Rio, Korean and little Olivier


When I left work on Friday I was very tired. I have had to attend to an array of work issues the whole week and I was still working on pushing out docs on my outbox a bit after 5 when I decided to quickly finish and leave. On the way home I texted Tress about going out to dinner and we ended up in a nondescript suburban Thai joint in Vermont.

It isn’t always about the food, I said to Tress and to myself, as we sat at a table next to a window, talking and sipping a glass from a bottle Tress had fished out from the wine rack. I didn’t even pull into the driveway – I had stopped at the kerbside, Tress jumped in and we went straight to dinner. As we talked I felt more relaxed (the wine – a Grenache – almost certainly had something to do with it) and as I looked around and saw other couples wondering in with a bottle of wine, I said to Tress it’s good to see others doing the same thing on a Friday night, just sitting down to dinner and start the circuit breaking process a weekend is meant to inject into an otherwise potentially relentless escalation of weariness.

On Saturday morning we watched the Olympics opening ceremony for a bit before I headed out to Simon’s for a hairy. We’ve known Simon since we moved into our rented home in Mount Waverley back in 2005 and he was operating his home business on Bizley Street. I remember he had a $10 hair cut flyer distributed in the area. I stopped going to him for a little while but Tress persisted and in recent years I went back to him and we’ve struck up a friendship of sorts. He’s a bit far for us now – he’s moved further couth to Kemp Street on Mount Waverley and we’ve moved further north to Blackburn – but he’s still a very good hairdresser and still charges way cheaper than   most others so we’re happy in this space. Untitled

After the haircut Tress and I worked a bit on scoping the damage a mini sink hole has created in the north-western corner of our backyard. I poked around the edges of the hole, fenced it and decided to see if it gets bigger in the next couple of weeks or so, before thinking about what to do about it.

We then had lunch at Madam K’s, and decided to catch the Demons v Hawks game at the G. The trains stopped at Camberwell however so we had to take the replacement bus, which took forever. I was reminded how bad Melbourne’s weekend traffic has become in recent years. Hawks played poorly, sustained key injuries and succumbed to the very good Demons. In the last 5 minutes or so Hawks fans started streaming out of the stadium and a bloke in front of us said he hadn’t seen this for a while now – that Hawks fans were leaving a game early because it was losing in a bad way… sigh…

On the way home we were again in a cramped bus to get to Camberwell. A couple of boys who were with their father were standing up and the little one looked tired so I offered to squeeze some space for him to sit on the edge of my seat. He and his brother were both very courteous and soon started to show Tress the finer aspects of mastering the Pokemon hunt. It made the ride less trying.

Back at home we walked the little fellow and then rested at home by watching an old favourite – Tom Hanks’ “You’ve Got Mail”.

Sunday was special. Peter had arranged for the Korean speaking members to help put together an English/Korean bilingual service. It was very good and the last hymn – “How Great Thou Art” was sung in alternately in Korean and English and it reminded me of our days in Klang, when we would sing hymns in English, Chinese and Hokkien simultaneously – each singing in the language he or she is most comfortable with. We had lost the richness of a multilingual congregation – St Alf’s is such a monochromatic setting in this regard. When we had a quick chat with Peter after the service I said the same thing to him and we told him we were very grateful he arranged for such an experiment. We had also gone up to our Korean friends to tell them how appreciative and grateful we were for their roles in making this happen.

After church and we made our to another church – St Christopher’s in Syndal/Mount Waverley – to take part in little Olivier’s christening. Adrian is Uncle Seng and Auntie Anne’s eldest and he and Racheal looked very happy (sleep deprivation notwithstanding) for the family to celebrate Olivier’s milestone. They hosted a lunch at the very nice Elephant Corridor in Glen Waverley after the service and the free flowing wine made for a drowsy arvo and by the time we left for home I was suitably inebriated such that the walk with the little fellow was a perfect antidote as we finished the day.

Olivier and Co

At the lunch we sat with Vijay and his family. We first got to know this family when they first came to Melbourne 10 years ago now. They had just bought a home Uncle Seng had built in Mount Waverley. His boys are grown now and when I mentioned to the older one that Elizabeth Debicki had been a famous alumni of the school he was attending, he immediately googled her and was very impressed by what he learned. This family had come a long way. Vijay is now a chief enginner with a very large property group and they looked well settled.

As I came into work reflecting on the weekend, it made me want to visit Klang again. Tress and I had talked about visiting during Chinese New Year and last night we looked again at various fares. We have also been receiving pics of the French’s (Graeme and Susan – Jonathan’s parents) visit in Klang and Jonathan and Ruth had gone there too with little Micah, for a short holiday. It would be very nice to spend Chinese New Year with the family there.

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