May Day

Well bugger me! It’s May already.

So what have I been up to over the last couple of months?

Family: We’ve had a few family get-togethers.  My eldest grandchild, KMan, turned 7 and we had a party for him.  On Easter Sunday we gathered at my daughter J’s place for an easter-egg hunt and we had a family Dinner to celebrate a visit from my Queensland family.  Daughter K’s pregnancy is going well and bub is due later this month.  K is looking forward to starting maternity leave.

Friends: I continue to have regular dinners with BFF and her family which is always nice.  Our group of friends have also had a couple of restaurant nights, Friday night drinks, the odd lunch and a trivia night!  I managed to catch up with my former university workmates  for a lunch.  They want me back but I tell them they can’t afford me.

Movies: I went to the movies a couple of times over the past few weeks.  First I saw Coriolanus which I enjoyed but found a little jarring at times – a brave effort to present a Shakespeare play, originally set in ancient Rome, in modern-day Bosnia.  I also saw Margin Call with great performances from Jeremy Irons, Kevin Spacey, Demi Moore, Simon Baker and others.  And of course, over the Easter weekend I dusted off my Chocolat DVD and had a good laugh and a bit of a cry.  I love that film.

Books: Ian McEwan’s Black Dogs has been sitting on my bookshelf for years and I finally read it.  He is a fine writer.  I also opened my copy of the Complete Works of William Shakespeare and read Coriolanus before going to see the movie.  One of my farewell presents when I finished working at the university last year was a signed copy of  Tim Bonyhady’s book Good Living Street, a story of several generations of his family from their life in Vienna, patronage of the arts, flight from Austria with the rise of nazism and life in Sydney, Australia.

Culture: My sister visited and we went along to the Renaissance Exhibition at the National Gallery.  It was interesting in that it covered a period when artists were beginning to use oil paints and moving to canvas.  There were some brilliant pieces but also a lot of pretty average stuff.  I much preferred the Picasso exhibition in Sydney that we saw in February.  While my sister was here, we also visited the Canberra Glassworks which was a real eye-opener.  It’s been around for a few years now, but this was my first visit.

Reunion: My high school classmates got together recently to celebrate our collective recent-or-near-future 60th birthdays.  The turnout was not as great as previous years but there were a few guys turn up who I hadn’t seen at previous reunions.  This was quite interesting given we went to an all boys school.  I was chatting to a couple of my classmates when another came up and asked me how I knew the two guys I was talking to.  I told him I went to school with them and then watched as he slowly processed this information.  It took a while for the penny to drop.  A photographer who came to take some photos also wanted to know how I was associated with this group of old, grey, balding men and seemed quite surprised when I explained that I went to school with them.  It was a good day and I look forward to our next reunion which will be in late 2014.

Other:  My new year resolution to keep the weight off is going well.  I’m now 16.5 kg lighter than I was last August! I just love being able to wear some of my old clothes.  The local ABC radio station has been reading out cryptic crossword clues during the Breakfast program and inviting listeners to come up with the answers.  I have been getting a few mentions on air (as Peta of Holt) for my solving ability.  Canberra is beautiful at this time of year as the leaves turn bright yellow, gold, red and orange.  I’ll need to turn on the heating soon.

Well, that’s about all I can recall.  Next post should have a photo of my new grandchild.

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