Salvos Fete, Social Media and New Shades


People often talked about Melbourne being a 4-seasons-in-a-day city. The weather here can change very quickly. Yesterday it was a very warm 28deg, and the clear blue skies and gusty conditions made it feel like we were in the middle of summer. This morning when I left home it was just under 8deg and it had been raining overnight. It felt closer to winter, though nowhere near as cold. The contrast told me for the umpteenth time, that Melbourne indeed is a city which can produce very different weather conditions within a very short period of time.

Last year around this time, it was bucketing down on a Saturday when the Manningham Salvation Army was having its annual fete. This year however, the fete enjoyed sunny conditions for the most part. Tress had been coughing badly last week and when the coughs persisted through Friday night, she told me, early on Saturday morning, that she’d stay home and away from the fete.

I woke early on Sat morning – just on 6.30am – and got ready as I was meant to get to the Salvo’s ground on Taunton Street, pick up the 12-seater, and head towards Blackburn Station to pick up a bunch of student volunteers who were meant to work on the fete. Just as I was about to head out however, I took a call from the coordinator of the students. None of them were coming. Apparently, the exams starting this week were getting to them. I asked the coordinator to ring Doug the gentlemen managing human resources for the fete.

When Tress heard the students weren’t coming, she resolutely got changed, and then headed out with me to Manningham. We got there just on 8am, and got busy straight away.

The weather held out – there were even long sunny spells – and it was a much better fete than last year. Around 10am I picked up a bunch of folks from a home on Elgar Road. Most of them I remember from last year, and a couple of them said to me they remembered me too, which was nice. Elgar Home provides residential care for people with mental health issues and it was good to take them out to enjoy the fete for the day. Last night Tress suggested we visited them periodically, maybe on Sunday arvos. That sounds like a great idea to me so hopefully something works out.

The fete finished up just after 3, and after helping with the cleaning and clearing up, Tress and I ducked into a Coffee Club place for a much needed cuppa. We got home just after 4pm and I said to Tress since I was a bit messy already, I might as well do the lawns, which had look like they had been on steroids. The “feed-n-weed” tonic I administered at the start of spring seems to have done its job.

The catcher filled up frequently and the cut lawn looked much neater after that and I cleaned up, we got to a nearby local shopping square, picked up some wine and takeaway, and went back home to finally put our feet up, just after 6pm. Channel 7 has been screening the Star Wars franchise in the lead up to “The Last Jedi” in December and “Revenge of the Sith” made its turn as we wound up Saturday.

We had spent Friday night with J & M our friends again, and during the day when we were exchanging emails, we said we’d pamper ourselves. We did that on Friday, as we rocked up to nice local restaurant, ate really nice food (the pork belly entrée was superb), drank good wine and had wonderful conversations. We were there from about 6.45pm and didn’t leave till almost 10pm. Yesterday (Sunday) as Tress was catching up on social media entries, she saw J&M tagged on pics taken in a home cookout. The host was a near stranger to us, and we had talked about how we made connections via a facebook group we were all part of. It was very strange to visit the home of someone we never met and only knew the existence of, via some social media groupings. But there you have it – J&M were at their home, enjoying the company of several other people and the hospitality of that host.

Yesterday after St Alf’s Tress and I went to pick up Tress’ new glasses. Kiddo had messaged us the day before, with her new glasses and sunnies so it was kind of strange – we’re all doing the same thing. It’s partly the season I guess – with longer sunnier days ahead. I too have been looking around for ways to keep my eyes protected against the harsh Aussie sun, as my multifocal prescription glasses meant my options are limited. At the optometrist where Tress picked up her glasses I told the optometrist and his assistant my problem. After looking at some options, I decided to get prescription multifocal sunnies. It’s all paid for now, and I pick them up in 1-2 weeks. I’m not sure if Mic got new sunnies too – if he did we’ll all be in new eyewear when we make that road trip over the Christmas break. Cool…

Last night I had to wake up a couple of times – the first time was just after 1am and then again, about an hour later. For some reason, my ankle – the one I rolled in Phillip Island a few weeks ago – got very sore again. I took a cox (Arcoxia) but felt the soreness through the night. I missed my exercises this morning and played with the idea of staying home but I’ve been taking the odd day off for the last couple of weeks – albeit all for fair dinkum medical reasons – so I thought I’d give it a go. It feels as though I’m hobbling across the line to finish the year. If I do, I’d at least be grateful I managed to even get across the line as it has been such an(other) unpredictable year, work wise, for me.

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