Sep 25, 2011

Mess Fuss

Today we decided to ride our bikes down to South Bank to go to the Science Museum. Nicole made some picnic nibbles while I went and power-walked the dog, and when I got back we mounted our trusty steeds (Eloise on her tow-along for long-distance riding) and set off.

The ride down the hill at Kedron Brook Road is a bit helter-skelter but we took it easy and free-wheeled down at a cool 40 before Eloise blew her tyre on the junction and the whole trip had to be abandoned, with Nicole riding back up the hill to get the car, loading up the tow-along into the car and driving back whilst I rode up the hill.

We were about to set off again when we realised that Eloise hadn't brought her Science Museum passcard, whereupon it all descended into chaos and acrimony as it turned out she didn't know where it was, or where her wallet was, or where anything was actually and months of simmering resentment over messiness and disorganisation and clutter nestled its way between the family folds and poked its nose out to say hello again. "You're just a mess fuss" she says. "A mess fuss."

And so it came to pass that a nice afternoon at the Science Museum morphed into a not-so-nice afternoon of tidying and throwing stuff we don't want - and she doesn't need - away.

On the plus side, she got a new bookcase. She enjoyed building it too. On the other plus side, her bedroom is nice and tidy. And her downstairs "study" area.

On the minus side, rather like the European Debt Crisis, I suspect that nothing has really been solved and that even though more storage space and scope for organisation has been created, the opportunity will be squandered and stuff will still just be dropped at the very moment and location that attention evaporates.

Crumbs from the Table

The beggar is the only person in the universe not obliged to study appearance While Nicole cooked, cause that's what se enjoys, Eloise and I played ballgames whilst Matilda sniffed around.

Come eating time the dog came back to beg, as is her habit, but had some competition from the local bird-life.

This bird is an Australian Magpie. Nicole here, determinedly unterrified, is outside her comfort zone, for it is Magpie Season at the moment and in suburbia these cute birdies with their melodious song mercilessly swoop bike riders with the temerity to approach their territory.

One drew blood on me a couple of days back down at Kedron Brook. When we go to school, there's one at Lanham Park who must know me by sight. I can see him a hundred metres away eyeball me and then cruise like some demented missile towards me before stretching out his claws to pluck out my eyes.

Eloise thinks it's hilarious of course, she revels in even the possibility of my pain.


Birthday Barbie The seasons are turning and it's getting warm again come evening time.

What more reason does the cuisinically orientated pyromaniac need to light the fire, char the sweet potatoes, and re-learn the art of barbecuing?

Sep 18, 2011

Dog Competition

Eloise, Matilda and Lottie On the catch-up front, a while ago Eloise's school held their bi-annual Fete.

We decided, for better or worse, to enter Matilda into the God With the Shiniest Coat competition, after Eloise decided to put her in for the Best Dressed Dog competition. With the dubious results you see above on her rehearsal attempt, we changed her mind for her.

Coincidentally Lottie the dog moved out from over the road that day, as Lauren has moved out of Valerie's house and taken the yapping little terror with her.

Eloise seems OK, so far.

As far as the Fete went, it rained torrentially (an island of wet in an ocean of dry) and Matilda didn't win her competition, though she behaved herself admirably.

I spent time watching Eloise petting chickens and goats while puddles grew around me, and we exited around 4 o'clock.

Sep 13, 2011


A week or so ago, Nicole's social life took off with a bang as she finished her dissertation for her Master's Degree in Being Very Clever.

She went to the Riverfire Ball, a work thing, at the Customs House in the city. 

Her afternoon consisted of beautification of the follicular tress variety. Whilst she was undergoing her Calypso-like transformation we mortals went and walked the dog up at Mount Coot-tha, achieving a 5km circuit around the Waterfall Walk in time to pick up the new Goddess of Beauty (and I mean that most sincerely) and take her to Marion's house for a spot of off-the-cuff accessorisation.

At home for a little while, I cooked and we mortals ate whilst Nicole dressed herself.

I could tell you an amusing (if you're male) or frightening (for everyone else) story about the dress she borrowed from her beautification consultant, squeezed into, then tested beyond its integral limits through the irresponsible act of inhaling, but I won't.

Anyway, she was due in town around 6.30 so we set off to drop her at the Temple of Fun before attempting to make a rendez-vous across the river with some friends.

With the fireworks due to start around 7, it became quickly clear that we would be rendez-vousing with no-one, as the bridges were closed and traffic was slowing. Oh, the small fact that we (I) got lost in the grid is a mere detail I feel safe in glossing over.

The city ejaculated us in a Northern direction, and with bearings secure, we joined the slow moving traffic which deposited us eventually at a multi-storey par cark where we de-carred and headed into the Valley, a slow trudge that took in many shop windows and interesting diversions.

As we climbed the final hill and the Story Bridge heaved its ironwork and electric bunting over the crest, the river expanding beneath us and the city monolithic behind, the fireworks began.

Normally I despise the badly-edited hotchpotch of so-called contemporary "pap" that seems to pass for dramatic complement to fireworks. In this case it was inaudible, a considerable blessing. Instead our ears were assaulted by drumrolls of explosive percussion, our eyes constricted by coruscations of light spat from every available iron orifice, and our senses tingled by the untuned Ooohs and Aaahs of the crowd.

Eloise climbed on my shoulders and stuck a cuddle toy in my face. Then she climbed some rocks for a better view. Then she went into the crowd to see what she could. Then she came back.

After about twenty minutes of whizzes, bangs, firework flowers, white waterfalls, searchlights in the sky, but no jets, the fireworks finished and off we went home.

Book Week

Rain Starts Play In a reprise of last year's Book Week, Eloise dressed up as Lettice the Rabbit; although reminded that last year Lettice was not well-known or well-recognised, she decided that this year would be different and besides she wanted to wear her rabbit ears and flower girl dress.

As it went, nobody knew who Lettice was. But she didn't care this year.


OHMS Around the time of the Royal Wedding Eloise sent a note of well-wishes to Wills and Kate.

The other day a nice postcard arrived thanking her impersonally for her kind letter.

She was very excited about that.