Friday, 10 April 2020

Holy Saturday

I'm typing this on the evening of Good Friday after a dinner of fish and chips and a glass or two of wine.  I'm thinking about Holy Saturday, which is tomorrow.

Image from here
It seems to me that Holy Saturday is a day that we don't value enough, sandwiched as it is between the anniversaries of the Crucifixion and the Resurrection.  But perhaps, it reflects an experience every believer has at some point, when one doesn't know what will happen next.

What happened on the first such day?  I'm knocking this off from something I seem to remember seeing on Facebook last year, but it's still sound.  On that day ...

The high priest smiled.

Pilate prepared a report for the Emperor.

The Pharisees and Sadducees shook hands.

Barabbas puzzled over his luck.

Simon of Cyrene waited for his back to stop hurting.

Peter searched his heart.

Joseph of Arimathea stared blankly out of a window.

Herod called for wine.

The Galilean women prepared spices.

Soldiers guarding a tomb played dice.

And Mary wept and wept.

It was a day of waiting.

Sunday, 5 April 2020

Responding to Covid; or, Tetris in real life

Yesterday saw me finally lending a hand with Red Cross.  After being unable to help out with the response to the bushfires this year, I finally had a role to play in responding to Covid-19.

On Friday a call went out for Red Cross Emergency Services to do food deliveries to people in strict isolation.  It was a kind of "come as you are" operation: there were a few utes and delivery vans, but most people were in hatchbacks and sedans.  We were to pick up the deliveries at the Yarraville Foodbank and then head off, with delivery addresses to be sent after departure by SMS.  It was kind of a chaotic way of doing it, although in a way that was to be expected: the management team would have had no idea precisely what carrying capacity they were going to have at their disposal.

Each household was to receive three 12kg boxes of food and a 7kg box of non-food supplies (soap, that sort of thing).  Each set of boxes was a "pack".  With a certain amount of playing-Tetris-in-real-life I managed to get four packs into my little Pulsar.

This came to 172kgs (in addition to which I also had my SES kitbag and some packs of papers).  I reasoned that the weight was still less than having four fully grown adults in the car and therefore it'd still be OK.  I might say that the degree the car sank down on its suspension (without even having my 85kgs on board) still didn't fill me with confidence!

I was told my destinations would be in the area of Warragul and Traralgon so I headed off down the Princes Highway in the general direction of Warragul.  Driving was interesting:  I was conscious of the extra weight and the long climb up the Westgate Bridge saw me flicking back through the gearbox.  The rain came and went all day and so I kept the speed down, what with driving a heavily loaded vehicle on wet roads.  I got as far as Officer when I was told to divert to Hastings, to make deliveries there and then at Tootgarook.  With a bit of grumbling over the geography of it all I stopped to get fuel and also food (thank you KFC!).

I got to Hastings about 2:30 and made the first drop off.  Direct interaction with the clients was (obviously) forbidden: the front door stayed closed while we dropped off the boxes and then called to say they could collect them.  By this point my phone had gone flat and so I found the St Vincents op shop and borrowed a power point for half an hour to put some juice back in it.

I made my second delivery in Hastings and then headed for Tootgarook, on the other side of the Mornington Peninsula.  This took me past the home I lived in as a child so of course I swung by to have a look at it.  The house is still there, repainted but the same.  It was a strange feeling, but it felt kind of good to know another family were there now.  It was a good house, and a good life.  Naturally I forgot to take a photo!

I made the dropoff at Tootgarook about 4:15.  I'd hoped to get a coffee and sit and look at Port Phillip Bay for a bit, but by then it was raining again in earnest and I said the Hell with it and drove home.  By the time I got there it was bitterly cold and certainly not running weather and so instead I went on a good long walk.  Most of the many restaurants in the area are now operating purely as takeaways and I decided I'd earned a pizza.  Da Peppe in Brunswick obliged (there's no photo: I was too hungry for it to last long!)

So there you have it: Saturday had everything.  It had a bit of community service.  It had miles.  It had pizza.  That's enough for any day.

Monday, 30 March 2020

Review: Hilary Mantel, Wolf Hall (2010)

I wrote this review of Wolf Hall just now for my Goodreads account.  Since it's easy to cross-paste the html , that's precisely what I'm going to do.

I've marked this book as "finished" although "abandoned" would be more accurate. I got to p.357 and then just flipped through the last half with growing irritation.

I have difficulty seeing how this book got such rave reviews when it came out. The writing is instantly forgettable and the characters little more than clichés (A religious bigot? check. A scheming harpy? check. A tortured but good man? check.) Cardinal Wolsey is at least mildly interesting, but as he's dead in the first half of the book His Eminence really can't redeem it. Don't believe me? Give me a quotable line from it. Neither can I.

More troublingly though, the book isn't particularly historically accurate despite which some people will no doubt think it is. I find this alarming, having met people who wanted religious liberties restricted based on a belief that The Da Vinci Code was factual (I also once worked with a man who thought that Game of Thrones was historical fiction, but that's another story). The dangers of all of this become clear when one considers that the Thomas Cromwell trilogy seems in large part to be Hilary Mantel giving her personal prejudices creative expression.

Despite the foregoing, I'm grateful for one thing. I'm typing this review during the Covid-19 pandemic. The 600+ pages of Wolf Hall will stand me in good stead if the toilet paper runs out.

Tuesday, 24 March 2020

Ghost town dispatch

Well, the shutdown is starting to kick in noticeably.  I overslept this morning and wasn't on the tram to work until about 0900.  This is what it looked like -

It hadn't changed much three hours later.  How do I know?  Well, like everyone else in the office the whole sense of impending trouble was wearing me down a bit.  By midday I decided that what I needed most was some hot food and some air.  I went up to Seven-11 and bought a sausage roll and some sandwiches.  This is what Queen Street looked like -

Queen Street, Melbourne, 24 March 2020

The city, in short, is a bit of a ghost town.

More restrictions have been announced this evening, although so far nothing that's likely to put me off work ... yet.  My own perception though is that we may run into problems before the epidemic runs its course.  Based purely on myself and my co-workers, I fear an awful sense of demoralization will creep in, with the endless news cycle of bad news and the cancellation of the sporting fixtures that do so much to give people something else to care about for a few hours each week.

I don't know if this is a good thing or a bad thing to ponder, but I suspect that the Covid virus itself may be the least of our worries compared with the economic dislocation and the sapping of human confidence.

Sunday, 22 March 2020

Living in Interesting Times

As the writers of Zombieland said, it's amazing how quickly things can go from "bad" to "total shitstorm".  This weekend has ended with us all heading off into the unknown.

Saturday saw me give groceries a miss in the morning: there seemed no point going to a live-action version of Dead Rising.  Instead I went out for a good long run which turned into a half-marathon distance outing.  I've blogged about it here (it's actually a decent post!).  I went up to get groceries and do laundry about 4pm.  I was expecting to find a Venezuela-style wasteland with empty shelves.  There certainly were some empty aisles, but it was very uneven.  There was as much fresh produce and tinned fish as ever.  Nearly as much bread as usual.  Minimal toiletries.  The Indian food section was basically untouched.

Some types of chocolate from the same maker were all gone and the others seemingly all still there.  The same could be said of the Mexican food section.  One had the impression of people panic-buying highly specific items.  This leads me to think that the public aren't worried about actual scarcity, but about the inconvenience of not having their specific preferred product when they want it.

After I'd done laundry I came back and was ironing my shirts when the pager went off for a missing person search.  We ended up with nearly forty members from Northcote, Essendon, Broadmeadows, Port Phillip, Malvern and Footscray Units taking part.  I'm happy to report that the subject was found safe and well (just lost).  I found myself part of the three person management team on this one which was very interesting.

I slept late today and had a wonderful, very chatty facetime with the girls (mainly Rachel) and took them on a tour of my neighbourhood.  They're a little bored being in lockdown and so I'll try and come up with more fun things like that to do with them. Rachel asked what cartoons there were when I was their age; she followed up by observing that "they were all black and white back then weren't they?"  How old do you think I am Rach?!?

I wanted some exercise so I went out for a walk along the Merri Creek trail.  I emerged somewhere in Fitzroy and happened to spot the Pinnacle Hotel.  As I was having a drink I saw the news that Victoria will go into shutdown from Tuesday as an anti-Covid measure.  I duly ordered another beer and some chips on the grounds that this might be my last chance to do so for a while.

And now, I'm really not sure what happens next.  At work tomorrow I'll scan my time limits for the next few weeks and see what needs to be dealt with extremely urgently.  Nobody seems to know what quite will happen or how long the shutdown will last.  I can't go up to the farm, so I guess I'll be confined to barracks.  Happily, I've done the laundry and have enough food for a bit over a week.  As best I can tell this has never happened before in Victoria's history, even in wartime.

Despite the inconvenience, and the risk of being unemployed for some extended period, it's a fascinating time to be alive.

Friday, 20 March 2020

Covid, Parents and Guilt

It's Friday evening, and I'm sitting here at my digs in a bundle of guilt.

Regular readers will know how on any given weekend I'm likely to be found working on the parents' farm.  That, indeed, was my plan for this weekend, until over the last ten days Covid-19 sent the world into a state of acutely nuts.

In what world should this be necessary? 

Well, I spoke to Dad by phone earlier today and said that I really wasn't keen to come up: both he and Mum are pushing 80, and neither is in the strongest of health.  As I ran the numbers, if they pick up Covid, their chances of dying are somewhere between 20-30%.  I feel fine, but the way I live means there's a decent chance I'll carry it up with me: I work in the CBD.  I use the tram once or twice a day.  I live in a house with ten other people.  Since this thing can be transmitted in the absence of symptoms, I'm a pretty bad risk.

None of which altered the disappointment in Dad's voice, or the guilt I'm feeling over letting him down.  I help people.  It's what I do.  If I don't do it, then there's really not a great deal of value in me.  And now, the best thing I can do for my folks is not to do the thing that principally does help them.  This, flatly, sucks.

What sort of illness seems purpose-built to corrode the bonds that should exist between people?

Sunday, 1 March 2020

Everything to plan - and yet ...

Last week was a bruising succession of court work and litigation.  By the time Friday got here I was barely functioning and decided to give the farm a miss for the first weekend in ages.  It was meant to be a rejuvenation weekend, although I suspect I’ve kind of failed at that objective.

Before and After
On Friday night I was keen to clean up my office, which was a blizzard of papers.  Some were in piles, some in drifts and some in my in-tray.  In the event, I left the office a bit after midnight and walked home.  Dinner was a slice of pizza and a potato cake I bought on the way.

Saturday kicked off as usual with laundry, groceries and ironing.  It was a sunny day of 24°, which meant perfect running weather.  I got the tram to St Kilda to crank out 21kms on the gorgeous track by the water (full story here).

St Kilda Beach
I bought an ice cream and got the tram home for a shower and then went for a beer at the Empress.  It was a good combination of sour beer and case law to read.  I think I can see a way into an article I’m trying to finish!

Empress Hotel, Fitzroy
I headed back to my place and had a healthy salmon-heavy dinner.  I set up a new blog to cover “Road to Wollongong” posts and crashed out to sleep a bit after midnight.

I slept a good eight hours but still woke up tired.  Hauled my backside out of bed and went to 9am Mass.  After Mass I hoped to FaceTime with the girls but they were tied up.  I waded through a bunch of SES paperwork instead and prepared my notes for training the new recruits on Wednesday (I feel tired just thinking about it).  It was a shame to waste a good day and so once I was done I got a tram to South Melbourne Beach for some sun, swimming, beer and chips.

South Melbourne Beach
Inadvertently I'd timed it perfectly.  My shoulders got a bit burned on yesterday's run and so it was good today to have the sun occasionally very bright and sometimes softened by clouds.  I had a couple of swims and lay back to read Wolf Hall and listen to my Calm app.

At 5:30 I decided it was time for refreshment and I walked across Beaconsfield Parade to the Bleakhouse Hotel for beer and chips.  Well, me and Thomas Cromwell...

Bleakhouse Hotel, So. Melbourne
Finally, back here to my digs.  I should feel rebooted but in honesty I feel nearly as tired as I did when the weekend started.  Happily this week is a slightly less mental than last week, so I should be able to get myself back to normal working order soon!

Saturday, 29 February 2020

Commencing Lent

Quick post tonight.

We're now a few days into Lent and I'm assuredly feeling better for it.

I made it to the Ash Wednesday Mass this week just gone, which was a bit of an achievement: I was  meant to be starting a jury trial the next day!  It was packed and, sadly, it was very difficult to hear the priest.  Regardless, I know what I want to achieve this Lent.  I'll again give up encouraging bad thoughts, and anything that might give occasion for adultery (I'll also go to confession, which I haven't been doing).  I'll pray a rolling novena for souls in purgatory.  That is, finishing it, then saying a couple of other prayers, and then starting again.  And I'd like to make a few donations to charities as well.

It seems perverse to have been looking forward to the penitential season, but I have.  Not, I suppose, out of a love of penance, but out of a desire to change myself.  I can't think of a better season to become the person you want to be.

Wednesday, 26 February 2020

Road to Wollongong Part III: Stronger

Things are on the improve.  Since my last post the weekend has come and gone.  I needed to head back up to the farm to lend a hand with drenching cattle, which meant a lot of time both on my feet and climbing over the sliprails.  And of course, many miles were walked with the dog during the off-hours.
Fairly representative for both days
Sadly, I couldn’t get time to run while I was up there.

I was fairly stiff in the ankles and tendons when I got back to town for the working week.  It was raining on Monday night and so I couldn’t walk home after work.  I made up for it all with a run home last night on the usual 10km route.  This particular run almost didn’t happen.  We’re going through a mind-bogglingly busy period at work following the departure of one of the firm’s solicitors.  It was 10:30pm when I finally wrapped up for the night.  I decided to run anyway given I need the stress relief: the mental pressure at work has been close to clouding my judgment which can only end very badly.

This isn’t the time of day I was running but it’s roughly the area

In the event it was a good run.  I’d only intended to take it gentle but I found my legs felt strong and my knees and tendons weren’t hurting.  Subject to work, I’ll probably try for 13 kms on Thursday evening and another 21kms at the weekend.

Monday, 24 February 2020

Road to Woollongong Part II: my knee hurts!

Last week was a somewhat patchy week for training.  On Sunday - the day after the benchmark run - I needed to go to the western suburbs to see a client (a pigeon racing club, no less!). After I’d seen them I went down to Altona beach to have a beer and chips and go for a walk to stretch my legs out.  
I wasn’t able to run again until Thursday, mainly due to pressure of work. I made up for it with walking home from the office most nights.

I decided to enter the half-marathon in the Victoria Police and Emergency Services games in order to test myself against other runners.  The games are fairly cheap to enter (about $25.00) and always a lot of fun.  It's a mild nuisance that it's on a Friday morning (which means a half-day off work) but on the plus side it's in Melbourne this year rather than Ballarat.

When I finally did get out on Thursday the run was a little troubling.  I settled on my usual 10 kilometres along the Capital City trail.  My legs should have been back to 100% but certainly didn’t feel like it. It took some effort of will to keep going, even if my average pace over the 10kms was fairly normal.

What was a bit troubling was a noticeable pain in my left knee whenever I went downhill (uphill was fine).  In the last three kilometres I was locking the leg in a partly bent position and rolling forward onto my right leg, which was doing all the work.  I'm really hoping the leg comes good, but I'll give it a bit of stretching and yoga on my off days.  I need to go and see the GP re some other things in the next few weeks and if it hasn't come good I'll ask what he thinks.  In the meantime I'll just keep pretending there isn't a problem.

Monday, 17 February 2020

Road to Wollongong: Part I

Hi everyone,

This weekend saw the start of the Road to Wollongong.  I'd decided on a 21-ish kilometre run to see what my pace is over that distance.  I'd have set the run for Sunday, but I was already committed to other things that day and so it was Saturday or never.

The weather made itself known, in the form of 100% humidity and near-constant drizzle with an option on rain.  Anyway, I headed out, since you may as well train in the conditions you might have to race in.  By the third kilometre my sneakers were full of water.  I pressed on through Birrarung Marr, past the Federation bells, and then up the Yarra trail to the Powerhouse Boatsheds.  This meant a quick trip down memory lane for me, to my one brief season as an oarsman countless moons ago.

I turned back  at that point for Church Street and kept going until I hit the Yarra.  Well, actually I stopped short: I didn't know that Church Street came to a dead stop by the Carlton & United Breweries plant.  I weaseled through some residential streets until I found Gipps Street and then picked up the Capital City Trail for the final leg.  By this stage (roughly 15kms) I was feeling the load and hills were a hell of a challenge.  I wasn't even game to free-run down hill on wet ground as I wasn't sure that I could react well enough if I slipped on something.

In the event, my pace was, well, ratchit.  Basically, I need to pare  45 minutes off of this to get back to my best time, and a full hour off this time to feel properly happy with it.  Good thing I like a challenge!

On the plus side, my legs were sore but not smashed afterwards and so I found I'd put up a respectable number of walking miles by the end of the day.  Some of these were to Our Lady's for Mass and then on to the Great Northern for beer.  I take care of body and soul.

So there we have it: I know what I'm running now.  I just need to get fast!

Sunday, 16 February 2020

Road to Wollongong: Prologue

For a while I’ve been thinking I needed another mountain to climb.  I believe I’ve found one.

You remember that I said I while ago that I wanted to try a lot of new things?  Things I’d not done before?  That was brought back into mind recently by something that happened at SES.  One of the newer members who I helped train last year came back from the summer break sporting a healthy pregnancy bump.  This rattled me a bit.  I couldn’t figure out why.  I only know her as a fellow volunteer.  I don’t know anything at all about her private life.  So, why should it matter to me?  The best guess I could come up with was a sense of life leaving me behind.

This lead me to consider finding myself another mountain to climb.  Happily, this didn’t take long.

The Australasian Police and Emergency Services Games are held every two years, and this is one of those years.  The games are open to (inter alia) “registered volunteers … from eligible emergency service agencies across Australasia, including New Zealand, the Pacific Islands and South East Asia”.  Since I don’t meet the criteria to compete in the World Police and Fire Games, this is as high a level as I can compete at.  Further, they’re being held in Wollongong, on the New South Wales coast south of Sydney.  This is reachable from where I live (flight to Sydney; train to Wollongong).

The event I've set my mind on is my preferred race distance, the half-marathon, which will be run on Friday 23 October 2020.  This is 8 months away, and I'll be training up for it: I want to put up the best time I can while the chance presents.

So, expect this blog to get a bit running-heavy for the next few months: Let's see where this road can go!

Wednesday, 15 January 2020

An Adventure in Speed Dating

I tried something different last Friday evening: I tried a speed dating event at a bar in Fitzroy.

Melbourne's heavens opened late that afternoon, so that was a challenge: I knew I'd be sporting that "drowned rat" look.  I'm not going to lie: I was a bit nervous.  I summoned up my “just arrived on scene at roof damage leading a good crew" look: the impression I was going for was of a man in control of my surroundings and his reactions.  Certainly after thinking this for the tram ride I was at least feeling like that!

I imagine the format of speed dating is well enough known not to need setting out.  Each date was about 15 minutes with changeovers notified by text message.  Matches seemed to be basically set by age, which saw me meeting people at the high-30's end of the age range (this suited me fine).  All of the matches seemed like good people, even if not uniformly appealing.  One or two had personalities that left no mark.  More tragic were the ones who seemed to have long ago sold their identity to their work and to have no real core of their own to express.  On the other hand, others were fascinating to talk to and one at least had had much the experience with her ex I've had with mine: there were no more fights over their child; it was easier just to get on with the business of being irrevocably part of each others life for the next umpteen years.

Oddly, one of the best conversations of the night was with a young lady of 31 during the meal break.  Each of us was enthusiastically consuming sausage rolls and chicken wings in the knowledge we wouldn't be paired and therefore there was no loss about scarfing down food in front of the other.  She remarked that her reason for being there was in large part that her parents want grandchildren!

Not many people hung around afterwards and so I contented myself with ordering the best Bloody Mary I've had since I was last in New Orleans.  On the walk home I stopped for drambuie in the Lord Newry Hotel, began a draft of this post and reflected on the experience.  Something that struck me was the randomness of it all.  My last date of the night was the belle of the evening, a professional lady who looked a bit like Natalie Dormer.  With a little Dutch courage on my side, I asked her why she was single: she was certainly attractive and intelligent.  She replied that she'd just never 'clicked' with anyone.  Perhaps I'm missing the point of all this (quite likely) but a 'click' seems like an alarmingly random way to decide matters like this: no wonder, perhaps, that so much sadness comes into the world from relationships.

Too Much Spare Time

Here I am on a Wednesday evening feeling a bit lost.

It's been a good couple of days: I'm getting back into the swing of things at work and also feeling a bit more like myself again.  I ran home from work last night, which was good even if I was left with a painful twinge in my might knee.  Melbourne is very smoky although going along the Moonee Ponds Creek you don't really notice it (mainly because the creek smells so much worse than the smoke).

Tonight, as I said, I'm a bit lost on account of unexpected free time.  This afternoon the weather bureau was prognosticating a bit of a weather apocalypse, and so I left work early.  Well, early for me (about 6:30pm) in expectation of callouts. 

In the event, there were no callouts which left me at a bit of a loss.  I couldn't run because I did that last night and want to do so again tomorrow night.  I settled for a yoga routine from my phone followed by TV and dinner, but it all felt somewhat unsatisfying.  At least the yoga seems to have sorted my knee out.

Unusually for me I actually felt like to talking to other homo sapiens and browsed my contacts on various social media platforms without finding anyone I can really talk to.  So that was a bit depressing.

Leading me to now: wine and a stiflingly humid room at my digs.  Roll on tomorrow.

Monday, 13 January 2020

An accident at Mornington

On Saturday I went for a leisurely wander through the Melbourne General Cemetery.  Any cemetery wander is a history lesson and today was just such a day.  This was the headstone that caught my eye -

Mr Nunn, as the headstone says, was killed while "aeroplaning" at Mornington (how long, I wonder, was 'to aeroplane' a verb?).  The fuller story, however, is somewhat more tragic.  The report in the Argus (3 January 1920, p.14) stated that he had long been trying to obtain a flight in an aeroplane and had persuaded the pilot in this case to take him on a series of afternoon flights in a Sopwith Gnu (the type of aircraft is identified in a report of the Defence Science and Technology Organization).

Sopwith Gnu (Image from here)
As the aircraft approached Mornington it snagged on a telegraph wire and overturned, injuring the pilot and causing Nunn fatal injuries.  Painfully, the Sydney Morning Herald (5 January 1920, p.7) reported that the flight had been taken without his parents' permission.

Nunn was born in about 1902.  The Wright brothers first flight took place in 1903.  It is painful to think that when Mr Nunn's parents received the news, they may have reflected that he was killed by an accident they could not have imagined on the day they welcomed him into the world.

Sunday, 12 January 2020

Sunday, and another beer.

Another summer day, another beer.  This time a Kaiju Krush at the Victoria Hotel in Brunswick.

It's been a full day.  I meant to go to Mass this morning at Our Lady’s at 9am.  I woke at 9am after the best night’s sleep I’d had in ages.  I decided God must have wanted me to catch up on sleep instead.  I got my coffee and began a three hour FaceTime with Grace and Rachel.  They were so happy to see me.  Also a good talk to The Ex.  As I’ve reflected a few times, this isn’t how I thought my family would look, but I’m good with it nevertheless.  This is OK.

After Facetime I headed out for my weekend run.  I lengthened the usual route a little to include Royal Park Station and ended with a respectable 14 kms at a better pace than I’d expected.
Running clears your head and when I got home I deleted the POF and Tinder apps off my phone (one spam email offering prostitution too many, among other reasons).  The reason I mention this is that at about the time I put them on my phone the other week, I mislaid my Marian medal.  Well, I went to do laundry after my run (and after deleting the aforesaid apps).  What do you suppose I found?  Sometimes Our Lady is less than subtle.

Cleanliness was literally next to godliness this weekend as my next stop was Mass at St Joseph’s, followed by the beer with which I began.  I’m putting off going back to my digs to start writing up SES Peer reports.  It’s not a difficult job but it’s fiddly and boring.

Not much more to add.  It'll be a busy week this week

Saturday, 11 January 2020

A mental health day

It’s Saturday and a cool change is giving Melbourne in general and me in particular a break from summer heat.

I’ve been exhausted for the last few days.  The usual late rush of work last year, then three weeks or so farm work in the north, and a big absence of my usual diet and exercise, has hit me mentally for six.  Time on the farm has been with family, which is great but means you’re “on” all the time and that's kind of exhausting too.  How tired am I?  There’ve been a couple of SES messages today and each time I’ve looked at the pager and thought “I’m not up to it...  show me a chainsaw or a damaged roof and I’ll stare blankly at it and tell the crew 'just do whatever you think'”.  This, plainly, is neither safe nor satisfactory.

As a result, I made today a mental health day with tincture of Marie Kondo.  I ironed my shirts.  I filed two years worth of paper clutter (bank statements; that sort of thing).  I got groceries and went with things I’ve not tried before (pulse pasta? Why not?).  Then I purged the piles of things on my bedside table, threw out old copies of Catholic Weekly that I know I'll never get around to reading and bought a magazine box for unread copies of American Rifleman and The Mirror.

Then, I got a tram down Lygon Street and took a gentle stroll through Melbourne General Cemetery (which gave me material for another blogpost in a few days).  I walked to the Brandon Hotel for beer and book time.  I’m not sure Hemingway was the best choice for a day like this.  I love his prose but sometimes it can feel like one is chewing gravel.  I’m still catching up on my misspent youth and stopped for wine at the Great Northern on the walk home, which is when I'm drafting this.

At this point I’m feeling more like myself again (Dutch courage?).  I was going to write SES Peer reports tonight but I don’t think I have it in me.  I’ll update my Goodreads profile and do some stretches and be in bed by 11pm.  God willing by tomorrow I’ll feel like myself again.

How's your weekend?