Friday, March 28, 2008

hot and cold

We flew home last night.

It was humid and sticky late last night when my sister dropped us off at Darwin Airport.

It was also incredibly quiet.

As per usual for my style of doing things, we were waiting way too early. At least we were for Darwin standards.

We were the first to check in for our flight at 2130 hours *sigh* Mind you... I am quite sure my sister and her husband were only too pleased to get their home back to normal after we left as their little boys had been totally disrupted all week and were just a tad out of sorts - let alone a decent bedtime! So leaving them an hour earlier than we really needed to was most likely a blessing for them perhaps anyway.

We went through security and found our way upstairs to the departures lounge where there were plenty of vacant comfy seats. The shops were shut!

I fiddled on the internet briefly and the kids spent more money on more food for an hour. Then the shops finally opened at 2230! I bought some soft neck pillows to use on the red-eye flight to Melbourne :) I confess to being the consummate shopper and will usually find a good excuse to shop for "something" no matter where I am in the world!

Finally, we boarded our plane for Melbourne at 2335. Unfortunately for baz and I, we were right in front of the exit panels in the centre of the plane so our seats did not recline back!!! Much good our neck pillows did us then as they uncomfortably pushed our heads forward, making it hard to sleep!

When we landed in Melbourne, our son sitting in front exclaimed how "Quick" the flight had been - he had had a lovely nap on the plane thanks! No so his ragged parents who were fighting a sea of fatigue of tsunami-like proportions! At least I hadn't sat next to someone with bad breath/body odour this time though PHEW! :)

As we left the plane to face the outside air on the Tarmac - I shivered. We had left a warm and slightly sticky Darwin evening to arrive in a very cool and crisp Melbourne morning. I think it was only around 4 degrees outside when we landed!

Ballarat railway station was worse at a mere 2 degrees with that typical Ballarat frosty edge to even that temperature! Our car was made ready for us and we slowly made our way homeward.

Baz did a great job in driving all the way home really even with my pleas for us to stop and have a powernap. We did stop for tea and coffee once but my...I am so glad it wasn't me who was driving or we WOULD have had to have stopped somewhere for a nap - I could barely keep my eyes open despite the chilly air.

I have since tried to have a nap in my own bed but alas...I haven't been able to get my feet to warm up since arriving home. I did sleep a little but feel worse now than I did before I went down.

I feel quite flat and wrung out actually as if I could be coming down with a cold or such like. I sort of want to get up and move and maybe take advantage of the lovely day outside and go for a walk but I feel so zombie like and heavy I'm not sure if I'd make it back home.

I might perhaps try a truncated route and make the walk a very short one. That might do the trick in waking me up enough to get supper sorted for this evening.

Am I pleased to be home? I was when my house was quiet and empty for a little while! I love being at home when I am in my own company. The house is clean and tidy and when there are no noisy teenagers or television sets going, I revel in the freedom to just Be. That was a delightful pleasure after spending close on 24 hours a day with people this past week or two!

It's still amazing to remember though that I left family back in Darwin who are still wearing thongs and shorts in 30 degree weather and 68 percent humidity and I'm now rugged up in track pants and jumpers with the heater going coz its only 16 degrees with 34 percent humidity!

Brrr! But hey? I'd rather This cooler weather than that drippy, slimy, wet heat for long term living comfort so I won't complain too loudly :)

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Martin the masseur

Not this Martin at all :)

But an equally clever one in his own inimitable way.

Martin B. is a quirky, irreverent and slightly eccentric Darwin character. He also has a wonderful gift for talking muscles into "behaving themselves"

He is a masseur of extraordinary talent.

I had an appointment with him this morning. My sister introduced me and he remembered me from my first visit some six years earlier. He was suitably impressed that there is significantly less of me than last time too. :)

As he works on you, you can literally feel electrical energy vibrating through the muscles. Martin mutters at the muscles and tells them off in a fatherly, authorative way.

"You don't have to do anything now. Just let go. That's better now. Ah! Ah! Ah! That's NOT what I told you to do. You don't need to assist that one; it's fixed. You can let it go. There now! Isn't that better? Good on you my precious! Much better!"

That is a sort of sample of the kinds of things Martin will mutter during the course of a massage session.

He will slide his arms and hands over the legs and kind of jump occasionally as if startled by something. He told me later that this is a sort of electrical shock he gets from the muscles fibres, within his patient, unlocking and releasing their grip.

The massage can hurt - quite a lot - at times, but honestly? I have been to so many masseurs in my life, I've experienced significantly worse pain with some than I've ever had with Martin but with a lot, lot, less satisfactory results.

Technically, I could probably do with a few more treatments from this Master of Muscle but our flight heads back down south tonight.

Some people go into massage as a way of making a bit of money. They're either okay at it or reasonably good at it. Those with a true gift for it seem to approach the whole ethos of massage from an entirely different stance. For them, its like they are connected to the source of their gift at a fundamental level that goes beyond fiscal or other reward. There is a kind of power in the exercise of the gift that is more satisfying than simply a relaxed (and paying) customer. It's as if the process of the massage becomes a spiritual expression and its value is inherent in that process.

Now that its a few hours past my own massage experience, I am feeling slightly heady, a little droopy, relaxed and kind of chilled in a "I-dance-on-the-inside" kind of way (I am still quite warm and sticky from this relentless humidity even so :)).

Our flight leaves at midnight tonight. I hope Martin's vibrational, electrical, energy-charged "discussion" with my tensed up bio-mechanical self will have achieved positive results by the morrow. I am sure they will. :) He IS a genius after all :)

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

12 monkeys and a map


so my christian brothers and sisters will probably have a heart attack over this one but I wanted to test it to see if it "could" work.

On the road in the Airport shuttlebus last week on our way to the airport for our trip to Darwin, I asked God a rather impertinent thing.

I wanted external validation for a particular conundrum and decided to test whether God agreed to my desired choice. I wondered if what He thought could be proven with a projection of something a little bit "unlikely" to occur at any other time.

So, with a bit of silly childishness, I demanded that God show me 12 monkeys over the course of this week. From Thursday 20th March to Monday 31st of March.

There were certain "rules" to this game.

1) The monkeys could be in any form such as on fabric, or in a cartoon or real and so on.
2) The monkeys had to be recognisable as clearly being monkeys (chimpanzees and apes did not really qualify)
3) That multitudes of monkeys within the same context such as a pattern on fabric or in a movie, were to be counted as a single monkey. The exception being if they were live monkeys!

By yesterday afternoon, I had an abundance of monkeys! I had counted up to 9 yesterday morning but after our trip to Crocodylus Park, I saw 12+ monkeys in one hit in a place I hardly expected to see them!!! I was going to a reptile park afterall and never in my imagination did I expect to see monkeys of at least four different species but all recognisable and definitively alive!

My "conundrum" is now further embedded into my psyche.

You see....NOW... I am wondering if it was just my desire to have MY particular answer clearly stated in the affirmative that I actually "attracted" the monkeys to my visual cortex through sheer mental focus!

Dang it! That bloody Law of Attraction thing sucks you know! One can't ask for external validation that is objective when one sets the rules of engagement of such validation. I have learned that now.

Thing is! HOW does one receive external validation without getting preached at with over-used biblical injunctions? You can't KNOW anything it seems until after the event

That is so frustrating! My eternally quixotic nature wants to have every detail of the future explored before I actually get around to exploring it. I am highly strategic by nature. I move only if I feel that the foundations for movement are secure. When I do not feel secure, I fret and aim to see around corners, including the ones in my future, so I can effect as strategic a plan as possible based on known information. I simply hate not knowing! I want a MAP for goodness sake!

And now I sit here confused and frustrated because I wonder if my 12 monkeys I essentially ordered from God were not from God at all but from my own desires to have my future plotted and planned according to my own selfish agenda!

Do not order stuff from God. If he answers you in the affirmative, it may prove more information than you are willing to handle. I can't begin to describe how confusing it can be either!

I really don't have that much faith in the Law of Attraction for this very reason. If it does work (as in my case it seems to have on first appearances), it seems to be just an extension of the desire within to manifest without - which has nothing to do with God but everything to do with ones personal intentions, to get what one wants come hell or high water! Not exactly an objective moral ethic I should think even if it is... extraordinary/miraculous...whatever... to the mind of the beholder!

Some might answer, that the map I seek is already here in the form of The Bible.

Alternatively though, some might say, "So? What is the problem? You have your answer and even it IS from within you, doesn't that prove that what you want is truly what you want, so you can go for it anyway?"

Both are true opinions.

Both are also frustratingly not-that-simple. One usually contradicts the other. The Bible is clear about moral ethics. What I want is clear. The two haven't yet gelled into a clearly coherent form enough for me to feel sufficiently balanced and calm about the direction I need to take.

In other words, I want my cake and I want to eat it too and the bible will tell me otherwise!

Oh dear! I am so going to get into trouble for this one!

Please don't question my Faith my fellow christians! I question it enough already!

And those in the LOA camp can also go jump in the lake on this one - it's already screwed with my head enough this week thanks. Selfishness and self-aggrandizement just isn't on the agenda no matter how grateful I feel for my 12 monkeys!


circles .... I am going in circles!


Tuesday, March 25, 2008


We had a late picnic by the beach the other day. Just hot chips and sea air. It was beautiful. The breeze was a welcome relief from the pressure of this wet heat.

Darwin is a beautiful place but I don't think I have the fortitude to live with this kind of madness-inducing warmth like my sister. She came up here for a sea change, intending to only stay for a "couple of years", and that was fourteen years ago!

Coming to Darwin is apparently easy; leaving it is quite another matter once you've "settled in".

Time is going slowly here. Lazy days for us being with family and going hardly anywhere. It is sort of what we needed but honestly? We would probably do more if we had the inclination.

We went to Crocodylus Park today. The crocs were being fed and it was rather good fun to see the big "Harold" waiting with open-mouthed anticipation for his raw chicken head :)

The kids spent our money in the souvenir shop as they do and then we all trapsed off to Macdonalds for a quick bite to eat - mainly so us older ones could get cool again and the little ones could run rampant in the playground. :)

Later, the four of us went back to our resort cabin and chilled. The kids used the pool and internet cafe and I read my current book "Blind Faith" by Ben Elton.

At first, I found this book so sharply satirical and black, it irked me. But I have gladly stuck with it and am finding its hero "Trafford Sewell" a truly likeable and believable character. The type of world this book is set in, is all too familiar albeit set in some not-too-distant future. I cringe on occasion as I read the cultural "imperatives" in this book but which I see are actually beginning to take root in our present digitized generation. It IS a black, ironic, satirically sharp cultural analysis of current pop culture and bloody good fun if you can ride the initial cringe factor!

Later today, I went to watch my wee nephew do his Karate thing. It was cool in the school playground under the giant ball court covered in shadecloth. Pleasant indeed.

H did not cry when he fell over as apparently he is wont to do. My sister is suitably proud and impressed. He also recieved another stripe on his yellow belt, which I guess means he is not far from progressing onto orange belt. :)

This is in stark contrast to his wee brother. R. sent the wind of fear up all of us last night when he absconded from this house as we were very not-so-focussed on this energetic 2.5 year old. We found him some 500 metres away. He had escaped through the gate on his tricycle and terrified his mother (not least his aunty) so much, she got a headache from the stress! The naughty little monkey KNEW he had done "something wrong", but is so curious that hardly anything can contain him. He RUNS all day if possible - stopping just long enough to exclaim in glee at some new discovery and then runs onto the next "cool thing". I can barely wonder what this bundle of mayhem will be like at fourteen! My own boy is fidgety enough to know its hard to keep them still when they burn for adventure!

So it feels actually weird now that Easter is done and we are still "on holidays". I expect to wake up tomorrow and have to rush off to work. We have NEVER had a holiday over the Easter Period before so it is sort of feeling odd and surreal - for me anyway.

Oh and yes! I did take the photo that graces this post :)

and yes... it would be a Paradise here if it were not so bloody humid! :)

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Easter 2008

My sis observed that I seemed a little "out of touch" today.

I guess I am.

I have my head elsewhere as per usual. I don't have to think about work and I don't have to think too much about housework and washing. I am in La-La Land. Thing is I don't apparently seem all that happy being there from my external demeanour. I will get over it, whatever "It" is, I guess.

The itchy hive rash on my arms and legs is getting to me though. I am trying my best to be a bit cautious about what I eat. It is an allergic reaction to "something" but I cannot pinpoint what it would be right now. I shall have to go into a solid detox diet out of necessity once we are home in order to get this rash under control. The heat seems to exacerbate it too. When my arms are cool, it isn't nearly so bad.

We managed to make it to church about 10 minutes before the end of the service this morning. My sis was convinced that the service started at 10am when in fact she was looking at the time for the Palmerston service - a good 25 minute drive away. The city service started at 9am! hahahaha I did feel a bit odd barging in on communion at such a late stage but oh well... this is Easter Sunday morning and surprises go with the territory! Literally!

After church we went and did that other Aussie Religious Passtime and went shopping!

Yes! We went to Casuarina Square shopping Centre to escape the oppressive heat and humidity and chill out in air conditioned Consumer Paradise.

We ate food, we drank liquids, chilled to within an inch of full condensation and then browsed the multitudes of branded businesses, one can find nearly all over Australia - quite possibly the world!

My kids loved it of course and were endowed with purchases from both me and their Aunty.

Even I succumbed to the bling and glitter of a jewellers store, finding some silver charms of Australian native animals, which are hard to come by otherwise. :) I also bought a very bright purple scarf on sale that can also act as a shawl on the plane. I didn't bring any jumpers or pullovers but now when I think about arriving back in Melbourne at 6am on Friday morning, I am assuming it could be just a little bit cool compared to what we are enduring at the moment. That shawl will prove handy I hope. :)

Finally we came back to my Sisters place here and veged out in front of the tele under the ceiling fans.

A lazy dazy afternoon. It's nice.

I think we head off to the beach to sit and watch the sunset as we eat our supper soon.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Chasing Wet sooner are we cool and relieved from the pressure of intense heat but we fly north to the tropics!

Yes! My family and I are on our holiday we had to postpone back Christmas time, to Darwin to see my sis and her family.

It is just a little warm and humid here :) Which for us dry-hearted southerners is something of an understatement.

Humidity that is relentless and persistent. Humidity that is intransigent and stifling.

When we left the airport terminal last night on our arrival, my daughter said as we trapsed out to the carpark..."I can't BREATHE!" Such was her amazement and chagrin at the level of moisture which hangs in the air like a pair of over-sized earrings on a well endowed gypsy!

Darwin IS a beautiful place though. It feels a bit like a paradise but with shopping.

I must say that I found the four hour flight something of a chore though. We flew the "new'ish" carrier Tiger Airways from Melbourne to Darwin. A small glorified bus of a plane with six seats across with the aisle splitting them into three seats either side.

A gentleman sat next to me which is an unfortunate thing really, as I am prone to needing the loo pretty regularly when I travel - I have a nervous constitution under all this calm, cool, collected travel-buff exterior it seems ;)

This gentleman is a stranger of course and we didn't bother to exchange names or hello's. We were just passing by. He sat next to me and I sat next to him and we tried to tolerate each other invading each others personal space for the next four hours.

I imagine his life; where he might be travelling to; where his family might live; if he has liver failure!

His breath and/or body is malodorous in the extreme. If he does not move or breath or, heaven forbid, belch... all is well.

He burbs softly under his moustache. The stench reaches my nostrils and assaults them viciously and exactly. I am rendered instantly nauseous.

I try to isolate exactly what it smells of. It smells of imminent death of course but without that sick cloying sweet rotten aftertaste that death has. This has an even more malevolent strain of stench to it. This breath (or body odour... I wasn't exactly sure but it was intermittent which makes me assume it was his breath). This breath was like an acidic blending of sulphuric and gaseous ingredients that might have been mixed by teen boys in a backyard chemical lab.

What would we get if we mixed ancient mothballs with the bilge water of a sea going vessel from the 17th century perhaps?

What might be the smell of rotting sun-baked sea kelp mixed with chlorinated eggs?

I travelled pretty happily for up to 11 hours in a plane only very recently. No problems at all. Yes! It was cramped! Yes it was slightly boring! But on the whole it was fine.

This trip of a mere four hours felt like those 11 hours stretched into 22! I even felt myself verging on the edge of a real panic attack! My heart was racing, I was very hot, I felt slightly sick, and I wanted to actually leap out of the plane just to experience the freshness of cold wet air on my burning, itching skin and my starved-for-air lungs!

I can assure you...this is not a pleasant feeling at all. I caught myself and watched with mild interest the rising panic racing up my spine and I deliberately called a halt to it and spoke kindly and calmly to the internal workings so they let go and relaxed and then blended together again and breathed deeply of the clean un-fouled air around me.

If the man beside didn't move or breathe it was okay and I was able to doze and dream pleasant half-awake dreams of faces and things that I love.

Whenever the fetid stench reached my nose again, I would wince and imagine that this man needed prayer for he may indeed have a vicious ulcer in his belly or a cancerous tumor or was worried sick about a family member. All of these things could have been that which made his breath so foul. One can only hope it was a treatable case of Simple Halitosis and not some other dire physiological ailment!


My sister was only too pleased to see us late, last Darwin night. She greeted me with tears as we are wont to do, my sis and I. Often it is years in between physical visits for us two: we two, who grew up sharing a bedroom together on an isolated farm in an isolated family.

The Big 4 resort/caravan park
is quite okay. Our ensuite cabin is very small but I don't mind seeing as we have a sink and a loo within stepping distance from the bed.

Once upon a time in a life long ago, I was in the Australian Army Reserve and pretty much wore the camping gene that may (most likely may not) live in my DNA down to an X - which essentially means NO WAY will I go the route of "camping" with tents and such. I hate it! I did enough of it in three years to have the idea extricated firmly from my system for a good many years to come. It is approximately 17 years since I last went camping and I have refused to do it again ever since.

I may change my mind in the future - I am inclined to that sort of thing when it suits - but for now...I prefer the finer luxuries in life like a clean toilet and a comfortable bed and AIR CONDITIONING!

Sorry! I know its so terribly un-small-footprint-on-earth of me, but its what I want.

I usually get what I want.


We expected it to be raining when we got here. Darwin has had over 70 inches of rain since the beginning of January. It is telling that they still use the old scale measurement of inches as opposed to centimeters! The numbers just seem silly in centimeters. 177 centimetres of rain just seems... well... other-worldly, especially for those of us who come from the Wimmera and have seen no more than 30 centimetres of rain in nearly 2.5 months!

I was a little worried this morning, that *I* might be the reason of why we are not getting rain down south. It had not rained when we got up this morning at all. It didn't really rain while I was in Germany either...well not much that I could tell, and it hasn't properly rained in my home region in years. Perhaps it was ME who was making the rain go away?

It probably sounds just a tad arrogant and thankfully, the heavens opened for us this afternoon to remind me that I am not god and cannot control the weather! Phew!

The humidity is claustrophobic though. It saps your ability to energise and motivate the soul into doing things. You need to sleep and rest during the cloying pressure of the noon-day for to move muscles and bones seems to take an extraordinary amount of energy. It's no wonder people drink so much up here. It's not so much about dehydration as about chasing a cooler core body temperature!

Under the fans here, in my sisters home though, I guess we will acclimatise eventually. Our cabin is almost frigid by comparison, with the air conditioner being refrigerated. It is only drying out the air inside. The temperature is set only a few degrees below that of outside but drying the air makes the outside feel about 1000 degrees hotter than it actually is. It is quite surreal actually.

25 degrees celcius seems to be an "ideal" temperature for mankind. It is where we feel more or less most comfortable and relaxed. When it is cold outside, our thermostats are set to around 25 degrees. When it is steamy hot and sultry, we set our air conditioner thermostats to 25 degrees. Give or take a couple either side of course! :)

Maybe its because 2+5=7 which has always been thought to be a "Heavenly" number!

hahaha! I digress...

Tomorrow we SWIM (and go shopping :)).

Happy Easter everyone.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008



the cool change is finally here!

I can smell the fresh scent of cool crisp moisture in the air. The breeze billows and softens the heat within walls and floors.

Goosebumps shimmy up and down my arms whenever I go outside.

My son enjoyed a few blissful hours in the shed airbrushing paint everywhere to his cool hearts content. He's not been able to go out there except for a brief drum session as its been over 40 degrees (that's around 104 Fahrenheit on the old scale) in that shed for days and days now .

The bones are weary and tired. The feet are swollen and pressured but all is now shrouded in collected calm with the advent of the enlivening breath of cold air coming in through open windows.

There will be smiles aplenty among folk tomorrow I should think. Restful sleep in temperate bedrooms and overheated brows softened as if by a cool reassuring hand will go a long way in restoring hope that the rain will soon come.

If that happens...then that will be very cool :)

Monday, March 17, 2008

Go North my heart!

An interesting concept I read today.

To follow "True North" within ones heart and soul.

I like this idea.

True North is magnetic and compelling. When one just ALLOWS oneself to spin into its central node, just like the arm of a compass does, we end up at True North and all possible directions are clear and established around us. We can choose to travel in whichever of these directions we want, but it is more reassurring and confidence building when we have a built in sense of our North - the direct pathway toward our best self.

True North is the souls intention matching the hearts direction. We are what we say we are and behave in kind. We are true to ourselves but also provide a comforting pointer for others to follow if they are so inclined.

True North of the heart gives confidence and courage in the face of the maelstrom. True North is positive, joyous, intentional and serene. It sticks and it does not waver.

We do not pander or ponder in confusion or disarray when we follow True North. Our steps are sure and our vision is clear. We know what we are in the greater scheme of things and we know where we want to go!

I'd like to re-centre so I can spin naturally toward the direction of my own True North. This may require a shift in direction...perhaps unexpectedly; I don't know! I don't mean I want to spin out of control in pursuit of the stability of my true North but I will spin even so. The thing is that the spinning is not forced. It is just a gentle swinging until the polarity is found and settled into place. The compass just drifts the spindle toward the magnetic attraction - it does not need to seek it, it just knows its there and allows itself to be spun into its direction naturally and spontaneously.

My faith inclines me toward the True North of belief in Jesus. My soul wants to travel along the path of its North with hope, joy, peace and love. My heart wants to smile in relief that it is not lost or alone because the compass rarely lies.

Yeah! True North! Everything is clear once one knows their right direction on the journey.

If my sky does indeed have five directions, then my True North is somewhere in the vast infinity of that globe which surrounds me and I will find it soon enough - if I just allow it to find me and take me there.

the heat goes on

relentless and unyielding, the Wimmera heat scorches and burns whatever is left of the will to do.


What we need now is water! Not from bores, not from dams, not from tanks or wells.

We want natural life-giving rain from the Heavens to soak us and wet us through.

Will we complain once we are soggy and mouldy from such rain?

Yes! Positively yes we will complain for the human memory is dull once acquaintance is long past. It remembers only that which is etched into the membranes like photographs.

So yes, we will of course complain if we get so wet the water is lapping at our feet, we will complain to God that we cannot endure another moment of being so deluged by the rain.

We are greedy, fickle, self-obsessed and ego-centric enough to believe that our happiness is fundamentally from outside of our natural selves. So while it is so hot and while the days curl our toes and teeth with the melting intensity of sunshine, we will crave being wet to our ears!

When that day comes and we have the water again... we will undoubtedly crave to be dry!

It's inevitable and unequivocable that we will never be content with our climate in the moment of its fact.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

the thing not said

I wonder how many of us carry the deep unspoken "Thing" we must and "should" say but cannot find in ourselves to say.

It might be anything.

It might be a memory not shared.

It might be a pain not expressed.

It might be a future unexpected.

What are the words we want to say but cannot?

Is it about timing? Or is it just about fear?

There are two questions every human being that ever lived asks if they have the courage to hear the answers.

"What do I want?"

"What is my deepest fear?"

Once we know ourselves enough to be able to clearly and calmly answer them, we grow exponentially into our potential for Love and Integrity.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

soulmate movies make me cry

I watched the movie "The Notebook" here on Preciousss tonight. While husband slept in the chair in front of some airline crash doco on satellite tv... and daughter disappeared into bedroom to talk for hours and hours to boyfriend on the phone and while son is at a youth camp down south overnight...I watched a movie about the depths and breadth of love.

Noah and Allie fought all the time, but there was one thing they had in common; they were crazy about each other!


Lovers who met and fell in love in their youth one pristine summer when things were hopeful and wonderful before wars and cruel pain enters their world of pre-adult starry-eyed wonder! Lovers who were thwarted in expressing that love by other people! Lovers who hated each other and loved each other with every soul stretched breath between them.

They were not so compatible those two with their feisty and belligerent ways. She called him an arrogant arse-hole; he called her a self-absorbed brat and then they would look into each others eyes and know that they were meant for no other person on earth but each other.

Together they created a better world. He made the pitiful wreck of a house into something wonderful. She brought colour and light into the world with her music and art.

When they were with others, they both died a little inside and stopped creating. When they were with others, no matter how much they loved them, they could not stop, either of them - even through the long dry years without contact - remembering that summer of wild and free love between them!

It was real.

Souls like birds.

free to be themselves but more whole when together. Content and happy because they are blessed to be with someone so wonderful, so beautiful, so extraordinary.

And even when they fought, they were fighting for their soul union to be made even more complete, more connected, more real, more everything!

And in the twilight of their years, when shadows fall across the mind and the forgetting is more common than the remembering; when the heart can no longer stand to be broken each day by that forgetting; when there can be no life worth living without that other beside you...they fade together into other realms of reality and find their truth again as one soul, united for eternity, in the pureness and rightness of Love.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

A little hot under the collar!

It has been inconceivably HOT this past two weeks!

We have had a number of days well over 35 degrees now for what has seemed like an age. I don't know how much longer our poor land here can survive under this heat.

My town where I live has been put on part bore water just last month. Drinking water from the tap takes on a whole new connotation when it tastes so brackish and "underground'ish".

About 12 years ago....the drought here in Western Victoria was a significant and challenging event we had hoped would only last that year.

Sadly, the suicide and depression rate among farmers rises with each year we face such dry conditions.

No one can cut a break! The only businesses doing well are those which are directly funded by Government or food businesses and even some of those will feel the pinch over the winter months if this dry keeps going.

I once had a thought that we might perhaps be half way through a 30 year drought! Who knows? I hope not but still, it seems to be a never-ending cycle of dry here. What was once a lush, beautiful, water-rich environment is now parched and spare...the foliage dry beyond belief!

Some might say that this is a direct result of global warming and climate change. I don't know! Climate is an entity we are only just beginning to understand, and we as a species have barely scratched the surface of what climate will/can do on earth.

The weather is the weather no matter where you are in the world and the only difference is degrees.

I could not be stuffed going to the gym this afternoon after work. I am TIRED and my body aches with a fatigue I can only attribute to the prolonged heat of this current period.

Quite possibly, I will be whinging about how freaking COLD it is come August! :) I just hope I can whinge about the cold and still rejoice that its raining!

Please God ....make it RAIN!

Thursday, March 06, 2008

River deep

It has been over a week since landing back home here.

I have come down from the Mountain High of February.

How do I feel?

Dunno actually!

Reality is a strange thing. One can be content with reality when one accepts it just as it comes without complaint.

Thing is ever rarely content with mere Status Quo.

The heart yearns for adventure and rich experience. The mundane butts up against the cruel taunts of time and I am caught in the middle.

I think Nürnberg changed something inside of me. I miss the energy and the freedom.

Perhaps that is just a fantasy. Maybe I am just rebelling against the expectations of my reality!

I wonder now ..... what IS my role here and WHY?

Sunday, March 02, 2008

The dishes and the washing!

I collected my baggage from the baggage carousel in Melbourne and promptly broke the carry handle on my almost new suitcase pulling off that stupid whirling thing! I am rather cross about this! The luggage is like brand new this year! I bought it off Graysonline for a song but now has a broken carry thingy. And it's too late to get a return on it! Oh and learn. I may be able to fix it with gaffer tape. One can fix almost anything with gaffer tape.

I declared my shoes! Australia has very strict quarantine rules and being a long-time farm girl from years ago I am highly conscious of the dangers of soil-born diseases and spores in the soils on shoes that have travelled to yonder shores. I don't care if it does seem a little bit over the top - I like declaring if I have been wandering around fields near sheep and horses in foreign countries and I get my shoes checked to ensure that what I bring home will remain safe and clean for my own country.

I declared the Lebkuchen I bought back from Nürnberg too :)

Everything was cleared.

I managed to make it in time to get the 2pm shuttlebus to Ballarat. I dozed on the shuttle bus, it taking some 90 minutes to reach Ararat train station. Then I found I had a four hour wait before the train left the station to Ballarat and my subsequent bus back to my home. What an annoyance!

I am so tired by now, I can barely think. I have not really slept soundly for the past 40 hours. My brain is this numb mush of thoughts so brief they are forgotten like cotton threads on the wind.

I decide to store my luggage in a locker at the station and I go for a meander (literally a meander in the style of someone who may have had too much to drink), toward the main street in Ballarat. I walk as far as a favourity pizza restaurant of our family, that we frequent when here and I have a small pizza and a coke. I really don't actually feel like eating much though. I feel stuffed, uncomfortable, weirdly out of zone with myself. But, like some automaton who must eat at 5pm each day, I eat and feel strangely guilty about it like I went behind someones back.

I go back to the train station and try to rest on the hard planked seating until my train arrives. It is late! There was a suicide on the line down in Melbourne somewhere causing chaos with the schedules in stations across the state. I send up a silent prayer for the family and friends of the person who so chose to die this way.

I board the train. It is a short trip to my next stop, only 45 minutes or so. I note the difference between this train and the ICE I travelled on only two days ago. This one is neat, tidy, clean and comfortable too. The only thing it lacks is ....Panache! The ICE is more than a train, its like the luxury liner of the railway, it makes my basic aussie train look pedestrian and "common".

I've always loved train travel, as a kid going to boarding school and then in my late 20's on regular hospital visits to Melbourne for eye treatment, I have always enjoyed the strange solitary nature of my train travels. I find trains a kind of meditative experience where my mind is free to expand its horizons even while my body is encapsulated by speed within steel. Train trips soothe me.

I arrive to collect the bus for the last leg of my journey. Buses are not so comfortable as trains. They are cramped, bumpy, and they are noisier I think too. I don't like bus travel as much as train travel!

Back in my home town, I wait just a little longer and get a taxi home. I walk in my back door at 11pm Australian time. I have been more or less awake for over 48 hours. My dear son hugs me at the door and I peer over his shoulder into the kitchen to see the sink piled high with dishes!

Mum is home.

Since being home, I've done dishes, bookwork, washing by the truckload (10 loads on Tuesday and Wednesday of my arriving home no less), errands, grocery shopping, phonecalls, visits with telco companies, friends, relatives; I've baked, cooked, cleaned and blogged.

Mum is going back to Germany! hahahaha

The one about the stop over in Bangkok

Our flight from Frankfurt arrived a little bit late to Suvarnabhumi airport in Bangkok just after 1:30pm Bangkok time on 24th Feb 08.

It was here that I would spend the next 11 or so hours before the next leg of my journey homeward to Australia.

I wasn't as panicky about being here as I had been the first time. Truth be told I was looking forward to kind of chilling out a bit in the departures level and scanning the wares in the shops and having a long slow cup of tea as I wrote emails to friends on my laptop.

Well, the lap top thing never got to happen in the end. The wi-fi at the airport was down for maintenance and I found myself rather tired already from the first leg of my journey anyway.

I did scan the shops for awhile, having cashed in my last Euros for Baht. I had some nice food in one of the many cafe's and restaurants.

I walked the length and breadth of the 4th floor (Departures) and most of the 3rd floor (arrivals) looking for the Dayrooms where I thought I might be able to get some rest on a bed of some kind for a few hours.

Well, what with carrying the 7+ kilos on my shoulder and in the deep throes of that weird spacy over-tired feeling one gets with sleep deprivation, I just couldn't find them, despite consulting the touch screen info stations on more than one occasion. I suspect I just didn't walk far enough down along Level 3! Next time I find those bloody dayrooms! :)

I decided that the seating in the very busy Chang Thai Massage hut on Level 4 looked like a reasonable alternative - at least for an hour or so - to the hard, cold metal seating available in the general hall. I had a pedicure and then a manicure.

The lovely Thai girl doing my nails was a little flustered to find that my manicure was not going according to plan given that I had visited Jackie from Jackies Dreamhair in Germany only two weeks prior and she had given me nails so hard and intractable as to be the equivalent of industrial quality polymer and cement! The nail polish on my fingernails had to be filed off!

In the end, I had three girls all filing furiously away at my fingers to rid me of the current colour. The acrylic coating on my nails more or less remained (it will have to grow out apparently *gulp*). Once I had as blank a canvas as they could create, the Thai girl then gave me a colour. I had to return later after I bumped my still drying fingers to have a retouch but all in all it worked out okay.

I did a bit of souvenir shopping for family and friends back home; my first ever Duty Free purchases. I bought chocolates in the shape of wee elephants and cute coin purses on keyrings that I hope will last the distance, and t-shirts for the kids. I still think that for Bangkok, where the exchange rate to the Aussie dollar implies that stuff would be incredibly cheap... what they sell in the Bangkok airport is relatively very expensive for what it is! There were lots and lots of cute things, but not a lot that was really very practical or useful as such.

I did seriously consider an electronic translation machine about the size of a PDA but on consideration later, decided that 14 languages is probably more than I need in my lifetime! I am so intrigued by cute gadgets though that it was kind of hard to let go of the idea even so.

Finally, I had a gate number for my flight. I deliberately didn't go rushing through customs though and waited a little longer eating a Burger King meal with a giant bathtub of coke to rev up my adrenal system and wake me up enough to last the next four hours!

When I finally ended up in the boarding area, I was surrounded by a large mass of slightly scruffy, tanned and ethnically attired young 20 somethings with Aussie Accents. Most of them boasting to each other about how many times they got thoroughly drunk each night on their recent sojourn in Thailand!

I sat next to a young man in the terminal who proceeded to chat up and woo the young woman in the seats behind him! They worked out that they had seen each other on a number of previous occasions during their respective Bangkok holidays! Now, on this last day, as they were going home, they were getting down the very serious business of first courtship. There was the coquettish, flirty pitch in the girls voice, the smooth magnanimous gesture from the boy as he offered his lap top so she could look at her My Space page; the exchange of work and address information back home in Melbourne etc.

So very sweet. My romantic side hopes that this pair of kids may end up being an actual couple for a very long time and they will tell people, in years to come, that they met in the airport boarding lounge in Bangkok one February a long time ago! :)

I half expected the flight to be a little noisy what with all the young people aboard, but it wasn't so. In fact, I think everyone was so tired from their various holidays that the flight to Melbourne was spent in near silence.

I watched a couple of movies on my personal screen in the seat in front of me. I recommend the movie Stardust - what a wonderful pleasure that was to watch. Very entertaining.

We arrived in Melbourne just after 1:30pm Australian time. My journey back is almost done.

Saturday, March 01, 2008

Last days

I rubbed the rabbits tail.

Der Hase is a latter 20th Century sculpture based on a popular painting by Albrecht Dürer.

It's as ugly as hell...the rabbit in question is presumably dead! But the level of detail and its links to the famous painter make it a worthy sight-seeing venture. It's also a recent legend of sorts that if you rub the rabbits tail, you will have good luck! :) Man-kind is ever the superstitious type huh? :)

Thus my first visit to Nürnberg city finished.

The next day, Friday saw me packing my suitcases and running to the post office to post back a parcel of goodies that would not fit into my suitcase. I'm still waiting for it as I type this back home :)

Bat and I finished our visit together with more DVD watching that evening. I will miss the bloke very much. It's rare to find people who "match" you and yet stretch you too. He is a wonderful person and very clever. He sleeps a lot but I rather like him anyway I think. Hahahaha ;)

I shall miss the darling S and my wee Niece and Nephew by proxy, Fizz and Schnu. I hope to see them again in the flesh as often as time and finances will allow in the coming years.

Saturday I was nervous about my forthcoming hours of travel and very sad to be leaving Nürnberg and my wonderful friends. It really IS tough to say goodbye to loved ones when you don't know when you will see them again. Even Raphi cried apparently when I left, the dear little man.

I got the ICE train to Frankfurt from Nürnberg. It's a very comfortable train and even though I was rather forlorn at this stage in my early journey, I did find myself soothed and comforted by the speed, efficiency and calmness of this public transport. I amused myself by trying to translate the gist of the german text that was displayed in red LED over the end carriage doorway.

Once I got to Frankfurt Airport, I confess to getting somewhat confused about where I was supposed to go to check in for my flight. I seemed to walk from the train and go up and down escalators and around corners for an age. I followed all the signs for the terminal I required but it seemed to be taking forever to get there.

My confused state must have be quite obvious as a gentleman approached me and asked if I needed some help. In carefully constructed English, I told him where I was required to be. He offered to help me and promptly grabbed my suitcase from my hand and led the way up even more escalators.

We talked some, his English being quite good albeit slow. We seemed to walk for ages through the airport terminal and at one point I had a crisis wondering if my naiveté had gotten the better of me and I was about to be taken to dark corners for foul deeds. But, he kindly led me to my correct check in counter and then promptly requested I pay him EU$5.00 for the privileges he had just granted me! I accepted with relief. I figured it could have been very much worse. Besides, I was grateful he had got me here...I'd have been quite thoroughly lost I'm sure otherwise.

Checking in was a breeze. My suitcase was actually LESS heavy than when I had arrived in Germany. My dear Preciousss though still weighed an insufferable amount on my shoulder, but there is no WAY I will ever let from my sight on these travels even so.

I paced the departures hall for the two hours and ate a rather old stale Brezeln for my supper along with a lovely cup of tea. I phoned bat from the boarding lounge to reassure him and the family I was okay.

The flight from Frankfurt to Bangkok was long and tedious as usual. I was stuck in the middle row of seats and had to tap the poor Gentleman beside me and ask him in my halting German if he would allow me out so I could go to the toilet on more than the odd occasion *blush*.

I was surrounded by middle-aged, neatly if somewhat blockishly attired, semi-retired German couples all travelling for various reasons to Asia via Bangkok.

It was a long, not very uncomfortable flight. The lady next to me fed me chocolates by surprise - mainly because she was on my blind side and I didn't see them coming - she was a sweetie even so despite the fact we could barely communicate with each other. We got on even so.

Tales of Bangkok Airport to follow. :)

Thankyou S. Rita, Raphi, Schnu and my dear Martin for allowing me into your life and country this past month. Friends forever huh? :)

PS - I still haven't smelled the coffee! Yet to be accomplished. :)