Weekend Coffee Share – 31st January, 2021.

Welcome To Another Weekend Coffee Share!

You’re in luck again this week. I can offer you a slice of double-layer banana cake with passion fruit icing and filled with whipped cream, which has now been soaked up by the cake itself so it’s very creamy. It’s not rocket science, but it is particularly good, and the passion fruit icing really reminds me of my mum whose speciality is sponge cakes with passion fruit icing and cream. I doubt passion fruit is native to Australia, but it feels Australian, and especially suits our balmy Summers. (Turns out it’s actually native to southern Brazil through Paraguay and northern Argentina)

Sorry, I forgot to ask. Would you like tea or coffee with that? Or, perhaps you’d like something else?

How was your week? I hope it’s been good, and that Covid isn’t interfering too much.

A perfect beach day at last. I was down there late afternoon and it was still sunny.

I went for a swim at the beach this afternoon, which was incredibly relaxing, exhilarating even, and the effects lingered on for hours. Indeed, although the water was a bit chilly (no doubt from all the rain we’ve had lately), it still inspired me to go back more often and to get over my aversion to getting wet. It’s so stupid, and my husband, Geoff, will tell you that you should’ve seen me inching my way into the water even at ankle depth looking like a human chicken. I was hopeless, and didn’t even put my head under. Indeed, only the tip of my ponytail got wet. So, I suppose some of you will tell me that I didn’t really got for a swim at all, and that all I was doing was stand-up comedy. Well, each to their own!

It’s been a busy week. Our teenage kids went back to school on Friday. So, last week I was busy organising uniforms, books, and also driving our daughter to dance privates to prepare her for next Saturday’s dance competition. She is entering in a new section this time for student choreography, and this required a few more lessons. However, it’s an interesting area to get into, and something which appeals to my creative mind, even if the body isn’t willing.

On Tuesday, it was Australia Day, and we had a public holiday to either celebrate, mourn, or ignore the anniversary of the 1788 arrival of the First Fleet at Port Jackson in New South Wales, and the raising of the British flag at Sydney Cove by Arthur Phillip. As this also marks the British occupation or invasion of Australia, it’s also known as “Invasion Day” or “A Day of Mourning”. I don’t really celebrate it anymore, although either my son or husband have gone in the Australia Day Regatta at the sailing club over the last couple of years, and we do deck the boat out in Australian flags etc. By the way, my vote’s on Australia becoming a republic, and embracing more of our Indigenous culture and history. However, I’ve got too much going on at the moment to fight for our independence. So, myHowever, that’s where I stand from more of a theoretical standpoint.

Meanwhile, I’m trying to get organized for the new school year. I dropped another car load of stuff at the charity shop during the week, and you must be wondering if we have anything left by now. However, let’s just say things were rather “cosy’ before we started all of this and there’s still a way to go. Actually, I must confess that I’ve also been inside the charity shops this week and had some excellent “finds”. That includes two suitcases from maybe the 1940s-1960s. They were only $15.00 each and about the same price as a plastic storage crate, except they clearly have much more character. I left them in the car until my husband went out and introduced them slowly the way you might introduce an unexpected kitten…”Oh! What’s that doing over there?” Anyway, aside from being somewhat useful, I get very nostalgic about old suitcases, and suspect they remind me of my grandparents coming to stay. That was just so exciting, and twenty years after my grandmother passed away, it would be just incredible if my grandparents as they were when I was little and my grandmother was still full of beans and racing round the shops like a rocket, before her health nose-dived and there were open-heart surgeries and ultimately a series of cruel mini strokes. My grandfather developed Alzheimer’s, but he was 95 when he passed away.

Piles of books which have already left the building.

See why I have so much trouble parting with the things I already have, as well as with bringing new things into the place. I connect meaning, memories, people to these objects even if this thing is sitting in shop and has had nothing to do with them before and might even only have a very slight resemblance to something to do with them. This is, I found out, one of the danger areas which leads to hoarding. Interesting, because if you reverse that thinking, you could say that these hard core declutter types lead meaningless lives, or at least have less meaning, or they can simply compress their meaning into a smaller amount of space, or they have a bigger space to hold it. Perhaps, you are one of these declutter Nazis, in which case I sort of apologise. It’s not you. It’s me. That’s what makes me an endangered species and I’m even trying to wipe myself out.

Gee, I think that might be what you call “overthinking”. I’m pretty good at that too. Indeed, that could also explain why it’s taking me hours of journal writing not to get to the point.

However, my excuse on that front is that a lot’s been going on. Not just for me, but for other people.

Writing in my journal regularly was one of the few goals I’ve set so far this year. I did that because I sensed there was a lot of stuff stuck inside and it needed to get out. In some ways, then, writing in the journal is like decluttering the soul and just like throwing all those extra physical items into the clothing bin and clearing the decks at home, by putting all these thoughts, feelings, events, conversations into my journal, I’m clearing out the soul and I’m able to move around again. See more clearly and walk around without knocking a gazillion things over. This is if you see your soul like a room. Maybe you don’t. Anyway, clearly my soul’s room is overflowing with verbal diarrhoea. Of course, I’d kill anyone else who said that about me, but this is just the two of us and the entire world wide web if it actually bothered to turn up.

Anyway, one good outcome of my journaling today, is that I’ve decided to base our household’s daily routine around my husband’s schedule. I’ve been trying to work out routines for the kids and I. However, the trouble is that no two days are the same and we’re like three moons who’ve escaped their orbit and are drifting randomly through space. However, Geoff is exceptionally well structured, even working from home. His routine is still very much set in stone and he doesn’t work from home in his PJ’s either. That’s me. So, I’ve now decided that the rest of us are going to piggyback onto his routine and we’ll start off from there. The only trouble is he gets up at 7.15am, and some days I’m not up before midday. I have been trying to change that for awhile , but it’s so difficult. However, as we all know, a new year brings about a whole new you and anything is possible. Well, it is before February, maybe March.

Meanwhile, news came through today (now Sunday), that much of Western Australia is going into hard lockdown after a security guard in quarantine caught the more virulent UK form of the virus. They really should have Nigel No Mates working in these quarantine hotels. That way if they catch the virus, it goes no further. This guy was working two jobs and living in share accommodation. Enough said. Of course, the rest of Australia feels real sorry for those smug West Australians who locked the rest of us out and threw away the key. Thought they were above getting covid. It’s a lesson to the rest of us. Even if covid isn’t spreading like wildfire here as it in in much of the rest of the world, lockdowns are. We’re now back to being able to have 30 visitors at home, a big leap from the previous five. Most of us aren’t going to invite 30 people over in a hurry, but five didn’t allow a lot of scope, especially in share houses, families with older kids etc. Personally, I’m still lying low.

Anyway, that’s about it from me. I look forward to catching up with you and hearing your news.

This has been another contribution to the Weekend Coffee Share hosted by Natalie the Explorer at https://natalietheexplorer.home.blog/

Best wishes,

Rowena

16 thoughts on “Weekend Coffee Share – 31st January, 2021.

  1. tidalscribe

    Yes, I was just reading my sister’s messages, it is a shame about Perth, but it only takes a careless gap in precautions like security guards…We, all of Europe, should have stayed home, but people went on holidays, came out of the first lockdown, students were sent back to university, just one long series of government hesitation and wrong decisions. Of course I was glad that my older son and family came back in the summer after finishing his three year posting to the USA, but of course everyone has reasons why they need to fly, cross borders, go places, but the virus does not hand out concessions.

  2. Rowena Post author

    Very well put. A friend’s brother has died young of covid and it’s hit them very hard. I’ve been pretty strict and I try to adjust my actions on the conservative side of the government regulations at the time. I’ve taken a stand against going to our Church at the moment as many people at the service we attend weren’t wearing masks, which are currently mandatory. They also sing and just don’t seem to understand the gravity of what they’re doing. However, the earlier service is adhering well. Our local businesses are all pretty strict, as none can afford to be closed down for two weeks. Also, most people don’t want to pass it onto someone else, and with the low numbers here, it really stands out.
    I can understand how happy you’d be to have your son and his family home, but from where I sit, it explains why we’re doing so much better than USA and UK. It’s very hard to get back here.
    Anyway, I’ve been chatting away and it’s now really late so I’ll head off to bed.
    Hope you have a great week and thanks for the coffee.
    Best wishes,
    Rowena

  3. tidalscribe

    Thanks, so sorry to hear about your friend’s brother; if everyone knew a young person who had died they would take it more seriously. I know there are lots of Australians waiting to get back and who can blame them, but it is better tone that way.

  4. Gary A Wilson

    You would think that with all the covid related annoyances still at hand, people would not be so keen on getting annoyed about the history of what some other country did to us multiple centuries ago. Even if the most egregious angle is correct, is there no statute of limitations for how long we all have to bear this cross. I think someone needs to look up and then think about both the meaning of Grace and what ultimately happens where grace is denied.

    Hope you’re all staying well there.
    Blessings.

  5. msomerville2014

    Hi Rowena, it is nice to meet you. I was struck by this particular sentence and would never be able to remember it all so I decided to copy and paste here: “writing in the journal is like decluttering the soul and just like throwing all those extra physical items into the clothing bin and clearing the decks at home, by putting all these thoughts, feelings, events, conversations into my journal, I’m clearing out the soul and I’m able to move around again.” “Writing in journals is like decluttering the soul…” How wonderful! While I do not do a traditional journal, I do journal my prayer and have done so since 1998, when a friend introduced me to the concept. My husband and I have joked that if I die first, he will have to burn my journals. Actually, his joke is that he would sell them, but the joke would be on him, I am not famous and can’t imagine anyone would want them. My daughter did say she would take them though. You don’t know me, so I hope this is not insulting, but I couldn’t help wonder if the books you had stacked on top of the stove were cookbooks? Blessings, Michele

  6. Natalie

    Rowena, Glad to hear you had a good day at the beach. You’ve been busy and productive. It’s not easy to part with books but you did it. Writing down thoughts is a good way to clear our mind. Have a great week ahead and thank you for linking with #weekendcoffeeshare

  7. Rowena Post author

    Thanks so much for your message. I really appreciate it. Unfortunately, my prayer journal would be an embarrassment, although much of what I’ve written in my journal are probably prayer points and definitely expresses concerns for others.
    Last year I was given a blank diary called the Christian Planner. You can write Bible study and sermon notes in it, and I thought it would make a great archive. However, by the time I factored n postage to Australia, it was too expensive and I thought I might be able to do the same in a blank notebook.
    However, I’ve been having breathing difficulties and going to church is quite risky with Covid and so I’ve only been once this year. Am thinking about the way forward. Once you go online, there’s no end to the range of possibilities.
    Meanwhile, our 16 year old son has really turned to God has has developed an inspirational faith. I’ve been quite surprised, because when you live with someone you can see a different side.
    While I did send off quite a few cookbooks, I think the ones in the photo where a cross-section. I am still needing to be more scrupulous and move on more books.
    I hope you have a good week and are keeping safe.
    Best wishes and God bless,
    Rowena

  8. Dan Antion

    “I connect meaning, memories, people to these objects…” I understand. I have many things that probably should be tossed, but they remind me of something or someone and that’s a nice feeling.

  9. Rowena Post author

    I run with that too, Dan. I can’t understand people who don’t keep something and find it rather sterile as a living space. Yet, I have appreciated the space we’ve already freed up. It does feel so much better.

  10. Rowena Post author

    Unfortunately the impact of the British invasion is still being felt because there was and remains not official acknowledgement that the Aboriginal people were here and it was their land either then or now. This is quite different to how the British conducted themselves settling other countries like NZ where they had a treaty. The Aboriginal people were denied the vote until 1962 and 1971 was the first year they were included in the census. Prior to that, they were classed either as fauna or livestock. On top of this was the systematic removal of Aboriginal children from the families. So, much of this is very recent and still raw. Also, because most Australians knew nothing about all of this and it’s only been coming to light within this time frame work, people are only now finding out what happened. It’s strange thing in this way, having all this repressed history gushing out like pus from an infected wound.
    Covid has also affected Australia quite differently. We don’t have the high infection rates, but we are experiencing very tight restrictions on going out of our homes, and I know it’s made me more introspective. I’ve been doing loads of history research, and perhaps people have had more time to think and comment about Australian Day this year when they can’t get out there and celebrate as usual. They’re probably not sober enough as a rule on Australia Day perhaps to think about anything serious.
    Meanwhile, while Queensland is now letting us over the border again, WA has gone into lockdown. They were holier than thou about keeping covid out and now they have 5 days lockdown.
    I hope you and yours are doing well and keeping safe.
    Best wishes,
    Rowena

  11. Gary A Wilson

    Sigh – so many mistakes made so long ago, even by people we might have never guessed would do such things and their deeds still causing such grief. I think this is all great evidence that we really can be terrible to our peers on the ride we call Earth. It is also a painful reminder that Grace is needed now more than ever, but that part about owning our own mistakes and even deliberate deeds, will always be a nasty tasting pill to swallow.
    Great stuff Rowena. Painful, but rich with insight. Thanks

  12. msomerville2014

    Looking forward to more conversations Rowena. btw I “dish” in my prayer journal, don’t hold much back. I mostly use cheap composition notebooks, unless someone gives me a special book.

  13. Rowena Post author

    I have a collection of beautiful notebooks and so many remain unused. Another symptom of my perfectionism and inadequacy. I should just open the cover and scribble inside, but oh no! That would be like scratching down a blackboard with your fingernail. Yikes!

  14. Rowena Post author

    The irony, too, is that the majority of this invading force consisted of convicts who didn’t want to come here anyway and were sent here at Her Majesty’s Pleasure.

  15. msomerville2014

    I suppose that is one reason why I try to avoid them but over the years I have been given pretty journals as gifts. Last year I purposely asked my husband to give me different colored composition notebooks. Sometiems they are as high as $250 but often I can get them for .88 to $1.00. I am working on a writing project with a friend and saw a beautiful leather bound journal through Trades of Hope and bought her one for a gift to inspire her writing and I bought one for myself. Mine is still unopened on the shelf a nd covered up with legal pads that I use for sermon notes and other research. Go figure. Blessings, Michele

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