Saturday, 3 February 2007

Day 34 - It's Raining - Rain & Broadband!

Can you believe, it rained yesterday! and I got connected to broadband! Of course all good things have a down side - it took me ALL day on the phone with the techs to get my connection working and then it threw me off last night at 1.00am (wh should go to bed earlier) and I've been on the phone all morning - mainly on hold -listening to music designed to drive you to drink - until I got reconnected again. Ahhh - the elctronic age - it saves soooooo much time - not.
Here is a photo -at last - of the baby jumpers I have been knitting If you look carefully, you can see one of our possum boxes in the tree behind. We love the wildlife around here, but I have the crankies with the possums at the moment - the bigger brushtails have kicked the ringtails out of all the possum boxes, and the ringtails are more vulnerable than the brushtails. To add insult to injury, one of the brushtails has taken up residence under the house in the space between the floor of the study and the ceiling of the bathroom. AND not only that, I got up one morning recently to discover that my beautiful cyclamen pink cyclamen (Ha! work that one out) which lives on the table on the deck, was sitting there with all the flowers intact, but every single leaf eaten off - just bare stems surrounding the flowers! It looked very funny. Back to the baby jumpers - the knitting group I attend at Cherryhills has been producing dozens of these jumpers to go to Africa. Someone's mother's church group asked for help, so superwomen flew into action.

Annie Blatt's pattern is still giving me lots of problems - I admit to being spatially challenged - refer back to the school uniform disasters - I admit to reading a paragraph of a pattern and knitting 10 rows with a line of bobbles on the 6th - then discovering the next row says: AT THE SAME TIME INCREASE blah blah blah. Even acknowledging these deficiencies on my part, THE PATTERN IS BLOGGING CONFUSING!!

So I'm still tetchy.

Just for you, Roxie:

This is a large birdsnest fern that grew (self sown) under the airconditioner outlet at home - it obviously thrives with the constant drip of moisture.

By contrast, here's a photo of a tree fern that has been severely burnt off in the all the hot weather we've been having:

Also a photo of one of my my bromeliads that has survived the hot weather in relatively good condition because it's in a pot out of the sun: .Don't ask me why my photos are all over the place in relation to the text - I"VE ALREADY TOLD YOU THAT I"M SPATIALLY CHALLENGED and TETCHY!

Ms 4 year old Flea is arriving at 2.30pm (it's now 12.10) for a sleepover and we are having people for lunch tomorrow. Not a bed is made, including the little Flea's which is still stripped from the last Flea invasion, not a dish is washed, not a cake is made, not a chicken thigh has been marinated, not a dip has been made,and not a thing has been hung on the line (probably will need rewashing because i t's so steamy and washing smells very quickly if not dried straight away- so much for the water conservation drive) and there's nothing decided for tea tonight. Sounds like someone has tied me to a chair in front of a computer screen and said "FIDDLE YOUR LIFE AWAY, FOOL". On the upside though, Ms 4 loves her mama - and Grandma Flea doesn't score it for a kiss or a cuddle when mama's there. BUT when we have sleepovers, I'm very popular and get lots of juicy little wet kisses on the cheek and heaps of cuddles. I feel better already.

Conscious as I am of throwing many punctuation and grammar stones at those other people who DON'T CARE about our language, I am also conscious that I live in a glass house and do VERY occasionally slip up myself. Of course it's NOT MY FAULT- oh no - (I learnt this one off Grandpa Flea - Mr Infallible!) - any mistake is the result of a typo!! So my apologies to my fellow grammar police out there.

Peace to the world - in my dreams of course.

Wednesday, 31 January 2007

Day 30 - I Forgot Our Wedding Anniversary!

I have NEVER forgotten our wedding anniversary - but today I did. As Grandpa Flea rarely remembers it, it was not such a disaster, but I can't believe that I forgot. 42 years married might explain it and I have had a lot of other things on my mind.

Good news - today I signed up for broadband - it will take about two weeks for the modem etc to arrive, and I'm really looking forward to it.

I finished another little jumper for Africa when we were travelling - they look really cute in the bright colours. Annie Blatt is no easier than before - I discovered last night that, despite careful measuringand counting, one front is longer than the other - you know what happens next - creative blocking! I've unpulled it too many times to do it again. I'll start the two sleeves tonight and with a bit of luck will finish the cardi by the end of the week. Then I'll have to go back to Eloise or it will finish up as a permanent UFO. I have just tried to upload some photos but it is taking forever so it will have to wait until our broadband starts.

We have a meeting with the builder later in the week to finalise our contract for the townhouse. The year will go quickly, but I wish it were already built (hope the tense is correct - people in glass houses and all that ...). We have taken our house off the market over the hottest part of summer but the pressure will be on to get it sold before our new place is finished - otherwise I'll be putting out a call for food parcels!

Our garden is looking soooo bad - I think we will lose at least two tree ferns this summer - they are all self sown, and have all prospered until last summer when we lost a couple in the heat. Every time we go away we lose something in the garden - this last four day absence meant we missed the watering day and it coincided with very hot weather. There is not much we can do about it.

I'm glad you didn't mind the rant, Roxie - I'm not as tetchy today, but still not happy about the state of the world.

Monday, 29 January 2007

Day 29 - Question 1

My last post had been in draft mode for days - how can one person in a 2 person household have so little time? Answer: dial-up internet. When we got a new computer (12 months ago) we were planning to move to a place with cabling in place so persisted with dial-up. Twelve months later we are still planning to move, but I've decided to lash out and get a new modem so I can get broadband - I don't enjoy spending hours in front of the screen waiting for things to download and it leaves so little time for other things I'd rather do. So in a week or two ...

We have just had four days visiting Grandpa Flea's brother and his wife in Temora - a NSW country town. The drought is very bad all over NSW and I was shocked to see how little livestock was around - the few cattle I saw were skin and bone and being hand fed. We did pass a a couple of flocks of sheep that looked to be in good condition. None of the farm dams we passed had any water in them and the crops that did survive gave very low/poor quality yields. The paddocks were eaten down to the bare earth and we saw quite a number of willy-willies taking the red topsoil away. We've had bad droughts before - I can remember them from my childhood - but combined with climate change, this one is very scary, for the cities as well as the country. Australia is one of the driest continents on earth and we are fast running out of water - one of the cousins-in-law was telling us that she took her family to a caravan park in another small country town in the school holidays and they were told to bring their own water with them, as the town is trucking water in.

My question is this (as the politicians are fond of saying): the average person in the street has been concerned about climate change for years -so why have the governments been in denial for all that time? Meanwhile the pollies are all running around telling us we won't have to drink recycled water. I can't believe that they can be so short sighted - ignoring the long term needs of the country for their own short term power trips. Country people have always drunk recycled water - treated sewage goes into the rivers and the towns downstream use those same rivers for their drinking water. Current membrane technology delivers water that is far cleaner than the water we drank when I was a child in a country town.

As you can see, I'm feeling a mite tetchy - don't get me started on the incarceration of David Hicks for five years without charges being laid against him; the use of "extraordinary rendition" by the US government with the full knowledge and complicity of our government; the failure of our Attorney-General to admit that sleep deprivation is a form of torture; or, for that matter, the invasion of Iraq - to mention only a few gripes. It puts my difficulty with Annie Blatt patterns into perspective.

Tomorrow is another day. Perhaps I'll post on knitting.