Wednesday, June 27, 2012

beautiful photos

Just came across these again - Don took these of the girls when they were about 14 and was when we lived in a house before the one out at Craggy Island. Beautiful photos - if you click on them they are better

Home now

A visit to Windsor NSW
Melissa and I near Windsor NSW
I have just arrived home from visiting our eldest and her husband...only a short visit but it was wonderful. Just to do something as simple as watching TV with people I am comfortable with is a novelty...not sure what my son in law thinks of me in trackie dacs under a blanket watching their at present favourite series "Foyles War" wine glass within reach...but he seems comfortable with this mother in law... I can't be anyone different than I am. I was made really welcome and so happy to see them especially as when Melissa saw me when I got off the plane she burst into tears. Its been a hard enough time for them both and I know from personal experience what it is to have to adjust as they are having to. I at least had had my kids when Don was injured so badly....even though its more work they always seemed to lighten things up a lot. Kids I think actually keep you younger, because you just can't get too set in your ways when they are about.

Melissa clowning about

I had a couple of days there where the winter sun was out and no breezes so just to sit out in the sun like that was wonderful. Back here its a lot colder although today the sun is just glorious and spent a bit of time out there with Alison.
Its funny, when I am with one or other of the girls I miss the other one more. I would give my eye teeth to have them both close. I am actually really lucky because they seem to like my company and along with the love between mother and child they are my best friends and there is nothing that we can't talk about. Also because they really are the only one who remember how it was at home with their dad, the fun we all had, the trouble he could cause if there was cause  - and what he got away with... One day Alison said that what she missed the most was his wit. She would phone up and be sad about something and he would talk with her in depth about whatever it was then I would hear him making up stories or telling jokes and she said when she got off the phone he'd have had her chuckling again... added a couple of photos of Ali which i took just before I went away. Back home now I have enrolled in a Tafe course just to refresh what I did last year which i most likely have forgotten... with a view to picking up some work later this year.
Melissa took an actually decent photo of me for a change

Chris with his own little growth Sooty - who seems to be permanently attached to Chris

Melissa and Chris

The view down the back of Melissa's place - it was something just to be able to see the sun set on the horizon - something I really miss
Out the back of Melissa's place
Alison and Andrew

Alison with Tiger

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Dad's anniversary

2nd Oct 1919 - 17th June 1969 - Rest in Peace Dad!
Its 43 years right now since my Dad was killed in 1969.  I remember the night as if it just happened. It was mid winter and Mum had cooked a potato pie. It was in the fuel stove oven. I was having a bath - we had to carry the hot water from the copper to the tub and I was first in...a big deal then. I was getting dressed in the bathroom when I heard loud knocking on the door. Dad was hit by a drunk driver only 100 yards from our home. The driver got off - Money helps - a valuable lesson at 15 in how the system protects the rich against the working class. Dad was a gentleman...very funny, decent and worked like a dog...he was happy just to be with us and it showed. I can see his blue grey eyes before me as clearly as if I had seen him yesterday. 
Dad (left) and brother Matt in about 1940

Mum and dad on their honeymoon at Gosford

Dad with Anne
In about 1964

The fam outside the toilet - a choice spot for a photo

A favourite - taken of dad Sunday sitting on the woodheap in the sun reading the papers...mum and Joan with him

Saturday, June 16, 2012

What's under the footpath

What's under the footpath?
Don in 1973 working at Mojo Creek NSW on an underground petrol tank
A post from Andrew reminded me of something Don told me many years ago when we were walking down Horton Street in Port Macquarie (NSW) and I noticed a small round metal thing in the concrete. He said  that I'd be surprised at what's under the footpath...a few years before Don had his accident he used to work installing underground petrol tanks for garages and removing them when the garage closed down as so many did... Many streets would have places where there was a garage and then it closed down and was built upon. The area cemented over. Don said in the early days up till about 1975 they used to rip the top of the big tanks off with a backhoe (risky in case of sparks because even an empty tank has petrol fumes ) then they were told to fill them with water and cover them up with soil and re cement...later the rule was to fill them with compacted sand - what happens with the water filled ones is that in time they will rust and the water seep out leaving an empty space underground. may not have happened yet but it will eventually - the tanks will collapse one day. He over the years pointed out places where he knew tanks were under the footpath filled with water - in front of book shops and cafes etc...the Oil companies were very powerful and took time to force them to certain standards...might actually post this as sometimes when you walk along a cemented street you will still see the small round metal plate which was the access point to refilling the tank - other things look like it these days but Don could always pick them...thought it might interest you now you'll be looking down for little round plates before you sit in an outdoors cafe!

Sunday, June 10, 2012

A sliver of sunlight this morning was really nice to come outside to but the clouds are returning. I am amazed how green things have gotten. I am used to most of the rain coming in the warmer months so when I moved to Melbourne in December and saw how dry things were, how hard the ground was after the lush wetness I was used to I thought this was as green as it would get but here in winter is the rain and things look so beautiful. One thing I really love is the colour of all the trees as they are dropping their leaves. So much colour and even in the middle of the city in the parks are yellow and orange carpets around the trees .
We went to the Mesopotamian Exhibit on Friday and it was amazing to see up close things I have only ever seen in books which does them no justice. Its a strange feeling to be so close to something that people have held in their hands and carved  - some of them back as far as five thousand years ago. I was really impressed by the big wall sized carving of some battle - there was so much detail and the horses, lions and men seemed as lifelike as anything I have seen ...and more so than most.

I had read a lot about this area and time in the past but to see it on such a scale, the maps of the area and the old city names was really something for a history lover like me. I was lucky really because for a couple of years I had a history teacher who actually loved her job and left me with that love - that's about the highest praise for a teacher I think as there were too many who just didn't care much. One like Sr Marion is all you need to set you on a life long love of learning how and why things got to where they are today - something that I will never achieve but will learn a whole lot in the process.

I am looking forward to visiting my eldest and her husband in a little while. She is in my head a lot these days. I don't know if others are like this but when you have a couple of kids, when you are living near one, the one you are apart from is in your head more consciously and in the reverse when you are with the other one. Her husband came out of hospital and we all breathed a big sigh of relief, but still has a way to go.

I came home last night from the pictures to a total of SIX cat vomits on my carpet - the last being just bile...only trod in one in the dark...couldn't get angry as poor little Cuss seemed so sick - then she got all hunched over as if she was constipated... ( I have an idea what might have caused her to be so sick)  - then for the first time in our years together she pooped on the floor and not in the kitty litter. Then she just went to sleep - This morning she seems fine - She's sitting on the printer, except when she is trying to walk on the keyboard - or her favourite - when she sits right smack bang in front of the screen. I think she's trying to tell me something. But when I do stop and pat her or talk to her she turns around and puts her tail in my face and skulks off "Mission accomplished".