The Virginia Creeper will just have to sustain us now.

IMG_0099 Virginia creeper.JPG

Virginia creeper.

All our communal town-houses were originally planted with gardens which included the Virginia-Creeper shown in the above photo. This creeper grows very fast, mainly at night when everyone is sound asleep or if not sleeping, at least inside their dormitories. Originally, our townhouses had a united garden which included the Virginia Creeper. Sadly though, all Virginia creepers were taken out with the excuse that they are known to be destructive. A falsehood was spread that those fast growing climbers would by assaulting and climbing over everything, strangle brick walls and block our much revered and beloved guttering. We, against all advice and scorn of neighbours, held onto our Virginia for dear life, and even if it succeeds in strangling us and our town-house, so be it. It is amazing how gardening is so often seen as OK or mere tolerable as long as it doesn’t take over or threatens our own homes and ‘investment’ as one of our neighbours once uttered.

With last night’s defeat in Australia of the Labor Party to the Liberals against all odds, and the best of News Polls, and predictions, this contemplation of the Virginia-creeper might just have to sustain us for the near future. The near future is not to be taken in vain or too lightly. Perhaps a better phrase might be ‘our twilight years’ as both of us are nearing the eighties and for some things, time is becoming more of the essence. It would have been so nice to  have witnessed an Australia finally coming of an age where change for the better, would override the endless ennui of more of the same. How much longer can we look forward each morning to an Australia where Taxation cuts, Border Controls, sticking to contemplating the past, and Queen Victorian Gun boat diplomacy has to sustain us?

Just think how it now must feel to have for another three years a Scott Morrison as Prime Minister. A man who has on numerous occasions highlighted his belief in Christian faith but at the same time was almost manically keen on locking up for indefinite detention thousands of people who have done no wrong except for trying to escape from wars and bloodshed and look for a safe refuge in Australia. I wonder how those refugees on Manus and Nauru, now well into their sixth year of detention, are feeling today, hearing how their tormenter has been chosen as leader of Australia for another three years?

So much hope was invested in a change of leadership that would finally allow Australia to progress to a more just and fairer society. A society that would be leading in climate change and care for the environment. Today is a day where we celebrate the standing still of Australia. When will we ever learn, that change ought to be embraced even if change might at times fail? It is always better to have tried than not at all. Why is Australia often celebrating the fondness for looking back and clinging to the past? My parents who came here from Holland in 1956 would not be proud today of Australia. They wanted a better future for their children. My wife,  from a very progressive Finland and I with Dutch genes, are almost tempted to book a return to Holland.

We don’t have to look at Holland or Finland for examples of progressive countries. Just look a bit to the side and look to New Zealand. They have a leader that seems to thrive on progress, especially on a social level. Why don’t we look to our Eastern neighbours instead of our much beloved Western US, a nation that is being headed by a morally bereft President man heading his country knee-deep in a moral morass?

It has been New Zealand who offered  several times to take the refugees from Nauru and Manus. Our Australian Prime Minister with his Christian Faith held high on Pharisees  sullied sleeve, heartlessly refused each time. We will just go outside and look at our Virginia creeper. It will have to sustain us till the next time!

My poor country, Australia.

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26 Responses to “The Virginia Creeper will just have to sustain us now.”

  1. berlioz1935 Says:

    A good essay, as usual. You inspired me to write my own essay. You find it here

    Liked by 3 people

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Thanks, Berlioz. I am in awe of your article. Well summed-up and covering so many important issues.
      What a nightmare to get Morrison after all that he has said, and not achieved, especially in climate change.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. janesmudgeegarden Says:

    Gerard, I am moved by your summation of the election debacle. I don’t understand how Australians who belong to the land of the so-called ‘fair go’ could be so lacking in generosity…a small percentage of wealthy people being asked to give a little in order to improve the lives of others. We now have a PM who ran a campaign by smearing the other side whilst promising nothing. I can’t bear the idea of at least three years of a smirking Morrison, so I think I will refrain from watching any news on TV and selectively read about other news online from newspapers I know I can trust ( the Guardian). As you say, pity those poor people on Manus whose lives have been in limbo, and whose lot seems like it will worse from now.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Therese Trouserzoff Says:

      I personally feel there is nowhere to go on the newsprint front. For me – also a Guardian reader – confirmation bias (only reading one’s own side’s papers, for example) was what lulled me into believing that Labor would be a shoe-in.

      I have a mate who refuses all news – preferring to be informed as much as he needs by his friends. Nup, for me that’s distilled confirmation bias :-). It’s also bludging off your mates.


  3. Dora Jahnes Says:

    Its as time has stood still in Australia.
    Unfortunately not for us.


    • gerard oosterman Says:

      So, what next, Dora?

      I am hoping to hang around till the next election but will refrain from having unreal expectations. Optimism can only disappoint while a good solid pessimist always knows things are bad.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Dora Jahnes Says:

        We would have to be lucky/unlucky to have to endure another 3 years of this crap. Still, our parents endured 4 and half years of a brutal war and then more famine….they escaped to greener pastures? Who knows where our grandchildren will live. At least ours have a choice to obtain European passports. It gives us some comfort.


  4. gerard oosterman Says:

    It is still beyond me how a Government can win an election without having any policies. The polls had it all wrong but so did the polls in the US, prediction Hillary would win.
    Did the voters in Australia got lured in by tax breaks and the promise of more rugby?
    We were all so keenly hoping for a Government that would move on the refugees, the homeless, the mentally ill, the childcare costs, disabled, the aged, pensions and New-start payments.
    Clive Palmer is now proudly stating that he won the election for Morrison and can now claim to dig up more gold and trinkets.
    What an honour for Australia.

    Even so, today is the first day of the fight-back. I hope we will see the day that things will change for the better.


  5. berlioz1935 Says:

    Without policies you are making sure you don’t scare anyone. Australians are scared of the unknown. You could argue that a policie free program would scare too. People who have no imagination can be scare by seeing something but not understanding.

    Liked by 2 people

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Yes, that is true, Peter. Having no policies makes one a Teflon politician whereby nothing will stick.
      It is possible that the senate might obstruct legislation enough whereby a new election is called for. One never knows.


  6. shoreacres Says:

    Your Virginia creeper’s beautiful. It looks a little different from what I think of as Virginia creeper, but that’s no surprise. The same common name often applies to a multitude of plants. The color of yours is equally delightful, and I suspect it’s one of the dependable bits of fall color, as it is for us.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. stuartbramhall Says:

    My condolences on the disappointing election results.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. freefall852 Says:

    I could just weep…but my eyes are now too dry from crying…

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Therese Trouserzoff Says:

    Yesterday FM said “You look a bit down, mate”. I replied “Day one of the next three years”.

    It hurts bad, Gez. The last time it hurt this badly was when Gough was dismissed. Perhaps it was even worse since I had so wanted the things that Shorten was promising.

    My personal mistake as one of Albo’s voters was to think that Inner West views are representative of all Australians. And I missed the fact that just because Qld had elected a state Labor government, they would not embrace the light on the Hill. How delusional was that of me ! George Christensen, Peter Dutton….. for Pete’s sake !

    Sadly John Howard summed it up pretty well – too much change frightens the essentially conservative “she’ll be right” voters. And somebody else reminded us that Kevin Rudd snuck into power not on a policy agenda, but on the basis that he was essentially a younger and more attractive version of John Howard.

    I think the Labor party made a mistake when they selected Shorten instead of Albo. They wasted the next three years being led by a prefect on the debating team instead of the guy who ruled the playground and captained the sports – which, it seems boof-head narrow self-interested voters really want.

    But the glimmer of hope seems that we should now have Tanya or Albo at the helm (goddess forbid it’s Chris Bowen – a decent bloke but not a statesman in the league of Hawke, Keating, Whitlam or Mal (Trousers) Fraser).

    And the last plus from Saturday is that the good voters of Warringah disposed of Abbott. Hurrah for that at least. But the crap still remains.

    Thanks for your great piece Gez, Your readers might like to read Warrigal Mirriyuula’s piece “How to get Shit off Green Leather” over at the Pig’s Arms – to raise a smile in these dark days.

    All the best, Therese Trouserzoff.

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      An all pervading smell of doom. We all should check our shoes in case we have trodden on it. (Michael Leunig)
      The stock-market is dancing though, up close to 100 points with the banks up over 7% on Westpac, over 8% on CBA. They can smell the RBA rate cuts which will make shares a much better investment offering 5% return AND the imputation credit.
      Medibank Private up over 11%. (No extra spending on health nor rebates on Dental care nor Breast cancer )

      Liked by 1 person

  10. doesitevenmatter3 Says:

    I’m so sorry to hear about the election results. 😦

    Seems many countries around the world are going backwards instead of forwards. 😦

    Your Virginia Creeper is so beautiful! I often find joy, hope, and comfort in nature. 🙂 I, also, feel like I learn from observing nature…it helps me try to do more than just survive…but find ways to thrive…and find ways to bring joy, hope, comfort, etc., to my fellow human-beans.

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Yes, despite or because of politics we might get more focussed on the more important issues of beauty and nature. And they are free. If we ignore that, we can’t be fighting for preserving our world. We owe it to our children to respect and care for nature and with that comes climate change.
      Long live the Virginia Creeper.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Master of Something Yet Says:

    I’ve just spent the weekend with a friend who has now today moved to New Zealand. I cannot adequately express the level of my jealousy.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Therese Trouserzoff Says:

    Gez, a bloke at our Sangha last night reminded me that our jaded lefties’ suffering is caused by expecting the world to either stay the same or improve in the direction to which we aspire – when we should expect it to do nothing other than what it does.

    Thank goodness for your Virginia Creeper 🙂


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