Blast From The Past

I wrote this essay on one of my other blog sites (not in use now) in 2013. As it happens, it’s Melbourne Cup Day today as well. I’ve posted the text as it was and I’ve added notations, so you know how things have changed over those six years.

The first thing to note is that the dog in the foreground, Honey, died earlier this year and she is sorely missed.

MELBOURNE CUP: A Day Off.

It’s a public holiday here today, which tells you a lot about the city I live in.

As far as I know, this is the only place in the world that has a holiday for a horse race [it’s Melbourne Cup Tuesday here].

This also tells you a lot about my city of Melbourne, and it’s love affair [obsession] with sport.

It’s a beautiful day, which is not a given for this time of the year and we are taking it quietly in our house. My wife just ventured out into the garden for only the second time this year! (Not this year. We went to an excellent birthday party last night, and she is sitting up in bed ‘recovering’.) Weeds are now in bags, and a very nice cup of coffee was consumed on our recently rebuilt back deck. (The deck is now six years old and in need of another coat of oil — it’s on the list, but not at the top. I sit on this deck every morning drinking juice and listening to the birds. It’s an awesome way to greet the day.)

My lawnmower died a few weeks ago (I got it fixed, and recently it threw a blade but did not hit me — some days you are just plain lucky!) and it is difficult to get such things fixed at this time of the year, so the lawns are getting a bit jungle-like. It has been raining quite a bit (It has this year as well) but now it is warm, and the grass is rapidly getting to be taller than the dogs. The lawn looks great when it’s long, but it is impractical when you have small dogs. (Only one small dog in our house now — we have up to four at one stage — and he is feeling sorry for himself because he hurt his hind leg chasing a cockatoo)

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Speaking of small dogs, Zed is having ‘one of those days’. His tummy hurts. He eats possum poo, and his tummy gets very sore. This usually manifests itself in the middle of the night, and no one gets any sleep, but today it surfaced at breakfast time, and he is working through it as I type. Nothing we can do for him until he feels like eating [just got told that he is in the kitchen eating his breakfast….. 6 hours later]. Hopefully, he will be feeling well enough to go for a walk on this beautiful day. (No walk for Zed today. He needs to rest his sore leg. Since I wrote this, we have changed the dog’s diet to raw food, and it has made a world of difference to Zed and his tummy. His bum does not hurt as often either.)

Work has well and truly begun on the McDonalds store up on the highway and as one of the security guards loves one of my dogs, he gives us the inside tips on how it is going. January is the expected finish date. With all the silliness that has been going on around this project, it will be good to see it finished. It will be the Maccas with the best view in Australia. (It did open but not until March, and it has been going strong ever since. I have partly written many of my books while drinking coffee. The young people who work there have become friends. One of the original protestors still chalks signs on the pavement outside the shop every Friday morning!)

Not feeling all that well today, but my spirits are high after a week where I got a lot of positive feedback on stories I have written. One story obviously struck a chord with a lady who had recently lost her father. This is a story that I’m very proud of, and it has gotten a lot of attention. (It is still one of my favourite stories.)

I also received some positive feedback from writers I follow, on a recent story. My ego needs constant feeding, and it got a lot this week. (My ego still needs continuous feedback. Since I wrote this, I have written a lot of stories and published more than a dozen books. I have taught myself how to make audiobooks and have published most of my back catalogue in this form. Audiobooks take a long time to produce, and I’m very proud of this achievement. My audiobooks have sold reasonably well, but my ebooks have not done so well — no, I don’t understand that either.)

If you are in Melbourne, I hope you enjoy your day off, and if you are anywhere else in the world, I hope your day is a good day.

Terry

Can I please Have My Town Back.

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15 photos to tell the story.

This lady knew I was filming, you can see it in her eyes. I was on the other side of the road and I was making them nervous. I took these shots the day after the leaders of this group were served with writs for damages.

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The security guards were pretty relaxed. There were a couple of arrests the day before and this took a bit of pressure off them as bail conditions included not being allowed within 100 metres of the site.

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Waving to the traffic. About a third toot in support about a third yell at them and about a third just don’t care either way.

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This bloke was on his way to cricket practice [in Winter?] and stopped for a chat.

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This lady was obviously concerned about drowning.

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These two hid behind those signs the whole time I was there! Every time I pointed the camera in their direction they would dive back behind their signs. They got the better of me, I never did see their faces.

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A member of ZZ Top made an appearance, which was nice.

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This bloke hovered around behind me for quite a while pretending to take photos. Eventually he worked up the courage to ask me what I was up to.

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Here he is on his way back to join his mates after giving me the third degree…… I stood up well under interrogation.

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For a while I had two blokes standing behind me but eventually this one got bored and wandered off. I guess the $5.50 Roast Beef and Gravy Roll was too much of a temptation… served fresh daily at your local BP service station…… and these good folks don’t want a McDonalds?

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The people who were on the roof got arrested yesterday. I like the defiant ‘we’re not leaving’…. yes you are but at least you know where an apostrophe goes.

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Eyes was all I could get. Also, notice the small child playing in the background. In my opinion kids, dogs and demos don’t mix.