We are happy to have Emily and Jasper with us for Christmas again this year. Jasper is now 3 years 4 months old. Even though they live in the UK, we are able to enjoy frequent Skype sessions with them. Emily and Jasper visited us again at Easter and August, John visited them in February, July and September, and Marian visited them in May and September. Rebecca continues to exercise by playing in a local soccer league (FC Nero Diavolo) with shirt number 18, and she also learns pole dancing for the exercise.



Jasper Christmas 2018

John with sparkler

Jasper in May

Rebecca with her team

Rebecca, No. 18,
on a pole

At Easter, Jasper enjoyed the Easter Egg hunt in the garden of our house. Marian enjoys experimenting with various food items, this year cooking paella for the first time ever. She made several different ones on the BBQ and later tried it on the stovetop with better results. Later in the year, she made Tarte au Citron (a French lemon tart) several times, making it a little better each time. She has also been continuing her studies in kinesiology, travelling to a small town in Germany (near Freiburg) in April for a seminar on balancing the Chakras with kinesiology, and in May to Budapest for a seminar on balancing the "Heart Brain" with techniques from kinesiology and Traditional Chinese Medicine.


Jasper & his
Easter eggs

Paella cooked on the grill

Tarte au Citron

Seminar in Budapest

At the beginning of June we went away for the weekend to Southern Burgenland with our running club. Part of the main run on Saturday included a 20 km trip on railway trolleys powered bicycle pedals. Later in June, we had a pleasant weekend away with a former work colleague who lives for part of the year in a small village in the mountains behind Linz. A dear friend and member of our running club for nearly 25 years, Alli Brooks, passed away in June after a courageous battle with cancer. She had only just retired, so it is doubly sad that she and her husband Martin (aka Whoppa) won't be enjoying a long retirement together.


John & Marian on a trolley

View of the Danube

Alli Brooks (aka Pocahontits)

In July, John visited Emily and Jasper and took them on a visit to the RAF Museum in North London. Even the playground had equipment that looked like planes. They also spent a fun day at the Barbican, where Jaasper enjoyed chasing pigeons.


Jasper and a plane

Jasper in a helicopter



On a RAF slide

On a car in the RAF playground

At the Barbican

In Loving Memory, Margaret Beachey Russell, 10 December 1926 to 30 July 2019

At the end of July, John's Mum passed away at the age of 92. She had an operation to remove a cancerous growth and seemed to recover quite well at first. John spent a few hours with her on 30 July and then flew home to Austria. She died while John was in the air. Her funeral was at the beginning of September and most of the family were there - all the immediate family plus nephews and nieces and her great-grandsons Jasper and Gregor.


As a young woman (photo colourised)

Mum in the last year

All the cousins after the funeral

In August, Emily and Jasper came to Austria for Jasper's birthday.


Jasper at the park

Jasper & his Mum at the park

Jasper with his
birthday cake

Opening birthday presents

At the ice
cream shop

At the end of September, Marian's sister Jennifer and her husband Javad visited Europe, starting in Paris. Marian flew over to Paris and did some sight-seeing with Jennifer prior to their continued journey to Austria. In August, Rebecca started working part-time as a Graphic Designer for WSF Group, a company that renovates and operates luxury hotels in the centre of cities in Central Europe and Spain (Barcelona) under the Almanac brand. In November, she spent two days at her company's luxury hotel in Prague for a special training. Thirty years ago in November 1989 the Berlin Wall came down. Soon afterwards John was given a piece of the wall which sat on his desk at the office and often prompted a discussion started by "Why do you have this strange lump of concrete on your desk? John continues to walk (not run) with the Hash House Harriers in Vienna (the drinking club with a running problem).


Jennifer in Paris

Prague luxury hotel

Berlin Wall

John at the Hash

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