wings and things

This, that….


Well I got back from Perth last week and the first thing I did was to rush to my new beaut vegetable garden and also check the chooks. I fed and watered both with a sense of quiet glee.

The second thing I did was to go inside and log on. When nothing happened I didn’t panic since all the green lights were indicating merrily that the internet wasn’t too far away.

Six hours later, having spoken to six different technical support people, all of whom were amazingly patient, kind and positive (with the exception of one woman whose sighs, when I didn’t understand her click34xcableetc instructions, became thunderous on loudspeaker) were confident.

At one point, during this ungleeful, longwinded experience, I rang Ming who said that when he got home he’d sort it out in a jiffy. Well he tried, and even spoke to other technical support people, to no avail.

The Ming then said, with great compassion and a generous hug, “Maybe you’re just not intelligent enough, Mum….?”

I let his observation linger for the ten days during which I had no internet except via my phone. When I began to get the 5s mixed us with the Ss, I gave up.

Anyway, yesterday the replacement modem arrived at the post office and Ming picked it up, brought it home, connected it and voila!

So what am I supposed to do now? I can’t possibly answer all of the zillions of emails and comments and facebooky stuff; I can’t possibly catch up on ten days of my blog friends’ blogs; I can’t even catch up with what I was going to do before I lost the internet because my blog kind of reminded me of what to do.

I survived my ten day blip of no internet, but the person most affected by my off-the-internet-radar status was my beautiful mother. Meg and I have a strong internet relationship via email and Facebook, but she is more attentive to messages than I am, so, when I lost the internet, she was the first to miss me.

And today is her birthday. She is 81, looks 61 and acts like 21. So today Meg came to the farm to see the vegetable garden then we went to a local winery for lunch. The secret surprise was that Ming and A. would join us and that was a fantastic thing!

It’s great to be blogging again. That internet blip taught me something really profound: I need the internet!

One of the hardest things for me now is having fun – the guilt of it. Lunches with friends, learning how to garden with new friends, figuring out the future, altering and/or discarding things in this old house, renewing ….

and the other….


Would you rather …?

The storybook that my mother, Meg, read from on her 8oth birthday cruise last weekend was one of her grandson’s favourites when he was little. (Thanks Morgan!) Here is a link to it on youtube

Meg brought the book with her and insisted that all of the grandchildren sit on the floor of the boat despite the fact that half of them are now in their 20s and even the youngest (12-year-old twins) are close to 6 feet tall. Then she began to read and something rather magical happened as they were all catapulted back in time and transformed into giggling little kids in the thrall of Grandma. One of the most hilarious moments was when my mother said to one grandson, in her best school teacher voice, “Rohan, pay attention!” Everyone collapsed into laughter as this big ‘boy’ – now a husband and father – obeyed. Then everyone competed, hands raised, to answer the questions posed on each page of the book.



In googling information about this storybook, I discovered that “Would you rather …?” has become a bit of a party game and I can see why! It was one of the highlights of a perfect day.


Out of the mouths of babes….

This group of quotes for Gma’s birthday book does not need any explanation from me.






There are more quotes to come of course – from some of the bigger ‘kids’ – but I will save those for tomorrow night after the boat cruise. Suffice it to say that these children’s words, enclosed in her book (and rather brilliantly photographed by me – ha!) have culminated in the most beautiful, mutual, unshakable hug of family.

Oh, I can’t resist: here is Jared’s (Meg’s second grandchild):



Not buying into Christmas

Such a relief! Today, Ming and I had planned to go into town, get presents for each other and Anthony, get a Christmas tree, a ham, wrapping paper, sticky tape (which I can never find), send a few last-minute cards, decorate the house, find the Christmas tree lights and ornaments (oh where did I put them?) and generally have a frantic, stressful, expensive, horrible day.

But on waking up this morning to a day that was already promising relentless heat, I changed my mind and a bit later I discussed my idea with Ming:

Me: I think we should postpone Christmas.
Ming: What?
Me: Well, you will be in hospital until Christmas Eve … actually maybe we should just skip Christmas this year.
Ming: What? No presents?
Me: No presents.
Ming: No tree?
Me: No tree.
Ming: No turkey?
Me: No turkey.
Ming: No Christmas crackers?
Me: No Christmas crackers.
Ming: Mum, this is such a relief!
Me: So you agree?
Ming: I think it’s a brilliant idea!
Me: Without all the usual fuss we can celebrate Christmas for what it is.
Ming: Do you mean go to church?
Me: Yes.
Ming: Okay, let’s shake on this.

So we shook hands and grinned at each other.

The sense of relief is huge! I don’t have to fight through the throngs at the shops, spend a small fortune on ‘stuff’, don’t have to worry about how the hell I am going to cook a turkey with no oven, don’t have to search the whole of Australia for cranberry sauce, don’t have to spend hours wrapping presents, don’t have to queue up at the post office – ahhhhh!

A bit later:

Ming: But what will we eat for lunch on Christmas day?
Me: Ham sandwiches? I mean Anthony hardly has any appetite anymore anyway, it’ll be too hot for me to eat and you’re a fussy brat.
Ming: I like ham sandwiches.
Me: Good, then that’s decided.
Ming: But Grandma’s still coming on Christmas day isn’t she?
Me: No.
Ming: WHAT?!
Me: I’m joking, you idiot!

Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh – now all I have to do today is frolic with the peacocks – yeeha!



Meg and Ming

Ming (my son) and Meg (my mother) are very good at charades, or whatever they were playing when this photo was taken. I have no recollection of this occasion, but my mother just sent me the photo which I have never seen before! In the good old days, when Anthony still lived here at home, my ma would often come to visit on Sundays. She and Ming would play games nonstop while Anthony and I watched, bemused, amused and sometimes hysterical with laughter. Meg and Ming + Ming and Meg = Inviolable.


Meg is Ming’s only grandparent so they have a special relationship, as well as very bad taste in eye-glasses. Thanks for the guffaw, Ma!