By 1030am I had washed my car, baked a cake and walked 5kms. After that I attended a funeral & wake, then went shopping on my way home for school stockings. I picked up a pizza for tea and realised once I got home that it was the wrong one and had to go back to get the right one (how do people eat prawns, pineapple & olives on a pizza??)
Amongst reflections of the long life of a memorable woman I almost forgot to pause and reflect on the shorter life of our father who passed away 27 years ago today. I still miss you Dad and wonder what sort of grandfather you would have been to our brood. And the unfairness of how the good die young and the seemingly undeserving keep skating by.
No sooner had I cleared out my summer clothing to make way for the winter wardrobe when the cold snap hit us. It has been icy and rainy and anything that was remotely flimsy was quickly dispatched.
I had made a pact with myself not to buy any new clothes this year and as I went through the many outfits I realised I would make it easily. I love to buy clothes but have many more options than need and should manage quite nicely.
I have more than enough options for the funeral tomorrow even with the chilly forecast. I might even get to wear a winter coat as well.
I put out a few items that I wont wear again and some things I haven't worn for a while and have a big bag for the op shop. Even Callum & Erins' wardrobes weren't safe.
I was pretty happy with this outfit, not that happy with the pic but I'll blame Chris for that.
You might see some recycled clothing this year (like this belt which is about 20 years old) as I resist the temptation to purchase.
Today has been very quiet because of the ANZAC day public holiday.
Quiet and cold.
It was cold for the dawn service, it was cold for the footy, it was just plain cold.
I have a hate/hate relationship with my hair. Definitely no love involved. I usually tolerate it and have tried many hairdressers trying to find the perfect one. Or one that gets me and my fine hair. The local hairdresser did a couple of fairly good cuts but then I wasn't really happy and had to go back for a fix up and then I found out she wasn't paying her staff correctly and owed people money while she builds a mansion, so I tried elsewhere.
This time around I left it go a few weeks too long between cuts. I was busy, the latest hairdresser isn't close by. So now I finally have had the haircut I think I have gone too far with the 'I want it short' claim. I cant get it how I want it, it seems too short for me. It will grow, and I'll probably get 1 week where I like it before it turns again.
I always claimed I wouldn't go camping. I didn't want to 'sleep on the ground and cook in the dirt' or so I thought. But I have been converted. Our little trip into the Grampians has been lots of fun and with the amount of equipment we took (including the lap top with wireless internet) it has been not as hard as I previously believed. While it hasn't been a luxury cruise it has been a great little getaway.
We have learned a couple of things along the way and have made some notes about how we can improve our set up.
It has been really cold at night time and after the first night made a dash to a nearby op shop to buy some extra blankest. I knew the ones I wanted, good quality woollen ones like we had when we were kids. The polar fleece ones we had just didn't cut it. I was thrilled when I went into the Salvation Army op shop in Stawell and found 2 of them. In perfect condition, just $5 each, such a find was luck or destiny or both. We have been warmer since, we probably wont need them when summer camping but I'll pack them anyway.
The other thing I must address is lighting for the tent after dark. We have one lantern, and a torch. Bit hard to read by, or make coffee by or do anything much. We made the mistake of starting to cook our dinner the first night after dark and it was a bit hard to tell if the chicken was cooked.
Other than that it has been a success with the equipment and basic running of the camp. I read on a blog this week about her musings on camping in a caravan as a child. I too have fond memories of caravanning but never considered that as 'camping'. I always thought that you needed a tent to go camping and now I have been camping!
I've been neglecting my blog lately because I forgot it is my own journal, my electronic journal. I haven't had any thing exciting to write about. But it is my journal and meant to be a record of my life day to day. Life isn't exciting every day, or it isn't around here. So here is the news, mundane as it is.
I worked up until the Easter break with a student in a busy period for the unit. It made me realise I enjoy teaching. Remind me I said that at the end of the year when the rotation of students lets up. We pretty much have students continuously until then. Patience is enforced as I watch the students practice something it would take me no time to do.
I had my flu shot and ended up with a painful arm for a few days. I put it off until after the race just in case a rare side effect interfered with my run. My nose is pretty much healed up with a couple of the dissolving sutures still making their presence felt when I wrinkle up my nose. My breathing is much better especially at night time.
Easter and Christmas bring up mixed feelings for me as I am not religious but still enjoy the festivities. I see both times as a celebration of family so partake in some of the rituals without mentioning Christ. Maybe there is some Druid in me, I respect life & the earth and treat others well. This Easter break has been very low key as we are heading off camping tomorrow so haven't caught up with my sisters as we usually do. Because there are no parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles or cousins within cooee our family get togethers are very insular.
I am quite excited about our camping trip. I have been gathering together equipment & supplies with a cautious eye on the weather. Today has been showery & pretty cold, the forecasters have promised me a few nice days so I am pretty hopeful. It is just going to be me & Erin as my younger sister & her boys weren't able to come with us this time. We are going to be trying out the new tent and it will be a big test as to how self sufficient we can be. Time will tell if we have everything we need. I am taking the laptop with internet connection so we wont be shut off from the world. We will be bike riding, rock climbing & bush walking as well and I hope to take loads of photos.
I'm off to find a few chargers and go through my many lists again.
Our niece is away at boarding school this year. She is able to come home on term school holidays and a mid term exeats. While she is away she is living a fairly spartan lifestyle without electronic devices for communication, not even the old fashioned land line telephone.
Australia Post has become the best friend to all the boarders this year. Letters and parcels form the basis of communication from home. Both sides of the equation are waiting by the mail box eagerly for missives. I have sent a few her way and she has managed one in return. I will give her a little leeway as there is only one of her to respond to those who are writing to her and the timetable includes lots of hike and outdoor activities to keep them busy. If that activity is meant to assuage the home sickness I don't think it is 100% effective.
So I'm going to type out this post and send it off to her early next term so I can keep abreast of the correspondence.
As you know on Sunday I participated in the 'Herald Sun Run 4 the Kids'. This run was to raise money for the Children's Hospital. They will still have the Good Friday Appeal but this run contributed $1.6 million. It was really good to be part of this enormous event.
I got up at 6am on Sunday, making sure I had set the clock back from daylight saving time. Being April Fool's day I had to make sure that every thing was right. My routine on big run days is to have 2 weetbix and a banana and my cup of green tea. I had some new running pants to wear with my Run 4 the kids purple singlet. I got on the 7am train to the city and when I sat down I smiled to myself when I noticed that there were many others in running gear, some wearing the same singlet or T-shirt, some with the timing tag on their shoes or were reading the Run info booklet. Some more of the same got on at Melton, the train was full of us like minded runners!
The city was really busy and most of us were headed the same way. We walked over to Alexandra Gardens and I found the place to put my bag and found the toilets. Everywhere was crowded, the toilet queue was never ending and same with the baggage area. I found my 'orange' start zone and was anxious for it to start.
The 5 km runners headed out first and finally we were away at about 0920. The starter had counted us down and I thought finally we would get going, but I was back in the third of four waves with the very fast at the front and we slower individuals towards the back with the pushers and the walkers. It took about another 5 minutes to shuffle up the start. Once we were through the gantry we were able to pick up some speed and sort ourselves out. Other runs I have done haven't had as many starters. I was amongst 33,000 others and we had to duck and weave around lots of people.
First up we ran across the Swan St bridge and down into the Domain Tunnel. It was really hot in there and people would start woohooing which was very loud! Up on the tunnel signals a Run4Kids sign was flashing spurring us on. Running down was good and the way back up was quite gradual so I kept running to the first drink station. When it got steeper I walked for a bit to catch my breath (about the 3 km mark).
At the drink stations there were lots of volunteers handing out paper cups of water. When you have had enough to drink you just fling your cup to the side and keep running. There were loads (?1000's) of discarded cups and the area was drenched as well. You had to carefully pick your way through the area as it was very slippery. I kept running having a break of walking after each 3km marker or if it was uphill, the ramp up the Bolte bridge was pretty steep so I walked that bit and ran down the other side. When I was on the bridge I could see thousands ahead of me and the same behind. It gave me a very nice feeling to be part of something so big. Along the way there were some people cheering us on. I stopped a couple of times to take some photos with my iPod which are a bit blurry & highlight my bright red face.
After the Bridge we ran through Docklands, past the Icehouse, then through the city, past Flinders St station and back to the gardens for the finish line. I gave my all at the end and ran as fast as I could which was not much faster but I tried. The timer said 2 hours and 8 minutes. I'll be curious as to my time which starts when you go under the gantry and several minutes passed before I started officially. I'm hoping for 2 hours or just under.
My muscles were tired at the end and I just wanted to sit down. They handed out some Powerade which I had never had before but really liked. It was just what I needed. I should have gone straight back to the station but I needed a rest and after 14.3 kms I didn't have any hurry left in me.
The next train was another 1 &1/2 hours later plus it was 15 minutes late and crowded. Luckily I got a seat and was able to have a little snooze on the way home. By then I was over the crowds, the queuing and the crowds.
Today I am a little sore around the hips, I went for a walk this morning and did some stretching to ease the soreness. I am keen to see the results in tomorrows paper. I am going to have an easy week this week and will get back into training for the Mothers' Day Classic in 6 weeks. That one is an easy 4 km and Hayley is going to do it with me so that will be fun. This was the longest run I had done and will definitely do it again. Maybe next year you could come with me, after this year you will be able to blitz that distance.
I'll add a bit more to her actual letter, this account is long enough for now, almost as long as the race itself!