It’s May!  Time, apparently, for a little dancing and some winged horse action.  So, pretty much like Woodstock in a doublet.  Huzzah!


309 Responses

  1. Nice to know you are still alive, doublet or no!

    • Right back atcha, Stafford!

  2. Yep. I’ll doublet too.

    Feeling virtuous today. More fixing of the cubby, Stained the last rod for the library ladder. Stained the catapult with the leftovers so it doesn’t look so new. Waiting for the brass bars I’ll use to make the hooks for the ladder – posted over a week ago from a few suburbs away but you know Auspost. In fact we felt so virtuous, we celebrated with some really nice shiraz-mataro and bacon-chili-mushroom pasta a la Beard. Hurrah for May!

  3. May-be.

  4. Being as it’s Greybeard, may-be there’ll be a mis-hap.

  5. Catapult? I’m more concerned for the local felines.

    • I’d never do that! It’s the flinging-flaming-missiles-at-the-castle kind of catapult.

  6. And Mayhem’s Mum. Maybe that’s why she’s been so silent lately?

  7. I hope GB’s winterised the oubliette. Won’t someone think of the rats?

  8. Going by the chip packets and food wrappers the little buggers are leaving in our back yard, I’d say they’re doing just fine.

    • But is that a healthy diet? Perhaps the poor wee ratties aren’t getting enough fibre?

  9. After 20 years of rats in the ceiling, I am pleased to have one without it.
    The Sparkies are convinced there’s a carpet snake up there, and so long as it doesn’t fall through the roof & land in my toilet, I’m happy for it to remain up there.
    Apparently they like to curl up & sleep on those heater lamp things that Victorians put into their bathrooms & really FKN stupid Queenslanders (like the previous owners here) put in theirs.
    We have a heater lamp in the ceiling of both bathrooms, and you can be sure of it, I won’t be turning it on.

  10. Have they been going through the drive-through?

  11. For the safety of our staff and patrons, service will only be provided to rats in vehicles.

  12. I knew there was a good reason for not clearing out all those old lunchboxes!

    BTW, Catty – how did you get on with the doc on Friday?

  13. No luck. I’ve had to reschedule to Wednesday.

  14. Bugger.

  15. I raise your Bugger to a Dang.

  16. I think the phrase I used was ‘Shit pickles’.

  17. That’s a good one. I’ll reserve it for future use, if I may?

  18. The Bloke doesn’t like pickles, so he uses it whenever we are at the markets & I pick up a jar of chutney.
    Shit pickle jam?

  19. How can anyone not like chutney?

  20. I have no idea. I particularly like it on a toasted cheese sandwich.

  21. It’s one of the greatest travesties of justice that the Hopetoun Tea Rooms don’t have cheese and chutney toasties on the menu any more.

  22. Did they, previously? That is a sad omission.

  23. They did. And they were good. Really, really good. Bastards.

  24. I wonder why they took it off the menu.
    Although I can’t say I’d like to share a cramped office space with someone who ate them every day.

  25. Better than someone who eats tuna out of the can, like a cat.

  26. Mmmm… Fancy Feast…

  27. Fancy is in the eye of the beholder.

  28. Oh, don’t be holding Fancy Feast. You’ll be attacked by cats.

  29. That’s no good. A potential catastrophe.

  30. That’s odd, I lost a post. The internet has been a bit slow today.
    Almost catatonic…

  31. Maybe GB is using your posts as ammunition for the catapult?

  32. If GB’s involved, everything will soon be cattywampus.

  33. I think we were all already in that category.

  34. More sins added to my catalogue…

  35. That’s not a catalogue. That’s a tome.

    • It’s so heavy I can’t take it anywhere so it just stays a tome.

  36. In other words, you’ve made it into a mater?

    • Lord no! But if it ever mates, I’ll send you one of the offspring.

      • Thanks, I love Tome Maters.

  37. I’ve got nothing.
    I’m just filled with bitter angst that none of us thought to patent the Plush Toy microbes that I found in the university shop today.
    I was eating sweets from their fondle & feed boxes when I came across this one, suitable, much:

  38. I got a couple of similar things from Think Geek a while back. They had stretchy bits you could use to launch them and made coughing or vomiting noises when they hit, depending on the germ. I’m all class because I didn’t buy the gonorrhea one (and didn’t want to know what noise it made).

  39. “Electro-gonorrhea; the noisy killer”

  40. Gonorrhoea has a Moog soundtrack, and, in all likelihood, a thin moustache.

    • And too many buttons undone on the shirt so you can see the chunky gold chain?

  41. Has it come to ‘Clean the pool’?

  42. Yes. It also has polyester flares, worn low on the hips.

  43. Hey! Those look my flares. How come the damned MRSA super bug fits into those & I don’t?
    Onto other news, Nursing Student Niece has a birthday coming up in a few weeks & the Bloke had such pleasure from the Super Bug that he has approved my purchase of one to add to her BD gift.
    Did I tell you that the latest update is that she’s planning to live in at one of the university residential colleges next year?
    I think the MRSA super bug will be the perfect pillow adornment to welcome her friends & amours, when they come to call.
    Although perhaps she’d prefer to dangle it from her rear-view mirror, so she’s got something to lash out at when she’s stuck in the gold coast traffic.

  44. That’s lovely news. She won’t be trying to stay with you!

  45. Don’t be silly, Morgana. There won’t be any room for NSN once we’ve moved in. Just waiting on that kitchen, Q.

  46. And the spa on the deck, too.

  47. Please tell me there will be space for our hammocks.

  48. And a pony!

  49. I do like ponies, but I couldn’t eat a whole one.

  50. You’ve got your pony. It’s on the letterbox.

  51. And now I’m singing…. The Postman came on a Monday, and put a pony in the letterbox!…. (*sing!*)…. and put a pony in the letterbox!

  52. Praise Cthulu, I don’t know that one.
    We drove past pony club OTW home last Sunday, the Currumbin club.
    I can’t tell you how lovely it feels, to be driving home from a glorious morning on the creek, and to be able to go most of the way past cows and horses & paddocks.
    We come home the back way, via Currumbin & Tally.
    It’s just delightful.

  53. If you don’t know The Silly Postman song, I may have to send you a copy of Peter Combe’s Toffee Apple album. You can play it in the car on that lovely drive home.

  54. Around here, it’s more like the Postman came on Monday and put a firework in the letterbox. It was only a few years ago that one across the road was blown up.

  55. That’s very sophisticated. Around here, the kids just kick the letterboxes down.

  56. At least it’s good exercise.

  57. Watch your language. We don’t like the ‘E’ word around these parts.

  58. But there are so many good “E” words. Like eclair, and umm… everything!

  59. There are a lot of bad E words too. Embolism, enema and ebola come to mind.

  60. Also, Earthworks, in which I am taking a guilty (poor little koalas) interest.
    They are putting the top layer of tarmac down on the new road over the hill, and I’m thinking happily of how lovely it will be to walk the hound around the block on the coming weekends, without having him come home red from the hips down, thanks to all that volcanic red soil they are shuffling around.
    So today, Pleasantville is brought to you by the letter T, for Tar.
    Also S, for Squelchers.
    In spite of this, I’m still finding it fabulously Serene, compared to Toad Park.
    We walked down at Burleigh this morning, instead of Currumbin, and even in the pre-dawn darkness, there were still far too many people about for my liking.

  61. I smell a new children’s book in the making.

    A is for Arthritis, Alzheimers and Aneurysm
    B is for Bursitis, Botulism and Beriberi
    C is for Chlamydia, Cholesterol and Chickenpox
    D is for Diarrhoea, Dysentary and Depression
    E is for Embolism, Enema and Ebola

    Now who can we get to do the illustrations?

  62. F is for Forgetfulness, Farting and ….

    sorry, what was I doing again?

  63. G is for Gastroenteritis, Glaucoma and Greybeard….

    ….We don’t need an illustrator. We can just photograph the plush varieties from Think Geek.

    • Heeyyyy!

  64. There’s a plush Greybeard? I hope it has interchangeable parts!!

    • I sure hope you mean my knee? (sniffle)

  65. Now picturing GB as Mr. Potato Head.

  66. Somebody totally needs to make that. Kickstarter!

  67. Mr Potato Head creeps me out. There’s something just wrong about storing spare body parts in something’s butt.

  68. But that’s how we design our cars?

  69. I might make a paper doll of Greybeard. What costumes would you like, GB?

    • Need you ask? Can i be a pirate? Please please please?

      • Sure. Also, I think, a plague doctor. What I really need is a full-length piccy. Preferably in a vaguely anatomical position, so you’re easy to dress.

  70. Please don’t tell me you just asked for a picture of GB in the nuddy.

    • Noooooo!

      • Noooooo! Just standing. Fully clad!!

  71. LOL.
    And we’ve been thwarted again in our schemes to get rich, look, someone has already made on of Hairy Greybeardson.

  72. At least we now know what the lesbian tattooist did after she was kicked out of the caravan park.

  73. That is awesome! I want one!

  74. What, the lesbian tattooist or the caravan park?

  75. I quite like the pins in the joints. Of course, Greybeard the Elder model would have to come with an extra set of pins, purely for Voodoo practice. And the unicycle and the kilt, obviously.

  76. I’d like a jointed paper doll of a lesbian tattooist.

    Don’t forget the Darth Vader helmet, Q.

    • LOL. How could I forget to mention that, and the bagpipes?

  77. Awesome! I can draw on my own tattoos.

    • Don’t forget the mutilated earlobes.

  78. The Gimmee has mutilated one of her earlobes. Every time I see the sun shining through her ear, I am tempted to run up to her, snap a padlock onto it, and swallow the key.

  79. I don’t understand this generation’s fascination with self-harm, and making themselves look so hideously deformed. It’s like it’s a badge of honour to be the ugliest freak on the block.
    And it’s not like I was a conservative dresser, as an older teen. I had some pretty wild outfits & hair & make up. At some point it all just got too hard & I regressed back to jeans & sneakers.
    Actually, now that I think back to my New Romantic period, I remember how much hard work it was, the fashion, the hair, the make-up. All worth it for the shocked looks, when you’d walk down Queen Street in the middle of the day, before it was a mall.
    I think this generation have just looked at all that effort & gone ‘Yah, too hard,’ & they’ve decided it’s easier to get drunk, pass out, and pay someone else to make them look hideous. Then all they need to do is wake up, throw on their shortest shorts & a baggy crop top from Big W, and let their mutilated bodies count as Fashion.
    I do wish self-mutilation would go out of fashion.

  80. It’s been going on for ages. I often wonder how many of them regret it when they get a bit older.

  81. Huzzah, I’m back! For the last day or two, clicking on Reply or Comments has taken me to a blank tab with gobbledegook header. So many tart replies and spirited defences of my sartorial choices, gone, gone like tears in the rain.

    I’ve saved that pic of HGBSon and I’m sending it to him. I think he should share my suffering. And he’s officially moved out of the old place and is in a rather nice share house with three young ladies(?). The old flatmate and his druggy nephews did a runner, leaving so much crap that HGBSon had to get a skip before the bond clean-up. The bloke was a friend from high school but he’s really on the drugs now. He left furniture, clothes, kitchen gear – anything he wasn’t wearing and couldn’t sell. So glad he’s out of P’s life, hopefully for good.

    Lyn’s mum rang last night. She has that Irish fascination with large family gatherings at *every* opportunity, happily ignoring the fact that many of them would really rather not. So she’s organised one for Sunday, the day after S and the two kids have flown up. Ma-in-law will love it and the rest of us will smile and smile (and be a villain in my case). Luckily her kids mostly get on well. Two don’t with each other and probably neither of them will be there. Would you like us to drive past Casa Q and take pics of Bog Hollow, just to remind you Q?

  82. Dear God no. I plan to spend the next ten years pretending that the previous 2 decades at Toad Park never happened.
    A family gathering? How very disturbing.
    Which Sunday, Khan GB?
    And are you driving/flying up to partake in this hullaballoo?
    All my assessment will be over on the 3rd June.
    And will be wanting friendly faces, given the cross looks on those of the children today, when they realised that they have one week in which to read & memorise 4 weeks of Español.
    So if there’s a chance to say hello, let me know.
    Druggy flatmates, sigh. Here’s hoping the revised house-mate plan is much more civilised.
    How’s J, by the way? All happy in her little nest? It looked so cute in the pix that you posted when they bought it.

    • We’re driving and arriving next Friday, S & kids fly in on Saturday. We’re carting up the bulky stuff and all staying in a 2 bedroom motel until Thursday 2nd! Then we drop them at the airport and go to Lyn’s mum’s for a night or two. We’re doing taxi duty for the kiddies so not much free time this trip. I’d love to see your new place though, even minus kitchen, and so would Lyn.
      J is fine and getting finer. She’s losing weight and feeling better on this exclusion diet and was accepted today into the second round of trials for the epilepsy treatment, which seems to be helping her. Also enjoying the Red Cross volunteer work.

      • Huzzah! That is great news about J, & the visit. Tell her Well Done You, from me. What’s she doing with the red cross, tea & bikkies?
        That could time out quite well, if you want to call in that weekend. And it would be lovely to see you.
        It won’t be terribly civilised & we don’t have a spare bedroom to offer yet – just the sofa, which includes cats, (irate cats, as they are off to boarding school on Sunday 5/6, and the vet nurse has to spray them both with tick treatment the day before) as the Bloke’s plans to install a door in the lounge room were deemed to be Technically Unfeasible by the good folk at Duce (another ‘I Told You So’ moment in our renovation saga, I suggest you admire it as a novel and intentional Design Feature) but you’ll get the BEFORE! affect in abundance.

        The Sanity Assassins/Cabinet Makers are due here on Monday 6 June for a week of kitchen installation, so I have blocked out my diary for 5 days of uninterrupted hysteria. If I were you I’d avoid that. Wish to God I could.

  83. Family gatherings are a good way of prepping for the Zombie Apocalypse. You can sit back and plan the best way to take each family member out. I’ve worked out that most of my rellies can be despatched with a shovel.

  84. Buried alive in a crate full of monkey poop?
    That’s my survival plan, Catty. Besides, one monkey on the clubhouse chandelier can’t possibly meet both of our extensive requirements.
    One of us is going to have to make do with Wildebeest poop.
    Your needs are greater than mine, so I’m willing to be gracious about it.

  85. You are too, too kind. Come the Zombie Apocalypse, (Sometime around September, according to recent calculations), the Wildebeest will be first into the hangi. The postman will be second. Unless I can convince the Gimmee to move in with us during late August – in which case, the postman will be third.

  86. Most of my relatives will cark it if I poison the wine supplies. Zombies doin’t drink wine, you say? Trust me, these ones won;t abandon the habit of a lifetime.

    Have a lovely trip, GB. Don;t forget the Valium!

  87. You’re right. Zombies don’t drink wine. They drink Ouzo.

    Yes, GB, have fun. You’ve got the Valium/Vodka slushie recipe committed to memory, right?

  88. That must be a Victorian Zombie thing, Catty.
    Here in Queensland, they all drink 4X.
    Mercifully it makes them particularly slow.

  89. Hey! I like Fourex! …. Oh. I see.

  90. Zombies love Fourex because it’s the only beer they can spell.

    Not that I can talk, judging by the typos in my earlier effort.

  91. Funny, that’s the same reason I like Fourex. Hey, you don’t suppose I’m a zombie, do you? Oh, dear. Now I’m worried.

  92. No, you’re too pretty to be a zombie. Also, you smell much better.

    • Yep. That’s almost exactly what I was going to say. Yep.

  93. Awww, you’re such a darling. Mwah!

  94. We’ve been doing a lot more kid wrangling the last couple of days as Sandy tries to tie things up before the trip. PB and I invented Extreme Muffin Eating, wherein she swings vigorously and I hold out a piece of muffin for her to chomp. Lyn took photos and I didn’t lose any fingers and we both had fun.

  95. No fair! I want to play Extreme Muffin Eating too!

  96. I used to play Extreme Muffin Eating. Lots of people go through a phase like that, at Uni.

    • ROFL

  97. JCU students don’t eat muffins. They have boat races. No boats are involved, just copious amounts of beer.

  98. So they have an Engineering Faculty, then.

  99. When I was there, legend had it that they used to fill a yard class full of warm urine & dare the drunkest of them to chug it down.
    How they could tell the difference between that & the 4X I will never understand.

  100. Really? I think someone was just taking the piss.

  101. Groan.
    Townsville engineers, MM.
    I’m sure Catty will back me on this.

    • I went on a date with one once. Quokka is 100% correct.

  102. I’m terrified at the prospect of Townsville engineers. There ought to be a big plaque before any bridges they design, so you’re aware you’re dicing with death.

  103. I don’t think they designed bridges. They were more likely to design the tap systems that brought the beer up from the cellar.

  104. LOL. What Catty said. There was also a theory that they’d designed one of the residential buildings & they’d put the roof on upside down.
    I think they aren’t allowed in metropolitan areas, but they do tend to proliferate on coastal strips.
    Apparently none of the shopfront awnings along the gold coast comply with code & most were originally designed by piss-drinkers, so they fall over every now & then & sometimes they manage to kill someone. The last one that collapsed killed the guy who designed the EcoVillage at Currumbin.
    Not sure what to make of that in the grand design of the Cosmos, other than that the Giant Flying Spaghetti Monster has it in for Greenies.

  105. Oh dear. According to Vote Compass, they’re who I’m most closely aligned to. Better watch out for dodgy awnings.

  106. I did that Vote Compass thing. It told me that I despise the ALP, the Greens and the LNP equally. Clever Compass.

  107. You’re safe, then.

  108. I’d still stay out from under the awnings on the east coast, anyway. JCU engineers are equal-opportunity disasters, waiting to happen.

  109. Sounds like a great excuse to stay home and shop online.

  110. That is utterly creepy. Please tell me you bought it.

  111. I wonder if it comes in Fob version. I could use one of those, installed by the knocker in the front door.

  112. It’s great, isn’t it? “The iris revolves hypnotically…”

    Q, you could just chop the straps off.

    Well, I’ve bought a new lounge suite on Gumtree. Off with a friend and his ute to pick it up this arvo. Wish us luck!

  113. Woohoo!

  114. Don’t forget to Scotchguard it. The Wildebeest is shedding again.

  115. It’s leather. I couldn’t risk fabric with my animals. The boys and the dog, I mean.

  116. Check behind the cushions for wallets. If you’re lucky, you might even find an Iced Vovo.

  117. It’s been yonks since I had an Iced Vovo. What does Vovo even mean?

  118. It is Icelandic for ‘buttock’.

  119. From now on, they shall be know as Iced Spankies.

  120. If you drop one on the new sofa, would you clean it up with a Hanky Spanky?

  121. Hehehe. Someone should bring out a brand of wet wipes called Gunky Monkey.

  122. My grandfather always called Iced Vovos “arsey foof-foofs”. I shudder to think what he would have called wet wipes.

  123. Arsey Foof Foofs? What, pray tell, did he call YOU, Catty?

  124. He called me Cathy. But in his defence, so did everyone else until I was old enough to make them stop.

  125. That’s a relief. I was expecting something much much worse.

  126. No, he left it for my father to come up with worse. Dad always called me ‘prawn head’.

  127. I got Fish Face from my step mother.
    In all fairness to her, my eyes were permanently boggled every time I set eyes on her.
    Dad sure knew how to pick ’em.
    Crazy, that is.

  128. My parents called me Greg and my grandparents called me Gary, ‘him’ or ignored me. Preferable to my sister who was called Eeley. Not sure why as she never resembled an eel? One of the four grandparents was quite normal but I don’t think he ever remembered which one I was. Kindly old chap though.

  129. Gary’s all right, as long as it’s not before Glitter

  130. Ew. Creepy.

  131. No wonder I don’t know who I am. The bishop at my confirmation had a stammer. “G-G-G-Geoffrey”.

  132. Are you sure he wasn’t saying ‘J-J-J-J-Joffrey’?

  133. Wodewick the Wobber?

  134. It wasn’t the baby-eating Bishop of Bath and Wells, was it?

  135. Would he throw the baby out with the bathwater or the well water?

  136. Whichever, it would be with a spring in his step.

  137. Yay! Trampoline shoes!

  138. Put the boing! back into anointing.

  139. It will give us a prime opportunity to see if they wear anything under those cassocks.

  140. I’ve got nothing. My brain has gone into a total coma from trying to learn a bunch of Spanish verbs.
    Carry on, I could use the giggles.

  141. Calzoncillos!

  142. Yeah, the gnomes took those.

  143. Aw, I thought it was Miss Kitteh.

  144. Well, you’ll be pleased to know that my life has turned into 70s porn. The Plumber has purchased a pool cleaning franchise.

  145. Bow-chicka-wow-wow!

  146. I’ll obviously have to buy him a gold medallion for Xmas.

  147. Has he started growing a moustache yet?

  148. Meant to be doing my online exam but pool porn?
    As soon as I surface from this day of online academic hell, the gold lamé ball hugging g-string is going into the mail.

  149. He’s got a full beard. I suppose they make hipster porn now, with full facial hair. Must look funny with a Brazilian.

  150. Oh, is the plumber Brazilian? I’ve been picturing him as American. Cheech and Chong American. Must be the gold medallion and the pepperoni pizza.

  151. Hehehe. Australian all the way, mate.

  152. Australian foreplay: “are you awake?”

  153. Ok, not THAT Australian.

  154. Catty you forgot Sports Code Romantics: ‘If you aren’t in the mood, then the poodle will do.’

  155. I shudder to think what the poodle will do. Scary dogs, poodles.

  156. Speaking of which, The Bloke had an exchange with the woman next door yesterday about hers. It’s a cavalier poodle cross & she ignores it all day & walks it once a week. Poor little puppy. She locks it in the laundry all night (and it cries)and as she is out from 7.30am – 5.30pm, the dog sits outside by the front gate & alternately cries & barks. We’ve tried talking to her about it & yesterday to ask her to keep it in the back yard where it can’t bark at every passer by. (um, Pilates & Wax Works?)
    when the Bloke approached her again he got a 20 minute wail of Poor Bugger Me, you are making my life hell here, just hell, I tell you (we’ve asked 3 x in 6 months very politely & supportively for her to address it) & a flat out refusal to comply with our request that she could chicken wire off the side of the house so that the dog is up in the back yard all day – rather than under my bedroom windows, crying.
    the awful thing is that she’s got one of those capsicum spray collars on it & it’s getting some sort of awful rash from the number of times it’s been blasted in the face by the thing.
    Anyway, she’s been strutting about today with that ‘hahaahahaha Dogs Bark, suck it up,’ attitude that bogans get.
    We’ve decided to stay quiet on the topic & just capture it on film.
    What the stupid woman doesn’t seem to understand is that GCCC have an on the spot fine of $375 for a dog that barks in excess of 3 minutes at a stretch. They issue a warning first, and try to work with the owner to resolve the problem, but yep. they’re so sick of bogans with neglected & unloved dogs that 2 years ago they changed their policy to be one of the harshest systems in the state. If the fines go unpaid they impound the dog & won’t allow the owner to have another one.
    Huzzah for the council for being on the side of animal protection.
    In Brisbane the fine was only $120.
    So yes. I was waiting for one of the neighbours to act like a dickhead & there you go.
    Unpleasant, but nothing to compare with the morons at Toad Park.
    I think all we’ll have to do is show her the video of her dog barking for 2 hours & say ‘Um, if we give this to council there is a $375 fine. A roll of chicken wire will cost you $20 at Bunnings. You get to choose which way this rolls, lady.’
    Her excuse for not restricting the dog to the back yard is ‘But putting a fence up there will ruin the look of my yard.’
    Eye roll.
    She keeps carrying on about how stressed she is over money, so we’re hoping that if she sees the video & knows that it’ll cost her $375 if we send a series of those to council, she’ll see the wisdom in investing in some chicken wire.
    I do find it staggering how cruel some mothers are willing to be to their pets, so that the kid has 5 minutes entertainment when it comes home cranky from school. Dad & the boyfriend are much nicer to the poor little doggy, so our other hope is that one of them will talk some sense into her.
    Still, we’re not too worried about it, given the severity of the council regs on dog barking. One look at a list of their fines should be enough to either give up & send the dog back to the breeder (which she keeps saying she’d like to do, she hates the dog) or else go out & buy some chicken wire.
    Poor puppy.
    Let’s hope she comes to her senses & she starts making some better choices.
    Aside from the dog behaviour she’s quite inoffensive as a neighbour.
    Smart of me to make the Bloke deal with it, though, as he came home last night with his eyes popping saying ‘OMG, I see why you didn’t want to deal with it, she’s completely unhinged, what a carry on.’
    Standard Alpha Female behaviour.

  157. I didn’t know you could get a dog collar that Maces the poor animal. That sounds dreadful.

    Good luck! Regrettably, many (?most) people are idiots.

  158. Agreed. This one would be perfectly acceptable as a neighbour if she didn’t have a dog. She’s out most of the time, and she keeps the same hours as me, so she’s not going to be a late night party irritant, thank God. And mercifully her Poor Bugger Me attitude means she doesn’t have any friends that come to visit.
    We’re hoping she’ll decide it’s all too hard & she’ll give the dog away to a better home.
    I’d say it’s on the cards, once we show her video of the dog barking while she’s out & tell her it’s a $375 fine.
    Still, I suspect she knows that, as typically after she’s done her whine & grumble & bitch, a few days later she pulls her head in & makes an effort to deal with it.
    It’s just painful listening to the whining, the excuses, the point scoring…OMG, she has no clue how to resolve problems & her entire skill base revolves around escalating conflict. Thankfully we’ve seen it all before & we don’t jump on that train when she starts tooting the engine.
    Still, dog aside, she’s easy to ignore.
    We’ve got a pretty sweet set up with this house – I drive in to the garage & walk straight up the internal stairs, and it’s very, very easy to not see a neighbour at all unless I make a point of being outside on the street in easy view of them, when they are home.
    And most of them aren’t home very often at all.
    And my policy of making the Bloke talk to the neighbours about any problem that arises is working.
    He’s deeply apologetic for not believing me over the last 20 years when I’ve tried to deal with the stupid women next door.
    He came home on Friday saying ‘F***, I’ve spent 30+ years on building sites dealign with the most stubborn, obnoxious personalities that the CFMEU can throw at you, and even so, you can usually get some sort of rational thought process out of them, and you can make some headway. But this one – Nothing!’
    As a result we had a very pleasant day together yesterday, because he’s racked with remorse.
    So at least I’m onto a winning strategy with this one.
    And as we have made some progress – albeit slowly, and none of it to the dog’s good – it does make me think we have some hope of edging closer to a resolution.
    Like I said – I think in the end she’ll give up & give the dog away.

  159. A friend of mine has a little doggie that would drive the neighbours crazy when she went to work. Her vet said it was separation anxiety, and put the doggie on anti depressants. He’s a chill little fellow now.

    Speaking of chilled out doggies, I hear there’s a group of activists lobbying for legalised medical marijuana for pets. This world just keeps getting more and more bizarre.

  160. For the pets…Right. Yep, sure it’s for the pets.
    And yeah, that’s what the vet said. They would medicate a dog for anxiety – and only if the owner had made every other attempt to deal with the behaviour. Like walking it twice a day, taking it to dog school, or calling in an animal trainer to address problematic behaviour. An anti-bark collar is not something you put on a puppy because you can’t be arsed training it & you only want to walk it once a week. That is just cruel.
    I had to take one of the cats down to our new local vet for a vaccination the other day & I had a long chat with them about our neighbour. Apparently she’s lying through her teeth about ‘the Vet said this & the vet said that’ as she’s not been in there since January & there’s nothing on his file about barking. She went through the roof when the Bloke (at my suggestion) asked her for the phone number of her dog trainer (she said she’d had a visit from bark busters. She didn’t. I called them & checked, and they don’t have her on file) so that we could support her efforts to train the dog when she’s out.
    One of the other neighbours did tell us that she had a very expensive trip to the vet with him just before we bought the house & he nearly died. Some sort of stomach upset. So between my information & the grim looks on the faces of the vet staff, I’m speculating that Prince & Princess Butt Wax lobbed something nasty over the fence before they left.
    Even my nicest, animal loving neighbour back at Toad Park said she was willing to poison the barking cattle dogs back there, if only she could figure out where the damned things lived. They were waking her kids up & making them all grumpy. So I don’t like to think what bogans would do by way of response to ‘Dogs bark. Get used to it.’
    Anyway, she’s out on Apache Parenting duty (judo tournament for the 6yro in Brisbane) & Bicycle Dad (the boyfriend) is in there taking gentle loving care of the puppy. He’s really good with it, & he locked it up inside the house when he went cycling earlier. Pity he’s not there all the time, really.

  161. Yesterday, nobody remembered to give the guinea pig her morning tea. She weeked so loudly, I thought the neighbours would be on our doorstep. I rushed to stuff lettuce in her cage, only to find her breakfast leftovers still in her food bowl. She’s decided she won’t eat vegetables that have warmed up to room temperature. That’s on top of her insistence on shaved cucumber rather than slices, diced celery, peeled apples, only dark green lettuce leaves, grated carrot, and home grown tomatoes – the shop bought ones just won’t do, you know! How did I end up with such a fussy little piggy?

  162. That guinea pig is nearly as fussy as my children.

  163. LK and MK also fussier than the guinea pig. The Teenie, however, will eat shit on a stick if it has tomato sauce on it.

  164. Good old tomato sauce. Good on everything except ice-cream.

  165. Where do you keep the cage, Catty?
    BOM said it was 10-14C in Melbourne for most of yesterday, and the vet told me that guinea pigs require temperatures of 18-22C to survive, and that if you keep them in temperatures outside that range they become extremely distressed – and then they die.
    Perhaps she was cold?

  166. She doesn’t like outside. We keep her in the family room.

  167. I’m surprised she doesn’t have her own themed bedroom.

  168. Complete with Disney Princess sheets, and a troll baby to share her bed when the nights are cold.

  169. A canopied bed, and bed-side salad chiller.

  170. Stop it. You’re giving her ideas.

  171. I hope she has a wardrobe. And also a tiara.

  172. I did give her a tiara. She tore it off, chewed it a bit, abandoned it in a corner and demanded moar celery slices.

  173. Just like any beauty queen.

  174. Almost. All she needs now is a cocaine habit.

  175. Hehehe. Then she’d be a snortlepig.

  176. And a delicacy in snotty restaurants.
    ‘Pulled Snortlepig, hand raised on Columbia’s finest marching powder, with a snifter of verdigris & saffron-infused quinoa.’
    I’m so looking forward to having a proper, functional kitchen again. Thus far the restaurant & cafe food that I’ve sampled at the Old Coast seems to share the same predominant ingredient: salt.
    Thankfully there’s some hippies that lurk in odd corners, making fabulous lentil burgers.
    I am impressed at some of the youngsters that I see, with their devotion to the old hippie foodie ways, having been passed the baton by their ageing hippie parents.
    It brings a tear to my eye, it does.

  177. Every recipe I see in the women’s magazines starts with two ingredients: garlic and onion. Even the cakes*.

    *O.k, so that’s not actually true, but sometimes it feels like it.

  178. Garlic might be the next big thing in desserts. You know, like salted caramel.

  179. Quick, into the kitchen to experiment with Sticky Garlic Prunes.

  180. Keeps you regular and wards off germs. And vampires!

    • Yep. I love garlic and am never bothered by vampires.
      The family gathering was moderately awful as feared. One of the aunts (who has always been barking and has rels in the Ozarks) now has a circulation – based memory problem. Maybe that’s why she couldn’t remember to give Pb some space, despite many requests. She did the high – pitched whining voice thing. PB curled up on my lap while everyone glared at the silly old git. Eventually we distracted the mad aunt and PB had a good time. Then Lyn, Sandy and Hamish turned up in support.

      PB has made up her own little song (which she sings quite sweetly) about how bad I am.

  181. Ugh. I feel like breaking out in a rash at the mere thought of it.

  182. A friend from a support group for Mad Families anonymous had a huge grumble recently about having to attend one of her idiot family’s mass gatherings. She got a call 30 minutes before she was due to arrive, asking if she could stop at the pet store & pick up 17 goldfish. They were wanted for the centrepiece on the party table – at a one year old’s birthday.
    She won the internet that day.
    I expected at very least them to be needed for Dares at a college keg party, but no. Forget the Joneses, it’s all about Keeping Up With The Kardashians, now.

  183. 17 goldlfish? We were happy with a plateful of fairy bread, when I was a lad.

  184. And a homemade sponge cake decorated with Smarties, and little plastic cups of weak lime cordial. Those were the days. Pass the Parcel had one prize in the centre (usually a pencil or a Mars Bar). None of this nonsense with a $10 prize in every layer nonsense. Hey, there’s a thought. Maybe they could put the goldfish in the Pass the Parcel layers? I dare the Kardashians to top that.

  185. Soggy and cruel. Just like children themselves, half the time.

  186. Yeah, I was lucky. My kidlets were merely sticky and annoying. And very, very adorable.

  187. Well that explains the decline of news print. If the children rummage through the SMH & fail to find a greenback, you can see how disillusioned they’d become, over time.

  188. When I was very young, we actually did have fish in our newspaper – battered, with a scoop of chips. It was a bit of a culture shock to move to Queensland, where they wrapped our fish and chips in butcher’s paper.

  189. You’re an experience parent, Catty. Can you explain why, if TGP goes days without a shower, he can get to the point where he’s sticky to the touch … but he never smells?

  190. All of mine were like that until just before their 13th birthday. Then their socks started to smell a bit whiffy. Within a couple of months, their armpits caught up with their feet. Don’t worry, TGP’s stink gland will develop soon enough.

  191. It might be a mother thing, I think it depends on your oxytocin levels. Or oxycontin, as the case may be.
    Have you had an independent team of the Unmaternal sniff his socks?

  192. Yes – My mum and him often have personality clashes, but she too is amazed at his smelllessness.

    How good is this weather? My only sadness is that they haven’t cancelled the AFL yet so I will be forced to venture out in it tomorrow.

    Anything down your way, Catty?

  193. Really? It’ll be a swamp.
    Take heart, MM. They always put the playing fields in low lying land that’s no good for housing developments, so between tonight’s king tide & the rivers-in-flood warning up your way, I’d say that it’s likely you’ll all be sleeping in.
    Our torrential downpour has settled into a soothing drizzle & there’s wisps of clouds wafting over the ridge. Glorious.
    I only have one complaint and that is that one glorious day of rain is not enough. Admittedly we’ve gotten 2 months rainfall out of it, but I’d rather get it over 2 months.

  194. We decided – after advice from Q – to delay our departure until the omens were more favourable. Thus Q is to blame for my future wrongdoings, right?

    Sandy has arrived in Melbourne with kidlings and we’re orf with cot, clothes, potties etc at crack of dawn. The car is skilfully packed to leave room for any wine and/or books we might meet along the way.

  195. Also, re TGP’s non-stinkiness, body odour is caused by bacteria I think. So is he naturally immune, too toxic to support Earth life forms or secretly using your deodorant? Or maybe it’s the odour of sanctity?

  196. What are you saying, GB, the bacteria are too frightened to clamber up on him?

  197. They are his stinky little minions. They do as he commands.

  198. Hehehe. It could be anything, but I think sanctity is the least likely explanation.

    Well, AFL went ahead. As one of the other mums said to me, “If you told them to go chasing a ball in the mud, they’d just laugh and head for the Playstation.”

    After match:
    Me ” Good work, Gigantor. I saw you kick a goal.”
    Gigantor (looks at me like he’s sizing me up for a bed in the Dementia Unit) “I kicked 3 goals.”

  199. In your defense, two of those goals were probably mud clots, and not the ball.

  200. And there are quite a lot of them on the field.

  201. They showed footage from several drenched football/ AFL/ soccer matches on the telly. If Gigantor’s game was anything like those, he would have had a soggy time of it. It looked like so much fun!

  202. It was splashtacular.

  203. Those AFL players are nuts. We were in the lounge room on Saturday night, listening to the downpour & the gale roaring outside, while the Bloke watched the Gold Coast AFL team playing in their home stadium. It was like that quidditch match in Harry Potter, all that was missing was a handful of Dementers to blow in & suck out their souls.

  204. They’re AFL players. The poor Dementors would starve to death.

  205. LOL.
    Good point.

  206. They might have souls, actually. But brains, on the other hand. I think Zombies would be the anorexics in this equation.

  207. Raaaaaaaainz!

  208. Meeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeat!

  209. I’d make a terrible Zombie. Caaaaaaaaeeeeeek!

  210. I’d be the least threatening zombie in the world. If I could still read books on my Kindle, I’d just sit there, slowly rotting.

  211. Unless TGP recruits you into his Zombie army.

  212. Well, after all the effort I’ve put into that kid, I’d hope to be Queen of the Undead. I’ve brought him back to life twice, for heaven’s sake.

  213. Twice? Good lord.
    Please tell me neither of these episodes involved burial in the pet cemetery.

  214. Hehehe. No, just near SIDS. Little devil.

  215. That would have explained a good deal, you know.
    Well, I posted your BD present & Miracle Girl’s yesterday.
    I twice bought BD cards & gift wrap & twice now they have disappeared into the chaos of Kitchen Apocalypso. So I do apologise for the absence of such…anyway, I think your postie has a hidey hole in the garage or such, so keep an eye out for it & I do hope you enjoy it.
    Are you coming down to Vagus at all in the next few weeks?
    It would be lovely to see you.

  216. Surely that would INCREASE the stench, though, rather than nullifying it?

    Many thanks! I’d only have to recycle the wrapping, anyway. I believe there is some talk of a trip down in the school holidays, I shall keep you posted.

  217. Don’t you dare mention school holidays. KIDLETS! Fetch me my anxiety medication!

  218. But just think of the joy of no lunch boxes. Oh, how I hate lunch boxes.

  219. We picked up quite a few bottles of anxiety medication on the trip. And books – did i mention books? As for school holidays, we drove through various towns at stupid o’clock on freezing mornings and saw the poor little monsters, bare-legged and cold looking, drooping off to school. Oh how we laughed. And sang with joy.

    Called in on Sandy & kids this morning. They did everything but hogtie us to keep us from leaving. I swear kids are born with emotional manipulation and guilt creation skills fully developed. Snuggling granddaughter – “You can’t go while I’m doing this”. But we did. Because we’re tough. (Waaaah) And they have to learn that that stuff doesn’t work.

  220. Umm, since when has that stuff not worked?

    • Well OK, it worked in the sense that we felt terrible and wanted to stay (little Hamish was reaching out for me!) but not in the sense that they got what they wanted.

      • Road tripping has obviously toughened you up.

  221. You’re tough… *snorts derisively* Yeah, sure you are, you big softie.

  222. I’d be surprised if GB was tough. He’s been marinating for so very long.

    • Mmm, alcomahol-based marinade.

  223. I think the correct term is ‘pickled’.

    • Tomayto-tomahto…

  224. Mmm…pickles.
    Hey, that reminds me, it’s two weeks till the Mudgeeraba show.
    I wonder if there’s some sort of ceremony for crowning the Pickle Queen?

  225. Probably not. They won’t be able to get the lid off the jar.

  226. It’s a ring of pickled onions tooth-picked to cheese cubes, and it’s passed round with Jatz after the ceremony.

  227. I think it’s more the Sayo crowd, around here.
    All this talk of food is making me very excited about my kitchen.
    I started unpacking the pantry yesterday…my god it’s a good feeling to know where the pasta spirals are again.
    Food chaos, it’s not my forte. Far too much of my identity is caught up in ‘I bake, therefore I am’ to cope for too long without a kitchen.
    My life is about to become meaningful & filled with purpose, once again.

    • LOL. Coxito Ergo Sum?

      • That’s it. Although if it was Spanner editing that, you’d have to insert the Latin translation for cheescake in there.
        For those not on twitter, Spanner had another episode of culinary inspired self-harm on Wednesday night that wound up with him & Mrs. S spending 5 hours in ER rubbing shoulders with the Nimbin Freaks.
        Hence Khan GB was lured out into the open – confident that the hole in Spanner’s hand will render it quite impossible for him to load or fire any arrows, at least until the stitches come out.

  228. Food is my enemy at the moment. I’ve given up avoiding trigger foods, because every single thing I eat seems to be a trigger food. Stupid intestines.

  229. Poor Catty, that sucks. I’m sure the life stress with DSS isn’t helping with any of that, either.
    Mwah xxxxxx

  230. Thanks Q. The surgeon doesn’t think my pain is due to surgery, but whatever the original problem was, it’s probably just been exacerbated by the surgery. So he’s shunted me back to the GP. But he did mutter something about gallstones and pancreatic inflammation or something, and booked me in for yet another ultrasound. Joy.

    On the Centrelink front, I got a letter today. Payments won’t start until 20th June, and I have to look for work. So much for the medical certificate I gave them.

  231. Well I suppose on the plus side, at least you’ve been processed.
    Still, I don’t think they’re allowed to disregard a medical certificate, Catty. Someone might have lost it. worth checking up on that, as you know how stupid they can be.

    • Sympathies Catty and I’ll second that suggestion. Stupid and sometimes just nasty for the sake of it.

  232. Speaking of kitchens, I’m still loving having one we can both buzz around in. I’m making pancakes and Lyn is doing cheerios wrapped in pastry. Guess who’s here.

  233. Don’t worry. “Looking for work” just means getting on the job websites and emailing off your CV. Just make sure you keep a record!

    GB – I knew you’d cave, sooner rather than later.

    • They were very stern pancakes! Actually she was bubbling with joy all day and we had a great time. Except when she cackled horribly and announced that she was a wicked witch and she’d turn me into a stinky toad. Lyn told her she was too late, granddad was already a stinky toad. Have you lot been offering correspondence courses?

  234. You do have a marvellous kitchen, GB. Your whole house is marvellous. My offer of $5k for it is still open, if you ever want to sell.

    Now, I’m sure someone mentioned pancakes. Pass the syrup!

  235. Mmm…pancakes!
    yes it’ll be nice to get down to Melbourne sometime & see your lovely new house, Khan GB. I’m feeling very envious of your library, with all my books still stacked up in Box Mountain in the spare room.
    Still, it’s made me profoundly grateful for the Overdrive & Borrow Box apps on my iPad.
    Wonderful inventions, eReaders.
    And so nice to sit in the sunbeams in my living room & to enjoy reading with the serenity of all that bushland around me.
    I could never live in the city again, urgh.

  236. Is there anything better than a teetering mountain of books? There is. It’s a teetering mountain of books next to a comfy chair on a rainy afternoon.

  237. Are you sure you want syrup, Catty? I think there are Wildebeest hairs in it. Again.

  238. This is what happens when you don’t keep him stocked up in Brylcreem.
    Speaking of which, did I tell you we went to the improvised drive-in for Cooly Rocks, on Friday night?
    The back car park of Seagulls, which looks over the Terranora lakes broadwater. It’s a lovely spot. They played ‘Grease’, and they had a 50’s style refreshment stand, with a twist – along with things like American hot dogs & pop-corn, they sold delicious pork sliders, yum! The staff had all dressed up in 50s gear & there were lots of the Rockabilly cars lined up, and people had taken deck chairs & doonas & picnics. Lots of sedans had reversed in & folded their seats down, so that the kids could lie down in the back under layers of quilts & giggle & wriggle until they fell asleep.
    I’d forgotten how much fun the drive-in could be. it was very interactive, very friendly, very sociable.
    I think we’ve lost something, with the big cineplexes replacing the drive-ins.
    The big MF SUVs would be a pain, though, because there were a whole bunch of them & the fun police with their fluoro sticks had to stack them all up where they wouldn’t annoy the smaller cars. As a once a year thing you could deal with it, but as a regular feature of life, it’d get rather wearing.
    Your car would’ve been perfect for it, MM.
    Have you guys ever taken your kids to the drive-in?
    Every child should know the joy of trying to sleep on the rutted surface of a folded down station wagon, at least once in this life.

  239. That sounds fantastic Q.

  240. I have incredibly fond memories of the Dollaries in Townsville. Did you ever go there Q? The Range Drive-In on Sunday nights. A dollar for two movies. They were usually recent release movies, but I don’t remember anybody watching them. I just remember what a great time we all had, parking in a group and hanging out with each other. Those were the days!

  241. Nup, I only ever had the bicycle when I was at JCU & I was too much of a girly swot to go out overly much. I had a flatmate who was doing a Phd in marine biology, so I didn’t even need to go out in search of cute boys (the only ones worth looking at were the marine biology boys) – Smiley brought them all home.
    A great time saver, that.

  242. I adore the drive-in, but there aren’t any operating any more. Although there used to be one at Yatala. If that’s still operational I might take them in the holidays.


  243. Yes I was about to say Yatala. I can’t believe school holidays are less than two weeks away…eek.
    Anyways, enough of that.
    Happy Birthday, Morgana!
    How was yum cha? And are the children doing anything special for you today, like changing their socks or applying deodorant?

  244. Yum Cha was delicious. Well, Gigantor has made me a jewellery box in manual arts, and hopefully TGP will celebrate the day by not wheedling too hard for a guinea pig. Maybe we should put in an offer for the parcooked ones near you?

  245. Yes, happy birthday Morgana! Bring forth the CAEK! There’s not much Wildebeest hair on it at all this year.



    The monkey got to it.


    Yep. It was definitely the monkey.


    Nothing but crumbs left, I’m afraid.


    Nope, scratch that, there aren’t even any crumbs.


    Never mind. I shall make you another, just as soon as my breakfast has settled.

  246. Naughty monkey. Don’t worry, my dear co-workers are visiting the Cheesecake Shop later on today, to fetch me a baked tribute. Shall I post you a slice, perhaps taped to a cat?

  247. And a happy birthday with virtual hugs and a cake IOU for when you’re next in Melbourne. You get a *real* happy birthday, unlike my sister-in-law who gets a harpy barfday.

  248. mmmm….cake! What type? I used to call in at our local CCS for a slice of the white-gold mudcake. It was fabulous, and very hard to drive past it.
    Enjoy, MM.

  249. It’s a surprise. Although that sounds nice. I might put in a request.

  250. It’s lighter than the caramel mudcake, but it still has that fabulous caramel flavour.

  251. Oooh, that sounds good! Yes, tape a slice to a cat. But remember to put airholes in the box. I’m not keen on inheriting my uncle’s ‘Cat Man’ title.

  252. Now all I can hear is “nananana, nananana – Cat Man!”.

  253. Good gracious, Madam, you are way too young to be a Nana, let alone a Nananana.

  254. Well, the way Gigantor’s carrying on, it can only be a matter of time.

  255. Nanahood – it can strike any time, when you least expect it. I’ll put together a starter pack of lace doilies, balls of wool and sachets of lavender.

    • Made from rat hair by the strangely-silent-of-late Mayhem’s mum, I presume?

  256. I’ve already got my knitting going, GB.

  257. I’m thinking about mine.
    Sadly I’ve ruptured all 4 of our comfortable ikea lounge chairs, though, so they’ll be going in the skip this weekend.
    And I suppose I’ll have to go to Ikea to replace them. Gah!
    Today I’m enjoying the rain & the eReader, though. The weekend was rather busy with kitchen clean up, and I managed to slash a finger. Nothing that can compete with Spanner’s regular bouts of finger slashing, but a day or so out of sudsy water & swiping the iPad screen can only do it good.
    Rain on the gum trees – bewdiful!

  258. The Boss managed to dissect his thumb with a stanley knife the other day. It bled like nobody’s business! He probably should have had stitches, but he just wrapped it in a thick layer of Elastoplast tape and went on with whatever he was doing. I was super impressed by his bravery. If it had been me, I would have had a Victorian Era fainting spell and reclined on the couch to recuperate for at least a day. Maybe two.

  259. The worst part is, he was after a banana.

  260. He’s so cute! TGP has got a monkey onesie, we should form a troop.

    Q, I think you’d better rest for at least a week. Just eat off banana leaves for a while.

  261. LOL. You are a bad man to set him up like that, Khan GB. But it’s very funny. I’m glad they’re still enjoying it.
    I wonder if my WA cousin has handed the monkey suit down to her youngest? I’d forgotten all about that. Apparently she’s expecting a third now, and is a bit disappointed it’ll be her third boy. I keep saying it’s for the best, as she’s so like me that a girl would drive her completely mental. I always thought that I don’t speak Girl because I was raised by my father, but meeting Kristy put paid to that theory. Clearly it’s just something that’s passed down through our DNA.
    And yes. Winter is the time for finger slashing. The sparky did a finger & a calf yesterday, mercifully his own, but the finger probably needed stitches. Given what a pain it is to get that done in emergency, I can see why you’d just gaffer it up & let nature take it’s course.
    Another glorious day of drizzle, here.

    • That wasn’t even me, it was his wicked mother. Takes after Lyn.

  262. Hasn’t the weather been perfect? Another week of this would be delightful.

  263. I listened to BOM at 5am this morning & if they speak truth, you’ll get your wish, MM. Sunday we’re in for a drenching – up to 30ml, and possibly a thunderstorm. So that’s nice. Enough to water the garden, insufficient to wash the surf clubs into the sea.
    I just hope it’s nice for the last weekend of June – I’m looking forward to going to the Mudgeeraba show. It’s predominantly all about the ponies, as it’s at the local pony club. So this year it’ll be lovely to wander in there at my leisure, and not have to deal with the nonsense of motoring down the M1 to get there & back again.
    I love, love, love being this close to the country.

  264. Too cold. Waaaaaay too cold. I don’t like colding.

  265. Soz for your colding, Catty. Shall I knit you a brain hat or something?

    • There is nothing I would like more. Except maybe that cat caek you mentioned?…

  266. We’re going out for a pikanik this morning. Probably down to the river at Warrandyte where there’s a playground, bookshop, cafe, bakery and ducks. All within a short walk. I also like being this close to the country.

    I was woken up at 8 o’clock this morning by the small one, who announced in a deep voice that it was morning time. I asked why the voice and was informed that she was a hippopotamus “at moment”. Meh. I just go along with whatever’s happening.

  267. Those ducks had better watch out for your hippopotamus.

  268. Oh, I want a hippopotamus for Christmas!
    Only a hippopotamus will doooooo!

  269. Turned out awful.

  270. Beautiful. Just beautiful.

  271. Yes, that looks terrible. You must never do that again. Especially not next time I come to visit.

    • I’ll save you a duck.

  272. Which duck did you eat?

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