#874 Takeaway delivery drivers

Sure, on these hellishly wintry weather days there are all manner of emergency service people out there who are doing an absolutely fabulous job of keeping things together – both by removing cars from flooded roads, and also by keeping trees from falling on our heads.

All very, VERY noble deeds.

But tonight I am giving a very deserving shout-out to another group of ‘lifesavers.’

Because let’s face it: when we are all warm and comfortable in our cosy abodes, away from the unnerving elements, and keeping ourselves warm next to a heater/fireplace/under seventeen layers of clothing, and we subsequently can’t be stuffed making dinner because

a) it’s the weekend

b) it’s cold

c) it’s too hard

d) you’re tired

e) no bloody reason AT ALL

who do we turn to?

The takeaway delivery drivers.

We simply pick up the phone from the comfort of our couch and –

beep beep beep beep, beep beep beep beep

“Hello? Can I make an order for delivery please?”

30 minutes later and BANG! Food is on the table ๐Ÿ™‚ Tonight’s menu: pizza, chicken parma, and chips – the best in comfort takeaway ๐Ÿ˜‰

You don’t even need to worry if your local takeaway haunt doesn’t provide delivery, as nowadays a million and one third parties, DO.

So, these drivers out there take the brunt of the whipping winds and howling rain, trying their damn-dest to get to the top of our driveways for just a moment to escape the middle-of-Winter severity, as we stand there counting loose change for this poor soul.

Note: They deserve ALL the tips. Think of that next time they are shivering on your door step.

I salute you all, delivery people!

 

#869 Late night soccer

Just as well I brought the hat home last Friday.

It had been in my old room, at my parents house. Just as I have been purging and sorting through my own stuff, so too have my parents been trying to purge – themselves of my stuff. LOL.

I always said I would tend to the big pile of childhood and teenage accumulation and mementos that I had left at their place when I first moved out. That promise turned into a faraway and not very concrete date, and so my parents took it upon themselves to take everything out of hiding and line it up accessible and for me to see in my old room.

Every time I am there, I go through a little more. I came across some carnival hats that baby girl was enamoured with… I thought ‘fine.’ There’s many things I am bringing home, simply because I am not sure of what to do with it, but I feel that I should really be throwing it away.

The hat, is not the case.

Because the hat, is from the homeland. It holds my parents roots, and is an emblem of where I hail from.

The discovery of the hat was so timely, because I was able to hold it near and dear to me, during the viewing of the Soccer, very very late (or very very early, whichever way you roll) last night/this morning.

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Croatia has progressed into the second round of finals in the FIFA world cup. I always said if they did get this far, then I would stay up/get up early, and watch. I knew baby girl having school holidays would make it easier – no early start and subsequent running around after a 3-hour sleep due to Soccer match… so very very early this morning, that’s what I did.

I had a preorganised massive blanket on the couch to wrap myself in. Little did I know it was the coldest night of the year, but I was all tucked up and cosy, the only light coming from the guys on the green field and the soft glow of our hallway.

In those 2 and a half hours, I learnt a bit. I didn’t think I would. I picked up strategies and things about the game which I had never noticed before. I got emotional, my head lifting from the pillow in anticipation when a goal was near; I whispered “damn!” at missed opportunities; and I also nearly fell asleep several times.

I am more sleep ambassador than a soccer one.

But it was the memories and the times I had spent watching the World Cup before, that led me to this night. I remember my Dad staying up late, and me sitting with him, trying to work out the game. Asking him questions. Things about the goalie, and how hard his job was. All of this came flooding back to me, the time I spent with my Dad watching this sport, excited about the rare late nights, and the bonding that I didn’t realise I was partaking in, ’til just last night.

And there was more. I remembered World Cup soccer parties at my sister’s place. The excitement of driving across town at midnight to watch the tournament take place. I remember sleeping in my bed at 3am, and the phone ring because Croatia had just progressed into another round, and my sister across town was calling to talk to my Dad, who was watching on our side of town.

“Sorry SmikG,” she said. “I’m calling for Dad.”

So casual, yet so novel. It was fascinating, how this event turned all our lives upside down.

And then when Croatia did make 3rd place in that same year, the happiness the people experienced and devoted themselves to, awoke something in me.

A deep curiosity for World Cup Soccer. Now, it was going to become a ritual.

Years later when Australia made the World Cup, remarkably it was Croatia they faced in one-play off. Although I couldn’t really lose in this scenario – ‘homeland’ team, playing ‘home’ team – I nonetheless went for the regional underdog, while Hubbie, then BF, was happily cheering for the land down under.

Our rules were: take a shot when your team makes goal. And run around the house with the national flag wrapped around you.

We did it.

Meanwhile on the other side of the world, my parents were in Croatia, their native home, watching the very same game. They would wince when Australia faltered, silently cheering and smiling with glee when they moved ahead, noticed by my uncle who said to them

“Why, you’re cheering for Australia, not Croatia!”

That’s because Australia was their real home now.

Or maybe it had to do with going for the underdog in their current location, just as I was doing, cheering for Croatia to win as I sat in my Australian house.

I never remember who won. I don’t even care. All I remember are the memories.

I am not a soccer devotee. I will not claim I know all the players’ names. I will not pretend to watch soccer at any other time for the next 4 years after this event.

But I am a fan of where I come from. And as long as Croatia will feature in this 4-yearly event, so too will I haul my ass out of bed in freezing cold Winter temperatures, and remember, the memories from before.

For those keeping score… my ass-hauling last night DID pay off. Croatia won. In an epic extra-time plus penalty shoot-out setting. They won on the last kick!

Incredible. And if all I remember from this World Cup is…

coldest night

reminiscing on the past

cuddled up on the couch

Hubbie joining me post 6am before heading off to work

and then cheering happily because they had won (and I was going back to bed!)

then that would be enough.

#866 Dancing in another place, with my loves

It’s not a good thing when you stave off dancing for a considerable length of time.

And I don’t mean the boppy, jump up and down kind of baby girl’s fave dance group Pnau. Nor am I talking of the swaying sensations of Hubbie’s preference Sia, or the hip-shaking rhythms of my, Ricky Martin.

No. What I’m referring to here is the funky feet of folk.

Folk dancing. It is a whole other dance, rhythm and culture all of itself. When you grow up listening to it, it surrounds your family parties, and you partake by dancing along to it whole-heartedly at these festive get-togethers, it creates the very important foundation of shared family love, memories and ALL the happy times.

This time however, it wasn’t in our kitchen. Sure, baby girl and I were present, but Hubbie was at work.

We were in a lounge room. Not our lounge room. My OLD lounge room. And the third person present was my Dad.

We were at my parents place.

๐Ÿ™‚

Baby girl loves to put it on. There is a small stereo in the lounge room, with a permanently placed folk cd inside. She turns it on, winds up the volume, and happily starts jumping along.

How happy that makes me, that at only 4, that type of music is already engrained into her.

“Come on Mama, dance!”

I tagged along.

I should warm up, right? When ever there we do any kind of ‘warming up’ as we call it, it’s usually because some big family event is coming up, and we need to get our cold dancing feet fired up and ready.

But today the only warming up was done for just thatwarming up.ย It was cold, there hadn’t been a get-together to get us jumping in ages, and yet I still felt the urge to get the blood pumping, knowing it would help the chills of this, our June day.

I started jumping beside baby girl, with no real rhythm, just to make her happy.

“Come on Deda!”

I looked at my Dad, all comfortable and cosy on the couch. There was as much chance of him getting up to join us as there was in the day moving above 20 degrees.

“Baby girl, leave Deda, he is resting.”

He looked to agree with that statement as I said it, but then as I kept on leaping in the air with baby girl, I saw him get up, and start to –

one two, one two three, one two three, one two three

He was dancing!

“Good job Deda!” I yelled to him.

Baby girl smiled in happiness, and on he, and now I, inspired by his professionalism in the act, kept on going, doing it the right way

one two, one two three, one two three, one two three

Our feet kicking the in air, moving from left to right and left again, and baby girl telling me all the while –

THAT I WAS DOING IT ALL WRONG.

Sure honey. Because she’s the folk-dancing boss.

So I copied her kicks in the air from side to side and left to right, and suddenly she was much more impressed.

(Face palm).

But for those few moments, the three of us mucking about, folk music in the air, legs kicking around wildly…

I reckon the room temperature DID reached 20. ๐Ÿ˜‰

 

#865 Beanie weather

Look. I am no Winter ambassador. I have said that on many an occasion.

But when you come equipped with the right goods, suddenly all of those cold and miserable starts become a hell of a lot more manageable.

Meet my new beanie. This beanie not only looks great and has a pom pom on the top (a prerequisite for any decent and cosy Winter beanie) but it holds special significance too. It is part of the Carrie Bickmore carriesbeanies4braincancer collection, a campaign founded by the Australian personality to create funding and support for this most vicious and highly under-funded of terminal diseases.

She has been personally affected by this. Her late husband died of this horrendous cancer.

Our family has been affected by this too.

I purchased the beanie months ago, primarily for this reason. Any amount or donation towards prolonging life, and finding a cure, should be made paramount.

And the fact that it is also cute and fashionable, makes it all the easier to wear proudly.

If you too would like to check out Carrie Bickmore’s head range, go to the website:

https://www.carriesbeanies4braincancer.com/

I don’t need to try and promote the cause to you any more. The stories and the lives impacted speak for themselves.

And these are the kinds of things I ponder as I walk around the streets of the bay, coffee in hand, pondering life and all of it, and how lucky we are to be here.

It may be cold. It may be icy. We are in the middle of Winter, bang smack! in the middle.

But somehow this morning was also beautiful.

Breathtaking.

The stillness of it all.

The momentary pause of seasons.

Nature stops, takes a breath, and halts its growth, as this is necessary for renewal… lying dormant until the first seeds start to sprout, sunshine is prolonged, and the World begins its natural pull towards rebirth, once again.

It is miraculous.

And we are alive. Think of that next time you are having a bad day.

We are alive, and blessed.ย โ™ฅโ™ฅโ™ฅ

#859 The day after the Winter Solstice

It’s a time of year that is cold.

It is dark.

Nature goes quiet. The Earth lies, unmoved. Seeds lay dormant.

Or do they?

At this time of the year, reflection and intuition are key.

Looking inwards, trusting your inner voice, and meditating on life is necessary.

And so on the day after the Winter Solstice, there are already signs of rebirth and renewal in the air.ย Greenery abounds.

I find it promising and beautiful that so much beauty and wonder is evident in our garden all around us. A stem from our orchid plant snapped off when heavy rain poured down on it, but it can still grow and bloom in our home, making everything around it look that much brighter.

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And the sunset of orange, purple and blue, tells us that there are Hopeful things yet to come.

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Expressing gratitude today, for all of this, and for the coming Light.

 

 

#855 Singing on the way to family day

Monday morning. Cold, but still. I had dropped off baby girl at kinder, and was now driving along towards the freeway, the music blaring through my car…

I was heading to the city, with George. George being of ‘Michael’ fame. ๐Ÿ˜‰ And ‘the city’ being 40 minutes out of the Peninsula, which let’s face it is more city than anything in the south beachside where we are.

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Not only did I have THE BEST TIME EVER singing out loud to music from my ipod as the sun streamed on down through the windows (think Bruno, old school Christina, and the best reggaetรณn from Daddy Yankee) but I was heading towards a much looked forward to destination.

I was having lunch with my parents and sister today. It was a month late, the occasion being us girls taking our folks out for a belated anniversary date… but better late than never, and to be honest I’m pleasantly surprised it didn’t take us ’til Spring time to organise.

We have busy schedules. All of us live on opposite sides to one another. But we pushed all of life to the side for a couple of hours today, where we celebrated my parents marriage by talking about their 50 years plus together, from all of those years ago when they first made the move to Australia, all the way to today, where we made plans for more fun and parties that will surely follow.

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We always say that we should do these catch-ups more often… let’s hope that we do, as I am all for the awesome foursome getting into some more food, some more family memories and laughs, and lastly, some more singing in the car.

#849 Nothing, and everything

Well, today it happened.

I was at a loss to creatively find something new to be grateful for.

Baby girl having a good day at kinder? It’s been done.

Happy to have a working heater on such a cold day? Done.

Happy we vegged on the couch tonight with takeaway? Also done.

Happy I had some wine? Done done done.

I had gotten calls concerning appointments and jobs to be done over the next week – this gave me satisfaction, but the strength to write about them in a creative manner (it’s not just stating the gratitude, it’s also finding the creative drive to make a story out of it) well that focus I needed was GONE.

Baby girl and Hubbie made me laugh countless times, and we hugged and complimented Hubbie on how much better he looked without his beard – that has also been done.

I watched Shark Tank, LOVED it – done.

Hell, I’m even feeling better regarding my cold – and that too has also been done.

And as I sat there later this evening, realising all the things I was grateful for had already been expressed before… it dawned on me that I had just made a brand new list, and this new list had never been done before.

So suddenly, I was grateful for it all ๐Ÿ™‚