Monday, December 22, 2008

M is a stress head. For years we've been trying to figure out ways to help him. Most of his medical problems arise from this. He never stops working or worrying. So last night I made him start a journal. We're doing it together. I give him a word prompt and we both write for 20 minutes. Then we read it out to each other. It was so much fun and the things we both wrote were so funny.

Had to do the shopping to day for Christmas. M's parents are boycotting it this year, so they came up for a visit a few weeks ago. We celebrated with them then. Some of our friends from M flying up on Christmas day. They've demanded a roast. M's put his hand up to cook it, which is fine by me. He might have to work in Christmas afternoon. It's all hands on deck for the silly season.

Friday, December 19, 2008

I'm trying to stay awake, because I have to pick M up from his work Christmas party. I left early, because I'm a lazy socializer, plus they were mainly talking shop. I'm not a night person and lately I haven't been much of a morning person. Funny, I used to be one of those annoying morning people. I would always get up around 6 am in the morning. As soon as the alarm clock went off I would get up. None of this snooze thing. I can't stand the snooze button. That's one of the things M and I always disagree on. He loves the snooze button. Then when I moved back to M and back into my parents for awhile, I became an insomniac. For a year I was living with my parents I was surviving on 2-4 hours a night, usually just 2 hours. I don't know how I survived (especially since I was driving most days). I was on automatic. I managed to complete my degree with really high marks. I finally got some sleep when I moved out of my parents and into a place of my own. I had to drop from studying full-time to part-time so that I could pick up extra shifts to pay the bills but at least I could sleep. I love my family, but I function better away from them. Weird.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Dog is scared of the ceiling fan. What a cack! I turned the fan (in my office) on my way to the kitchen and he started growling. It freaked me out at first because I wasn't sure what he was barking at. I had to abandon my the kettle and go check it out. I had a good chuckle to myself when I realised what all the fuss was about. Then I had to calm him down. Now he's sprawled out on the floor sleeping. Again.

It's strange though, because it's never bothered him before. Maybe because he's never entered a room while I am in the process of turning it on.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

M likes to play WoW. He tells me it relaxes him. I always raise my eyebrows to this.
"Is that why you swear at the computer all the time?" I ask.
"It's the only time I get to myself," he replies.
"You didn't have to drag me with you to the doctors, you know."
"I wanted to spend some time with you."
Sometimes I wonder if we speak the same language.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Decisions, decisions....

I had to give up something that I love doing, in order to pursue something else (that I also love doing). Now I'm not so sure if I made the right choice...

Sunday, December 7, 2008

The resident diamond python must be back, because the antechinuses seem to have gone...for now. According to some of the staff here, the last spotting of it was in our decrepit shed, by the contractors who were doing some renovation work on the house before we moved in. They refused to go into the shed without the accompiment of one of the staff. Same with the telecommunication workers, if they need to look at the line (which is in the bushes along our driveway), they won't go alone. Diamond pythons aren't venomous, but the other snakes around here may be. Australia has (I think) 20 or is it 10 of the top venomous snakes. I've come into contact with tiger snakes (very aggressive and venomous little buggers), and that was in suburbia. It was in my sisters house while I was house sitting for her (that's another story). And of course heaps of red belly black snakes (at least they aren't aggressive).

V stopped over last night to drop M's keys (M locked himself out of his office yesterday). The antechinuses have been mocking him, so he reckons. A few nights ago, one of them dragged its meal into his bedroom (dead bird). It also had young ones and he could hear them squeaking around all night. He found bits and pieces of the dead bird the next day, near his pillow.

Oh the joys of summer.
Well, we're not was just gluttony on my part. M is disappointed but I'm okay with it. His parents came to stay for an early christmas because they're boycotting it this year. It was fun, lots of eating though.

It's been a very hectic week. We had some friends of M's from NT stay earlier this week as well. We went to the aquarium with B and T. I don't know how I feel about aquariums. I'm not a big fan of wild animals kept in confined spaces (says the girl who has a rabbit and guinea pig in a hutch!). It was sad watching large sharks swim up and down constantly in a small area (one sign of distress). There's a fine line between eco-education and animal cruelty.

Went to watch the Vienese Classic. It really surprised me how much I enjoyed it. Although at the beginning I wasn't so sure. I get distracted easily by people around me. It's because I'm such a control freak. I need things to be orderly, otherwise it distresses me (or am I OCD?). We went out for dinner by the harbour and the service was really bad. It wasn't the people per say, but the way the whole place was run. Drinks and food had to be ordered separately, and there was only one person walking around taking drink orders and the poor thing was run off her feet. There was no communication between the food and drinks staff, so we waited ages for someone to come around to take our order, despite asking several times. Anyway, I got really agitated (not mad, but distressed) and this was after we managed to order. It was because the table behind us were trying to order their drinks but were completely ignored. I managed to take a deep breath (or three) and get over it. See I'm learning. In the past I would have said something or left (which would have agitated M).

The show was great, but I had a guy sitting next to me who came late, so he was breathing heavily for the first few minutes, then he started doing smelly burps. The lady behind me kept on playing with her camera, so all we could hear were the electronic beeping of the camera. At first I couldn't find the source of the sound. She stopped after I turned my body fully around to look at her (subtle aren't I?). There were no cameras allowed. The other thing that I found strange was that people started leaving during the last piece.

After the show, as we were walking out to the foyer, an old lady went to sit on a chair, missed it completely and fell on her butt. The poor thing couldn't move. M and another guy helped pull her up (she was quite a big woman). As you can see, M is the nice person in the relationship!

All in all, it was the perfect non-christmas week.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Before M went to his meeting, he went to get some blood tests done. He came back with a bottle of Italian sparkling water (I've been craving it for weeks) for me (he's wonderful!). He thinks we're pregnant. I'm not so sure. I think it's just gluttony on my part. We'll just have to wait and see...
Ahhhh...chooo....the last time I had hayfever was over ten years ago. Now it's come back with a vengence. I haven't stopped sneezing all morning. It got so bad I almost fainted. I was supposed to go with M today(he's supposed to be on leave but has been recalled for a meeting), while he attends the meeting I was going to walk one of the tracks near his office and take some photos. Now I'm holed up in the lounge wiping my nose. And the weather is so nice today!!!

Okay that's enough of my whinging today. Had a great day yesterday, swimming in the river and exploring the 'burbs near us. We ended up walking one of the tracks, unfortunately there wasn't enough light to get some decent photos. Last night we had a little camp fire in our back yard. We decided to pull out the chimnea and toast some marshmallows (I'm not a big fan of marshies, but it was fun!). Dog was going crazy trying to sniff Pig and Rabbit. It was so funny watching him trying to break into the hutch. I tried earlier that night to check out the smiley face in the sky (ie Jupiter and Venus above the crescent moon) but the view of the western sky was skewed by all the trees. I did see Jupiter and Venus though.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

We got Rabbit another companion yesterday. This time we got a male guinea pig. I had to clean out the big hutch when we got back, because the straw was wet, so we put both in the smaller hutch. M went to check on them later on and found the Pig with a ripped claw. So we cleaned him up and separated them for awhile. We put Rabbit back in the big hutch. In the afternoon I put Pig back in the big hutch, although M protested. I told him it'll be fine, they need to get to know each other, and they don't even have to run into each other in the big hutch. I was right.

M peed me off last night. He stayed up till 3 am playing his games (very loudly), I let that slide. He crawled into bed and decided to read, so I had the light in my eyes...I took my pillow and went and slept on the couch. It was really uncomfortable so I cleared the spare bed and snuggled there instead. Need to clean this room...

Monday, November 24, 2008

Just had a call from my friend V in M. Her nephew is in hospital with meningococcal. So I'm wishing him well here in this blog.
We hosted our first dinner party here last Thursday. Good food, good company, great success...only wish the day started out in the same vein...

Went and saw The Birthday Massacre play on Friday. S and his entourage were there as well, they crashed at our place. It's the first gig we've been to see since moving here. I miss watching goths try not to look happy. In M we used to go to see a lot of goth/industrial/alternative bands play. Think we're getting a bit too old now...think I lost another 10% of my hearing.

For the first time I noticed the difference between the headline and support acts. The Birthday Massacre were made for the stage. They were so tight, and the!

The next morning was funny (rabbit incident aside), S was trying to teach S & T how to cook eggs. He was instructing them on how to make a complete meal with eggs. It was hilarious listening to him.
We lost one of the rabbits on Sunday. I woke up Saturday to find that once again the rabbits had escaped. This time they must of pushed the lid open (securing it was going to be our next project). In a panic I woke M up from his weekend sleep in before 8 in the morning. We hunted around our house for over an hour before giving up. M got a bite from a tick for his efforts. After that we gave up and went back in the house. By the time M had his chiropractic appointment, we still hadn't set eyes on them. I had a feeling that they were in the bushes between the garage and road, because Dog spent most of the morning sniffing around there.

We found the first rabbit soon after we got back. She was in the Wisteria patch, but not for long. She hopped away when we approached. M and I ended up chasing her up into the bushes near the road. After a few embarrassing mishaps we finally managed to catch her. We'd left Dog in the fenced off yard.

Later that afternoon, I let Dog out the front yard. Right away, he jumped the ledge behind the garage (it's quite a jump, taller than me), from my vantage point on the porch I could see the missing rabbit. I called out to M, and he came bounding out. He and Dog spent over an hour, trying to search the area. Unfortunately we discovered it was filled with hollows and burrows that she could easily escape into. Dog spent quite a while at one particular spot.

We decided to set the possum trap in the area, hoping to capture her before nightfall. I was worried about foxes and snakes. A few hours later, Dog was hanging around the back door. I had an inkling that Rabbit might have come back, but was in the middle of something and promptly forgot to check.

We decided to go for another walk later that afternoon. We spotted her in the fenced off yard, so I ran through the house and out the back door to see if I could tempt her back in the hutch. Unfortunatly Dog had also spotted her from outside the fence and was whining and growling. So we ended up chasing her around, M and Dog on the outside, while I was in the back. She jumped through the hole in the deer fence and went charging into the bushes. Dog and M followed close behind. Dog was the quickest. He managed to hold her down with his paw. He wasn't sure what to do, he just sat there with his paw on top of her. Rabbit was frozen in fear. Unfortunately she never recovered. I found her dead in the hutch the next morning.

Now we have a depressed and lonely rabbit. We're thinking of getting her a guinea pig to play with instead of another rabbit.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Public Transport

Since M worked the weekend he got today off, which gave us the opportunity to run some errands. We parked the car at H station and caught the train into the city, so that he could exchange one of the lens for his camera and pick up some other accessory for his new toy.

I don't mind public transport, but let me tell you, things are a bit backwards here. There are no bins at all in any of the stations...what's with that! On the way back we ended up (I'm a freak magnet) in a carriage with a drunk man, who had wet his pants and had become very aggressive towards other passengers. Luckily for us, he was in the carriage above us. I must say, one good thing about the service here is that they are well patrolled. The transit police got on (I thought it was hilarious when they all pulled on their black gloves) and dragged him off the train. The drunk guy must of been a well known character because they called him by name.

I've had some horrifying experiences on public transport. When I was living in M, I use to finish work late at night and catch the tram home. One night, I was sitting at the back of almost empty tram, when a guy boarded the tram in a notorious drug surburb. He ended sitting between me and the only other passenger in the carriage. We both watched in horror as this young man, got out a spoon and starting heating his drugs and then injected himself right then and there on the tram (while it was moving). He got off the tram at the next stop.

Another time, I was catching the same tram home a punk couple got on. The guy was tall and really aggro. I felt sorry for his girlfriend because she was trying to be friendly to the other passengers, maybe to compensate for his behaviour. Just before they got off the tram, he for no known reason, head-butted a guy who was sitting next to the door, then jumped off the tram. The tram driver did nothing, he added to the situation by keeping the door open. Meanwhile the girlfriend is trying to hold her boyfriend back, and hitting the tram telling the driver to close the door and to go.

And I can go on....

Thursday, November 13, 2008

The lonely hitch hiker

M came back from his after work hours adventure last night all sweaty and exhausted. They had to do a two hour walk in an hour to get to the campsite. Turns out it was a case of he said - she said, with the cabin owner pitted against the campers.

M parked himself on the couch, trying madly to take down notes in his incident book, when he felt something on his arm. It was a tick attempting to dig its way deeper. He removed it and we took some photos because I wanted to identify what species it was (this wasn't the first time we've had ticks). I was a bit worried in case it was a paralysis tick (for Dog mainly, because it could kill him).

Interesting fact: there are around 75 species of ticks in Australia.

I've always been worried about lyme disease, but when I was trying to identify the tick last night I found that the disease is mainly confined to the northern hemisphere. There have been no confirmed cases in Australia, which is strange because M and his mother have been telling me that his grandmother contracted the disease from a tick bite. She died a fews years later from heart failure, but they maintain that her decline began as a result of the tick bite. Maybe she had underlying health issues, because all my text say that it's a curable disease. Now I'm not so worried about them.

M's family is full of tropical diseases. His uncle suffered from Ross River virus for years. Every year he'd be down and out for a week with fever. The fevers would occur at exactly the same time each year. Then he got encephalitis from a mozzie bite on his property. The good news is that his annual ross river virus fever disappeared but now he's lost his balance, and can't cope with vibrations (ie driving for long distances, mowing etc).

Back to the tick. I think it was a paralysis tick, not 100%. Ixodes holocyclus

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

people always have to screw things up

M and I were planning to go swimming in the river this afternoon after he got home from work. I had just changed into my cosie, and M was standing around in his underwear when we got a phone call from the duty manager. There's been a report of 20 or more illegal tents up at E, and from the sounds of it they aren't a friendly bunch. They've been drinking and some of them are vandalising the empty cabins which are privately owned and heritage listed. So M has been trying to ring around to see who's available to go with him to check out the situation. I'm really worried because there isn't much one or even two people can do against that many. At the moment they're just going to observe to see if the police need to be called in.

Sometimes I hate living so close to all the action. Nature might be beautiful, but people always have to screw things up.

Bugger of a start to the silly season...

Back to Basics

Drove dad to the airport today. It's been great having him here but at the same time tiring. Dad gets bored easily and needs to be fixing things, so he took it upon himself to fix the rabbit hutch (with my blessings!) and removed the empty bird cage that's attached to one of the outside walls. I wanted to take him for another tour of where I live, but it was too hot and muggy for him. Dog really took to my father and followed him around everywhere (maybe because my dad was constantly going outside for smoko).

I took him plant hunting, he's a medicine man, so he was on the lookout for some medicinal plants. We didn't find the plants that he was after but I did find some other useful plants (ie edible as well as medicinal). I have to wait for M (he has a plant collectors permit) before I can do anything.

M and I are being eaten alive by the midges. I have so many bites that itch to high heaven all over my body. I should start using insect repellent more often, but I hate the smell. I've got an Australian bush roll on, but I'm too inconsistent in my usage for it to be effective.

Monday, November 10, 2008


Today I drove 2.5 hours to pick up my dad, from my uncles place. Dad will be staying with us for a few days before flying back home. What a ride...M was concerned because I had planned to stay only a few hours before driving home again. I hated driving through the city, that took ages but once on the highway, the speed demon in me just took over. I was dodging and overtaking cars and getting frustrated at other drivers. I understand why M speeds now! The drive back was a nightmare. We hit the start of peak hour traffic once we were off the highway. Dad complained about my speeding, then kept on asking how long till we got home and then complained about the traffic jam. So all up the trip home took over 3 hours.

Hope I didn't get any speeding tickets. M will be so mad!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Chasing Rabbit

Another morning of chasing Rabbit around. This time, she had managed to dig her way out. I let Dog out the front because I couldn't be bothered dragging him out the back (it had been a long night...more later). I went back inside to fetch my shoes, and when I went back Dog had disappeared. I wasn't too worried because I was gone less than a minute. However, I see a flash of brown run pass me in the direction of the outdoor dunny. I run around to check and there was Rabbit. I chase her, and she runs under T's car (he was up for the weekend trying to catch some waves). I leave her there and try to get Dog back in the house. He smells Rabbit and refuses to budge. So I give up and enlist his help. I leave him to guard one end of the car, while I try to scare Rabbit out from under the car. I manage, she runs to garage. Dog chases her. I chase them both. Dog corners her but he doesn't take a bite, just sniffs. Somehow she escapes and the farce is once again back on. Dog and I chase her around the garage. Finally she manages to hem herself in, and I pounce. Then Dog pounces, he tries to take a bite and ends up with a mouthful of fur. He smacks his lips and looks satisfied. I run into the house with both Dog and Rabbit. I wake M up. I need help because at this stage I'm unsure if Rabbit2 has also escaped. Poor M, he was involved in a stakeout at G beach last night and had only crawled into bed at 3 am. Lucky for us, Rabbit2 was resting in her hidey hole. We had to lock them in their smaller hutch.

This morning we were woken up (except T, he slept through the whole thing) by sirens and ambulance and rescue vehicles tearing down the road. It went on for over an hour. M called the office to see what was going on. Turns out there was another car accident. Someone had slammed their car into a wall (cliff), but the driver was nowhere to be found. I suspect it's one of the drifters. They were out racing last night. I hate the silly season here!

We found out last night that the driver involved in the motorcycle accident was one of the security staff's nephew. He may be paralysed, apparently his leg bones have been pushed into his spine (ouch).

My cousin rang me this morning and had a good whinge about her parents (but that's another story!), all I'll say is all the in-laws are commenting on how dysfunctional our family are...

Other than that I had a great day. Went to G beach with M and T and did some body surfing. The waves were awesome! but I was exhausted from trying to battle them...maybe I'm going about it the wrong way! T lost his board in the surf, it was ripped from his hands, lucky it washed up near a lifesaver. The rips were so scary, I was pushed away from the group and was too exhausted to swim back, and the only thing I could do, was let the waves take me. Luckily it was back to shore, but that was a struggle as well, it was a steep drop! I couldn't touch the bottom and I was less than 5 metres from the shore.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Scribble Soup for Writers' Block #3: Writing sentences without the letter 't'.

How many rainbows can you see every day?
Do bunnies hop every where?
Jumping ship means going overboard.
I have nice belly muscles.
My legs are long and narrow.
I dream of years gone by.
She had rainbow coloured hair and yellow dresses.
She wore pink ribbons in her hair.
Her flowing black dress billowed around her ankles.
Funny jokes make me laugh.
Silence is impossible in loud places.
Narrow minds make people dumb.
I sleep and dream wonders.

For more writing challenges go to

Wednesday, November 5, 2008


I got a call from my lovely cousin this afternoon, giving me an update on how my aunt is doing. She just got off the plane on Sunday (back from her second honeymoon), when she got a call from her parents informing her that our aunt in QLD is ill and the prognosis wasn't looking too good. So suffering from jet lag she had to drive 3 hours to her parents place, and then with them to QLD the next morning. She asked if I wanted to come, but I had to meet her at her parents. She wasn't really sure of the travel details yet. As usual no-one in my immediate family had bothered to tell me anything. So I spent the afternoon calling my parents and sister. My dad and his younger sister, were flying that afternoon to QLD. My mum opted to stay (she's recovering from eye surgery) and wait for further news. I decided to stay put, because I know my family. There's always trouble when we all get together, and the kids were already stressed enough, so I didn't want to add to the chaos.

So back to the phone conversation. She told me she's back at her parents house, but now she's flying back up to QLD to escort her parents back like naughty children. Her dad was involved in an incident last night. She doesn't know all the details, but the men were drunk last night and her dad threatened to smash his car window. Well he did smash the car window as well as his hands. My dad being the oldest, and the medicine man as well, had to clean up the mess and reset the bones. So now my cousin is flying up to escort her wayward parents back home, despite her mother insisting that her dad is alright to make the drive back. You have to laugh, my family are so predictable.

Meanwhile my aunt was improving, but she had a seizure last night. So I'm hoping and praying very hard that she will get better.

I had to call M at work (he was in the middle of conducting a panel interview) and tell him the news. He wants an exit clause in our marriage contract now. As if! I did warn him. Also asked him if everything was okay, because I could hear sirens all morning and police and ambulance vehicles flying pass our house. He says there's been a motorcycle accident (and it's not looking too good) near W.

I should explain that we live near one of the best scenic drives (it's also one of the main roads used by the coastal dwellers to get to work in the city). After all the road takes you through, heathland, coastal heathland, littoral rainforest, and sub-tropical rainforest. It is one of the most mega diverse (in terms of flora) area in Australia. It's absolutely stunning, but the road is also very windy. Every weekend the motorcyclist come out, so do the cyclist, walkers and everything else in between. The place gets crazy. And the sad thing is there's always an accident or two.

Now we're heading into bushfire season, so more things to think about...

Fungi of Australia

Microporus xanthopus
Distribution: QLD, NSW, VIC?

Bush bashing in pj's and everything else in between.

A new day, another morning of chasing Dog and Rabbit. This time Rabbit stayed in the confines of the fencing. I didn't have to panic that much!

Though early in the morning Dog decided he wanted to go out, so he sat waiting by the front door. In my morning haze I let him out (it's only supervised walks if he goes out the front, just he case he wanders off down a track). Most of the time I drag him out the back door, which involves a lot of bribery or physical dragging by the collar. Today I let him out and was about to follow him out, but discovered that I'd left my shoes near the back door. It was wet from dew outside, and I couldn't be bothered getting my feet wet today. By the time I found a suitable pair of shoes Dog had disappeared. I'm not worried until I hear voices coming from the track below our house. So I had to go bush bashing in my pj's once again to try and find him (I wasn't in the mood to fend off leeches). Ten minutes later I spy him walking merrily a long the track below our house, luckily there wasn't anyone (that I could see) around.

We started laying out elliot traps for the antechinuses again. M discovered a hole in the kitchen where they are getting through. I removed the drawers near it (they had started making a nest in the drawers, so everything had to be thrown out) and replaced them with traps. We caught a female, luckily with no babies this time.

Brain exercises

Here's another site to help with the brain cobwebs. Play the speed thinking game and have some fun.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Brain exercises

I like to keep my brain active, so I do a cryptic crossword a day.


Imagine that you've come home from a busy morning running errands. You come home, hoping to have a little rest before picking a friend from the station. Before you can even put your feet up, you have to fix the rabbit hutch, move the rabbits back in and entertain the dog and of course find that elusive spot in the house that will give you mobile reception, just in case you get the pick up call. Oh, did I mention it's blowing a gale. So you unload the car (you've just picked up some straw and lucerne). You manage to fix the hutch with the help of the dog. It's time to reintroduce the rabbits to their home. You lift the hutch that they have been temporarily kept in but someone hadn't locked the bottom. One escapes. Dog chases it. You chase it. Your fencing is inadequate to keep a rabbit in, it's a deer fence after all. You realise that if it escapes you've just released a pest species into the wild. You panic. Dog thinks its a game, he chases the rabbit. You chase the dog. Rabbit runs towards the fence. You chase the rabbit. Dog chases the rabbit. You chase the dog.

Finally you make a decision. Chase the dog, drag him into the house and lock him in. Meanwhile, rabbit has managed to escape the fence...she's outside! You run back inside the house, grab the keys to the gate and chase her around. Luckily she's on a ledge. The problem is, it's a narrow ledge. You stalk her along the ledge. Up and down. Finally you manage to grab her...just.

Back in the house, you've had a missed call on your mobile. You can't read the message, because you no longer have mobile reception. You run around, trying to find that elusive spot again. The wind is howling outside. You run outside, down the long driveway. Finally you get one bar of reception. You return the call. She's been waiting at the station. You think, because the phone cuts you decide to drive to the station...what the heck...luck might be turning your way....

Saturday, November 1, 2008

In absentia

I finally received my degree in the mail. Everyone's been telling me that I should have gone to the graduation ceremony, but obviously people don't know me that well. I hate formal events, and moving to another state has given me the perfect excuse for not attending the ceremony. Although M threatened to put me on the plane himself, but I beat him to the punch and ticked the graduate in absentia box. Though I think I should take a photo of it and send it to my parents as proof that I did graduate! It's taken me years (not that I failed anything) because I have committment issues. Three years in the one area is enough to give me itchy feet, and I rarely do anything full-time (always working or doing something else).

The degree came in a post-pack tube. M was excited for me when he handed it over. Dog was excited too for another reason. I put it away in the bedroom. I was talking to M in the kitchen when we heard chewing sounds coming from the room. I went to check it out and there was Dog on the floor happily chewing the tube. The little bugger.

Friday, October 31, 2008

The antechinuses are back

The antechinuses are back. They've crapped all over the kitchen cupboards and even made a nest or two in the drawers. It's a losing battle we're fighting here or more to the point we've been a bit lax in laying out the traps. So I guess we have to start all over again tonight.

Dog ignores them. We started letting him in at night in our room (he has a bed on the floor), 1. to stop him waking us up with his barking (at the deer, wallabies, possums etc), 2. to chase the antechinuses. It's obviously not working, he just snores his way through their nightly raids. That's right Dog snores. He is so much like M, they both snore (though not in a loud obtrusive way) and they both sit there and sigh a lot.

Dog and Goanna

Dog was feeling morose in the heat yesterday. So I let him in the house where it was cooler. The heat and humidity seemed to suck the energy from everything around me. Well not the birds though. They were out in full force. Dog was woken up from his afternoon nap by the laughter of four kingfishers on the gum tree. I took him out to the yard (the deer fence free section) to check out what all the noise was about. Dog went ballistic at the kingfishers. They took a break from their gossiping and sat high up in the tree watching him. Dog wasn't happy. To vent his frustration he lept off the ledge and ran into the bushes. There was a frenzy of activity. I wondered what he was up to the little bugger. Then I realised he was up to his usual no-good, chasing goannas. The little bugger had chased a goanna up another gum tree. One of these days they'll realise he's all bark and no bite, then we'll see who'll be chasing whom.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008


Living out in the bush, we get our fair share of wildlife, both inside and outside the house. We get the occasional antechinus invasion. So once in awhile we do an ethnic cleansing. We set elliot traps at night and release the little buggers into the bushes near our driveway (which is the farthest we can get without crossing the road and without the need to go bush-bashing). Last week, early in the night we caught one in one of the traps laid out on the kitchen floor. As we had just come back from wildlife spotlighting around our yard, we made the usual decision to wait till morning to empty the trap.

The next morning I went to empty the elliot trap, but found to my dismay that the little bugger had managed to escape. But the poor thing had lost three of her babies in the process. So we had the hard decision to wrap them in paper towel and hope the mother came back for them or euthanase by freezing them. We decided to give the first one a go first.

That night we caught another one. We checked to see if it was the mother. It turned out that it was another female with a litter of her own. Her pouch was full, so there was little chance of her adopting the babies. We tried though. We put them together in a container, even though we knew that the likelihood for a positive outcome was low. The next morning we found out how low. The mother had killed and partially eaten one of the babies and then she escaped. But in the process she lost one her own babies. So then we had to make the tough decision to euthanase.

It's been quiet in the kitchen in the past few days. No droppings all over the kitchen of late, but that could all change soon!

Saturday, October 18, 2008


What a magical day it has been. M and I went kayaking for the first time together. We borrowed the double kayak from P, who also came with us on his individual one. It was absolutely beautiful. There were so many fish in the river, as well as jelly fish and stingrays. We paddled to a small waterfall, where it was so quiet and peaceful. The only thing marring the day, was our team work issues. Towards the end, we started getting better.

After kayaking, M and I went for a swim in the river. Or rather I swam and M did his usual wade in, wait an hour for one part of the body to acclimatise before moving on.

Friday, October 17, 2008


One of my pet hates are parasites. Personally I don't see the evolutionary purpose of most of them. I concede that some like tape worms, hook worms etc play a role in stimulating our immune system, but leeches and ticks how do they fit in the scheme of things? Unfortunately I live in a place where leeches and ticks are common. I guess living in paradise does have its downs.

I was taking photos of our house and yard to send to my friends. I decided to try my hand at nature photography while I was at it. Meanwhile M was bush bashing with Dog and calling out for me to join them. No thanks, I was in my sandals and I had a feeling...M and Dog head back to house and catches me in the process of trying to take a photo of a flower on a vine. M suggests I should also take a photo of the African Lillies that are growing in the bush as well. I agree and still standing in the driveway focus the camera. M insists that I should take a macro photo, so I wade into the bush. Suddenly I feel something moist and cold land on my toes. I look down and see something black and yellow, looking suspiciously like a leech or caterpillar between my toes. I start screaming and jumping up and down, trying to take off my sandals. While M is telling me to stop jumping around so that he could get to it. In my panic I'm kicking my legs about and trying to thrust my foot towards him. Finally he calms me enough for him to check it out. He wasn't quick enough for me, I'm trying to shake the thing off while yelling at him to grab a stick to flick it off. At this stage the thing has crawled deeper between my toes and closer to the sole of my feet. Finally he manages to flick it off me.

I run out of the bushes, convince it was a caterpillar. M follows at a slower pace. I asked him what it was. He tells me it was a leech. I immediately jump into his arms. Gross. I feel so violated. Lucky for me the leech didn't have a chance to sink its suckers into me.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

How not to meditate

It was a lovely day today so I thought I should try and meditate. So I locked the dog in the house (leaving the back door open in case he wanted "out") and picked a nice spot under the shade of the lillypilly tree. Since I love the outdoors, and I am very "airy fairy" I like to be around earth because it grounds me. Therefore this was the perfect spot. I lay my yoga mat down, and started off with some exercises to open up the hips, ready for sitting in the lotus position.

I close my eyes and start to meditate using a breathing exercies (mouth slightly open, tongue on roof of mouth, and breathe through both mouth and nose). I am aware of some noise in the background. All of a sudden Dog runs out to the backyard and starts barking. He doesn't stop, so I take a break from my meditation and go see what he is barking at. I walk to the edge of the hill and look in the general area that Rusty is barking at. I hear something go crashing through the bush and spy a large monitor climbing the eucalypt tree. I rush in the house to get the camera but when I get back, the monitor is nowhere in sight.

I wait around for a bit, hoping to see him again, then give up. I get back to my lotus position and start meditating again. Something crawls up my leg, I try and breathe through the discomfort and send a plea out to the universe to get rid of the bug for now. It doesn't work, I get bitten anyway. So I kill it (I know not good karma). I don't miss a beat, and continue to breathe slowly. Then another bite, this time on my foot, then another and another. I open my eyes. There's ants all over me. I jump up and realise I had put the yoga mat on top of an ant nest. Good one!