We will meet you in the book-shop

Mother, daughter and sons on the way to Thai café.

Mother, daughter and sons on the way to Thai café.

I could hardly believe that it is has now come to this. People that bother reading my blog should know I do tend to exaggerate and with a fair bit of word-knitting, twisting and turning, manage to make events and experiences as truthful as possible. With school holidays our grandsons often use the time to visit us for getting and renewing their pancake hits. Their mother is often fed up and glad to be rid of them. We, on the other hand make them wash cars and give them money for the lollies-shop.

A major achievement has been a break-through in travel arrangements. They now come by train. It saves a lot of ‘I spy-I spy with my eye’ while in the car driving home all the way from Sydney. The older one lords it over the younger one, and driving while controlling a fight in the back seat brought this Grandma and Grandpa often close to strangulation or teenticide. (with a quick burial of both of them under a large gum tree.)

They have now gone home again. The eldest likes basket-ball and is now over six feet. The younger boy loves fiddling with his IPhone, almost doubled over it in concentration. He stays up and watches soccer being played late at night. I discovered a jar still full of black Kalamata olive liquid except, there were no olives. It’s useless asking, ‘who ate all the olives? They have reached the age of no return, and I have given up about making them feel rotten, let alone guilty. However, they did heed our constant nagging for getting to read words in books. Oh, we were relentless, and told them that words are the only way to make sense of the world and their future.

It’s not easy to get older and facing adulthood. There could well be a nagging suspicion there must be more to life than one day after the other, to be conquered and gotten through. Their belief in two headed monsters at the sea bottom and fairies in the forests are been given a severe dent, looked at with suspicion and some doubt. However, the repeat of experiences does also coincide with curiosity about sex and what might be possible with those stirrings down below.

I know when I discovered sex more than sixty years ago, I felt a huge load being lifted. This is what it is all about! Why did someone not tell me? How terrific! What a discovery in my early teens. I must tell my friends about this.

Of course, now I think is THIS what has driven me? How pathetic. All that heaving. What madness. Are you for real? Look at yourself. Look at peoples faces instead of their crotches. You should be ashamed of yourself, Gerard. My mother was right. Stop it! Go to confession.

On the second day, the boys wanted to explore a very large second-hand bookshop that opened up here in Bowral. It is called, not unreasonably ‘Reading’. So, we told them we would follow after a couple of hours and asked them where we will meet and have lunch. You know what they said?

“We will meet you at the bookshop.”

Now, wasn’t that something to lift the spirit. I reckon their Mum , Grandpa & Grandma must have done something right.

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44 Responses to “We will meet you in the book-shop”

  1. Yvonne Says:

    Hooray for grandparents and parents.

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Yes, Yvonne. They were nice to have for a few days. After arrival we try and settle them down with garlic prawns and lots of Turkish bread.

      We retire to our own bedroom into which we have squeezed a comfy settee. We sit there in the evenings hoping for the kids to go upstairs and to bed.

      When they do, we re-appear back into our lounge room and watch a bit of TV.

      The pan-cake mix is made for next morning’s fest, and includes butter-milk, milk , water and a couple of eggs, some salt.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. auntyuta Says:

    I reckon you did everything right! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. berlioz1935 Says:

    Dear Gerard, I would have taken you as my granddad any time as a child. I loved it as a child when old people explained the world to me. My paternal grandfather did not survive the war to stop all wars. Probably a bullet from an Aussie gun killed him. The soil in Flanders is soaked with the blood of soldiers who should never have been there in the first place.

    My maternal granddad, who was a lovely old, quiet man, who worked in a beautiful post office, died too early to tell me about life. I was only five when he passed away.

    Your grandsons had the full experience of you and will never forget you. They will tell their grandchildren about you and the memory of you will live on for another hundred years and more.

    Liked by 3 people

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Thank you, Peter.
      I have at times an over-blown and grandiose opinion of myself as a person and often feel I must be about the only one taking myself seriously. It is so pleasing to hear words of kindness and encouragements. I am not sure I would have been a good grand-dad to you Peter, but would have tried.
      It will be most rewarding if the grandkids remembered me as a silly fool that made them laugh.

      I have no problems being that. It comes naturally.

      Like

  4. berlioz1935 Says:

    Ahh, the photo, it looks to me like the old railway bridge at Como?

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Julia Lund Says:

    “The age of no return” – I love that, it could be a book title. And what a gift to embark into adulthood with – reading. You’ve all done something very right.

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Yet, reading was a normal thing when I was young. Joining the library was one of the first things to do when able to read at about 5 or six years of age.
      It was as normal as walking and talking. My parents really did not have to urge us to read.
      Even so, Julia. We are proud that then grandkids have taken to reading (as well as IPhone tinkling…)

      Like

  6. shoreacres Says:

    “We will meet you at the bookshop” has to be one of the best phrases in the English language: albeit one of the least-heard these days. On the other hand, I recently read an article that was mentioning, very quietly, an uptick in patronage of booksellers, and a return among readers to real books. All may not be lost, after all, thanks partly to grandparenting like yours.

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Yes, Linda. Real books with paper pages are having a come-back. I noticed the bookshops are hardly ever without customers.
      When we arrived in Australia, books were rare and so were book-shops. Race guides and sport pages were more common.
      Dad used to try and peek inside peoples houses to try and spot bookshelves.
      One of our neighbours house their books in the garage.

      Like

    • Big M Says:

      The ‘in’ crowd keep telling me to get with the times, and read on my tablet. I downloaded one novel, and have reallly struggled to get into it. It doesn’t feel right. In contrast, a fairly long paperback bought at the airport was quickly devoured!

      Liked by 1 person

      • gerard oosterman Says:

        I read a couple of books on them. I like the smell and feel of paper. In the old days I used to run my fingers around the top of the books at the Sydney Library. I picked the dustiest book and took it on an outing home. Often they were very good books.
        Of course now I am a dusty reader as well.

        Liked by 1 person

  7. kaytisweetlandrasmussen83 Says:

    It sounds as if you and Helvi are being great grandparents. We had a very close relationship with our two oldest grandsons, now in their 40’s. They remember everything, including all the camping trips with pancakes, and the bedtimes stories told over and over, even the hours spent with me in the studio. It’s gratifying to know they don’t forget. Enjoy them as long as you can, because the relationship between you and great-grandchildren is different; not as close. As great grandparents we are observers rather than participants.

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      I am not sure about great- grandchildren. Kayti. How did you cope? Did Dr A jump into the breach!

      I have two cast iron pans going red-hot in which I make pancakes at a neck braking speed. If great-grandchildren make their entry I might have to think of expanding the kitchen and get a twelve burner stove.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. hilarycustancegreen Says:

    Give yourselves 100 Brownie Points each.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Cheri Says:

    This is a funny post. Whether you intended it as such, it is.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Big M Says:

    A welcome relief from body corporate bullyings!

    Like

  11. Master of Something Yet Says:

    Every time I park near the library, I get wistful about the days when the boys would come home with a huge pile of books. Now they download them onto their phones and read them online. A “We will meet you at the bookshop” would certainly make my heart sing. You done good.🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Yes, Libraries are good places to be in. Apart from books, they also have daily newspapers. Sometimes, a nap is taken and the book falls on the floor.
      Young people in my house download in one day half my monthly allowance. A Telstra letter gets e-mailed warning me that my speed will slow down to a word a minute or so. Grrr…

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Mal Kukura Says:

    One of these days I will be there too

    Like

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Welcome Mal,

      Your name sounds familiar. I think Helvi knows you. Helvi is curious about where Chris Hunter might be.

      Like

      • rakum8 Says:

        Yes Gerard we have conversed before on table Talk and Helvi knows me from there too. I have been in touch with Chris Hunter some months ago and he is in Adelaide as far as I know.

        Like

      • chris hunter Says:

        Chris Hunter is dwelling in the shadows, or is it the closet, anyway he will come out soon enough. Anyway, he sends his regards to all who remember him.

        Congratulations on your publication Gerard and yes, I must get onto Amazon.

        Like

      • gerard oosterman Says:

        Glad to hear you again, Chris.
        Helvi and I wondered where you might have been. Perhaps you and Kukura have been writing on other blogs?

        Like

      • chris hunter Says:

        Hi Gerard, no, I haven’t been writing on other blogs. To be honest I was exhausted after the Ellis blog finished, I felt, no doubt along with a small band of like minded that included Mal and Helvi, rather like Horatio at the bridge, holding back the embittered racism, the anti Muslim sentiment that is now rampant in our country, unbridled and dangerous, shades of Germany prior to the holocaust.

        Well that time has now come to pass, the East is in total chaos and nobody has a credible exit plan, even senior Labor figures supported the re-invasion, the bombing that has seen thousands of innocents immolated, hideously injured, and yet we have grown callouses on our national soul, are indifferent, even more hating. What a bloody mess, and what weak, immature drips we have leading the charge – to what?

        Oh well, just drop your pants at the airport to the voyeurs, show them that your package is not a hand grenade and whistle Waltzing Matilda.

        Is this now the Australian way of life? And Howard was given a doctorate!

        Liked by 1 person

      • berlioz1935 Says:

        Hi Chris, I absolutely endorse every word you wrote. What possessed those people at Sydney Uni to give Howard an honorary doctorate.? It is a slap in the face of all decent people.

        Like

      • chris hunter Says:

        Berlioz, my abiding memory of John Howard is of him waving the troops goodbye as they sailed off to Iraq 2. He was smiling, gay, as if they (we) were off to a picnic.

        No gravitas, did he not realise that many of those troops would return with mental disorders, what’s to smile and wave about, other than his own triumph as Deputy Sheriff, the local overseer to the ‘illegal’ invasion that opened the can of worms that now assails us, that is consuming our soul, that is consuming the world’s soul?

        Is there a Doctorate for destruction?

        There are more refugees now than at any other time in the world’s history, nobody on this planet can be truly happy with this as the background, effectively we are doomed.

        How will we solve this, by bombing afar and building bigger walls around ourselves? Our leading politicians are pathetic, truly unworthy of office, utter rat bags.

        But I don’t wish to overly muddy Gerard’s blog with all this, although I know that both Gerard and Helvi have a real distaste for duplicity, insincerity; that is the hallmark of Australia’s recent political life. Good to hear you speak up mate. Cheers.

        Liked by 1 person

      • gerard oosterman Says:

        Yes, I understand things are pretty crook in the land of Aus. The compassion graph is dipping to new levels each time Malcolm opens his mouth. Did you hear his mouthing on how Australia is the most welcoming to refugees and no country has done more.

        He refuses to go into the problems of refugees on Manus and Nauru. In fact, Australian Government now totally disown they have anything to do with those refugees.

        It might be time to move to the Ukraine or try and get Thai citizenship.

        Like

      • gerard oosterman Says:

        Go and muddy as much as you like, Chris. No worries. Your comments are always to the point and very welcome.

        Like

      • chris hunter Says:

        Cheers.

        Like

    • chris hunter Says:

      Hi Mal.

      Like

  13. Curt Mekemson Says:

    Hooray, Gerard! The boys wanted to meet you at the bookshop. Progress. Nothing wrong with sex either, at 16 or 66.🙂 –Curt

    Like

  14. rod Says:

    So what I want to know is whether a title of yours is available at the bookshop?

    Like

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      No, Rod. The Amazon POD is not as yet available in Australia. I ordered 25 copies of the latest ‘Oosterman Treats’ from the US before the spelling mistake on the back page blurb was rectified. Mondane indeed.
      I am not sure, but also suffer a bit from Dutch courage.

      Like

  15. beautifulbarbadosblog Says:

    Made me smile.
    I have also nominated you for the Three Days Three Quotes Challenge. More info here https://beautifulbarbadosblog.wordpress.com/2016/09/28/a-friend-in-need/
    Have fun with it.

    Like

  16. sedwith Says:

    So funny and so true

    Like

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