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Saturday, December 30, 2017

My Festive Season 2017

Christmas Day, for me, is a day on the beach with whatever I'm reading at the time and a picnic lunch. This year, I was accompanied by my mother. We had a very nice lunch of fresh-baked bread, made by me that morning, as per my tradition - in a very good bread loaf tin I bought at London Stores, in my little fan-forced oven - hard boiled eggs, fresh summer fruit, smoked cheese and fruit cake and mince pie, cut into small pieces because Mum can't cope with even looking at a large piece of food, even if assured she doesn't have to eat it all. I prepared us each a small thermos of icy cold water, and had a large thermos of boiled water with a choice of tea or coffee. Mum had coffee, I had tea.

The beach was overflowing with people and we found a bench, because there was no space on the grass to spread a blanket and Mum had her walker, so no chance to go on the sand. After lunch, Mum took a nap in a limited space behind her favourite sea-gazing bench and I read my Christmas gift copy of Hidden Figures, a history of the African-American women who worked as mathematicians, known as "computers", during the early days of the space program.  I do have a copy in ebook, but it was nice to have a print copy, especially since I don't really like reading e-books at the beach, risking getting sand into my device. It is a wonderful story, which I recommend, whether or not you've seen the terrific movie(which I've just bought on DVD).

 I was relieved to know we had missed the riots that happened on my local beach after Mum and I left. There were apparently 5000 people on the beach, about ten times what I had thought.

We ended up having our dinner at Macca's, as nothing else was open near Mum's place and really, neither of us was up to cooking anything after the filling lunch we'd had. Mum enjoys eating there anyway.

Boxing Day: I went to see the Dr Who Christmas Special at the Village Cinemas in the Jam Factory. I still haven't re-viewed it on iView, but must do that before it goes. I enjoyed it very much. Afterwards, I went into town, to the Boxing day sales. My main aim was to buy a new pari of sandals, as I'm hard on my shoes and rarely wear closed shoes, even in winter. I bought two. They aren't cheap, but there is only one place I can find shoes to fit me - everywhere else is no longer selling narrow fittings, but this shop sells European shoes and they do have narrow fittings. I have found a couple of brands that are made to be comfortable. They aren't cheap, but to my delight, the shop was also doing Boxing Day specials. After buying them, I went across the road to spend some of my JB Hifi vouchers and got Hidden Figures(the movie) and some early Dr Who episodes. I just love Time Warrior, a Jon Pertwee story in which Sarah Jane Smith makes her first appearance, and so do the Sontarans. And I got three DVDs for $26!

Wednesday was hot and I went for my first swim for this summer, at St Kilda Beach.

Thursday I took my nephew's younger girl, Rachel, to lunch and the movies. I'd planned to go to the city, but it was just too hot. Fortunately, there was one session of Wonder, a film based on a book we had both read, about a little boy who has a facial deformity and finally starts school in Year 5, after being home schooled. It was a pleasant way to spend the day and nice to catch up with Rachel, who is heading back to Sydney this week.

We also went to Mum's place, where the family gathered to drink a toast to Dad, who passed away on December 28 eight years ago. My brother brought a six-pack of beer, my nephew a bottle of whiskey, which Dad loved. I had a glass of beer, but also a tiny sherry glass of whiskey.

Friday I tried to get stuck into some housework, but failed to do my fridge. Today, I swear!

Tuesday I hope to go shopping for a new iPad. My old one, alas, is refusing to let me use my sim card, and I really need to be able to do that. I'm giving the old one to my brother-in-law, who has easy access to wifi and will just use it to watch sport on Foxtel, in bed.

Before finally deciding to go ahead withe the replacement, I had a chat with my nephew, David, who knows more about tech than I do. He agreed with me that even though it was a newish device - I bought it from the Apple shop when I had to replace my broken original - it just wasn't going to do what I wanted any more. So I'm planning to get the newest model, with 256 g of space, and David, who can't afford one, asked to have a look at it when I get it.

Only problem is the backup. I don't have wifi  yet and I can't back up to the Cloud on my laptop. You need wifi. I have some ideas...

Tonight, New Year's Eve, I will spend with my sister and Mum. To be honest, I haven't done New Year's Eve since my father passed away.  It was only a couple of days before New Year. I remember that New Year's night there was a storm - wonder how that affected the fireworks? My friends were having a party, which I didn't attend, and I sent them a text early, wishing them well, so that they wouldn't text me at midnight, as was the custom when someone couldn't make it. I have been going to see Rocky Horror, then to bed before midnight,  but Mary and I go to Mum's place on Sundays, so that's where we will be tonight.

It will be a very different year for me, since I'm not going back to work. I feel strange, but I'm sure I'll get used to it and enjoy. And more writing time!

Have a great 2018, everyone!


Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Sue - so glad you had a happy day with your mother ... sounds an ideal time. I have the book Hidden Figures ... missed the film - but will see it at some stage ... take care and all the best for 2018 - Hilary

Sue Bursztynski said...

Thanks, Hilary! Not sure how I would have spent the day in the northern hemisphere. Certainly not on the beach. Do see Hidden Figures - a wonderful film! And amusingly, the actor who plays the nerdy Sheldon in The Big Bang Theory was a villain!