Saturday, 24 February 2007

Day 55 - I'm just sneezin' along

Saturday Sky: this photo says it all.

It has been a hot and humid day - and now the thunder has started and it's about to rain - we hope! Grandpa Flea has been off bussing around a local history route and I've been home with a filthy cold. I NEVER get sick, I don't know ANYONE ELSE who has a cold, although everyone tells me "It's going around", so I can't point the finger. I'm aching, have a small jackhammer in my head and a tonne weight on my neck and shoulders, and I'm tetchy - and it's only a cold! Imagine how I'd be if I was really sick! The upside is, that an elderly friend (as opposed to the elderly FleaPas) was very happy to take my place on the bus trip. He is a real sweetie and I'm sure he will have a great day.

Now I'm going to have a cup of tea, two panadol (tylenol) and a good lie down (for those of you who are too young to remember, or live elsewhere, a good old Aussie tradition used to be "a cup of tea, a Bex and a good lie down" until they discovered that the aspirin, phenacetin and caffeine mix in Bex ate your kidneys up).

Wednesday, 21 February 2007

Day 52 - I'm just froggin' along ...

Well, it is with great regret and joy that I announce that Annie Blatt has bitten the dust! The wretched thing has been blocking away for days (I was too busy/lazy to pick it up) - when I went to sew the sleeves in, I discovered that I had done the three needle cast-off shoulders by joining the fronts (knitted on 2.75 needles) to the original back, knitted on 4mm needles. Do not even ask how this could have happened! So, I undid the shoulders and dropped several stitches. I dutifully frogged back and redid the shapings, then immediately rejoined the small needle front to the big needle back ... need I go on? It only gets worse. Eventually I decided that it would be kinder to all concerned to send it to the big frogpond in the sky. I have now bought the (ever so slightlyfrogged) yarn from Cherryhills and intend to use it to make a small pillow for my granddaughter.

The weather has been hot and steamy here. Monday I went on a group excursion with Grandpa Flea - a two hour train journey to Cronulla of the beautiful beach; a twenty minute ferry ride to Bundeena, a small community across the bay;
a walk along the beach;

lunch, a walk around the town and repeat of the travel, in reverse. It was a hot and sunny - the water was a a clear blue - magic. I love the beach - the way the waves roll in and out,

the beautiful shapes, patterns and colours in the rocks, and the amazing little rockpools just waiting to be explored. I lived near the beach for some of my childhood and I guess it brings back memories.

Kate has asked why I'd move from a beautiful, bushy environment to a big, wet hole in the ground! Grandpa Flea asks the same question, but as he currently has a knee like a balloon, has to hop down stairs and can't sleep at night because of the discomfort, I think he has answered his own (and Kate's) question. Sadly, it's age - it happens to us all and I know that if we don't move now, it will all become too hard in a few years time. Happily though, I can report that the big, wet, hole in the ground is now
a big, dry hole in the ground ... quite an improvement!

Well, I'm off - perchance to frog a little!

Tuesday, 20 February 2007

Day 51 - David Hicks

How quickly things change - with a federal election coming up later this year, a new opposition leader, and the opinion polls slipping, our PM is getting jittery - suddenly he is concerned about David Hicks - who has endured 5 years in detention with no charges, much of it in solitary confinement; who has been subjected to sleep deprivation and a 24 hour light on in his cell; who is allowed 2 hours in the fresh air daily - the time subject to the whim (or plan) of his gaolers (- 2am, 3am - hey! what's he got to complain about? he's outside isn't he and he won't get sunburnt); who has been denied access to his family and legal team except for a few rare occasions; who has alleged interrogation under torture, allegations which have been poo-hooed by our government; who refused recently to see the Australian embassy representative because he feared repercussions from his gaolers; who, if he does face a military commission, will have evidence used against him which has been gained under coercion.

I fail to believe that this man is a threat to the American people or to the people of Australia. Sure, he may well be a confused young man who was seduced by the rhetoric and adventure offered to him by a deeply committed (even fanatical) group of people, but so have many before him. He may well have converted to Islam. He may well have trained with al-Qaida and he may even have intended to fight with them in Afghanistan, but I still don't believe that he is a threat. Even if he HAD been a threat 5 years ago (and I don't believe that either), he is certainly not now - from the little bit of information that we get, it appears that his mental health is such that he will be doing well to survive himself.

I cannot believe that if he is brought home to Australia and released into his father's care, that he will not be monitored closely by ASIO - and probably the CIA as well. There is no way he would be able to do anything even remotely connected with terrorist activities.

5 years in detention with plenty of allegations against him, but no charge - David Hicks has been a useful pawn in the sycophantic relationship that our PM cultivates with George Bush. A pox on both their heads.