Driveway lights, ladies groups and speeches

John's Poster
Works for me

The dogs have been inside  on their new beds for most of this week. The door remains open with the insect netting in place but they can move out and in as they wish. Last night  we were able to get out and take them for a walk.  My son was here so he took one and I took the other.  Went back to the Gym on Saturday – Monday and I still hurt  :o)

I need some outside electrical work done, so sometime during the course of the day, I will call an electrician and ask for someone to come and give me a quote and an approximate date. It’s not a lot but it means moving power points and me and electricity and really not good friends. Apart from which, it has to be done by a qualified electrician anyway- SA law. But my driveway is always in the dark and it gets difficult to see it at nighttime. This is what the ladies have been telling me and herself is not too impressed either because when she is out, one of the ladies will bring her back home but will not come into the driveway, so herself has to navigate the drive in the dark. Not good.  I want  the area lit, for herself and others.

The Electrician came over this afternoon and I told him what I wanted for both jobs. We’ve made a date two weeks from now and he will come over and get both jobs completed. I’ll be quite happy about that because it will mean that I can finally get rid of that horrible cupboard in the back. I couldn’t do so before because of the electrical points that are in there. Getting finally rid of that terrible cupboard will  be a happy day.

Well the Feds. have stabbed yet another leader in the back. They are really good at that. Socialist leaders don’t really have enemies – just friends that hate them.  But it’s a ” meet the new boss – same as the old boss” situation with a cringe  factor added  ” let’s get cooking with gas”  ‘ fair shake of the sauce bottle, mate”  ‘ we need to chill out here, mate’  are only three of the “matey” sayings he peppers his conversations with.

Well that’s the month over and things can get back to normal until the next time. I don’t know when Herself will be hosting the ladies group again – probably be quite a few months ’til they come back here again.  One of the ladies has asked me to write a speech for her  for a wedding – Mother of the Groom. Unusual, but that’s cool –  I’m on my second draft already  :o)

The Big Wet.

Some localised flooding.

I said recently that South Australia has developed as a metro-centric State and this has just been proved, yet again. The Magistrate Court and the District Court in the north (here) are to be closed down and all cases will now be heard in Adelaide. This means that witnesses, lawbreakers, police and, if it’s a trial by Jury, the jury members, if they are selected from here will have to move to Adelaide to attend court.. The law courts are up in arms because this move will  make the already backed up system even more backed up. Of course, having said that I really don’t have a lot of sympathy for an out of touch justice system in the first pace. This move will serve to make it even more remote and out of touch with the community it purports to serve.  There is also to be  1000 people cut from the District Nursing Service – a service where the nurse goes out to outlying areas to attends to the needs of the sick in their homes – follow up after surgery, birth, etc.  The  present Socialist  government is up to its collective eyes in debt, just like their pals in the Federal Government in Canberra. They – the Feds. took over government that had a surplus of 90 Billion and in a few short years have  managed to turn it into a debt of 310 billion. Spain, Italy, Ireland, Great Britain, Greece and Portugal have nothing to teach us.   I am always mindful of the words of the Late Margaret Thatcher ” The  trouble with Socialism is that you eventually run out of other people’s money”. Anyway, there are people much more qualified to comment on politics than me, so that’s it. But I have to say that The Man is concerned since the cost of dog food has risen.

Bit muddy, I think

Ok, at the risk of really cheesing someone off – it’s raining again. I say this because we have been informed that the highest june rainfall since records for this area started  (1901) was 74mm and for the first time in a century we have well exceeded that total. Heck it’s like being back in Scotland – cold, wet and miserable. This is not South Australia. Generally our winters are cold with the odd shower or three – but this has the  experts baffled because normal rainfall for a winter month in this area  is about 20mm.  All we need now is a really high wind and  we will have these gum trees falling down everywhere again. As it is, no personal damage, just water over the roads and medium strips along the centre of the road, and out here – mud.

Ladies groups and dog walks :o)

The New Look
Next stage is the area at the very back – at the green fence

It’s good to be back home again. Adelaide was just fraught with problems, and not just driving ones either. Governments aren’t the only organisations that are metro centric, it’s just the whole South Australian culture and the way South Australia has developed as a one city state with everything being concentrated in that one area. The meeting scheduled for here in October has been rescheduled back to Adelaide, which didn’t really surprise me.

I find it interesting that Google Earth is still operating on maps that have been out of date for the best part of five years. I say this mainly because it is showing the South Road as it used to be before the major construction and upheaval began.  Tuesday and Wednesday for the next two weeks I hide in my room, or go for very  l  o  n  g  walks with the dogs. For the next  four weeks herself is hosting the ladies group  (18) on a Tuesday Evening and a Wednesday Morning. However I get the fun job of rushing around setting everything up for her on Tuesday afternoon and then put it all away on Wednesday afternoon – if I am home.

The weather has been dry  but cold, particularly in the mornings and at night. Adelaide Airport had to be shut down and traffic diverted for several hours the other day as fog blanketed the area. We had some fog here but nothing as bad as Adelaide and the Adelaide Hills area. I bought new beds for the dogs and they have adapted to them quite well. They are much thicker padding than the old beds, so they seem to like that idea.  This is also good because the little man seems to spend a lot of time in his bed sleeping.

Got a request for the RFDS to do a catering function next week so I have been busy today trying to organise people for that. I have four thus far and I think we may well be able to manage on that.  Should be a fun day.

South Road and the carpal tunnel

I have been away for the last few days. When I am in Adelaide  I can access the mail server through a portable modem, but for reasons which are totally unknown, I cannot reply to anything. I have been to see Apple and Telstra, but we can find nothing wrong.  Telstra checked the settings on the modem and Apple checked out my laptop and  there is no reason why I cannot send out, but I just can’t.  This is by way of explanation to a little friend, The Grey Wolf, reborn, that I was not ignoring you – I just could not send you a message of support. You will get through this, I know you will – I have faith in you.

South Road
The Exciting South Road

In my hotel room I wrote a post about Misty, one of my dogs. In the light of recent events I decided it was not appropriate at this time and  did a cut and paste on to another document to be used some time in the future. Adelaide was exciting in that I went to see Alan and managed to navigate through the  vagaries of the South Road to where I needed to be. On the return journey, which is even more fraught with delays and detours, I became  ” Geographically Misplaced” and instead of arriving back in the city  arrived some 15 miles away in  Port Adelaide. That’s kool – I had never been there before so that was good. However by the time I did get into the city I had been driving with only a short bread for over seven hours and did my hand hurt!! One of these fine days I will get this seen to, but I think driving all the way down to see Alan and then the drive back, including the “Geographically Misplaced” section,  was just too much and I suffered for it. Four hours or thereabouts I can accommodate, but driving for most  of the day was just a kilometre too far.  The GPS is a very handy tool, but it can have its limitations. I know the way to all the places I have to go, but this is new and the South Road is not the place to  go looking for new things because the detours and routes change from week to week – sometimes, so I am told, from day to day. And the GPS wants to take you into roads that are blocked off, or just no longer exist because of the reconstruction. The South Road is a good example of what happens with a metrocentric government – it will quite happily borrow and spend million and tens of millions on roads and freeways in Adelaide,

The exciting South Road
The exciting South Road

but there is nothing available to upgrade or even repair roads in the country.

Until recently I had never heard of Valley Fever, so in order to find out what it was I had to look it up. I now know and understand – well as much as anyone who may never have any exposure to the sickness can understand.

Thunderstorms and frantic dogs

My cup (water tank) runeth over.

I paid my $5 to the ladies group for the Biggest Morning Tea this coming Saturday. I have not received an Agenda yet and if there is not a lot of business it may well be that things could be laid over until the August Meeting. If that’s the case I win because I have already paid my fee  :o)  On the other hand, I would like to be able to go out to Hackham West and  visit Alan. He sounds well enough on the telephone so it will be interesting to see how he actually is. The problem is that I need to know fairly quickly in order to book the hotel. I mean I have already had a few unkind words from the management because I forgot to cancel the booking for the last meeting – the one that I didn’t attend.  It used to be that we set the meetings at the AGM in February and  you could be certain that they would go ahead, now this is no longer the case and  that last performance was an example of the problem associated with  booking ahead in this current climate.

In the early hours of this morning we had a thunderstorm. This was not predicted so Chienna was not given any medication. As a result she went slightly gaga. Somehow or other she managed to get behind the ironing board and just about brought that down on top of the little man. That’s when I  got there – just in time to arrest its fall. Normally the little man doesn’t bother, but Chienna was so stressed that it started to worry him. I decided that the only course of action was to bring them both into my room. I put him on the bed (it’s too high for him to jump up) and Chienna decided that being under the bed was a good place to hide, so that’s where she finally went.

At times it seemed as if the thunder was directly overhead – it was loud and the house shook a bit and we seem to have lost the servers. You will read this, but as I write it I do so on MS Word because we have no WiFi and no servers. It’s a real shocker of a day.    We had two more thunderstorms and decided not to wash the dog beds after all. I took the covers off them and decided that they really were grotty with no chance of cleaning the inside stuffing, so we decided to keep the outside covers – which we can possibly use – and buy new beds. During a break in the  rain we went down to the store and bought three new beds. I have put the small bed (which The Man  has claimed already) in the laundry and when this rain stops I’ll get out and tidy up and put the new beds into their houses. – The covers of the old beds will fit so I’ll keep them and dump the stuffing. Thus far – according to the local news – we have had 36mm of rain. That was on Tuesday – on Wednesday we had a further 20mm of rain. This is getting beyond a joke. We are not used to this weather – cold yes, rain, yes ( in small doses) but not this. My water tanks are full so you can turn it off now!!!   My gravel has weeds I never knew we had. Meanwhile certain (Unnamed ) parts of the world swelter in 43c.

Winter Coats and Morning Tea

Me and my daddy.

I said the other day that the man was “crying” and that I lifted him up and sat with him for a little while. He  seemed quite content to stay cuddled up. Herself  took the photograph. She was born in Scotland but I have a faint suspicion  that there is Revolutionary French genes in there somewhere because she keeps cutting people’s heads off.  Anyway, she got the little man and that’s the important thing. He was quite happy to stay where he was – still, he is about 13+ The reason he is wearing his overcoat is he was at the groom the other day and we had his coat cut a bit shorter than normal, but it is winter so hence the coat.  I’m not silly, I stay where it’s warm!!!

I am always amazed by the things people can do with their dogs. I spent a fortune on toys and balls only to have them sniffed at and rejected out of hand ( or should that be paw?). Other people have felt the need to buy a toy for one of my dogs and  were a bit miffed when it got the same treatment. I have no idea why it should be so, but they have never been play dogs – or at least, dogs that play with toys. They will play and I will chase them and fight them and get down on the floor with them. Outside I chase them and if I turn away  one, usually Chienna, will  jump on the back of my legs, I turn around and the chase begins again. So in that respect they are play dogs – just not with toys.  It’s like the cartoon where the person throws a ball and the dog looks as if is saying “Well, you threw it – You go get it”

The Biggest Cup of Tea

Every year the ladies put on their version of  “Australia’s Biggest Morning Tea” The cost  is a mere $5 per person and you get coffee, tea, cakes sandwiches and scones. Those who read here know that I am very partial to scones. This is the event I will be missing next Saturday  and I am not going to forget it in a hurry – herself will see to that  :o) What is it, well it’s a national fundraising event for Cancer Research. All across the country,  from May to July, clubs, pubs, hotels, community groups and schools put on their own particular version of the event and all the money goes to The Cancer Research Council of Australia. So far, we manage  about $800 for our event each year – and yes, I will be paying my $5 before I leave.  You didn’t think I would get out of that did you???

House phones and Teddy Bears

It’s been an interesting few days  without the house phone. The calls were supposed to be transferred to my mobile (cell) but I only got some and I know that I did miss several – a couple that I shouldn’t have missed. Oh well  things happen.  Anyway, the landline was repaired today so we’re back in business.

Samsung the noo 036
Me and my Teddy Bear

I don’t know what’s wrong with the little man at the moment. There appears to be nothing amiss, yet he just stand there and “cries” and I have no Idea why. I lifted him and sat with him on my lap for a little while and he seems to be ok. Perhaps he was just having a “Moment”   He was ok when I took them out for a walk a little while ago and I didn’t even have to carry him, so he seems to be fine. I will have this weekend at home and the following weekend back in Adelaide.  There are a few things that I should mark down and make sure that I get this trip. I also want to  go out to the far end of the city and visit Alan in his new place. I haven’t told him I’m coming so it will be a surprise for him. Certainly it’s a long way but I will be staying in town overnight so it’s not too bad. I can still get back to the city in time to get the things I want and then settle down in my hotel. With any reasonable luck the conference on Saturday morning should be over by lunch and I can get back home before it gets too dark.

Politics dominates the news and has done for some time. We have a very unpopular government, which, if the current polls hold up, is heading for a historic defeat at the General Elections in September. I understand the Prime Minister was offered a Job with the White Star Line. They wanted to know how good she was in moving deck chairs.  The best description I heard of our government is that it’s like being on the last hours of the Titanic : the Third Class Passengers realise they’re locked in and there’s no escape while upstairs the first class passengers are running around trying to decide what dress to wear.

The downside of spending the next weekend in Adelaide is that I will miss two RFDS events. I will also miss an event organised  by the ladies group – one which I have enjoyed every year for quite some time. Herself is not letting me forget THAT too easily. However, I cannot not go to Adelaide. I put in an apology for the last meeting I cannot afford to miss two meetings – at least not one after the other.

Rain, Drought and Cattle Drives

I arrived home on Late Wednesday afternoon. It started raining on Wednesday evening and has hardly let up since, Adelaide has suffered flooding in some areas and little  creeks have become torrents. There are no reports of any injuries, just flooding and damage to  houses – roofs have caved in. The emergency service has been busy answering calls for assistance – in Adelaide.  Here it has been heavy at times with only minor flooding of roads, not houses as in Adelaide. My son walked to the gym from his place, then as another rain storm hit, called me and asked if I would come and pick him up and drop him home. Well, isn’t that what dad’s are for??

The modern cattleman with his horse and his mobile (cell )phone

The dogs have not been for walks for a week now and even as I write it is raining again. Hate to go on about this weather but it really is quite wild – the wildest it has been in ten years. And it’s strange to think that despite all the rain and flooding in Queensland last year – it’s in drought because of the failure of the monsoon. I think they are getting our dry cold weather and we’re getting their wet, cold weather. Not impressed – they can have it back anytime they wish. Anyway, because of the drought conditions in Queensland the graziers (cattlemen) have started doing something that has not been done for  nearly a century – they have started droving.  Droving is a particularly Australian word  which simply  means  “A Cattle Drive” with horses, chuck wagons and camping out at night. In other parts of Queensland there is plenty of feed and water but the law states that they must move the cattle 10 miles per day. The are not allowed to stay in one area – other than an overnight stay. All very cool – shades of Rowdy Yates and “Rawhide”. It’s cheaper to pay  and feed a dozen men  for two or three weeks than it is to transport the cattle by road. The cattle are not the best because of the drought, but the water and feed on the drive will get them in good condition by the time they reach the stockyards.    Yes, like America, Australia has the “Tourist” cattle drive, but this is the real thing. There is talk of opening up parts of the national parks, which has the conservationists  in a tizzy. I think they would rather see the cattle die rather than let them touch a blade of grass of take a drop of water from their parks. Yes, yes, I will no doubt get told that it is a lot more complicated than that, but it’s an emergency – not a permanent arrangement and things are only complicated because we make them so.