Saturday, February 19, 2011

Jackass -The Sequel

I've got to say, upon the last event here, that i feel that the problem lies within the Y Chromosome. I feel somewhat exonerated as i down my Gin thinking back now. The double XX Chromosome seems to be attached to logical thinking. I'm pretty sure i could get funding for this theory, if only to supply me with more alcohol... I wouldn't need to actually put funds into the theory to explain it as it seems that if you give the ppl sporting the "Y" chromosome an hour of unsupervised time, they tend to only build my case.

The test subjects here are The Man and The Boy...both sporting the "y" and I like to think of it now as WHY??? and a Saturday evening to themselves enjoying The boys new scooter. The scooter has recently had it's rear wheel replaced "Y"? Well because The Boy has found a big thrill in starting at the top of our long, steep driveway and likes to zoom full on down it, breaking at the bottom of the house causing the wheel to screech and smoke and doing some fun patterns on the asphalt. Don't look at ME to be supporting this $20 wheel replacement from once was a perfectly round wheel now looking rather square but the other... yes that other Y is happy to go and shell out the dough because he too thinks this is grand entertainment. In fact that afternoon I am seeing both return with the new wheel and heading to the garage but THEN i see them leaving the cave with newly fixed scooter, a flat board and some chunks of wood back down the drive High Fiving each other and grinning like idiots. This can't be good can it....?

No. No it can't, as a short 2 tries later over the newly build RAMP at the bottom of the drive The Man comes in carrying The Boy all bloody in his arms. What the hell??? The two double Xs run to do triage and while picking bits of debris from his elbow we discover that perhaps this is not the main problem here... noooo... it seems that while the boy did in fact get some "air time" off the launch he ending up landing over the handlebars and landing full on his hands. Perhaps an x-ray is in order since he can't seem to move his left one. Awesome! There is nothing better than going to the Emergency on a Saturday night now is there? Little XX packs for the field trip a bag designed to feed and entertain the masses for what i'm sure is to be hours if not days in the petri dish of the city. Big XX grabs cash for the $100 worth of parking we are to pay and the family loads up and heads out into the night. I have said nothing and continue to keep my silence- really if i were to start it would never end.

Auckland's main hospital (downtown) is housed with the most pleasant surprises though... It's almost a valet type feel and you pull into the Emerg with a guard directing you to a lovely little unloading area. From there, you have two choices of Adult doors and Children's doors leading to separate Emergencies. What a Godsend to know that the next 5 hours i won't have a drunk person sleeping on my shoulder while i count the candy slots in the vending machine over and over. Mind you, children scream and cry a lot when they're ill... but it did seem like the lesser of the two evils. We were incorporated into the health machine in such short order though! In no time we were all huddled in our own personal curtain cubby awaiting the Dr. Oh look! A lady pushing a trolly stops by and asks me if i would like some coffee or tea! Must have been a hybrid because i know i asked for coffee but it tasted quite like both. No matter- gave me something to grip while being too slow to follow the two Y's to xray with my Little XX and we ended up standing between a locked elevator and 3 sets of locked doors waiting for someone.. hell anyone to come along and open anything. Turns out it was the WHYS coming down from Xray wondering what had happened to us. Silence continues and my teeth gnaw on my tongue a bit more.

The X-rays turned out to be somewhat helpful in letting us know that we had no major issues of breakage BUT it couldn't show us all the tiny bones in Y's hand and so for safety measure they were setting him in a cast for a few days. As an added bonus, little Y was offered laughing gas while they set his hand of which The Boy took FULL advantage of puffing on it like a steam engine and myself getting into a wrestling match with the laughing loon to pry it from his death grip. Glassy eyed and hiccupping i was told from little Y that i was indeed a killjoy.

I guess the silence was getting a bit much for the WHY ppl in the car on the way home as one of the first things said was "It was pretty good air time you got buddy, which little WHY replied YA! Did you see the first one! The week passed without incident... no, nothing to note other than the day of the cast removal another fun event for me as Mr WHY comes into the house starting up his powered skill saw and with a devilish gleam in his eye and asks "where's The Boy?" I head to the liquor cabinet with my field notes on my study and poor another.


Yes, I know of this that are really boys that do stupid life threatening stunts after a kegger for the camera. I personally have yet to sit thru a complete show or one of their money sucking movies in the theaters. I can't fathom what their mothers must be thinking as one of them lights a fireworks out of another's butt and giggles with glee as they all head off to the emergency. Actually, I think if it were me, I would be going about with a bottle of gin and hanging my head in shame at the whole business. "Where and when did I go go wrong?" they must be thinking to themselves.. and until most recently I prolly would have put a lot on these boy's upbringings but I see now that I too am heading down the path laid with empty bottles of gin.

Sometimes it takes just an hour of boredom and being by oneself that not so great ideas form. Take a look at the boy after school all exhausted from all that rule following and learning. He generally comes home and plops himself in front of the TV for a wee bit just to unwind. One of his favorite shows is WWE wrestling. I have walked into the living room and seen him trying to put a hold on Thabo- who bless his heart just stands there and uses his only defense -farting. Wally is keen to attack The Boy but she doesn't play WWE rules and likes to hide behind the couch and launch herself at The Boys shorts. I have also seen her stalk the boy and while The Boy appears to be taking a break she will pounce on his feet latching onto his socks in her own personal "Wally Hold" and waits to hear the scream in order to gain a point for the match. My living room is the arena and i have walked in and immediately turned myself out when i see all the cushions on the couch strewn about the carpet and the boy attempting some sort of back flip off the back of the couch. Really I don't need to see this do i? The rest of the participants seem to agree since everything comes to a stop and 3 pairs of eyes stare at me while tails drop (not the boy!) and silence ensues until i turn my back.

The other day though, things got a wee quiet in the arena... I honestly thought they had just all played themselves out and kept on clicking away at the MAC until i heard my name being said. I looked up and there was my son staring at me from within my wicker foot stool from Pier 101. At first i thought it was some sort of play of "Lion Tamer Gone Wrong" and i asked him what i could do for him- perhaps put together a whip? But no, The Boy had been practicing his "moves" again and had lodged his melon in my stool and couldn't remove it. In fact, he tells me, it's getting a wee heavy and could i maybe do something about this? But of course i say, as I march into the office and grab my camera.. i will be doing something for sure about this situation. I figured documenting the stupidity and holding photos for ransom was my first order of business. I have not a collection but a complete 12 volume work for his wedding day and gosh he is only 11!

After a snapped a few pics off I did *try* ever so carefully to remove my is a lovely piece and I'm thinking this will prolly outlast my son at any rate but his damn ears seemed to be the issue- I only got up to his neck and he was making those Bart Simpson choking noises and crying "Diddly! Diddly" before i sent him to the couch to sit with the stool propped up on the back to take the weight off while i gave it a think. Meanwhile his sister comes home, takes one look at her brother watching TV with the wicker cage around his head and rolls her eyes and heads up to her room calling behind her- "Did you get the pics or should I grab the cam?"

Well certainly time was of the essence since The Man would be home in and hour and the two of them trying to solve the issue would most certainly lead to some sort of tool- perhaps a saw.. a head and most importantly my stool ending up in pieces so i looked around the kitchen for something to grease The Boy up with and that's when the idea of cooking spray hit me. So there we were in the kitchen and me giving him a liberal dose of Pam -actually straight shots into the ear but hey! not the first time The Boy has had weird things in his ears now is it? His entire head was slick and shiny and his ears were bright red from the previous attempts and once again i pulled and tried like the Hulk to pry the wicker wide for him to escape while heaving up all the while attempting to turn the stool -The Girl stood there with her bag of popcorn and watched. Minimal amount of skin was lost and his head did indeed make a satisfying plop as the stool released it's grip. Thanks Mom! the little greasy haired, red ear'd urchin exclaimed as he darted off back to the arena for the next round.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Boys will be Boys

The boy is really getting tall i noticed. The other day he strolled by me in his pants 2 inches too short for him. A full sleeved shirt that was creeping up his arms. Nice to know he doesn't feel the heat like the rest of us in t-shirts and shorts do. What IS it with him? The front of his hair is done in early Hitler, parted and plastered but he fails to attend to the back of the rats nest. THIS is how he would stroll to school if i didn't catch him on his way out the door. I worry for his future in dating frankly and have gently and not so gently urged him to find a more eye pleasing style to the ladies. We are now at an age where personal appearances and smells do come into play i say to him. I have even tried to make the whole process seem more appealing to him by purchasing a small can of AXE body spray (in Chocolate). Oh, roll your eyes at me- go on! I roll my eyes at the general Kiwi men pop who seem to think AXE is the way to go round here. You find it in all department stores and groceries flooding the shelves in its toxic array. I long for the days of BRUTE at any rate. The boy has really taken to the notion of body spray though and i smell him before i see him, wafting by me in a cloud still looking much like Pig Pen but smelling kinda Chocolatey now. I also know that this may have also increased his appeal to the girls in his class smelling pretty much like a large Easter Bunny.

The first whiff that i had of a girlfriend was actually on the last week of school. The Boy is not overly chatty about the opposite sex unlike the walking hormone i also house. In fact, i would be none the wiser except he told the Mister when being collected from the year end dance. I mean of course i wondered a wee bit about the need to wear a tie but I was overpowered by his scent and didn't think to ask when he flew by me out the door (and apparently met his "date" on the way back to the school and walked with her to the dance). The Man positively gloated that *I* mother, all knowing and all seeing, missed this. So, to say the least, i was a bit miffed. Over the next couple of days leading up to The Boy's pool party i gently tried to pry the information from him with limited results. I was afraid he had picked another hoochie -he does tend to be attracted to overbearing and aggressive types. I thought boys tended to look for girls that were somewhat like their mothers?? I was avidly curious though by the time the party rolled around and she appeared - looking actually very normal and subdued. In fact, while observing her out of the corner of my eyes most of the two hours she was here i honestly couldn't say that she or The Boy, had any special feeling between them other than friends. I shared this with the Mister while i pretended interest in his BBQing and it's then that i got the other memo from Himself that the girl in question prolly didn't know The Boys real feelings. Hmmm, again i feel left out of the loop.

But that's the boy for you. With him you are constantly on only a "need to know" basis. That hasn't worked so well for him. On the second LAST day of school 15 MINUTES before he leaves the house he says to me "can you tie my tie?" I look at the plaid shirt and the striped tie in his hands and say "Why on earth are you needing a tie on the last day of school?" I see the blank look and the wheels turning and then it happens, he says; " Oh! well i have my grad this afternoon we have to wear a tie, you need to be at the school at 2 and bring a white elephant gift of chocolate and can you make my teddy bear a pirate costume?" HUH?? So it is explained to me that this grad is a formal event requiring a tie, the chocolate is for his secret Santa gift, and the teddy is going to the Teddy Bear's picnic tomorrow. Then he quickly darts past me to school leaving me in a chocolate dust cloud. Ok so... i show up a few minutes early to the school with Chocolate and a nice dress on. The teddy is at home -almost finished the sewing up the coat and i ask to be directed to the place where they are holding the Grad. THIS is when i am told that the Grad is in fact at 6pm -2pm being the rehearsal... the Teddy Bear picnic was today already and hmmm (Where the hell is my son, i think i would like a word with him). So yes, there i sit in an almost empty auditorium while watching the year 6's practice on stage and the Boy spots me (not hard! Pretty much the only one there) and gives me a sheepish wave. It turns out, as i explain to the boy between clenched teeth, that i cannot attend his grad since i committed to a Guide event for Shay that night and she wasn't missing her event because he didn't think that i needed to know anything in advance. Sad truth was that i missed my son's graduation from primary school but at least the Mister was in the audience.

There is more on The Boy and his boy type ways but I feel it may turn into a bit of a rant and so i will save tell you the many ways my son is determined to be featured in the next Jackass Movie for another time.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Breen Acres Kiwi Style

oy... i know.

No excuses just straight to the goods and a wee apology for those that have been patient.

Let's start with some general topics today. As most of you know we have moved (yes again!) out to the country. It became apparent that our trailer/tin can was not the "Home Sweet Home" that we all longed for. It did have it's pluses - the liquor store a quick jog up the 90 degree half Km driveway and lovely view of the jungle and thru that the sea. But shivering our way thru another wet winter and finding space for all of us, especially Thabo, was frustrating. I gladly waved goodbye to the bugs and the camper kitchen grabbed all our gear and retired to our country home because really.. after all the painting and papering I never really wanted to do THAT all over again... and yet....

Funny story about the new house. While Chris was originally in NZ scouting out prospects of gainful employment i too spent evenings in front of the MAC looking at properties in vague locations. This particular house was on the market back then. I had no idea WHERE Titirangi was ( Titty-rang-ee, Say it twice because it makes me giggle) But the gardens and pool certainly caught my attention. I cannot recall one thing in the interior pictures that they took but the last one in their slide show showing the house done up in all things Christmas certainly made me laugh. Maybe it was the giant decorated palm tree, or Santa and his deer on the roof? I'm thinking it was the 8 inflatables artfully arranged as a Wal Mart yard sale that made me giggle and move along. It wasn't until Chris took us to our private viewing and cresting the gentle hill and seeing the house ablaze in the evening that my memory was jogged and i screamed at himself "I have SEEN this house!!! It's the CHRISTMAS house. Good LORD! it's still on the market, There is no WAY we are buying this place -something is wrong with it.

As it turns out nothing was actually wrong with it per se. The owners had taken it off the market for a year while he sorted out his business and was looking to retire to Australia... good news. Better news was the market was at the bottom so we kinda got the bargain basement price of an otherwise "executive type" house - complete with rental suite. Now i have to say, going into the circular drive was pretty stunning. The pool was all tricked out in party lights and such... i could actually hear the humming of the electrical meter I'm sure. We were greeted at the double doors by a rather modest English couple (at first i thought butler but shoved that aside.) Really, this place was unlike ANYTHING that i had seen in all of Auckland with all of our open house slogging. Much much too showy for the average Kiwi if you know what i mean. Well maybe you don't. Kiwi's are a modest breed of folk and their dwellings generally reflect this whether you are in the $500K or 1.5 Mil mark. The difference between the two is usually a forth bedroom and perhaps a full size fridge.

Anywho, I think the first obvious difference between this house and the usual ones was the lovely er, artwork about. The main entrance done in black marble and 5 inch baseboards -which is nice BUT the thing um, statues of a family in repose going up the main stair was a bit off putting truth be told. I counted 4 bodies going up the wall and peeked in the corners searching out cherubs and such. It was hard not to look Himself in the eye as we navigated past 3 dimensional breasts on the stairs. The entire second floor had a much more modest design with the exception of the crystal chandeliers. It was then reported by the owner that the original couple that built this house ran out of money and so they finished it. (I am ever so thankful of this). The bedrooms were all generous and we had the addition of a spare room. The main floor was obviously where all the money went into er, decorating. The formal living-room/ dinning and the family rooms all had the "wonderful" crown moulding and scroll work going across the ceilings as well as more crystal lighting and medallions. I am mentally taking a pick axe to this as we walk thru. Further to that the current owners were firmly entrenched in the 80's and so their taste in pastel watercolor drapes and fab mod furniture added to the house's exotic look. Interestingly enough, they had also recently decided to update the kitchen with granite tops and a built in bar (complete with kegger holder and taps) instead of the traditional table and chairs one *might* find in an eating area. Clearly these ppl had done some serious partying in their day. It was also mentioned about some sort of swim up bar in the pool... Ronin will love that i thought. So basically it looked like the house was done by many people with many different ideas of what a home should look like with importance played to a stainless bar fridge cabinet and bar but the half bath was left in the 50s -early jail cell complete with wire cage around the bulb in the ceiling. We left and had drinkies to discuss this new idea of moving out to the country. I tell you what sold me on this place and it wasn't the grand exterior or the mod fab kitchen... nor the boobies. Nope, it was a simple idea that Himself would have his own closet. I know that sounds trivial when making a big money decision but frankly sharing with him for the past 8 months in limited space was unadulterated pure hell. The idea that 60% of my wardrobe was left in a tin can garages in damp boxes at any given time was enough to spurn me into action.

Moving day was pretty normal, that being Himself was AWOL and left me to run the show with kids and movers scurrying about. It took on giant moving van and 3 trips with the smaller van to load and cart our stuff from place to place. I had to kennel the dogs and for two nights we put ourselves up in a hotel in order to begin the process of sorting ourselves out -again.

The house itself is a bit of a local celebrity. Didn't know this really until i went and registered the Boy at the local school. I gave them our address and the secretaries all looked up and one proclaimed "Oh! you bought THAT house". There was sizing of myself up after that wondering what bank i maybe robbed to be sure.... i was almost compelled to tell them that it was a smoking deal we got on it but i held my tongue. Apparently the house is also known as the CHRISTMAS house -which would delight me to no end would i have been back home where lights and such are so common and amazing. Here a string of lights will run you about $36 (plain Jane model) and inflatables are hundreds of dollars... so now i can see while the Kiwi's looked at awe at this place and it's "holiday wonder". Sadly these were all smartly packed up and shipped to Australia with the previous owners - 20 Ft metal palm tree included. Equally embarrassing is the number of drive bys we get at night right now from long time locals coming to enjoy the houses' splendor... perhaps i should move the Christmas tree closer to the window?

Friday, July 23, 2010

Aspects of My Social Life Uncovered

They say that everyone has their twin somewhere out in the world. I can almost say with some certainty that about half of the people I know in Canada have a twin and have found them here in New Zealand. Unfortunately it’s usually the back of someone’s head or their profile here that is the only resemblance. I stupidly get very excited at theses “sightings” as I go rush forward with the words almost tumbling out of my mouth, “What are you DOING here? Why didn’t you tell me!!” only to do the quick veer to the right as they turn fully around and I see nothing that resembles anyone that I ever knew. Oy! Don’t think that I am that lonely that I start to imagine friends, the Kiwi people are almost always friendly. Maybe it’s because like the bird, sighting a born and bred Kiwi in its natural habitat is kind of rare. Almost everyone that I meet has come from somewhere else. Everyone seems to be quite open to meeting new people and “sharing” the most interesting and intimate details on their lives upon introduction.

At first I thought that perhaps I should join an interest group or club to perhaps get a foothold in here. Although I didn’t actually pursue it very far I found out quite by accident myself in a membership of introductions via the way of Trade Me. Trade Me is the island wide response to EBay. As some of you know that obviously love me more than others shipping to NZ can be costly. So the Island wide auction site is designed to meet that and er, apparently also used as a local social sight. It took me a bit to catch on. I’m used to kind of going driving to a place to buy second hand goods with the item placed outside the door and the person standing there with their hand held out. So I was quite suspicious the first time I was invited in to a lady’s home (getting some lamps) and asked if I wanted some tea. My North American mind was on high alert. “Who else is lurking behind that door and does she have a chop shop of body parts hidden in this house? Will anyone know to look for me here if I don’t come home?” I honestly can’t even remember much of the conversation as she took me on a tour of her home and sat and had cookies. I was still in the Run Forest Run mode I believe. I just chalked it up to her perhaps being a bit lonely. But then when I bought the bedroom light fixtures I was getting into it a bit. Another tour of the home and this time it was wine so I defiantly would be coming back if she offered some other stuff.

In fact, I began to look at the whole shopping on Trade Me as a bit of an adventure and started bringing the kids along. Usually the places we were driving to where a new area to us and afforded us a big of touring fun and the locations were always exciting now to see what tidbit we were going to be offered. The girl came with me when I bought concert tickets to Green Day for the man and myself. Pick up was arranged around the lunch hour so I made sure we didn’t eat too much. The couple that greeted us at the door like long lost relatives quickly ushered us in for the tour and out to the back to show off the Alpaca farm they owned as well at miniature horses. Shay was in her glory. We left with hugs and warm wishes all around and a promise to buy an alpaca from them should we ever have the need. Of course I had to squash that dream of the girls half way out the driveway but no matter.

Yes, I have even taken the man on my buying adventures. We went to pick up a rather large wardrobe with too small a van as it turns out so we went back a couple of times. This couple would probably been a good fit for us but that they were selling off items with the intention of moving back to Australia. Anyways, the wife was ever so lovely and I have been in correspondence with her from Aussie with her best picks of local restaurants to try in Auckland. We also left that day not only with the wardrobe but some lovely free designer pots as well. At any rate once we make a trip over there we are sure to look them up.

They say that Ebay is addictive and yes, I do get that being one of the masses that shopped quite heavily online back home. I used to think that there was nothing more exciting in getting that brown package in the mail. This whole Trade Me thing though is well beyond that! Is it wrong for me to shop for an item and put priority to it’s location now as local pick up? It is an adventure with every auction.

Friday, July 2, 2010

She Was ALL Ears!

So the girl is indeed a mystic and fortuneteller of the future. There was a mass infection of the earring kind to be sure. What our little Psychic didn’t fully see (and lets face it they can be a bit spotty on looking into the future) was that it was Herself that landed the infection, not The Boy. To be sure, the Boy has had some issues with locating his earring from time to time he has be blissfully unaware of the pain of inflamed holes.

The whole business started out with a pair of 3lb dumbbells that Shay purchased at the local costume jewelry shop. She must have seen the bling half was across the mall and they called to her to buy them (with her own money of course – I have standards). Anywho, failing to sanitize them she popped them in and in a matter of an hour she started to complain of the pain. At first I thought perhaps it was the sheer weight of these things and after removal she did feel a bit better but then the next day….well she had these lovely red flaming balls hanging on each side of her face. Having run out of the usual antiseptic I suggested she use this all-purpose (what could only be described as a type of iodine) on her ears. The medicine kinda turned the area a brownish red and looked just awful but we thought we were heading in a good direction – not so much. Waking up the next morning, the girl heads into the bathroom and I hear a scream. The antiseptic has now started to eat away at the tender flesh and the infection has caused her ears to swell and bloat like vine ripened tomatoes. Oh boy. What to do now? Well ok, lets put on some white gobby ointment that we have here for cuts, maybe that will do the trick? Oh and lets send the girl to school like this with words of encouragement that “no one will notice- it’s not that bad”. (lie-lie-lie) She came home from classes that day with her ironic smirk and told me that “Sure, no one noticed my ears, mom. Do you know how many people asked me What the Hell is wrong with me today?” By now The Man is fully engaged with his St John’s Ambulance course tucked firmly under his belt and steps in to tell us that I put this on her by using the iodine and to continue with the white gobby cream and no, put down the phone the Doctor isn’t going to offer any better treatment then cleaning the infection and putting said cream on them.
So, it appeared that The Man was right. Unfortunately to heal, the ears needed to shed the dead skin so NOW we have the girl sporting red tomatoes, white cream and skin hanging off her ears. Frankly I am surprised that she wasn’t shunned as most lepers are. Everyone at school kinda backed off from asking but it was hard during the healing process to talk to her and keep your eyes firmly plastered to her face. I would find myself in conversation with my gaze drifting to the hot mess of her ears while she was talking to me and thinking “OMG! How is it that she can even go out in public without cringing? I would shut myself in the house being the Lame-o that I am. But there you go, the girl is a much better person than I and like the energizer bunny she appears to be unstoppable.
This is not the only example of Shay’s stick to it nature. She frankly amazes me with all the knocks that she gets and just keeps on trucking along. Intermediate School offers so much more opportunity to find your interests than Primary as you know. Sports, creative arts, and technology groups abound. It is a great time for a Tween to find their niche and do something of interest to them. The thing with Shay is that she’s not sure WHAT interests her and so she tries everything. Not a bad thing really but there has been some “speed humps”. It would take both hands to count on what the girl has tried out for at school and almost the same number of fingers can be held up to show what she didn’t make the cut for. School Council (which, IMO was totally rigged) Soccer, Cricket, Net Ball and Field Hockey were not her forte to put it bluntly. Honestly, she has no real natural talent, just like her mother for these sports group activities. Then the tryouts for Orienteering came along and Shay eagerly wrote her name on the sign up sheet without really knowing what the sport was about. Was it luck or a miracle that the girl FINALLY made a team? I didn’t even know she was aware of how to use a compass to find her way thru the running trails quite frankly. That alone impressed me. I was so eager to share her newfound passion that I signed up to help at the citywide tourney that the schools team was in and chauffeured a giggly group of girls to the event. The team had been practicing you see and so I thought The Girl knew what was to happen at the event. It was explained that they ran in heats of four with an initial start time and then off into the fields and bushes to follow a map with their compass and collect punches on their cards at the 12 stops along the route. The top four placers then had an opportunity to qualify for some other event much bigger than the one that we were at. Shay was all nerves at the start with her teammates and was in the sixth starting heat. Off she went down a hill and into the bush. All the team members had different courses to run so I just stood around with the other Mother’s chatting about how fast Shay has been in trials and how I hope she does well. A little behind me the finish of the course was laid out and we could see a couple of kids from the first heat coming in and made our way over. All of a sudden I see thru the trees a child that I have no doubt as my own, running pell mell for the finish line. OMG! She is AMAZING!! How could she have finished the course so fast? It was almost impossible to be THAT fast I thought but my chest puffed up with pride as the other mother’s jaws dropped in awe at her approach. She came to the finish line with her crumpled card to be validated by the officials and I see there is some sort of issue. Turns out that the girl failed to punch in at all 12 stations and thought that she only had to punch at one (In practice mom, we only go to one!) She was disqualified BUT she ended up restarting and doing the course again because she wanted to finish right. She was put into one of the last heats and by the time she took off most of the 20 kids from her school were sitting on the grass at the finish line eating their snacks and comparing times. I was left alone with other mothers patting me on the back and running to meet their own children. I was a jumble of emotions really by that point. Sad, angry a bit and most of all just worried about how Shay was feeling and what to say or do when she finally reached the finish. I glared at the other kids from her school thinking if they even so much as dare say anything negative I would be on them like a mother bear. I need not have worried so much I guess. Shay came in at the tail end and we could all see her approach. The red blotchiness and tearstains down her face told the tail. One by one all of her school got up and ran to the finish and clapped and cheered her on jumping up and down screaming at her that she could do it. All of them. All of them surrounded her at the finish as I held back as they crowed around her with hugs and smiles while she caught her breath still sobbing. She finally composed herself enough to walk to me and I held out my arms to her. She walked to me and I held her as I heard her muffled voice in my sweater, “I failed mom, I did it all wrong!” No Hun, you didn’t fail. I think that you do everything just right. You may not excel in most team sports but you have the best thing that a team can offer you. You have their admiration and respect as well as mine.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

A Few Words

Yes, I took a break. Or maybe it was one long mind fart.Did you miss me? I hope you noticed I was gone but no matter. Will go back to your regularly scheduled programming.
One of the considerations that the Mister and I made about relocating to another country was the need to be in a primarily English speaking country. Neither of us are well versed in Spanish or French. As much as I would love to live in France, me going around and asking for beer and where the toilets were (although handy to know in any language and thus I can party in Mexico, Germany and Japan) is somewhat limiting if you are to try and carve out a life in the real world, a natural fit would seem going to a place like New Zealand. Well, at least I thought it would be the same...not so much as it turns out. If you have ever had an ear infection or a particularly nasty cold that plugs up your ears you kind of have an idea of what I am talking about. You will catch the odd word and a bunch of garbled sounds linking them together when you go out and about in your daily tasks if you talk to the locals. Much as the Girl got caught in the land of confusion with the phrase "Sweet As" being "Sweet Ass" I have found myself pondering over some of the terms used around here.

Watching the local news is kinda funny with the weather reports given daily. A lively young thing gestures to the Island map behind her dancing around and proclaiming it to be a "Fine" day. There really is only two types of weather to report around here; Fine and Rain. So "Fine" is actually meaning sunny here. Very Fine is heaps of sun. Partly Fine is well... yes, you are getting the picture. The newspaper reports exactly the same.

Good, Better, and Best. These are the types of flour I stare at in the Grocery. Likewise, cheddar cheese labels of Mild Medium and Old are replaced by Tasty, Tastier and Tastiest. I have yet to figure out the Milk... Trim Milk? Is that like, Skim or do i pick the Trimmer Milk? I will let you figure out what it is I am buying when I head to the store to pick out some Capsicums and Courgettes and Lollies. I *could* do a whole blog about my trips to the grocery but will table that for another time.

Heaps of new words and lingo to process HEAPS i tell you! Heaps.......really? Yes, I have opened fliers from the mail box and read of stores offering HEAPS of items on Sale. It will be HEAPS of fun to go, True That! If I don't find coffee filters soon to go with my ever rare coffee maker I may become Angus... I will have jumped into my car, (not forgetting to take my mobile with me), filled up with petrol, checked the Tyres and probably gone thru at least 10 roundabouts getting to the shop only to be disappointed. I may have to go for Drinkies after that to medicate. If you think it's funny to read the word "Drinkies" try hearing it from a 50 year old man talking to his mates about what to do after work. For some reason I think adding "ies" is only acceptable when speaking to the dogs. Walkies, bickies and drinkies are soley reserved for them.

The Mister and I have had a giggle or two over the phrase Speed Hump. We have a different definition for *that* one after having kids. Nice to finally put a name to it though.