South

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Even after more than two years here there are times when my internal compass spins automatically north – times when I try and do things the way they’ve always been done.

I had imagined that January would be productive. New month, new year, new start – the perfect opportunity to get my head together and work on some priorities for 2016. I was going to declutter the house. I was going to detox – alcohol, carbs, social media. I was going to set up my new computer so I could email editors and write something brilliant.

But of course January is still the middle of school summer holidays here, and none of that happened. Instead it was a month of ice cream and beach time, lazy Bruny days, boat trips and books. We had visitors from Scotland, cuddles with kangaroos, and soft, warm evenings in the Adirondack chairs. There were all sorts of loveliness. Continue reading

The things he has learned

Young boy looking at globe

First he learned the basics: how to smile, and then to laugh.

He learned how to sleep, to sit, to hold a spoon. To grab his own toes, stick a fist in his mouth, clutch a blanket tight when he needed comfort. He learned to crawl and walk, and then to run, to jump, to stretch up high like a tree and crouch down low like a lion. He learned to make noise with a ladle and saucepan, to build towers and knock them over, to roll a ball, and then to throw it.

How foolish I was to think that was it. It does not stop at one year, or two. The learning continues, every day, forever. Continue reading

September and Spring

spring notebook

September has always been a favourite month of mine.

In my head it has always felt like a time of new beginnings. When we lived in the northern hemisphere that seemed at odds with the fact that it marked the start of autumn – a time for closing in rather than reaching out – but perhaps I associated it with the start of the academic year.

Now that we are in the south, September really does signify something new – it is the official start of Australian spring. You would not guess that to look at Mount Wellington, which still has a generous covering of snow on the peak, but the increasing noise levels from the birds in our garden and the lighter mornings are both giving a hint of what’s to come. Continue reading

Mid Winter

Hobart winter weather

We’ve just had two weeks of school holidays here. I had thought – given that it’s the middle of winter – it might be one of those breaks where time would drag and boredom would kick in after a day or two, but if anything the opposite was true. The fortnight flew past and when DorkySon went back to school on Monday it seemed far too soon.

He is a boy after my own heart. On the last day of term I asked what he wanted to do for a celebratory treat. He replied that he’d like a visit to the bookshop, then fish and chips and ice cream. So that’s what we did, followed by a beautiful early evening walk along the Hobart waterfront. DorkySon rarely comes out with us in the evenings – he still likes to snuggle into bed before 7 – so it is rare for him to be out in the dark. He loved the lights, and the live music that was being performed in Brooke Street Pier. Continue reading

Park Life

beach

We are in the middle of the Easter holidays here.

I thought it was going to be a quiet break, but it hasn’t turned out that way. DorkySon spent last weekend recovering from the excitement of his birthday – he lay on the sofa and worked his way steadily through all the new DVDs he’d been given – but this week he has had a swimming lesson every day and we have been fitting in all the things like dentist appointments and haircuts that can no longer happen during the term.

Last night DorkyDad and I went to the launch of Dark MOFO. Tomorrow our supply of winter firewood arrives, so we’ll be spending a good few hours stacking that and – *shudders* – hopefully avoiding the spiders. Next week we head to Bruny Island for a few nights, before having some friends to stay for the final weekend of the holiday. Continue reading