A potpourri of pre-Christmas events.

Last week we drove to Sydney to visit our daughter who was meant to visit us. Due to storm damage  the trains were delayed and the buses were not running, we thought it easier to drive to Sydney instead. Trains are often risky and even a rogue wombat can derail trains. I bet the old ‘fast-train’ service will be raised again now that an election is due soon, together with the perennial second Sydney airport.  It keeps us nice and docile. Gee, the French sure know how to get things moving. I like their spirit.

IMG_0215

This is our daughter and her youngest son, Max, who has reached that stage of being a teenager very drawn to languorousness.  This means he likes to adopt a seating arrangement between sitting and lying. He is Tom’s brother who is almost at the end of his Indonesian adventure and at present in Bali’s Ubud. Tom is 18 and now taken to sitting upright again.

The lunch was beautiful and included as a dessert a nice chunk of water melon ‘infused’ with mango gelato. This coming Christmas day she and both our Grandsons will be visiting us for a Christmas lunch with a possible stay over-night. Of course, that has the proviso the trains are running and that the wombats stay away from the rails.

The latest new’s item that really stunned me that for over 150 years a Tattersall club in Brisbane, Queensland, prohibiting women becoming members. They excluded women. Can you believe this? A vote was taken on the issue and the ban was lifted. Oh, Australia; where is your Santa list for moving forward?

https://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/national/queensland/brisbane-s-exclusive-tattersall-s-club-votes-to-allow-female-members-20181219-p50na1.html

The vote in favour of allowing women wasn’t all that overwhelming. It was mainly for financial reasons and not because it was so outrageously  misogynistic.

I wonder if the Republican issue will be dealt with soon? I suppose, we are waiting for the English queen to pass away. Another terrible sad bit of news is that the issue of refugees on Manus and Nauru will not be resolved before Christmas. When, oh when, will Australia be dragged in front of some court to face charges of crimes against humanity?

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-12-20/boy-raped-on-nauru-asylum-seeker-lawyers-claim/10632882

But, there is also good news. It seems that keeping pets helps to keep children healthy and possibly avoid getting infections. And…the more pets, the better!

A baby lying on the ground beside a small dog.

https://www.abc.net.au/news/science/2018-12-20/pets-allergies-asthma-dogs-cats-immune-system-microbes/10630174

We are both now fitting in some more medical appointments as well. The medications we now ingest are keeping us alive as much as possible. This morning at 9am I was ordered to get in my underpants and take my valuables to the medical room and submit myself to a bone-density test. It was a remarkable experience. My feet were strapped in while laying on a hard surface in the horizontal position. ‘Just relax’, I was told by a female technician operating a sliding monitor taking images of my totally prostrated body. You know, when it was all over, I had trouble getting vertical again. The woman had to actually lift me up and prop me up a bit. The ignominy of ageing. It seems only yesterday we were skating and somersaulting about.

And now, look at it!

 

 

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31 Responses to “A potpourri of pre-Christmas events.”

  1. freefall852 Says:

    Gerard…I can sympathise with Max…I too suffered from and still feel the twinges of the symptoms of “Lateral Spine”….it is incurable and occasionally will confine one to a prostrate position for hours on end and the only known relief can come..I believe..from the sharp edge of a mother’s or wife’s tounge.

    Liked by 3 people

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Yes, Jo, so true.
      I too succumb to the occasional glorious lie down. But, despite my hearing impairment I have become an expert in detecting the nearness of a wife. It must be by some sonic radiation not unlike those bats that fly about blind and yet avoid hitting a wall.
      I haven’t heard ‘you’re not lying down again, Gerard’ for some time now. It is the ‘again’ that really hurts, Jo.

      Liked by 1 person

      • freefall852 Says:

        ” It is the ‘again’ that really hurts, Jo.”……hmm…with me it is ; “still!”…..and I ask..;

        “What can cut as clean as a scythe,
        But the soft spoken accuse’ of a woman’s ; “thy?”

        Liked by 1 person

  2. berlioz1935 Says:

    It is astonishing that your output is not diminished despite all those medical appointments. When we go out to see one of the many medical practitioners, who set our daily routine, we are exhausted and want to lay down in the said position your grandson Max is wisely practising.

    That Helvi has to undergo another treatment (Herceptin infusion) is not good news. With the internet, we are able to learn all about, those special treatments. The internet tells us more than the doctors are willing to let us know.

    We hope you can both cope with what lays ahead of you. Still, we wish you both a “Merry Christmas” even so life in Australia is no laughing matter. But a bit of merriment can do wonders.

    Liked by 2 people

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      The best of Christmas to you and Uta as well, Berlioz. We still have enough time to keep going. That includes the medical meetings, shopping and walking Milo. I do get cranky when I haven’t written anything and feel always happiest after putting down a few words. Life provides a rich font of material to write about.
      The Herceptin treatment is a follow up from her chemo treatment, Peter. It is supposed to attach itself to any surviving cancer cells to prevent them from multiplying. Helvi, as far as we know is in remission.

      Liked by 3 people

  3. petspeopleandlife Says:

    Your daughter looks a lot like you. She is a pretty young woman but is not to say that you are a pretty man. Hee hee.

    Anyway it is good to know that you are driving very well as evidenced by your drive to Sydney. But I’m not striving to infer that it is miraculous that you are still driving. I still drive as well but have avoided interstate highways for about 17 years or more. Extremely busy highways give me the willies and I just avoid them and take another route.

    I am sorry that Helvi is still under the influence of chemo. That stuff is hell. I hope that she is soon fully recovered.

    Here is wishing a lovely Christmas for your family.

    Liked by 2 people

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      I must say, my driving is not as assured as it once was. Driving in tunnels makes me anxious. The traffic police always advice to keep plenty of distance between cars. I practice that but someone always takes advantage and sneaks in between. I sometimes wish I could activate some sort of electronic device that would rebuke those drivers. Perhaps giving a mild electronic shock or a flat tyre would be nice. I don’t like those busy highways either.
      Helvi is trying to be helpful especially in finding parking spaces that I have just driven past. (joking)

      A lovely and joyful Christmas to you too, Ivonne

      Liked by 2 people

  4. doesitevenmatter3 Says:

    Thank you for always speaking about important and interesting issues, Gerard!
    And for making me laugh about other issues! 😀
    Maybe when we reach a certain well-seasoned age we become like teenagers again in that we are back to being/liking languorousness. (great word! 😀 ) But, unlike teenagers, we need help getting back up. 🙂
    I’ve had that bone density test. :-/ At least it wasn’t painful. 🙂
    Best wishes to you and Helvi with your heath issues. And I hope you have a wonderful, fun, happy Christmas! 🙂
    YAY for our pets! They do make life grand! 🙂
    HUGS!!! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Glad you enjoy my words, Carolyn. You and others encourage my words and it makes for happiness.

      How was you density test? I have a backache and the doctor thinks I need to perhaps get some treatment.

      I hope all this messing about comes to an end. I have to balance all this up by some saying that Australia is very much driven by over-subscribing patients with medications. It is very much profit driven.

      On the other hand some ailments are genuine and need treatment.
      Have a nice Christmas too and… keep those hugs going.

      Liked by 1 person

      • doesitevenmatter3 Says:

        My density test results were good. At a certain point they start testing women…I guess post menopause women can develop osteoporosis. So they check women every 10 years or so.

        I hope you get healing for your back.

        Thank you! You have a nice Christmas, too!
        And I will!
        (((HUGS))) 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  5. freefall852 Says:

    Bone density tests..??…I’m sorry if I sound ignorant on the subject..but ; bone density?…it sounds strange sort of test…a bit invasive is it not?…..and is it done with or without taking the viagra?

    Liked by 2 people

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      No, it is not a boner test, Jo. Don’t get too excited.

      The test you are referring to is the Justice Frankfurter (1939 to 1962) test on the issue of obscenity many years ago. This was during the period when certain books and films were still prohibited and banned.

      The test was tried in court by Justice Frankfurter of the New York City jurisdiction. The material would be viewed by this expert Judge. He would retire to his chambers for private viewing of the material. On his return he would, and depending on the angle of his penile tumescence/ excitement, declare the material obscene or not.

      D H Lawrence’s Lady Chatterley Lovers and Philip Roth’s Portnoy’s complaint were not deemed obscene as his Lordship’s erection did not get above the pre-determined 90 degree angle.

      It is still known today as the Justice Frankfurter test.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. GP Cox Says:

    Liked by 1 person

  7. freefall852 Says:

    That series ..; “Utopia” covers both the “fast train” and the second airport at Badgery’s Creek…I don’t know how the writers got wind of them, but they were right on the money with both the schemes and the farcical policies!….truly a laugh a miniute stuff…been watching a dvd of that show and The Hollow Men….jeez..they are so good..and right on target with the laughs..

    Liked by 1 person

    • Big M Says:

      Gladys has the fast trains coming and going again, and to far flung places as Orange, Kiama, Newcastle, etc. Of course, these places once had steam trains that got people and goods to more places, quicker, and with more stops. I recently slipped down to Sydney on the Flyer, to have lunch with my cousin. Seven hours of travel to have ninety minutes of lunch! I did manage to catch the ‘ poor man’s yacht ‘, the Sydney Harbour Ferry. What must tourists think? Actually, I know what they think. I was chatting to an American on the Airport train last time we came home from overseas. He mentioned the words, uncomfortable, no room for luggage, generally fucked, and we are getting a cab!!

      Liked by 1 person

      • gerard oosterman Says:

        I still have an Opal card on which I deposited $30.- .Last time the train took so long to get to Sydney we decided to go by car again from then on.

        People tell us that the trains were faster 50 years ago. They patch up the lines but I suspect the rail infrastructure is totally buggered. A new rail-line needs to be build.

        I remember fondly our experience of trains on our arrival in Australia in 1956. The trains were made of weatherboards. The carriages were made of wood! My dad studied the dates of manufacturing as engraved on the couplings, and he came home all flushed. ‘They are made in 1932’, he enthused.

        Even so, at least one could wind down the windows and let go of a good thunder after a dodgy prawn Christmas party.

        Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      I haven’t seen or experienced Utopia, Jo.

      Last night we watched ‘The Pianist’ made by Roman Polanski. He is still subject to the possibility of an extradition order to the US for having had sex decades ago with a minor. Anyway, the movie, like most of Polanski’s films, was well made and showed his artistry even at his advanced age.
      What is Woody Alan up these days?
      He too hasn’t escaped the wrath of the ‘me too’ movement with allegations of sexual antics. It is getting so dangerous now. Men will be lucky to escape.

      Keep your eyes averted and away from Eve. Eat an apple instead.

      Liked by 1 person

      • berlioz1935 Says:

        And I thought eating THAT apple was the cause for our disgrace and being kicked out of paradise.

        Liked by 1 person

      • freefall852 Says:

        And sometimes even when one tries to avoid distasteful scenes,One can’t escape…:
        This friend I had in Melbourne (gosh..when I think back on so many friends I had before they invented the internet!!), aware as he was that his girlfriend of the time was very jealous, he would rigoriusly avoid and “seeing” of other girls (they were young at the time)..However one day, when they were caught in slow traffic, in the lane nearest to the footpath, he espied from a fair way away coming toward him a young woman of generous proportions wearing a tight sweater…I don’t think I need explain how males have this natural capacity for telescopic vision when it comes to the opposite gender…sufficient to say that Nostradamus himself couldn’t see as far into the future as your average male can into the distant crowds at a shopping mall and spot that one cause of his disquiet…
        He knew he had better not look to the lady if he knew what was good for him, so with a white-knuckled grip of the steering wheel, he slowly crept the car past as the young lady came abreast, keeping his eyes super-glued to the road ahead.

        But just as the girl walked past, he received this almighty smack to the back of his head from his girlfriend!
        “What was that for!?” he cried..
        “That girl with the tight sweater…” his delight accused.
        “I wasn’t looking at her..” he bewailed “I was watching the road ahead…” and he rubbed the sore spot..
        “No!” she sneered..”But you wanted to!!”

        Liked by 1 person

      • berlioz1935 Says:

        Whether women like it or not, we men were designed like that by mother nature. We have to keep an eye on our prey, so to speak. Diverting one’s eye, while driving is dangerous but it also proves that the instinct to procreate is stronger than the instinct for survival.

        When I was younger, much younger and my wife caught me once looking at another woman she said, ” I don’t mind where you get your appetite from, as long as you eat at home.”

        Perhaps this is the reason we had our 62nd wedding anniversary yesterday.

        Liked by 2 people

      • gerard oosterman Says:

        We can never win, Jo. A tight sweater, and things are stacked against us.
        The primary function of breasts is to make men look stupid, (Dave Barry)

        Liked by 1 person

      • gerard oosterman Says:

        So true,Berlioz,

        But every now and then, a takeaway beckons, but it is alright if you take it home. 62 years is a long time, Peter. Say hello to Uta and congrats to both of you. Well done!
        Let me leave you with this:

        There was a young fellow named Lancelot
        Whom his neighbours all looked on askance a lot,
        Whenever he’d pass
        A presentable lass
        The front of his pants would advance a lot.

        Like

      • freefall852 Says:

        Ah! ..brave Sir Lancelot…:

        There was a young Lady of Shallot,
        Thought Sir Lancelot quite hot!
        His ;”Tirra Lirra” by the river,
        Raised her body to such a fever,
        That beside his war-horse and bridle gemmy,
        She thought he as “hot to trot” as any!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Big M Says:

        Hedy Lammarr quite famously said, “American men, as a group, seem to be interested in only two things, money and breasts. It seems a very narrow outlook.”

        Yes, Gentlemen, as Mrs M once said. “Other women are like motorcycles, you can look all you like, but take one for a test ride……”

        Liked by 2 people

      • gerard oosterman Says:

        Though a lady repel your advances, she’ll be kind
        Just as long you ‘intimate’ what’s on your mind.
        You may tell her you’re hungry, you need to be swung,
        You may ask her to see how your etchings are hung.
        You may mention the ashes that need to be hauled;
        Put the lid on her saucepan (“lay” isn’t too bald);
        But the moment you’re forthright, get ready to duck:
        The girl isn’t born yet who’ll stand for ” Let’s ####.”

        Liked by 2 people

  8. freefall852 Says:

    Here, Gerard…forget about all the rubbish of the year..Here’s to Xmas food!.. https://freefall852.wordpress.com/2018/12/21/slow-cooking-in-a-black-kitchen/

    Liked by 1 person

  9. gerard oosterman Says:

    The apple turned out to be a smelly Durian.

    Like

  10. Forestwood Says:

    Merry Christmas to you and Helvi, Gerard! I discovered my teenagers rediscovered their spinal column around 22. Almost there with the last one. Do hope for the best with the tests. I am officially in the sandwich generation and find them also intrusive for the family accompanying their elderly relatives on these riveting and worrying hospital excursions.

    Like

  11. freefall852 Says:

    Gerard…Just in case I haven’t said it clearly..Here’s to you, Helvi and all yours for a safe and joyful season…all the best for the new year!
    Love your humour…

    Like

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      And the same to you, Jo. All the best for you and Irene. Keep that oven burning bright and show us all the brightness and lightness of your illuminating philosophies on…well,… just about everything.

      Like

      • freefall852 Says:

        ” philosophies on…well,… just about everything.”…well..you know how it is…you’ve fixed the brakes on the Holden Commodore so they at least slow the car down a tad or two, and with that you reckon you’ve just about solved it all!

        Like

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