I have a week off work. I should be writing brilliant blog posts, but I have struggled to get something together each day.
Sunday we set off for the Bellarine Peninsula to visit Sister. We had been looking after dog Jack for a few days, but as his mummy had not returned from Tasmania, we dropped him off at her ex's place. She made us coffee and by 10.30 we were Bellarine bound. We stopped for a cold drink at the North Geelong Scottish Restaurant, aka the Golden Arches, and by 12 we were at sister's. She made us lunch and we went out for a long walk. When we returned, I felt quite unwell, see previous post, and it was rather flat Sunday night for me.
Next morning after Little Jo went to school and Bone Doctor and Sister to work, we tidied the place up and set of to Jirrahlinga Wildlife Sanctuary at Barwon Heads. It houses injured animals and some animals who had owners who could not longer look after them. More on Jirrahlinga and photos in a later post. We had a look around Barwon Heads and the place where Mother stayed for her seventieth birthday along with late Step Father, as a guest of Sister was still there. It was a place featured in the Sea Change tv show. We went on to the viewing spot known as The Bluff and then we had a small lunch and coffee at The Dunes, just out of Ocean Grove. We stopped off in Ocean Grove for a wander at the shops and then returned to Sister's and rested.
We walked Sister's dog to Little Jo's school and collected her at 3.30. I had been told dogs were not allowed on school property and that I would have to wait on the oval. Just inside the school entrance were seats and a mother sitting there with Samoyed. I sat there with dog Fuzzy while R went inside to collect Little Jo.
Once home, R and Little Jo did craft and reading and eventually watched kids tv.
Bone Doctor works within walking distance from home and returned at 4 to collect her bike to make rounds at the local nursing home. Sister returned at 4.30 and after complaining what a full day she had at school, then went off to her pilates class. Bone Doctor returned and could not get into the kitchen as R and Little Jo were making biscuits. R made a salad and Bone Doctor cooked meat on the barbecue. Sister returned and Bone Doctor went off to do something to do with football.
I took the notebook with me, and as usual used my phone as a modem and last time I looked, I had blown out my phone allowance to 120%. It was a calculated thing. Cheaper to pay for the blow out than buy a data card or change plans.
Next morning we packed up. Little Jo and Bone Doctor set off on their bikes to school. It was Sister's day off, but she was being collected at 9.30 to go to tennis. She said she wished she didn't have to go, as she had so many things to do. This apparently did not include housework as she asked us to leave the back door open for the cleaner and there was $70 sitting on the bench, presumably pay for the cleaner.
We left soon after Sister and had a very nice cup of coffee in Queenscliff at a shop called Gusto.
We were home a bit after noon and then I had another attack of the vapours, although much more minor and not worth telling R. I put it down to not eating in my normal manner.
And then I set upon a course that I knew would be mega stressful. Usually when our computer becomes slow and problematic, I take it to the computer man and ask him to reinstall Windows. Our computer was upgraded about five years ago and that was the last Windows reload. It has done well, but it has become slow. R is complaining about it and is all for buying a new one. Last reload, we payed for the Windows cd, so I could reload it myself. I said to R that I would reload windows and if that did not make the computer work more quickly, then we woud buy a new one.
Well, I have never done this before and I did some research before hand, and I am glad I did. The manual backing up of stuff took ages, but by Wednesday morning, I was ready.
But family stuff intervened. Overnight Oldest Niece gave birth. We went into town to buy a gift and a card and after inumerable phone calls, Thursday we will pick up Mother and visit Oldest Niece in the FKN hospital, also known as Franger, properly called Frankston. Oldest Niece's labour was long and eventually a ceasarian was performed and a girl was extracted at 11.24pm on 18th. Tradie Brother is now a grandfather, ex Sis in Law a grandmother, I am a great uncle, and Mother is a great grandmother, all for the first time.
Not enough? ABI Brother is having a skin cancer removed at a hospital near us and is staying the night after arriving by train. We dined at the local hotel that night and the next day we will take him to the hospital in the morning and then collect Mother to go and see the newborn.
Oh yes, in the afternoon after shopping in the morning, I made a clean install of Windows 7. One hour was spent just trying to make the computer boot the from a cd. No online advice was working, but eventually the delete key got me to the right place. Yes, it is faster now, but there is still much to do to get things back to normal, never mind the queer things it is doing.
ABI Brother was delivered to hospital at 10am. By 10.45 we were in Mother's town and it was too early to pick her up. We had coffee and ordered some flowers for Oldest Niece. At Mother's, she had also ordered flowers but from a different place. We left at 11.30 and collected both lots of flowers and were on our way by 11.45. Visiting hours finish at 1.30, so we had plenty of time. I imagined a nice country drive between what was the rural town of Pakenham, and Frankston. No! Houses, houses everywhere, traffic lights, varying speed restrictions and varying states of roads. It was a miserable drive, made worse because we were a bit late.
Once we arrived and found our way to Oldest Niece's room, her partner was there, along with her mum, Ex Sis in Law, and an 'advisor'. We had to cool our heels for nearly an hour and with ten minutes of visiting time left, we saw and interacted with Oldest Niece and Great Niece. We overstayed a bit. R would not let go of two day old Great Niece. We had a light and late lunch at the hospital and we set off to take Mother home. 'Can you go via Cranbourne and I will get a Ready Roast, which will last me for two meals'. I had told Mother no shopping. 'Can we stop at the supermarket for cigarettes and magazines..
I was getting stressed and snappy. It was school finish time and we kept getting stuck on traffic congested roads. I have never done it before, but I thumped the steering wheel with my fists as we crawled along. I am used to inner city driving. This outer suburb driving does my head in.
I was so fed up with Mother and her slowness but I kept a vague smile on my face. If only she would stop talking. I called R out of the hospital cafe, so whe would finish her sandwich and tea and stop talking.
We spied ABI Brother's car, and he was at Mother's when we finally got her there. The skin cancer he had removed was just below his eye, so he is bruised. He paid me some money he owed me and I now have a very full wallet, but I know cash diappears quickly.
R talked about giving Mother $500 for her eightieth birthday on Sunday, but after today, I will insist on only $200, more than I was going to give her.
But there were some good bits for the day. Oldest Niece's two day old child is lovely. Most babies are pretty ordinary when they are just born. Her partner was very kind and considerate towards her when she started crying after the baby advisor left. So in spite of pre natal classes, she did not know it all. What expectations are now on new mothers to know it all and be perfect. It was nice to see Ex Sis in Law. She started to cry too when Oldest Niece cried. She gave comfort.
While I had imagined being home by about 3pm, it was 4.45. I did a bit more to the computer to return it something we know, and then our friend from Japan who is in Sydney rang and how lovely was it to talk to her. She will leave her birth country to return home on Saturday. We could have gone to Sydney to see her, given I have a week off, but the week off was shedualed to be busy, and so it has been.
I just worked out I spent about 3 and a half hours driving today. No wonder I am crabby.