Midway

May. 27th, 2009 08:54 am
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I'm halfway through my cast. At the rate it's shedding small but irritating fibreglass dust, it might not last the distance!

No, just kidding, it's as stiff and solid as ever. But I can feel the dust on my left fingers, and I've learnt not to rub my eyes, even if they are itching, because it just makes things worse. Every now and then I'll get a sneezing fit, which is no fun at all.

Two more weeks and I'll be back on the roads, but I'll only have a few days between resuming driving and going off on my next big trip. While I'm enjoying the time off, I'm really annoyed that I'm missing out on some superb autumn times in Canberra and the chance to earn some badly-needed money.

I can't even drive. The only time I've set paw to wheel has been to reposition one of our cars in the driveway. I have to either walk or be driven. On the upside, that means that if I want something from the shops, I'll walk into Civic, which is both pleasant and good exercise. I stride along with my "Smiles" playlist going, feeling supremely happy.

And I have been happy. It's been good to spend some solid family time. Too often I'm driving a twelve hour shift out of phase with my wife and children, and then on the weekends I'm catching up on sleep. My holidays are mostly spent away, travelling by myself.

Then there's the chance to chat and email and share forum space with my friends. I am constantly thrilled and amazed by the love, generosity, fun and creativity displayed by those around me, most notably my quirky BookCrossing mates. Seeing the photographs coming back from New Zealand brings the warm memories of what was truly a magical holiday.

And, of course, I'm catching up on tasks neglected. There's housework and cooking, blogging and journalling, reading and writing.

I'm currently writing up my blog of the New Zealand trip, printing out the episodes, punching and gluing them into pages of a Levenger Circa journal and then adding in the various boarding passes, dockets, maps and ephemera I collect along the way. Some items are big enough to punch and slot intio the binder disks, some need to be cut out and stuck in.

And when I get around to it, I'll get my photographs printed, to be added to the record. The end result is a scrapbook I can look back on in years to come, rekindling memories of the wonderful time I had in New Zealand.

I've got a stack of these books now, each one a happy storehouse of a part of my life.

All in all, I'm happy at the moment. Supremely happy.
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Gandhi in Glebe

I guess I'm a bad blogger nowadaze. It's been four weeks since the Christchurch convention ended, and two since I broke my arm, and in almost every respect my life is not at all what I thought it would be just now.

Seldom have I enjoyed a BookCrossing convention so much. It was so close to perfect, with the setting, the season, the fun and the friends. I don't think anybody wanted it to end!

I got home, and felt so incredibly blue. Yes, I know that Canberra is a beautiful city, and autumn is the best time of year, but after a week in paradise, everywhere else is bleak winter.

My friends found ways to buck me up, and I'm back to my normal operating mode, fondly remembering the good times past and dreaming of those to come. Looking forward to the Edinburgh trip, capped off with a few days in Rockhampton, which is always pleasant in midwinter, compared to Canberra's chill. Especially with the family around me. I'm getting to be one of the older generation now, with the youngest members down around kindergarten age.

I had a fairly normal week back in the cab, swapping shifts with my day driver, enjoying his twice-daily chats, and getting back into the swing of things. But then he went away on his own delightful holiday - and yes, I'm grateful for the updates, Paul - and I did double shifts until the owner found me a co-driver.

Doubles mean that I have the car 24 hours in a day, and it pretty much means dawn to dusk and beyond. Fifteen or eighteen hour shifts with a nap in the middle.

And then I broke my arm. No more driving, not even my own cars. I stay at home, do all the things I've been putting off for months if not years, read books, do housework, cook meals, and best of all, get to enjoy the company of my wife. My usual cabdriving life sees me spend huge amounts of each week either absent or asleep, and that's probably not the best way to be a good husband and father.

I'm enjoying the break. Could not be happier in fact. It is so pleasant to be able to chat with my friends online, or watch evening tv shows with the family. And I'm even getting a bit of exercise. My plan is to lose ten kilos of excess over the next 50 days, which should see me reach a healthful weight, rather than being just a bit tubby.

I walked into Civic yesterday, listening to my "Smiles" playlist on the iPhone, kicking through piles of leaves under trees of rapidly disappearing gold, and feeling on top of the world.

Currently reading "Middlesex" by Jeffrey Eugenides, which won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction. I gave away a copy of this book in October, and a friend has been kind enough to give me a replacement. There's something about BookCrossing - never short of a good book to read. A good book or two or three or four hundred!

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