Posts Tagged ‘National’

Australia day, where is the ‘joie le vivre?’ It seems a bit lacklustre.

January 26, 2018

 

Almost ThereThe night before last we watched our PM Malcolm Turnbull, lavishly praising himself while handing out the ‘Australians Of The Year Awards.’ Sam Kerr who won the  Young Australian, was my favourite. There is just no one like her, and she has put soccer in the limelight not seen since Dutch Abe Lenstra in the fifties. Of course, the Quantum Computer builder, Michelle Simmons is the worthiest recipient of this award ever since it was introduced. And what about the other two recipients? Eddy Woo. Amazing, an inspiration to all. The taciturn Senior, Graham Farquhar was outstanding, such talent.

Next day, Helvi and I got up early to go out and sample the exuberance of Australia Day in Bowral. There could be no doubt, there would be music and all-round jollity with neighbours forgetting old feuds, congratulating each and all on the all inclusive and diverse nature of this lucky brown sun-kissed land of Australia. But, it was all eerily silent and quiet. No tooting of horns nor flag waving. We noticed many shops were closed and the few elderly people that were about looked a bit lost. I quickly hovered over the idea if they too were struggling with accessing ‘Aged Care’ and perhaps had lost their ID numbers!

Some years ago, canny estate agents had put out little flags stuck in lawns in front of every house. Not this time. In fact not many flags at all. We went home and had a coffee, pondering about what the reason was for this lack of Australia Day fervour. Was it the previous heatwave that had sapped remaining energy already depleted through over-indulgence during Christmas? I know I had witnessed mothers loosing their cool with kids’ demands for ever more ice creams or mango slushies. I overheard one mum telling her son, ‘wait until I tell your father’, an ominous warning for the poor boy.

I suggested to Helvi we have another go at sampling Bowral exuberance some time late in the afternoon, when heat had sunk below horizon giving people time to re-charge and give outbursts of National pride a fair chance. I also suggested to Helvi I might ask some of the passing pedestrians how they celebrated this momentous event and it if they knew where there might be music or even public dancing?

We waited till about 8,30pm, and for the second time went about sampling Australia Day. The evening was lovely and balmy. I wore sandals without socks. It was almost dark anyway. Again, there were not many people about. The main street was empty and a black crow was screeching its head off sitting on top of a telegraph pole. At least the bird was giving festivities a bit of a leg-up. There was no music. In the distance we noticed three people coming our way and I had my question ready. When we were level with each other, I noticed they looked dark, possibly Indian. They were three men with one of them wearing a large dark coloured T-shirt with AUSTRALIA emblazoned across it.

I congratulated them on Australia Day which surprised them. They smiled and I quickly asked them if there were any celebratory events they might be looking for. I explained we too were celebrating Australia Day and were looking to share this. ‘It is very quiet,’ I said, and followed this up, ‘where are the celebrations’? And there was this immediate response of recognition. ‘Oh, always very quiet,’ Australia is quiet country,  one man smiled broadly. ‘Maybe across the road in the pub is a bit of life,’ another offered.  It was true.

We all had reached common ground.

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And now for the good News

February 24, 2017

 

Almost ThereThe last few posts have been the work of the curmudgeon supreme. Jerimiah seems to have  reached a new level in delight and joy, highlighting the never ending stream of all that is going wrong. Sorry for the bleakness, but somebody had to do it. I don’t know why I watch the news. Relentless Trump and Turnbull. Neck on neck trying to outdo each other in a race to the bottoms-up, dehumanising their patch. Surely, there is something more cheerful to write about. Those grim purple faced bishops fronting the Royal Commission. Footage of one eminent church leader dipping a large feathered brush in Holy water sprinkling the congregation. Oh, such folly of voodoo and chicken feathers dressed with mitres and in flowing robes. Are there Technical tafe courses in becoming agnostic?  I am sure many are now queuing up.We need many more doubting Thomas’s.

 

The good news came from our National Library of Australia in Canberra.  ” Dear Gerard Oosterman.” “We would be DELIGHTED to receive a print copy of your book  ‘Almost there.’ Our records showed that this title is now published.”

Can you believe it? All this apart from both my books also having been entered in two of the State Library literary competitions. I am so happy that, after I posted the book at the Post office, I promptly shouted myself a nice  micro-wave heated up sausage roll. The word ‘delighted’ really did it. It was about time somebody got delighted.

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I walked with my fat sausage roll to a park bench in Corbett Gardens, Bowral. The same park where the three elderly sisters were hit by  lightning  last week.  I sat down with Milo. He looked keenly at my poly-styrene package holding the sausage roll. It was a mini celebration. I would like you all to share in my joy.

I gave Milo about half my treat.

It was so lovely and good.

This blight of being normal.

March 17, 2015

 

The grandsons Jan, 2013

The grandsons Jan, 2013

If you are ever told that you are mad, rest assured you’re on the right track. No greater praise can ever be given. I generally try and avoid normal people. They often listen to  radio’s shock jocks, look at commercial TV and put on re-runs of ‘I love Lucy’. The jury is still out on those wearing knee socks, especially when combined with sandals but  is ok with raglan sleeved jumper. Only this morning I noticed a man sitting on a park bench reading The Daily Telegraph. Now, there was a normal man if ever there was. Milo sorted him out though, walked up to the bench and cocked his leg resolutely while trying to catch the man’s eye. I felt that my contempt for that newspaper was well warranted when I noticed car stickers with ‘ Do you think that is true or did you read it in the Daily Telegraph?

 

The country is getting excited again. The normal state of torpor is rapidly vanishing. Neighbours are smiling to each other and saying ‘gooddayehowsitgoing?’ again. In another eleven days the NSW state is having an election. The greens have just announced preferences ,bar a few seats they could win on their own, will be given to the Labor

More Salvia

More Salvia

Party above that of the conservatives. Both the Greens and the Labor party are opposed (vehemently) to selling off the Poles and Wires. Things are looking up and H and I will be glued to the screen watching how the previously safe seats of the liberal- national party will fall into the warm, soft and welcoming bosom of Labor.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-03-17/nsw-election-2015-labor-greens-preference-deal/6324726

You can tell that the Liberal-National party are run by very, very normal people. They had hoped that passing legislation with a matching budget that lowered prosperity, especially for the impoverished end of town, would be received with great enthusiasm and  given standing ovations by all. The pension would be lowered from 25% of average wage to 17%. They would introduce a lovely co-payment for each visit to the doctor of $ 7.-, each time. As icing on the cake, deregulating and making university independent from government funding would also be introduced. Universities would be allowed to compete and charge according to what they see fit. Students would be paying off the fees for many, many years, but only if they got a job. All very normal.

It is almost time for the next budget and last year’s budget is still hanging in there. They blame an obstinate senate not passing those lovely bills. And, even now at this late stage, no one of the normal LNP club dares to look in the mirror of reality. They should know that selling public assets is now truly on the nose but with their persistence in trying flogging off the power grid, they seem to have exceeded all forms of normality.

Thank goodness for all those ‘normal people’ who will put Labor back in the seat again. ( We hope)