#493 Emerging light of the shortest day

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Does that picture look like something from a science fiction movie?

In fact, I took the above photo on my way in to work this morning. I had to capture something to mark this most exciting of days, and when I saw the image before me, the soft mist turning the horizon into a hazy dream, boats still and sleeping in the foreground, while behind the tall buildings and bright red lights of civilisation, there shone something more.

Something grand.

Something promising.

Something, to HOPE for.

Because today is the shortest day of the year. From now on out, the daylight in each day can only grow incrementally, and with that increase, comes the prospect of brilliant sunshine-y times ahead.

I know we are only 21 days into Winter. However, a glass half-full sunshine loving Leo as myself needs something to look forward to, and the shortest day of the year during Winter, is about the most exciting thing to happen today.

Exciting, and gratifying.

And so it helps, it fell on a day that ended up turning rainy, grey and miserable.

But that’s ok. Because the only way is up.

#490 Walk around the ‘hood

What was meant to be a little walk to the local park and then back home, ended up in us heading that extra block to see the beach, and then winding around a couple of extra streets, to get just that bit more sunshine.

Winter, so far, has been spectacular. I know, right? In fact, the sunny and still days we have had so often, so far, has put me in a greater state of fear over how horribly the rain and wind will hit when REAL Winter comes along. According to My Climate Guide, we are actually in Win-tumn, which is false pretences Winter, and the REAL mofo Winter that will f$^k us right up, is due to hit in about 5 days.

Sigh. But we won’t worry about that now. Today was absolute bliss, walking around our ‘hood in our trakkies, and discovering the sights, sounds, scents, and seeing all the beauty that is around us… All of this, and the magnificent sun in the background, made me so, soooo grateful, that this is OUR TOWN.

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And with each day, I’m loving it more and MORE. Even in Winter. Can you bloody believe???

#468 Churchies give me coffee and a muffin

Ahhh. Hot, sweet, hot, sweet (did I say hot?) coffee, accompanied by a perfectly executed warm egg and bacon muffin.

I almost didn’t have this. If I didn’t act precautionary and stuff extra coins into my coffee purse (yes I have a coffee purse), I totally wouldn’t have had it AT ALL.

At the usual time this morning, I grabbed my work pass, my phone, and my coffee purse to head off on my coffee walk to get my Saturday morning coffee while at work. Having the scratchy and dry throat that has decided to reappear in my life for a few days now, and feeling also slightly sickly, I looked at the fruit waiting for me on my desk, and decided ‘this will not do.’

Sure, I would eat them today, at some point, eventually. But I needed something solid, something hearty, something to go fantastically with my morning coffee and help me get through the day and way into the night, as we were expecting visitors at our place later on. I threw in a couple more coins from my ‘regular’ purse, into my ‘coffee purse’ (I know, right?!) and with my bomber jacket headed on down the road through the chilly air.

The Asian lady greeted me warmly as I walked up to the counter, smiling happily. I like her. I like my Saturday morning coffee place. I hoped I would like her more in a few moments time.

“Hi,” I started. “I wanted something like a coffee – “

“Yes we have coffee!”

“- yes but, with something like toast? Like a coffee and toast deal?”

Not more than $6.50, not more than $6.50, I repeated in my head. In my quick skim through the contents of my coffee purse earlier, I thought I had that amount for sure, but any more, and I would have to check.

“We have a coffee and egg and bacon muffin for $7.50.”

Hmmm.

“Regular coffee?” I enquired.

“This one,” she pointed to the smallest size, not the medium size as I had anticipated. She repeated regular, and I got confused with the sizes as I started to count out my change.

“Let me check…”

It is usually the case that with coins, there is a tad more than what you initially see with your eyes.

4.50, 5, 6, 7… 7.50!

“7.50!” I said happily. “And for a medium?”

“This one” she again pointed to the small size, and my heart deflated a bit. “It’s a bit extra for medium…”

I started doubting whether I even wanted this egg and bacon muffin. I mean I did, but not enough to sacrifice the size of my coffee. I stared into my much lighter coffee purse, and observed 45 cents worth of coins.

Don’t say more than 45 cents, don’t say more than 45 cents…

“An extra 40 cents.”

!

With 5 cents in my purse to spare!

I emptied all the coins onto the counter like a girl who had just raided the church donation baskets, and minutes later, I was walking back to work very happy. And then at my desk, enjoying my hot coffee, and my warm muffin, I was immediately grateful for all my coins.

ALL THE COINS.

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Don’t throw away your churchies people. You never know when they will make your day.

#406 Coffee Walk Life Reflection

This post has very little to do with the frivolity and luxury that a coffee walk evokes. And I don’t mean to put down any serious coffee drinkers out there with those words (myself included), but really, this post is less 1st world luxury, and more about the serious humbling nature of Life and Death.

Late last night Hubbie and I learned that a man we knew, a family friend, had died on the weekend. He had been in his 30s, a little older than Hubbie, with two beautiful little kids, and a loving wife.

This man died due to a horrible, horrible disease. The same disease that took Hubbie’s Dad away.

Our hearts broke at the news. Of course, with a terminal affliction such as this, death becomes a thought that makes space in your head quite early on, cleaning up the floor and moving stuff away so it can become a prominent feature in the living room of your mind.

But, he was young. And strong. And had so much to live for. We really hoped, that he at least, for the sake of himself and his family, would be one of the lucky ones to survive.

But… bastard disease.

This morning I walked in-between my two work colleagues to grab a coffee. The sun bathed us as we crossed the road to the sunny side. I thought of him, this man that was no longer walking on Earth. It had been days since he had left us all. He could not see the beautiful sunlight streaming down upon us. He could not bath in its beauty. He could not see the light sparkling off the rippling water, and he could most definitely not walk out to get a coffee.

My quiet reflections humbled me. Here I was, doing the most simplest of things, something that I was always so grateful and happy to do… and this morning, it just meant so much MORE.

We are all so lucky. If you are reading this, take a moment and show some gratitude that you are even still here on this earth. Life is so fragile, so fleeting, so flagged by chance, that I thank my lucky stars every day, that I am here with my loved ones.

Be grateful. Be grateful for it all. For it is all beautiful.

#399 Colleague appreciation no.2

So, it’s getting later in the gratitude game now, where I’m tending to double up on gratitude moments.

Not really double-up, but the theme is similar, hence all my “no.2” posts at the moment.

Take coffee for example (of course I would use coffee as an example). A narrow-minded person may be grateful for it, once. But an open-ended and wide-ranging one, would take cause to notice it’s deep aroma, the texture, the way it perks you up, it’s up-lifting qualities, of course it’s taste, and then there’s all the places you can enjoy this fine beverage in a range of wonderful locations… and so, so much more.

You get my drift.

I actually have been grateful to coffee in a number of ways too. And I will continue to be.

As I will find reasons to be grateful, for many, many other things multiple times over.

Like, a nice compliment. Appreciation. Who doesn’t need a bit of kindness directed their way???

So today I had my usual coffee walk with my work colleagues. I haven’t seen them properly in a while, which means that although I, and they, have all been working, with all of our shift work, and then my part-time work on top of that, I’ve just been catching the end of them as they conclude their day’s work.

I was both surprised and touched to hear, amidst our light-hearted banter, that they had missed me, and preferred when I worked earlier in the day, as opposed to late in the afternoon.

“But I don’t make that much of a difference!” I exclaimed, referring to my part-time work.

“But you do!”

Awww. I’ve known them for quite a few years now, and it’s interesting how well you begin to know each other’s lives and everything in it. I’m pretty lucky to work within a great team, and to hear from some of my longest and best colleagues that I’m missed when away…

Well, that just makes me blush. 🙂

#338 Taking a break

I’m fortunate enough to be able to work alongside some pretty cool views. It’s not often that I am able to appreciate them though.

You know, ‘work’ and all.

You know, temperamental Melbourne weather and all.

Which makes the converging of Summer, and holidays, all the more exciting. Warm and comfortable days, relaxing walks due to not-so-pressing work matters, makes for some… ahhh moments.

While heading out to grab a coffee at work today, I was on my own and without any of my fellow work colleagues/coffee lovers, so I took a longer than normal break to just, you know.

Sip coffee and watch.

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Breathe in.

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Observe the glistening water.

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And ponder that while I’m at work, I’m by the water.

And when I’m at home, I’m also, by the water.

And yet I’m a Lion that loves to bathe in the sunshine.

Always the contradiction.

It was a small, yet tranquil moment, and I took it in while it lasted. Then back to the office I went with my Blended Beard firmly in hand.

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It’s all about the small things. It always is. Because they add up to the greater whole.

#303 Spoilt for choice on Christmas Eve’s Eve

I don’t know what exactly to be grateful for today. So instead I will be grateful for ALL THE THINGS:

*Having an abundance of Christmas-y goodies and presents to feast on while at work

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*Taking a leisurely stroll in the beautiful sunshine with colleagues at work and talking about fantastical dreams of buying a boat

*Being let off work 2 hours earlier, because, Christmas

*Getting to shop by myself for 2 hours in peace and freedom before I went home

*Having Hubbie home earlier than expected in this mad Butcher’s week

*Going to look at some local Christmas lights with him and baby girl, and taking part in neighbourhood bonding and festivities in doing so

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*Sharing an indulgent ice cream with baby girl at the end of the night on the couch, with Hubbie looking on in amusement

I know I usually pick one thing… but it’s Christmas. And I guess I’m glad that when there are exciting times ahead, the fun and happiness and good times seem to follow you wherever you go.

Having time off work helps too.

And by no means does this mean I can’t be grateful for the above items, individually, in separate posts… today’s gratitude comes in the combined effort of all of the above.

Because, Christmas Eve’s Eve.

Merry Christmas Eve’s Eve to ALL.