From Ashes to Ashes

Tress drove the Xtrail to the office on Friday arvo and I left early – just after 4pm – and made the journey back to Melbourne with her. We arrived just before 11pm and managed to catch Steve Smith earn his double ton at Lord’s to seize control of the second Ashes match.

On Sat morning we went to a car dealership in Nunawading to kick some Skoda tyres. I’d been looking at the Skoda Superb wagon but would probably abandon the idea for now. Later, we went to do some shopping at the Forest Hill Chase and then went to pick LBJ up from his sitter, which was just 2 streets from us. Rosemary had been introduced to us by Amber, his groomer, and she was very good for him.

We got him back home, walked him for a bit, and then I washed him while Tress did some gardening. Later that arvo – after the customary lunch at Madame Kwong’s in Box Hill of course – we went and watched a movie at the Forest Hill Chase again. Pixar’s Inside Out is such a clever idea and cleverly executed. Kiddo had watched it a few weeks back and told me it was very good and earlier in the week Tress had suggested we watched it over the weekend. It was thoroughly enjoyable, even with dozens of kids chatting away in the cinema before the movie started.

Back home after the movie, I eagerly awaited the start of the Sydney Swans v Hawthorn game. I was expecting a tough battle – instead, Hawthorn completely decimated Sydney Swans. The final margin was even bigger than the Grand Final last year and the way Hawthorn doggedly and brilliantly went after each contest and steamrolled Swans when the ball is won, was breath taking. It was even better than the win against Fremantle Dockers last week.

Sunday morning was freezing cold. There was frost in our backyard and when we drew the blinds at the front of the house, the oval in front of us was also covered by a blanket of frost. It was just under zero. After brekky and church we went to Madame Kwong’s again for lunch. These double treats on weekends back to Melbourne are almost worth the 6-7 hour drives each way in themselves. The only downside is for the Sunday feed, the post lunch drive leaving Melbourne to head back to Watson Street is always something of a challenge in so many ways. I took a few DVDs (The Godfather box set) to “listen” on the way but the footy games (Melbourne v Brisbane and Adelaide Crows v Port Adelaide) took up most of the drive.

Back at Watson Street last night, I watched The Ashes again – hoping to catch the Aussies get a few quick wickets to seal the second match and level the series. In the apartment by myself watching The Ashes in the middle of winter reminded me of my student days, when I would listen to the radio broadcasts in my room on the first floor of the shop on Anzac Parade in Kingsford NSW. Instead of Allan Border, Steve Waugh and Terry Alderman, the heroes now are Michael Clarke, Steve Smith and Mitchell Johnson. That was almost 30 years ago now. This weekend which was sandwiched by the first and last days of The Ashes felt like a microcosm of a bigger slice, sandwiched by The Ashes of the late 80’s and 2015. And these have straddled Sydney, Melbourne and Canberra.