Towards the final curtain D

Whilst the good people of the Northern Hemisphere wax lyrical about Autumn – or Fall, here in this little corner of the Southern Hemisphere, Spring has  Sprung and Dear Mother Nature has

Rawnsley Bluff – Flinders Ranges

given us a reminder of who is really in charge. The temperatures this week have steadily climbed to 41c, with a  high North Wind. In this corner of the planet a North Wind is a hot wind coming off the desert. It was not the most pleasant of days to be running a fundraising Barbecue for the RFDS , but never the less, we did it anyway. Given that it was the middle of a long weekend and  many people were away, if we  made more than $150, I will be very surprised.  Why did we do it- we were asked to – that simple. And, of course it was for the Royal Flying Doctor Service.  However,  we have a policy  that if a trader asks for the RFDS to do a fundraising venture, I will do my upmost to get a team together and accept on the  belief that if we refuse, they may ask someone else next time. LOL, I have even organised a fundraising event from one thousand kilometers away when I was in Mount Gambier – and yes, I have had my head examined –  several times!!  Most of the time it’s good fun – we work and chat with customers and when it comes to the RFDS, people are very generous, and they were this weekend too – even although there were not all that many –  and I  expressed the belief that there was more money put into the donations tin than there was to the cashbox. Anyway, it’s funds that we didn’t have at the start of the day and that’s what matters.  Having been through an early 41c on Saturday,  the temperature crashed overnight to be 24c on Sunday – Monday wasn’t too bad and today (Tuesday) I was feeling very cold when I took Benji out for a walk at 6am. I guess I was too pig-headed to go back for a heavier jacket, so I just continued with the walk, but it was a cold morning.

One of the drawbacks of living  “in the sticks” is the fact that I miss city shopping. I don’t mean that the shops here are not good, they are, but there are things  not available in the country that are commonplace in the

Fires NSW & Queensland

city. For example, I want shoe polish, not the common  New Zealand (Kiwi) Shoe polish but a polish that is produced here in Australia and is not petroleum based. Decent size Australian Company but products not available here. We really only have one shoe shop here and that’s  “Spendless” with   small shoe departments  in Harris Scarfe and Target. The shoe shops we did have have all gone. How can you survive in a place where 60% of the population wears flip-flops or no shoes, 35% wear sandals or sneakers and only 5% of us wear  actual shoes.

Over many (Too many) years I have  gone from paper organisers, to electronic organisers ( Palm Pilot ) and finally back to paper, Filofax, Van der Spek, Mulberry and  my current Kikki.k. I have gone from Personal, to A6, back to personal and finally to A5 and Kikki.k. It was all so very easy once. I was in Adelaide fairly often so was able to buy what I needed in either David Jones or Borders, and in a few of the stationers.  Not so now. David Jones no longer stock much  in the way of Planners/Organisers and I think has only one Filofax in stock and Borders closed down. Now I have to order on line from China, Hong Kong,  or,  if it is from the UK or the USA,  I  practically have to donate an

Benji on the Hill; We were just up there again this afternoon.

arm or a leg to defray the postage costs. For other things I  have a supplier in Perth, Western Australia, and she’s very good.  For my inserts these days, I download  a system that I like in the size I want, copy it to a USB and take it to the local printer who will print everything for me in an A5 size — I supply the paper, which is great because it means I get the paper quality that I  really want.. And yet, it would appear that  paper-based planners and still quite popular, but in South Australia it certainly doesn’t feel like that.

 

Looking Back – Looking Forward

New Planner/Binder
New Planner/Binder (2015/6)

For more years than I care to remember I have used ring planners. For a period I went through the Palm Pilot craze but in the end I came back to paper and ringed planners – mainly Filofax. Of course my planners did not survive the move from Scotland to South Australia being limited in what we could bring (weight) However,  like much of our things they were packed in Tea Chests and stored in my Father-in-law’s cellar. The idea was that once we were settled we have the teachests sealed and shipped out to South Australia. Sadly after we had been here a few months and were starting to settle down,  my in-laws house was broken into and most of the things from the cellar were destroyed or stolen, that also included all my photography equipment and the photograph

albums. The photographs were of no use or importance so we suspect they were dumped in the  nearest safe trash bin. Very little of the crystal and none of the silver we had been given as gifts remained. None of my  planners remained. The thing that upset us the
most was not the glass or silver or photograph equipment, but rather the photographs themselves. We have no photographs of the
boys as babies or little children other than what we have  taken in Australia. Before we left Scotland Annabell and I took the boys all over the country and took photographs of them at various places, Fort William, Loch Ness, Stirling Castle, Edinburgh Castle and Mons Meg, Sweetheart Abbey, Jedburgh Abbey, St. Giles Cathedral, Elgin Cathedral,
scandaDornoch Cathedral and Dunblane Cathedral, Paisley Abbey and Dunfermline Abbey,  Bannockburn and Robert Bruce, Duart Castle, Loch Earn, The Rannoch Moor, Glencoe and, of course, Glasgow Cathedral and other places too numerous to mention.   Photograph of Annabell’s family and my family – all gone.

Here in Australia the Palm Pilot was the thing so I went through a Palm Pilot phase and I think I still have a couple hanging around somewhere. But I tired of that and went back to  Ring Binders again. I have been there ever since. Generally I used a Filofax and did so up until a few years ago when I  started to use  an Organizer from a Dutch company called Van der Spek. Generally I change my Organizers/Planners every two years and I have just ordered my third  Van der Spek and for the very first time ever, I have chosen something that is neither black nor brown. I have chosen a colour called  French Blue. People thought I was being silly when I asked what colour/shade French Blue is as there are so many shades of Blue. All I got in reply was “Blue” which didn’t really help.  It should be here in a few weeks and I am anxious to see what it looks

Been a long day. Need rest!
Been a long day. Need rest!

like.

This time last year I had great hopes for the coming 2016. I had lost both Chienne and The Man and there was still much sadness there but there was Benji and I looked forward to life with him.  I  suspect one day I will get out of the habit of referring to him sometimes as Chienne. There has been much sadness in 2016 but there has also been joy and I will see the year go with mixed feelings. My one shining light has been Benji – as it should be. I have lost friends this year, some fur-friends, some human friends, some who have passed and some I have just lost and they are the saddest of all. But I have also found new friends and that helps with the sadness of loss.  Again I look forward to the coming year and hope that 2017 will be a better year, but like all years there will be a mixture of joy and sadness, laughter and tears,  but we need them both, one to balance the other,  and all we can really hope for is that the joy will be more than the sadness and the laughter greater than the tears.

I have no doubt that there will be other posts between now and the end of the year, but for now, I want to say thank you to all of you for being here and for your lovely comments and conversations. I hope we can share 2017 together.