Sunday, January 18, 2009

100 Things I would like to do before I die...

What an ambitious project! I don't really think that I will my finalized list together in one sitting. Some of them are going to be really crappy, but I will come back and edit them later. There are a few things that should be on this list that I have already done. For the longest time, I dreamed of visiting Paris - now been there - done that - and all that it entails.

1) Learn to water-ski
(Not to an extreme level - just enough to be towed along and have fun)

2) Go para-sailing

3) Visit Gallipoli, Turkey at dawn on the 25th of April

4) Win lotto (well derr...)

5) Write a really entertaining (and not necessarily best-selling) book

6) Attend the Gymnastics World Championships or watch the gymnastics live at the Olympics

7) Have a reputation for throwing really good parties, and have people really look forward to your parties

8) Have a lovely flower garden

9) Sing a duet with my daughter that will knock people's socks off

10) Write my will

11) Be able to walk to the top of the You Yangs without stopping for a rest

12) Wear a size 10 sleeveless dress again and look good

13) Have a really long rambling family history trip to Ireland

14) Visit Auschwitz

15) Write the story of my life - honestly, brutally, and without elaboration

16) Have a wonderful wardrobe full of funky retro clothes and be able to carry them off without looking like mutton dressed as lamb

17) Read books that touch my soul every day

18) Ride a toboggan in the snow with C and the Midget

19) Live in a houseboat in Amsterdam

20) Write to Thomas Keneally and have him write back to me

21) Ride in a hot air balloon

22) Go snorkelling on the Barrier Reef (again)

23) Fly over Sao Paulo in a helicopter (I saw it once in that Race around the World show and it looked so awesome)

24) Go on the Race Around the World Show and be competitive

25) Swim in a pool in a cave

26) Get really good at eight-ball again

27) Take beautiful, magical photographs

28) Find cooking less of a chore and more of a wonderful experiment

29) Get a librarian's degree and work in a really cool place like a State Library with lots of really old, crusty documents

30) Do something really heroic and selfless

31) Have the guts to donate blood regularly

32) Walk the Sandakan trail in Borneo to remember our fallen

33) While in Borneo visit the orangutan reserve

34) Come to terms with my mother's death, once and for all

35) Go on a relaxing, luxurious cruise around the Mediterranean with a bunch of wonderful friends

36) Be comfortable enough with my own body to have a really good massage

37) Have a psychic experience

38) Be unafraid of confrontation

39) Be pulled along by a boat on an innertube really fast!

40) Own a classic car - something with fins

41) Earn enough money that I could employ a cleaner and never have to do housework again

42) Float down a long river on an innertube

43) Inspire other people to lose weight

44) Be in the room when my daughter gives birth and for her to want me there(that is a looong way off yet)

45) Attend the Venice Carnevale - and go to the ball in renaissance dress and mask and look really good.....

46) Visit Lourdes

47) Do a slow driving trip through France, without money being an issue

48) Be in a lighthouse on a really dark and stormy night

49) Learn to drink coffee, and like it

50) White water rafting

51) See the statue of Christ in Rio, up close

52) Go to a Cirque du Soleil performance with my daughter

53) To go on a really good flying fox or zip line (maybe the one in South Afica at Sun City?)

54) Eat Mexican food in Mexico

55) Live in rural France for a while, learn the language, shop at the markets, immerse

56) Visit the Lost city of Petra in Jordon

57) Attend a show at the Moulin Rouge

58) Have my hands henna painted

59) Make friends with an elephant

60) Have a drink at the Geiger Bar

61) Jump off a bridge (not too high) into a river or the ocean, a couple of times in a row

62) See Amy Winehouse, live in concert, at the top of her game

Will have to think for a while more back soon.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Critics be damned - I loved "Australia"

I don't care what "they" say, I was completely engrossed by it! I let it wash over me, chose not to be too picky about some of the plot failings, and let it consume me - I cried most of the way through - for my hometown, for the injustices, for the hard outback people - the ones who have always done it tough, for motherly love, for passion and missed opportunity.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

I had a dream

A few weeks ago - I had a dream, and this one I remember! Only because it was bizarre. The hunky young man above was looking deep into my eyes and saying "You're the One". There was no romantic connotations, just burningly intense blue eyes!

It was the Ron Hovey room!

This is the picture of the Thanksgiving Service held at St Mary's Basilica after the Cats won the flag last year, celebrated by my friend, Father Dillon. Ron Hovey & Frank Costa in the photo.

This post is dedicated to my readership of one, with many thanks for his loyalty and supremely good taste in football teams.

Marcus, I messed up - it was not the Bob Davis room (I don't think there is such a thing), it was the Ron Hovey Room. And there is no romantic story about how I got to be there - no long lost footballers in the family etc. I just purchased tickets on Members Purchase Day for that game, and they were sent to me. Before I turned up at the ground that day - I didn't even know where the room was! I had seen the glassed in area at the back, but always thought it was corporate boxes or something.

My daughter and I decided we didn't really like the experience - far too sterile and quiet. And we're of the embarrassing kind - we like to yell and scream and get into it - Carn the Cats! But it was all a little too polite. Tiny bits of polite clapping, almost like being in a library!

I'm upset today about my Chappy. He's my fave, and he's gammy hammy is acting up - here's hoping he'll be right for the final (God willing we make it that far!). At my daughter's school, they always say prayers for the Geelong Cats players that are injured - that cracks me up!

This is How A Heart Breaks

Don't you wanna go for a ride
Just keep your hands inside
And make the most out of life
Now don't you take it for granted

Life is like a mean machine
It made a mess outta me
It left me caught between
Like an angry dream I was stranded

And I'm steady but I'm starting to shake
And I don't know how much more I can take

This is it now
Everybody get down
This is all I can take
This is how a heart breaks
You take a hit now, you feel it break down
Make you stay wide awake
This is how a heart breaks

Don't you wanna go for a ride
Down to the other side
Feels so good you could cry
Now won't you do what I told you
I remember when you used to be so shy
Yeah, once we were so fine
You and I why you gotta make it so hard on me

And I'm sorry but it's not a mistake
And I'm running but you're getting away

You're not the best thing that I knew
Never was never cared too much
For all this hanging around
It's just the same thing all the time
Never get what I want
Never get too close to the end of the line
You're just the same thing that I knew
Back before the time...
When I was only for you.

Sung by Rob Thomas

Not sure about the above lyrics, and actually not sure that I have the right song, but definitely have the right artist!

I find it incredible how quickly I forget dreams, and in this case the first song I have heard for the day - the memory has been wiped out by hearing many other songs.

Opinion on Rob? Interesting voice - not my cup of tea - but certainly doesn't make me cringe like James Blunt.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Now We're Getting Somewhere

Now We're Getting Somewhere (Neil Finn)


It never used to be that bad
But neither was it great
Somewhere in the middle than
Content and much too safe
Ooh tell me please
Why it takes so long
To realize when there's something wrong

Lay me out with your heart
Now we're gettin' somewhere
Push me back to the start
Now we're gettin' somewhere
Take me out let me breathe
Now we're gettin' somewhere
When I'm with you I don't care
Where it is I'm falling

There's money in the Bible Belt
Hugs for daddy too
Three wishes for eternity
We've got some work to do
Oh tell me please, tell me what went wrong
Cos I believe there is something wrong

When you took me to your room
I swear I said surrender
When you opened up your mouth
I saw the words fall out
Though nothing much has changed
I swear I will surrender
There is pain in my heart
We can choose what we choose to believe

In order to alleviate my writer's block, I shall endeavour to post something about the song that wakes me up on my alarm clock each morning - if I can remember it!

I have always loved Crowded House, and originally loved Split Enz & Neil Finn as a soloist. As a matter of fact my current Facebook status is Showing "Ednabeancounter is singing Four Seasons in One Day" due the wildly bizarre weather we have been having here over the last few days.

I never saw Crowded House live, sadly. I did however see Split Enz live at the amphitheatre in Darwin in either 1982 or 1983. They were insanely good! I remember nearly having an embolism during "I see Red". I don't think I have ever enjoyed myself so much at a concert! They were supported by a local band of hunkies, and they did a version of Batman! that was super cool - well to a 14 year old any way!

I was extremely saddened to hear of Paul Hester's suicide, but I have posted about that on a previous blog entry.

It is so incredibly funny that my first attempt to write regular blog posts is based on a song choice. I had a similar writer's block back in the early 80s when I was a prolific (and reasonably talented) fiction writer. I decided to write a story about the lyrics on each of number of SPLIT ENZ songs that I had on a cassette! The co-incidence is quite bizarre!

As for these lyrics - some of them could absolutely sum up my current relationship! It has most recently made a huge turn for the better - due to the opening of a number of channels of communication - like words falling out of my mouth!

The second verse doesn't really make sense to me, but Crowded House do have an obsession with American culture, so therein would probably lie the answer.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

The Demise of Style

Today I am lamenting the demise of style. And yes Your Honour, I am guilty, so very guilty.

I've been wading in a pool of reminiscence all day. Not my own reminiscence, but a reminiscence of stylish times past. When women dressed up to go to work or shopping. When a man about town had a stylish suit and a hat, and polished shoes.

When most people didn't overeat, and were happy to have mundane jobs because it put food on the table.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Cyclone Tracey

Well today I have been given a reminder that I have a blog, and that I should be using it.

It is blowing an absolute gale outside. Storms don't scare me at all - in fact I find them quite thrilling!

On that note, I might enthrall you all with my memories of Cyclone Tracey.

The funny thing is, I was not actually in Darwin when the cyclone struck. I was nice and safe in my grandmother's house in East Maitland in New South Wales. We had left Darwin three days earlier to go on our bi-annual visit to see the relatives. We learned on TV, as the rest of Australia did that Boxing Day, of the utter devastation of the only place I had ever called home. It didn't seem real to me - it was just pictures of a massive mess.

My mother was absolutely beside herself. She didn't care about the house, she was just so worried about her friends. She was crying and irrational. My grandfather couldn't understand her behaviour. I remember him saying to her "What are you worried about? You have all your family safe and sound here". What he didn't really understand is that my parents had built a life there without the safety net of family (except for little old me), and their friends were their world. They had moved to a strange little frontier town in 1964, thousands of miles away from the hustle and bustle of Sydney where they had met. They had moved for adventure, and they had found it. They also found an astonishing warmth and sense of community. A wild and crazy place. A place of big drinkers, beautiful sunsets and lifelong friends.

I don't think it was the first time in their lives that my grandfather George, and my mother Barbara were at loggerheads. My mother was the second of four girls. She was the only one who had sought a career, nursing, and who had continued to work after marriage, and her only child, me. I think that Barbara had quietly broken her own mother's heart when she moved so far away.

When George had returned home briefly on leave from World War II, he brought each of his three girls a present (the fourth daughter was born after the war). To his eldest and youngest, he gave a beautiful doll, and a teddy bear. To my mother, he gave a tomahawk.

I remember crying while watching the TV, but not really feeling anything. Crying more because of the hysteria in the room, and the confusion of having absolutely no idea what lay ahead of us.

George decided to ring the local newspaper. The following day, our story was in print, including a mention of me crying my eyes out in front of the TV. Yay! Officially a cry-baby in print!

Then the phone calls started. People wanting to donate things to us. Other relatives. The Department of Construction looking for my Dad. Three days after the cyclone we received a crackly phone call from Katherine from close friends who had survived. There was not much left of our house, but all of our friends were fine.

Dad was officially recalled to Darwin. The rest of the population of Darwin was being airlifted Hercules by Hercules out, and the government was trying to find a way to get my father in. By the 29th of December, Dad, Mum & I were in Sydney. We traipsed from government building to government building trying to get all Dad's paperwork in order. Dad had vaccinations, and a firm place on a chartered aircraft on New years Day.

I remember feeling very excited and scared at the same time. It was so exciting to be in Sydney - it was the first time in my tender seven years that I had ever spent time in the city centre. Were were staying at an old crummy hotel in Pitt Street called the Mac Hotel.

OK - the night is getting late. I will return to edit this post and finish it off in subsequent days. I will even try to get some scans of photos of post-cyclone Darwin in!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Tomorrow We Say Sorry

Tomorrow, the Australian Government will issue a formal apology to the Aboriginal population of Australia for our abhorrent behaviour from 1910-1970 in relation to the stolen generations.

Finally, I am proud to be an Australian again. Finally, an elected government in Australia has the guts to own up to the racist attitudes that existed (and sadly still do exist) in our parents' and grandparents' generations.

Kevin Rudd, I am so glad I voted for you. How refreshing to see politicians follow up on their promises. First Kyoto, and now Sorry. Great work mate.

I don't think the sorry goes far enough. I truly believe that compensation is applicable on a case-by-case basis. Stealing children is barbaric. What the hell were we thinking?

I am hugely annoyed by the standard redneck response that is being bandied about. "Why should I be sorry? I didn't do anything!". Oh for God's sake. The emotional immaturity of that response is astounding.

I wish I could be at Parliament House tomorrow.