Outing to Yarrabah

Today, we went off on a pure “just drive and see where we end up” outing. Just Jack and myself. My Mum is unwell, so I figured that if we went out for a little bit, she could have some peace and quiet to rest.

After a breakfast of bacon and eggs, we headed off to Yarrabah, an Indigenous Community to the East of Cairns, on the other side of Trinity Inlet. It is a bit of a drive, I thought it was closer, but was so well worth it. The drive had us meandering through the sugarcane fields, and after the downpour we had yesterday from Tropical Cyclone Owen, a lot of the streams were flowing. This was the first time we went to Yarrabah, so didn’t know what to expect, and it was also Jack’s first time going to an Indigenous Community. There are certain things you need to observe when entering Indigenous communities, and you must have the utmost respect for the place and it’s people.

The drive took us up over the mountains, which was quite a climb up and over the range, but the whole thing was worth it. Below, is a photo overlooking the bay that fringes Yarrabah, who wouldn’t want to live in this slice of paradise ??

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We wandered on down from this amazing vantage point into the community below, and as we pulled up at the beachside, a lovely old Aboriginal lady in a wheelchair was having her morning wander around, and we had a little chat. She was an amazingly friendly and warm woman.

We then wandered onto the beach, where we discovered that 2 shipwrecks also inhabited the waters just off the beach. It was a popular photographic subject with both myself and Jack.

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Jack was trying to get the best angle.

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The western headland of the bay also was quite interesting and picturesque.

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We then decided to head back home, but took a detour before getting home to have lunch, which included a feast of Lychees we got at a roadside stall on our travels. Below, is the Western flank of Walsh’s Pyramid, with water streaming down some ephemeral waterfalls due to the heavy rain yesterday.

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We also happened across this colony of Fruit Bats, or Flying Foxes, which just so happens to be not far from our new home. I have been itching for a bit of an explore, but due to all the work we have needed to do, this has been the first proper opportunity.

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All the usual crap with fibromyalgia is happening still, and we still have tonnes more work to do, but it was nice to just kick back for a few hours, and start to explore our new home.

Andy.

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Feeling generally more positive, the first time in a while.

A second post in as many days !! It’s a drizzly day, and warm, which is highly unusual in this neck of the woods at this time the year. I have done the morning school run, then taken the recycling to the recycling centre, done a bit of top up shopping, done a run through the Op Shops, got medicine from the chemist, and have now come back home to be home alone, not a usual situation to be in, but I’ll take it !!

I don’t have a tonne of stuff on the cards today, it’s still the half world of being ready to move, but not able to yet, but it is looking more and more certain as the days go by this time around. We will be permanently living in the Tropics by Christmas, I am sure of it.

Jack has been the most amazing kid the past few weeks, he has, without being asked, been straightening out the bed each morning, has been making a pretty good effort to keep things tidy, and even put his washing in the washing basket, instead of in the bed, on the floor, in the lounge room, etc……. We are sharing my bed, a double, seeing as we had sold our old double/single bunk bed before the last sale of the house fell through 2 days before we were supposed to be leaving. Anyhow, I will be looking forward to having it all to myself again when we arrive at the final destination, but for now, we have to do what we have to do. It’s amazing, I knew he moved around a lot in bed already, but he must be at a rave party in his dreams, because he has arms and legs flying everywhere !!!

I think, seeing that the house is so quiet right now, that I might try and have a nap, I am so worn out from all the stress and worry and uncertainty of the past  couple of months, and will need to start focusing on getting both mentally and physically prepared and rested for the big drive when it comes, which at this stage is likely about 4 weeks from today. We have to do over 3000km to get to the new place (3329km to be precise according to Google maps !!) which will be about 5 days driving, and seeing a 350km drive takes it out of me at the moment, then I really need to get ready for that one !!!

Time

I have been so dark and stormy, sort of like the weather outside tonight, for the past few months. It’s not normally me, but with everything that has been going on, I don’t think you could expect anything less from someone going through all that crap.

Over the past couple of weeks, we have put a circuit breaker in a lot of the crap, firstly, we got the go ahead to put the house back on the market, so we did (with no real estate agents this time), Facebook Marketplace actually, and within about 16 hours, we had 3 people come and look at the place, hectic, but we actually had an offer made by the end of the day. An offer that we accepted. Tuesday we should see the contract signed, deposit paid, and everything back on track. We have even made arrangements with the owner of the place we were going to buy to buy it again, and thankfully, that too is steaming ahead. Hopefully it isn’t a repeat of the Titanic this time.

After my little (read BIG) explosion at my father, things settled down, and so far, things are holding steady. He has been a reasonable human being for the most part now for 3 weeks, which is a record by a long stretch.

During the past fortnight, we, meaning Mum, Jack myself went for a 5 day sojourn to Melbourne, it ended up being a bit  busier than I think we had anticipated, the time flew, but we spent some great time with my Aunt and brother. My only real plan for the 5 days was a trip to the Point Cook RAAF Museum, and a possible Op Shopping day, which accomplished, but my brother also insisted on us all going Ten Pin Bowling, and seeing a movie (the new Johnny English one) on one day, and my Aunt insisted on us going to the Werribee Open Plains Zoo, which by the way, was absolutely brilliant, far, far better than I had expected.

I am currently very drained however. I am still taking Valium to sleep at night, I did do a couple of nights without, but have needed them again. I am excited by the prospect that this time the sale and move will go through, but am containing that excitement, deliberately trying to avoid another disappointment. I couldn’t take what happened happening again, I’d end up going into a complete breakdown. It’s hard to keep your shit together when you are prone to depression, that’s what the Valium is doing, helping me keep my shit together.

Tomorrow sees Jack back to school for another school term, so this afternoon has been a flurry of making sure bags are ready, shoes are polished, and I even managed to fit in cutting his hair, yes, a single parent has to be a jack of all trades. Apart from his first ever hair cut by a hairdresser (which to be honest, was woeful), I have been cutting his hair ever since, and seeing the mum’s of the kids at the school want to know who cuts Jack’s hair because they want their kids done by them, then I must do a good job (I always say to the mum’s that it was “somewhere in the next town, can’t remember what they are called”, I don’t want to be a hairdresser for everyone else’s kids!!).

Anyway, I am pretty tired, but just wanted touch base so you didn’t think I’d fallen off the face of the planet.

Goodnight.

Andy.

3 weeks to go…..

So the move is definitely on, and we now have a house to move to.

Mum and Dad have found a place where Mum, Jack and myself can live together in the main house, and Dad has his own smaller self contained house on the same block. We move out of here on the 6th of September, and all going well, we move in to the new place on the 14th. It will take us 6 or 7 days to get there, it’s a cross country trip, so it all seems to be falling into place.

The past week Jack and I have been home alone, and between packing already sealed boxes of stuff of mum and dads, and getting my last couple of things into the shipping container, making sure we are both fed each day and doing the usual stuff, plus a few appointments thrown in the mix, and I feel completely wrecked. I can say with a high level of certainty that moving in with my folks was a good idea from the point of view of my fibromyalgia. This week has been tough doing it all on my own again.

I have sent emails to the new school Jack will be starting at for term 4, after the spring break, and had a meeting this afternoon with his current teacher, organising some work for him to do while we are on the road, so he doesn’t miss too much. Tomorrow I am off to my doctor, it may be the last visit before we leave, I am not sure, I will have to see how it all goes.

I’m feeling a few different emotions this week, mainly because I have had a lot of time to myself, I have a huge sense of relief, for a few reasons. Relief that I am going to be living so far away from my abuser that the likelihood of running into her when down the street is zero. Relief that we now have certainty with where we are going, a house to move to. I even know my new address !! I am also anxious about what the next few weeks will hold for us before we move, and then about getting all set up in the new place. And lastly, I am feeling edgy, I want to go now ! Waiting for the next 3 weeks to go by is killing me !!!

Weirdly enough, I don’t feel sad. With everything that has happened here, it is time to go. I will not miss this place. I certainly won’t miss the horrible weather or the ignorant, misinformed people of this area.

New beginnings. New Beginnings. It’s exciting.

A nice day out.

Well, as I said in the last post, we went out for a drive up to The Grampians today, Jack, Mum and myself. and we’ve all returned feeling a lot fresher in the mind. We’ve escaped the dome we’ve become accustomed to, and just chilled out.

I drove most of the day, and even though it was pretty appalling weather conditions and my body doesn’t like long drives so much anymore, I love driving. I still have that same sense I had when I first was able to go out and drive by myself after getting my license. The really is nothing like getting out on the road and just driving through the countryside.

Up until the last 18 months, Jack and I had regular outings, going to The Grampians, over to Melbourne, out to local national parks, it was great. But as finances have tightened, it’s become something that doesn’t happen enough. Today, I realised that it’s just going to have to be something that I somehow make affordable, because the feeling of regaining my sanity it has given me is so worth every single cent.

Andy.

Successful day, considering….

Today we, Jack and myself, headed off to Hamilton early, with the main aim of hitting the Op Shops, and then getting back home for lunch. It’s about an hour each way, and 5 Op Shops. We hit all of them, and had a successful trip.

I ended up with a brand new blood pressure machine (like, still in the box and the plastic still wrapped around the box), which set me back $10, and also 2 matching doona’s for our beds. They cost $11 all up. Jack got some toys, and we dropped into a discount variety store called Trevs, where I picked up some ankle supports and another wrist support, and another compartmentalised container for Lego. We have too much Lego (no, not true, you can never have too much Lego !!).

So after all that, we got home at 12.45, just in time for a lovely Silverside and salad sandwich each, and I had a side of Caesar Salad as well. This afternoon has been occupied with washing the new doona covers, sorting out a bit more stuff, and just generally mucking about with Jack.

It’s been very cold and wet, with a side dish of very windy today. On the way to Hamilton, we had drizzle all the way, but during our wanderings around, it didn’t rain at all. I like to park the car centrally to where we want to go and walk around, we must have done about 2 or 3 km’s of walking, with not a single drop of rain. Our trip home was dry until about 2 minutes from home, but the wind had picked up, so we were continually buffeted side on by 50 to 60km/hr wind gusts, at times it was fun keeping the car on the road.

Tonight, as I type, Jack is watching a movie, we have the bedroom light off, and outside there is the occasional flicker of lightning off to the south west. Funnily though, there isn’t a cloud in the sky, stars to be seen all around. Tonight the weather is supposed to go pretty nasty though, we currently have a weather warning for damaging winds in place.

So, the considering part in the title of this post is because of my now 4 nights in a row of really, really bad sleep. It’s been horrendous, to be honest. Tonight I have done everything. I have had a huge soak in a hot bath, taken every pill I am allowed, my wrists and ankle are strapped up (they have been a major problem with actually getting to sleep), i haven’t had a coffee after dinner, and………..well there is other stuff I have done to try and maximise my chances of a decent sleep tonight, only time will tell if it will be a success.

When we have dramatic shifts in weather, like the past 4 or 5 days, where the barometric pressure dramatically rises and falls in a matter of hours, I seem to have a bad flare up of the fibromyalgia. It’s interesting, I was actually watching a quiz show last night, and the answer to one of the questions was what divers suffer from if they come up too quickly, The Bends. It got me thinking, that hey, nobody is quite sure what causes Fibromyalgia, but could it be that the muscle pain and joint pain intensifying with dramatic shifts in atmospheric pressure works by a similar mechanism to what happens with The Bends ? It’s just a thought. I guess when you suffer from something like this, you try and come up with an answer yourself, when nobody else seems to have the answer. Who know’s, maybe the crazy ideas like this may actually lead to an answer. I have always thought that if you want to see the solution to a problem, look outside the box.

Well, I might leave this for now, I need to be up and out of the place before the shipping container arrives tomorrow, it’s due between 9 and 10, so I need to hopefully get some sleep before then. Goodnight.

Andy.

School Holidays

Today is the middle of the first week of the school holidays, not sure how it’s gone so fast, but it has. It always seems to be the way.

Yesterday, we went off to see the latest installment of the Jurassic Park franchise, Jurassic World, Fallen Kingdom. It was what I expected, enjoyable, and Jack obviously, due to now having been a dinosaur nut for at least 5 years, loved it. He really likes the Velociraptor “Blue”.  I guess it’s easy to have a soft spot for Blue too.

Apart from heading down to Warrnambool to see the movie, we went and had lunch at Subway, did a bit of shopping, I got myself a new rugby top, and we got a bunch of DVD’s as well, ranging from the original “Wizard of Oz” to “Pacific Rim”. I had planned on making the most of the specials at Sanity, but after spending 30 minutes trawling through the DVD’s and Bluray discs, there really wasn’t much special about it. We instead went to our trusty source of movies in Warrnambool, a secondhand bookshop, and scored big. Ended up with 10 movies for $40.

I am one of those rare men that enjoys shopping. I’d enjoy it more if I had more money to spend, but all the same, half the fun is trying to find the best deal for the least amount.

Today we had a few things on, mainly to go to the dentist for Jack’s final visit, and I was supposed to go to another appointment, but that was canned as they rang me instead, we discussed what we needed to, and that was that. I went and checked on the time for another appointment I had for the end of the week, I had forgot what time it was for, I mean, the appointment was made 4 weeks ago, so a lot can vanish from my mind in that time !!! As it turned out, the appointment had to be shifted to early next week anyhow, as the other party has had something unexpected come up and is now no longer available on Friday. Just as well I popped in today !!!

As for the rest of the past few days, since the school holidays began, I can’t really remember what we have done, it’s all been a bit of a blur. I have been suffering a bit with the fibromyalgia, so that certainly stuffs the memory around.

I’m still up now, at 11.30pm, because of the fibromyalgia. I am in a fair bit of pain, and nothing is settling it down much, but worst of all I have a bad bout of IBS. I just had to duck out to the loo for the second time since starting to write this. It is horrible. And to make matters worse, Cottonelle Kleenex brand toilet paper is NOT soft, regardless of what people think. I’d rather my cheaper, usual toilet paper any day.

It’s amazing how this blog goes from one thing to another extreme so quickly, but that is me. I tend to get side tracked, I’ll be talking about something, it leads to something else, and then eventually I get back to what I started off with !!!

For the rest of the school holidays, we don’t have solid plans, we will be going and doing something outdoorsy, but this time of the year you just can’t plan that too heavily. For instance, the next 3 days are supposed to be very, very wet, very, very windy, and very, very cold. Not the ideal outdoorsy weather. I think on Friday, we might go for a little run up to Hamilton, and check out the Op Shops up there, it’s been a while since we have, and Jack just about jumps out of his skin with excitement if I mention the words “Op Shop”. Just as much as he does if I mention “Garage Sale” !!!

He has bagged some amazing bargains in his short life. He scored “What Bird is that?” a book that is easily worth $100 secondhand, at a Garage Sale for $5. He found about $400 worth of genuine Lego at an Op Shop for $40. And that doesn’t include the huge collection of AFX Aurora slot car stuff he has amassed, currently he has at least 3 sets (it’s all together as one lot though), with about 12 cars, and everything needed, which even on the secondhand market is worth about $500, and all up it’s cost about $30. He really has a keen eye for things.

So apart from some possible Op Shopping, I am thinking of a day trip up to The Grampians, we have been up there a few times, it’s a favourite spot, but we haven’t been for a while. This time of the year is best, because the waterfalls are….waterfalling, and there is also the possibility of snow. We will wait and see if that trip eventuates, but I sure hope we get the chance.

Anyhow, it seems my insides have settled down now, so if I can overcome the pain with sleep, I am going to give it a go.

Goodnight all, and see you next time.

Andy.