#889 Park Days no. 5

You know what’s better than park days in warm weather?

Park days in JULY.

You know why?

Because it is Winter, and when any opportunity presents to get out and enjoy some sliver of warmth in the middle of the coldest time of year, well that is a big

SUCK YOU WINTER

right there.

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It was still fresh, but there was no wind, making the suns descendance down onto our skins that much easier. We walked on over the short 10 minutes to the park, after our necessary coffee and babycino stop at the nearby corner café ( 🙂 ) before enjoying some family time in the park.

And by the way, another reminder that we are MORE than half-way through this coldest of seasons, meaning that…

Spring-time is coming!

:):):)

#885 2 nights and 3 days

Sometimes that’s all you need.

Getting away with my family for 2 nights and 3 days, spending uninterrupted non-stop family time together, was… beautiful? Interesting? Relaxing?

How about all of the above.

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It was very quiet, and it was very low-key, but that is exactly how we wanted it. And as much as we loved our family time together, the purpose of our trip has been satisfied.

We are fulfilled. Our energy and enthusiasm reserves are restored once again.

Hubbie will go back to work tomorrow with some renewed vigour.

Baby girl will go back to kinder tomorrow with extra ammo in her step to paint all the pictures and swing as high as she can.

And I will go back to… what do I do again?

Oh that’s right. EVERYTHING.

I love going away, but coming back home is great too, because it gives you back some of that oomph! often lost in Winter…

#884 Inverloch getaway

It is night 2 of our mid-week Winter Inverloch getaway.

And the only thing guaranteed about a mid-July escape, is that there are no guarantees on the weather.

Which is why today has been such a delight.

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Yes, it was windy. Yes, the waves were wild. But there was sunshine out, it was even mild at times (I kid you not), and along with heading out amongst the elements to experience it all, we had just as much fun watching it all from the comfort and warmth of indoors, once the fiercer weather rolled in.

 

If you’re not sure whether or not to do it, I say DO IT. A random winter escape is the perfect way to escape winter and the routine of life, by doing something unexpected, at the time of year where people probably least holiday out and about.

But enjoying uninterrupted time with my family has been the bestest escape of ALL.

 

#882 Middle of Winter

I’m going to interrupt your regular social media scroll for a service announcement folks.

Friends, let’s pause for a moment, and PONDER.

We are right in the middle of Winter…

… and we have survived!

Thus far, I should add. But oh, the cause of celebration is magnificent. Because let’s face it… the weather in August gets incrementally better in the sunshine-y direction, and the fact that Winter started so early for us this year in late-May, should mean that it ends just as early!

Yeah right. This is Melbourne we are talking about peeps.

But we can still Hope. And Dream.

And celebrate that we are half-way through Winter.

:):):)

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Photo by Morgan Sessions on Unsplash

 

#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 🙂 Tonight’s menu: pizza, chicken parma, and chips – the best in comfort takeaway 😉

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!

 

#870 Winter Sunset

Do you know there are people who think it is pointless to move to the seaside, unless you are a surfer?

Do you know that this very sentiment has been expressed to us, since our move?

“Do you swim everyday?”

The haughtiness drips.

My personal response?:

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You don’t need to swim everyday when you have a view like that.

There are many ways to enjoy living by the sea. Yes, one of them is to swim in it. Other things can be the calming effect of just looking at the water; walking by the water; and taking your daughter to the park where the water looms at you from below.

There’s a meditative aspect. It is soothing. It is spiritual. The beachside locale usually means a community feel is present, a real authentic and meaningful connection in all that you do, and the places that you go.

And of course, there are the water views such as the above. Living by the water you can be assured that there will be some kind of spectacular sunrise/sunset visible in the horizon, and fortunately for me, on this side of Port Phillip Bay, it is the latter. I am not a morning person.

In the warmer months we swim in it, and in the colder months we appreciate it.

That is called BALANCE.

And it is striking to me that at this, the coldest time of the year, the sunsets have been beautifully drawn and more amazing than what I would have imagined them to be at Winter time.

And that my friends, is called WONDER.

#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.