Thinking of writing again

It seems more than slightly egocentric to post about it; but I actually have a question to put to anyone out there who’s written more than once ..

Q: How hard is it ?I don’t want to start out with fanfare and champagne and then pathetically back away because it was too demanding.

So somehow I have to find out about going through the writing process a second time.

As to what .. I’m only capable of writing in the first person; and fiction is something I couldn’t write to save my life.  It would be, were I to get stuck in and Nike, entitled “How to Grow Old and Silly Successfully” – a topic with which I have a very close relationship ..

It would be instances of my more idiotic performances in Life, and how their various ‘audiences’ responded. In my own writing style, of course ..

Does it sound the faintest bit amusing ?

ATLMD was written from a vastly different point of view; but it did contain a fair bit of humour, as anyone who’s read it will (jesus I hope so !!) attest.

So. How hard is it to write a second magnum opus, anyone ?

A day of note (sort of ..)

Yesterday I entered upon my eightieth year.

When I write it like that, I can see what my favourite man means when he says “But the day you turn 80 is just one more day after you weren’t 80 !” when he’s scoffing at my saying I’m scared of that birthday. Birthdays are just .. well, days, right ?

So now that I’m 79 and not looking to the next birthday (well, at least saying that to him) I should be able to shrug my shoulders and say so what ?!

Ah well.

I had a wonderfully enjoyable morning-tea with my second-favourite man; and there’s another morning-tea coming up next week when we’re joined by the absent one, to make up for his not being with us yesterday. I don’t know of anyone in my age-group who gets entertained by two gorgeous and truly intelligent men.

My life with these two in it is full of sunshine (and rain, and cold – it is winter in Melbourne, after all !). I am a singularly lucky old fart.   :D

Well, I went there ..

.. but I didn’t join in with ’em.

Why ? – because never have I seen in one place so many people (of all ages) being really competitive. Competition is not my jam (as one of my two new but already dear friends likes to say); and it’s clear at the Maribyrnong ParkRun that those who run are all competing against everyone else.  As for the ‘walkers’ – I couldn’t possibly even catch them up, let alone match their pace ! Even the people wheeling baby carriages were either running or walking at great speed.

I’d plotted out half a kilometre on Google, and walked at my own speed – not as fast as I used to do when living in Sydney, but not all that much slower – there and back two times without stopping ! AND ! – I could’ve done another pass were it not for the fact that the balls of my feet were on fire.

So I returned home (via the two trams), pensively working out how to afford a good pair of running shoes. Haven’t got there so far ..

Anyway: I won’t bother going on with ParkRun because the poor sod designated any day’s Behind the Last Walker would make me feel terrible (as Debra spoke of the other day) – couldn’t do it. Besides, I’m still not up for 5km, yet.

So I shall simply do one of my 1km local walks every day. And who knows what I might work up to in time ?!


Circumstances conspired ..

.. and definitely against me.

So, erhmm .. what do you see as being important in ParkRun’s requirements, eh ?

I had, last Sunday, ordered on-line a credit-card-sized thingy with my name and barcode on it. Didn’t make it here by yesterday’s mail, dammit ! Oh well says I, I’ll just do as they say and print mine off for tomorrow which I would’ve done had my Pixma not had a hissy fit and chosen not to function. It wasn’t the Wi-Fi connection or suchlike but your actual mechanical problem buggerit. No  barcode no participation: the ParkRun site makes that crystal clear.

I was actually relieved on account of having worried myself into quite a state regarding my ability to last anything like the distance. I decided that I wasn’t meant to start today but spend the next week getting in some trial walks: drew up a few Google maps with that in mind.

There’s nice – the delightful little park a few doors up ..

And that kilometres takes in some of the very pretty Bulla Road environs – should be indeed pleasant !

And to replicate ParkRun – were I full of bullets –

So that’s enough practice for a squadron, let alone one old broad ..

I doubt I’ll ever do that 5k walk around my area – it’s not all flat ! But the two single kilometres should be fine for ascertaining my degree of – not fitness, no .. of ability to walk. And then I can go to Maribyrnong without having to be scared because of not knowing if I’m going to collapse or somethin ..


From MyWW to Lite n Easy explanation

What happened was that I completely fell out of love with cooking.

It was fine as long as I could make my 1-pot stovetop meals and work my way through them. But my sister Paula had pointed out that I wasn’t eating any complete protein while cooking my beans-based vegetarian meals.

It was then I found out that I CAN’T COOK NON-VEGETARIAN. No: not that my noble spirit won’t allow me to; but that I’m not able to !


So I struggled along doing things like eating a shitload of salad with tinned tuna, until I felt that another mouthful of tuna would see me screaming. And Woolworths over the road had put up the price of its roast chickens to $11, which I refused to pay. So for a while it was those deli packets of sliced ham and stuff like that – all of which I actually detest.

And so, of course, I then fell out of love with the MyWW regimen. It was all too hard because I’d never used any of their hundreds of recipes.

Happily, I moved here to Essendon and had changed my Home Care Provider (as mentioned yesterday) and so have someone to offer advice – or, rather, suggest possible solutions. My Look-Afterer says he often eats Lite n Easy meals for the sheer convenience, and recommended a couple. (But he and his wife and kids eat from the straight dinners menu – not the calorie-counted meals; so his choices aren’t available to me.) I signed up; and I’m here to say that although the delivery men are stroppy bastards – well, mine is ! – it’s most definitely worth it !!

I get lunch and dinner. I’ve swapped out my oats banana for a grated apple, and believe me it’s a YUMMY breakfast ! And to not have to even THINK about preparing food is the most delightful thing – just wonderful ..

My Home Care Package picks up 70% of the cost, which means I’m paying just under $41 for a whole week of lunches and dinners because I decided to go with the 1200 calories a day set. Interestingly, moving up to the 1500 a day looks to me to add desserts, coz the menu items have the same names. I’m not a dessert person, and I fill up quickly these days; so as I don’t want to drop too much weight in the short term I’ve ordered some extra soups for next week. It’s all fun !   :)

You can see what I mean about losing weight too quickly .. Of course, a sensible person never weighs herself daily; but I’m glad I did !

I can’t go on eating 1200 calories a day indefinitely; so at some point I’ll cut out the lunches and just order the dinners. Or maybe go up to the 1800 cs a day ! – wowee !! I must check those meals out, sinful as they are ..

But I want to share the joy of never needing, ever !, to think dismally “What on earth am I going to make for my dinner ?” while knowing that it’s meant to be HEALTHY and all that.  With Lite n Easy all that shit’s done for me, lazy old fart that I am ..

Exercise ? – ACK !!!

But yes ! – exercise.

I suddenly and inexplicably grew tired of having to choose the radio button that says ‘nil’ when indicating how much of it I do.

No, that’s a porky. Wish it were true.

I came across a link in .. in .. dunno: maybe The Guardian ? – it wasn’t the ABC’s Just In column. Musta been The Guardian (to which I subscribe).  Yes, this was it. Never knew about ParkRun; or if I did I’ve managed to push it to the back of the ancient brain.

It grabbed me instantly. And that’s NOT a porky, believe it or not ! It fired me up to remembering how I used to do this daily walk, after Chic had gone and I mysteriously decided to lose some weight:

It was, of course, an absolutely GORGEOUS walk with Sydney Harbour everywhere around. I had some terrific photos taken during it, once: but no more. And that’s a tale from the M-R Madness files ..

Back to ParkRun ..

My local one – there are thousands throughout the world !! – is, I am very happy to report, at Maribyrnong. I have a very soft spot for that area as a result of living there for almost a year and having fallen in love with the beautiful little river – around which, as you can see, the ParkRun course runs. As do its participants – well, not this one: I don’t run, I walk briskly. I actually can’t run: something to do with balance and fear of falling ..

I start next Saturday. And I’ve already started on ‘Lite n Lean’ lunches and dinners: I can have my Home Care Plan pay for 70% of that ! In other woids, apart from seven bananas with seven servings of 40g of rolled oats and some lactose-free low-fat long-life milk for my coffee, I eat fourteen meals a week for about $48. Heh heh .. good for me and very good for my wallet ! Which has been attacked relentlessly of late by the need to have furniture taken away and in a couple of instances replaced by smaller things – this is a very small apartment indeed ..

Today my scales tell me 76.9kg. Comme vous pouvez lire, my weight continues to fall, ever so slowly. As I said to the young bloke who looks after me – upon whom I dote – in my Home Care Plan Provider company, Aunty Grace,

it’s my ambition to reach 70kg so that I can be a regular person in a lift. Don’t get it ?: lifts have plaques telling the gross weight they can carry and also the number of people. It always divides into about 70kg. [grin]

There was a very, very long time during which I would have to look away from that plaque ..

They say that exercise is addictive. Hmmm .. I shall have to avoid talking to my dear Hev, as she will only push me to do MORE. Still, getting up on a Saturday morning and taking a coupla trams to ParkRun should be tolerable: after all, I did that Pyrmont walk every day for quite a long time ..

Watch this space ..

And about bloody time !!!

Very happy to identify my political leanings.

It was well past time for Australians to take ScoMo to task for his absolute refusal to acknowledge climate change and his own betrayal of trust regarding a Federal Integrity Commission.

Amongst other things, of course.

The only awful news coming out of yesterday is that our tv screens and online newspapers will shortly be filled with images of the repulsive and completely OTT Peter Dutton as he becomes the Opposition Leader.

I couldn’t bear that: I shall have to start selecting a god to pray to that the ABC and The Guardian don’t give him as much coverage as they did ScoMo ..

And here’s the moon ..

Beautiful pale morning sky .. pinks and grey swirling gently behind Luna, who might even be full ! — such beauty up there above the gum trees with their slowly awakening bird populations just beginning to be heard ..

And this is right in the middle of a fairly central Melbourne suburb.

Am I lucky ?! – I AM !

There goes a little aeroplane, ‘way up high .. Essendon Fields is just north of me, and provides any time spent indoors with small aircraft taking off and landing (helicopters too she added, without excitement).

No: I think she’s a fraction shy of full – the curve isn’t quite there on the top right. But Luna is lovely: the palest lemon against the sky’s now faded colours.

IF ONLY the camera would show what the eye sees ! But still, you can see the most important things, I think: indisputable evidence of Boodz, and my Breville Barista Express, and the balcony giving onto the trees ..


Recalled to Life (?)

(with apologies to Dickens)

I have a wonderful new Dell laptop with a ‘spill-resistant keyboard’. I have access to the Internet. I have lost an IT support provider. Life goes on ..

I am in my Essendon teeny apartment, and I LOVE IT LOVE IT LOVE IT. I use that adjective because it’s really much smaller than it seemed when I viewed it empty. But I don’t care about its teeniness: I am enjoying it immensely !

Oh, and I also have Covid.

“Unclean, unclean ..” she intoned dismally, ringing the little bell around her neck ..

Did a RAT on Friday and it came up as positive instantly – no waiting for 20 minutes, no sir !

Its source ? – no idea.

A short essay entitled “On Affection|Love”

It was, I’m fairly sure, only a couple of days ago that I suddenly understood what’s been hovering over me for longer than I can point to; a kind of mysterious miasma of .. something.

Out of nowhere it came to me that I’m absolutely starved of affection, let alone love.

I’m not a person others can easily feel affection for, I think; they like me, and they can even be happy to see, hear or read me. But I do tend to alarm people – in a friendly kind of way – and while I may amuse them, they’re probably somewhat relieved when I leave (or finish).

It’s a grim situation for an ancient, especially for one who is entirely alone – and MOST especially for one who was loved absolutely and unquestioningly for 31 years by the husband she considered as others might god.

Why did I never realize this frightful lack before now ?!

I do have an answer for that question: it’s because I recently came across a person whose brain is admirable, whose ethics ditto, who’s responsible and even occasionally reliable, and who tells me “don’t overestimate my intellect lest I fall short of your expectations”. This combination writes an irresistible siren song for me so that I have, being me, immediately handed over my wrinkled old heart in hope of not having it returned in disgust: it is a young person, after all .. and how much more alarming must I be to one such ?!

There are three women in my life who I can call dear friends; but the one from longest ago is in Sydney, one (the next longest) in Brisbane and the most recent in Geelong. I have a dear male friend, also living in Geelong, from years and years back, and another man who was once my boss in Melbourne but who now lives in Perth. All have full lives, unlike me. All are people I would be deeply unhappy not to have as friends, even at those distances. I love them greatly. Who knows ? – maybe they love me. But I can’t hug them and give them loud kisses on their dear faces and clutch their hands.

Was I ever this demonstrative when I spent time in their company ?

Probably not.

Would I be so were they to haul up over the horizon tomorrow ? – definitely !   :)

I also have three family members left: an older sister who was living in Paris but is now disruptively back in Oz, a younger sister who lives in Tasmania and a nephew who lives in Perth (my home town). With the eldest I never developed a meaningful relationship; I and my younger sister were once very alike in temperament but she is ageing gracefully; I love my nephew very much, but I never see him.

So you see my problem with regard to this so much younger person: there’s possibly nothing more I would like to do than demonstrate my regard in the timeless manner I described above. It wouldn’t be anything more than me saying “I think you’re ACE !” in the same way as I would my extant dear friends; but it would bring on a panic attack.    :(

And were I not so badly in need of some utterly harmless demonstration of affection returned, it might never have occurred to me to even think how delightful my display would be — to me ..

Sighh .. What a silly old fart I am.