neither here nor there, now or then

green trees

I had a thought, a really great thought. So, I asked to meet with The Principal and one of the Assistant Principals.

The problem is, that is has taken ten days to find a time when we can meet, and now I have kind of forgotten my thought. Well, not forgotten, but the genius part of my brain has decided to go slow and work to rules.

And then one of the APs has had to take family leave and another has had to accompany students on a camp, so it will be just the Principal and I, which is okay, but not quite what I was hoping for.

I think I may just go lie between the book stacks for awhile.

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Massaged Kale Salad with Asparagus, Asiago, and Bacon

This, the title claims, is Massaged Kale Salad with Asparagus, Asiago, and Bacon.

How does one massage kale?

If the salad was titled Beaten Kale Salad with Asparagus, Asiago, and Bacon, would it taste somehow different?

Does it have to be massaged? Can I just stroke it a little?

What if the neighbours see me massaging my kale?

What will the children think?

 

[For those who desire massaging their kale, I believe the recipe is thus : Link ]

living a life of dreams

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Mist filled the valleys and the hollows throughout the countryside as I drove to work these past two mornings. The mornings have had that autumn feeling that I have longed for, but the days continue hot. The misty morns touch the countryside with romance and fantasy.

A week or two ago, I  caught sight of a woman driving a hot pink ice cream van down the highway. I don’t think it was still used as an ice cream van, there was no large ice cream cone attached to its roof and it didn’t play the tune Greensleeves, but there was no mistaking its origins.

The idea of buying an pink ice cream van and driving around the countryside seems appealing to me, somehow. Have you ever seen anyone who doesn’t smile when they see or hear an ice cream van? It always brings back happy memories of childhood, doesn’t it?

I fancied the adventure I might have, driving here and there at will, bringing smiles to people. They might wake and I would be parked outside, sitting beside my pink van, taking tea in the morning sun; or I could watch the sun set, before bedding down for a night in my little van. A trail of smiles would follow in my wake.

Just me, a large teapot, and my van. Sigh…

autumnus

joey

Carter, Jeff, 1928-2010. Orphaned joey wearing a winter overcoat made from an old sweater sleeve, Foxground, New South Wales, 1968

 

Everyone in the northern hemisphere seems to be heralding the arrival of spring, and considering the winter that you have experienced, I can understand.

We here in the southern hemisphere are however on a different seasonal calendar. We are waiting for autumn.

Here in  our patch of subtropical Queensland, we are yet to experience a day below 30C. It has been an extremely hot summer with day after day over 35C and nights that did not allow enough cooling to be comfortable. I am so over summer, so over sweating, and teenage boy body odour after lunch sport, and fruit flies, mosquitoes, snakes, hail storms and cyclones, mould in the bathroom and having to drive in boiling hot cars at the end of the day.

Send me days to wear woollens, and nights to light fires. I need meals  that are warm and comforting, and excuses to simmer thick soups. Socks and boots and fingerless gloves. Scarves!

Bring it on!

Autumn in the Adelaide Hills, South Australia

Autumn in the Adelaide Hills, South Australia

 

Thank you for your commitment, love, loyalty and patience

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 “We have to recognise that there cannot be relationships unless there is commitment, unless there is loyalty, unless there is love, patience, persistence.”
― Cornel West, Breaking Bread: Insurgent Black Intellectual Life

To roll with a dog on a hillside on a glorious afternoon

woman with dog

Will exchange large, ill-mannered blonde golden retriever for old, slow, lap cat.

I decided to strike out and take Augie Dog for a walk. He was so excited when he saw me pick up his orange lead that he started twirling and whirling in circles. Daughter1, who is staying with us, decided to join us. She was in for a treat.

Half way down the  hill towards our front fence, Augie must have picked up the scent of something really enticing, perhaps a wallaby, or a possum and all forty kilos of dog raced away with Flamingo Dancer in tow.

Well, I kept up for a metre or so, before the slope of the hill and poor foot work brought me down. I hit the ground and rolled.

No hand on his leash, Augie turned back and thinking I was in for a game, jumped on top of me. Daughter1, who had the manners and good sense not to laugh at her mother floored by a dog, grabbed his leash and pulled Augie into control.

“Are you okay,” she asked.

No.”

We continued on down the road where we were met by a dog that escaped from a nearby yard. It looked as though it was part pig dog, which too many dogs are in the country, and next thing, my stupid genes came into play and I placed myself between the two dogs. Yes, I know, stupid, stupid, stupid. Luckily, the interloper was more inquisitive than aggressive and its owner soon puffed up the hill and retrieved it.

By then both daughter and I had enough of the dog walking and turned for home. Another neighbour, a wild life warrior from down the road whom we had never met before, pulls up in his truck and as greeting calls, “Is that the dog that ran through my yard yesterday?”

“No, we have a fence. He is never out of his yard.”

“Well, it looks like the dog.”

“The breeder lives locally, there are golden retrievers everywhere,” I snapped and walked on. What an objectionable man.

Back home, I told Augie I was trading him in for a lap cat. He appeared not to care.

Daughter added insult to injury by commenting that “every time I walk out with you, you fall over.” She was referring to the start of the year when I tripped while carrying Petite Fille in the garden.

“Common denominator is?” I replied, applying disinfectant to my knee graze. “I refuse to walk with you for it is obviously your fault.” She appeared not to care.

Minerva sent a text a little later to say that she had been forced to put one of her dogs down over the weekend. I said she could have Augie Dog. She was not amused.

“Dogs are our link to paradise. They don’t know evil or jealousy or discontent. To sit with a dog on a hillside on a glorious afternoon is to be back in Eden, where doing nothing was not boring–it was peace.”
― Milan Kundera

a single act of love

pleasure No one sets out to be old, but it happens none the less. What an odd place old age is. Well, it seems so, looking from the outside, not there yet myself. My mother is 88 years of age today.

Every visit I ask her how she is, and even when she was lying in a hospital bed, tubes down her nose, drips in her arms, she still answered “Fine.” I heard my father only say once in his life that he felt “no bloody good” and that was the week he died. What different people are the old.

I massage lotion into my mother’s hand, our fingers entwine and I feel her fingers gradually relax. The tension eases from her body and she soon slumbers.

Does she know that I love her? Love, the only gift that really means anything. Happy Birthday, Mum.