Archive | February, 2014

birds of a feather…

18 Feb

What’s with birds today ? …. I mean, really ??? What AREcockatoo they trying to tell me?

Driving to work, I passed 2 dead on the side of a country lane. I guess that in itself is not so unusual … but as l took notice of their ruffled feathers I wondered how on earth the TWO had managed to meet an untimely end together.

A few hours later in the day I was in the car again, and suddenly I was  swooped by a bunch of Cockatoos …One rather large one flew straight at the windscreen, scaring the daylights (and a whole lot more) out of me and my passengers. How it managed to redirect its course at the last minute still makes me wonder… BUT thank goodness it did, or I may not be writing this tonight (no wonder they die on the roads).

Now wait…, there’s more….

Driving home along THE SAME country laneway as the morning’s discovery, I saw a small van in front of me, suddenly showered in feathers… clearly it had struck yet another a bird. Thankfully I didn’t see the end result of that one.

I know it’s all very weird… and not necessarily even blogworthy, BUT what is even MORE weird is that I wrote about the same small feathered creatures almost exactly one year ago!! doo-doo-doo  (check out the post on 14th Feb 2013)

Now I’m not suggesting that any, or all of this is a  ‘sign’…. but you’ve gotta agree it’s pretty darn odd.

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some days it sucks to be a frog…

17 Feb

Driving to work minding my own business this morning and something very odd caught my eye. As the car in the next lane passed, I saw what looked like a leaf poking out the crease of the back side door; so after deciding it was no big deal, I continued to daydream and drive on.

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That is…UNTIL the traffic slowed a little, and I found myself alongside the car. I looked closer and the leaf started to wriggle. Trying not to run up the back of the car in front, I was soon close enough to identify the suspicious site as a small tree frog that was trapped by his (or her… I’m not real good a sexing frogs on the move) left foot.

WHAT SHOULD I DO ??  

Feeling compelled to do SOMETHING I try to get the driver’s attention. I wound the window down and tried to yell across to him…a big ask for anyone at 40kph …but without a voice it was just NEVER gonna work.

Next, I thought I would jump out and run to his window when the traffic was held up. But I began to imagine how he might react to a ‘crazy voiceless woman’ running between the traffic and up to his window to say there is a frog hanging out of his door.

Clearly I thought about it a minute too long and the traffic began to flow.

So…I just headed to work, feeling a little sad but amused by the thought of the little guy hanging on for the ride of his life. Wherever he is tonight, I’d reckon he has one very sore foot. … It’s days like this I’m glad I’m not a frog.

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the lost art of ironing

16 Feb

When I think back to my childhood, I remember the laundry being a feature of Mum’s life, something she took great pride in. Getting things soaked, washed, hung out to dry, back in and ironed all in the one day was a marathon that she ran with ease…. often competing with my live-in Nan for the gold medal.laundry

So why is it that staying on top of the ironing is such a hurdle for me ?? …how DID I miss out on the ironing gene?

I go through fits and starts… but anyone who knows me well, knows that there will always be one (if not two) baskets of clothes tucked away in the laundry somewhere waiting on their turn to be pressed and returned to their spot in the wardrobe.

Not really a big deal, until … 5 minutes before  time to walk out the door ‘Mr 50 Something’ has his heart set on  wearing a particular shirt …and it’s nowhere to be found.Chaos ensues and stress levels rise, until ‘said shirt’ is discovered in last month’s ironing pile …then the trusty appliance is heated and creases vanished, by which time we are running late. ….again!

Where’s Mum when I need her ? …

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my Saturday evening post ….

15 Feb

my Saturday evening post ....

mmmmm, so what do YOU all have planned ?

I wonder just how many ‘baby boomers’ were conceived after a night like like this ???

the advantage of acne…..

14 Feb

As some of you know (and for those who don’t… I’ll tell you) 2 weeks ago I had a call to say I WON …repeat WON… a trip to New York City !!!!! (courtesy of the Sydney Opera House).

How awesome is that ?

So …. the arrangements are all coming together beautifully and easily (with the Opera House staff taking control) however the one thing that I need to arrange is travel insurance …. (funny really since they are paying, but hey, stick with me on this).

I do the obligatory on-line research and start the comparison of value for money…bla bla bla. acne 2Then suddenly I am stopped in my tracks. NOT because of ‘exclusions’ …. BUT because of automatic ‘inclusions’.

I quickly discover that I am covered (‘at no extra cost’) for ACNE and MENOPAUSE!!!  how generous!

Given that we are both ’50 something’ …I’m guessing that acne is not likely to be a HUGE consideration…. but ‘MENOPAUSE’ ??? oh my goodness do they think I’m going  to make a claim for hot flushes?  sleeplessness?  brain fog?…. or just being grumpy.

…come to think of it …..maybe … just maybe!

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up-selling gone crazy …when is enough enough??

13 Feb

thursday 2

Today our dear old pooch underwent surgery for a blocked gland below her jaw.

At 14 she really does bear a striking resemblance to a little old lady (some would say she is very like my MIL… both in nature and appearance) with slow gait and arthritic hips, she waddles around as deaf as a post, but is seemingly content in her own world.

Sadly, recent months have seen her struggle to swallow and a large blocked gland was soon found to be the culprit. So … a month ago the first intervention was to drain it; a temporary fix for the bargain basement price of $300.

Following the surgery we were offered a permanent cure but involved radical surgery and a starting bill of $3000…. (gulp…NO Medicare on this one)

Instead of rushing in, we chose to take a few weeks and watch how she went …but  lo and behold it returned as predicted and soon she was struggling to eat again. So, at this point we were presented with an alternative option…a modified, ‘budget’ procedure which would make her comfortable for ONLY $1000…. or so we thought.

When my 50something husband checked her into the clinic for the procedure this morning,  he was stunned to be upsized with a range of ‘optional medical extras’ …procedures and equipment that one would normally expect were the domain and decision of the operating Vet.

  • Would you like her to have a blood test while she is ‘under’?  (extra cost of $85) Seriously?? How the hell would we know?
  • Would you like her to have IV fluids during or after the surgery? (extra cost of $45) but AGAIN how the hell would we know? Isn’t that the Vet’s decision?
  • And so it went … in total , seven ‘up-sell’ opportunities as the cash register goes Cha Ching..and our $1000 quote suddenly looks more like $1500 and rising.

Still …..she is home again, and just think how much we saved from that first quote …. It just make me wonder about the McDonalds approach to surgery…..”would you like fries with that?” 

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cashing in on Cupid

12 Feb

When did Valentines Day become reason for yet another ‘sale’ ?cupid 2

Like many of you  (I’m guessing)… every single day my inbox fills with ‘special deals’…, ‘offers too good to refuse’…, ‘bargains’ and ‘golden opportunities’. I quickly scan before highlighting blocks of them and hitting the all powerful ‘delete’ button.

Very occasionally, my attention is captured and I can’t resist being drawn in …perhaps even buying the odd dinner deal or gift voucher. BUT, these last few days have seen Valentine’s Day specials popping up all over the place. Discount gifts to express your love… delivered to your door at the click of a button.

Tell me ….what Valentine in his/her right mind would buy you a new set of saucepans?? …or pavement cleaning??  …and why is 14th Feb the time to “get romantic in a new pair of heels” ?  LOL the mind boggles at that one.

I’m just wondering what marketing giant thought up these crazy gift ideas?

IF you really feel compelled to tell someone you care… go and buy a Hallmark greeting card  (or you could sms, tweet, facebook, facetime, skype or instagram them).

Finally here’s a  tip from this ’50 something’ cupid…DON’T go the saucepans, or you could end up wearing them.

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drowning in ‘stuff’…

11 Feb

It’s strange how we get to a point in our lives (around the ’50 somethings’) and, for most of us the household shrinks as the kids leave the nest… BUT somehow we don’t manage to reclaim the ‘space’.

Not only do they leave behind all the things they WANT (but don’t want to take with them)… but we also find ourselves playing home to the belongings of our aging parents, who are downsizing into more manageable homes, aged care facilities …. OR making the more permanent move to greener pastures.  clutter

Suddenly home becomes a storage facility ( well the sheds at least …). No-one can bring themselves to ‘getting rid of granny’s goodies’ especially if she hasn’t quite ‘moved on’….  and you never know when you might need a spare lounge (or three)…or a 3 tiered planter stand and pots full of artificial plants…, or a 1970’s microwave. Just as you never know when your kids might be looking for that trumpet they played in year 7… or the year 10 formal dress that’s been hanging in the spare room for 11 years.

Funny though …as I write this I can actually hear my father asking me whether I plan to take the rest of my stuff when they finally sold the family home in 1999…(and I was a ’40 something’) ….so I guess nothing really changes.

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stuck up…

10 Feb

Over recent times I have been taking more and more notice of stickers on cars… kind of like body art they have become (a slightly less permanent) expression of one’s identity.Image

Some of them are amusing, some cute, some downright racist and obnoxious…. and some just make me wonder …WHY??

Like the two I passed today with RIP  (insert name here) followed by their DOB & DOD  – emblazoned in huge lettering across the rear window.

I don’t feel strongly ‘for’ or ‘against’ this … whatever floats your boat is fine with me, but I do wonder what it really says ???

I almost understand when the person was a young’n and perhaps lost their life in a car accident (I don’t know why that’s different, but it somehow feels it)… but today’s example was born in 1935 and died in 2013… 78yrs, a pretty average sort of innings by today’s standard.

Then there are the ‘Peter Brock’ fans whose view through their rear windscreens are  almost completely zilch due to their public display of grief at the loss of their hero  …. Again I ask …Why ??

Don’t even start me on the stick families … or the Aussie pride (read racist) sentiments often shouting at you from the next lane on the freeway…. that’s another story !

‘declined’…

9 Feb

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The one word that sends shivers through you when you are at the checkout with a trolley full of groceries and the supermarket peak hour queue grows behind you.

The sirens may as well go off, and spotlight pin you to the floor. You imagine all eyes are looking square at you, when the young shop assistant calls for help.

You suddenly find yourself over-talking and telling the 16year old how much money you have in the bank …and that you are not REALLY broke. Then finally her supervisor apologises and says that she pushed a wrong button…

I wonder who is more embarrassed now?