The frescos are beautiful and there are many stained glass windows too. In one of the rooms on the side of the church you can see a robe worn by Saint Francis of Assisi. It was in a glass box with an ornate gold frame. It is believed that Saint Francis founded the church of Santa Croce.

Oddly enough, on one side of the church, there is a leather school where the age old art of leather craftsmanship is taught and practiced. If you purchase a leather item in the shop, they will custom imprint you initials on the item.

It was fun to see the places in the scenes from the movie A Room with a View.


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Washington D.C.
Submitted by bugsly on Tuesday, January 10, 2006 - 19:06 Core | Life Sciences | Subway | Walk | Washington, DC

Today we took half the day off, just laying around and doing our work. I on the other hand, I finished my homework and spun quarters with my brother, built half a house of cards, and did some laundry.

We all decided to head out around at about 2:30, so we went to the Museum of Natural History (bear with me I'm still figuring out how to load pictures). We saw a lot, and by that I mean a lot, of prehistoric age fossils, bone structures, and gems. We also saw the Hope Diamond, which looks smaller than the Tiffany Diamond, but is much more expensive. The museum closed before we finished, so we then headed down to see the White House. After a lot of walking we finally made it there. I have to tell you that it is big, but it looks bigger in the pictures.

To conclude our day we went to a nice western diner type restaurant and had a nice meal to end our day.


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There are three types of "Kiwi's" in New Zealand. Kiwi birds, Kiwi fruit and the New Zealanders call themselves "Kiwis"!

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