How farking hot was it yesterday? Did you hide inside with air-con or swelter outdoors? I spent several hours under the corrugated iron roof of Central Station with the mentally ill, the homeless, the elderly travellers, the denim-shorted-with-their-butt-cheeks-dangling Big Day Out attendees and a few dozen anxious parents wondering where the bloody hell their children – who were supposed to be returning from camp – had gone.
It was ace.
Turns out the train tracks had melted or something and there were “major delays” but we had bugger-all hope of finding out what exactly that meant or how long we’d be expected to wait. I’d shuffle off to the parking meter every hour to put another $7 in it, then plead with another Rail Corp employee – in vain – to tell me what was going on.
The Department of Sport and Recreation – the organisers of the camp – weren’t answering their phones. They sent out a “minor train delay due to heat. Please have a drink ready for your child” message that ended with a number to contact “for more information” that went straight to message bank.
Sydney city sweltered under a record high of 45.8 degrees yesterday. I reckon it was teetering towards the 50s in that hellish station. The pump packs of water I’d duly purchased for Sprog 1 and her friend were sucked down long before they even arrived, along with a lemonade icy pole and a lemon Calippo to appease a sweaty Sprog 2.
(When I bought the lemonade icy pole, the guy said “That will be $1.” I stared at him and said, “Sorry?” He said “$1.” Since when did major venues stop gouging? Bottles of water were going for $4.50 at the Big Day Out, naughty buggers.)
That enormous station/sauna would have been an awesome way to start my diet if I hadn’t decided it was far too hot to cook dinner and stopped at a chargrill chook shop for chips and half a bird instead.
When I asked Sprog 1 what she thought of camp she said it was “good”. When I asked her if she’d go again she said “no”. The “no”, from what I can gather, is purely based on the fact she was made to “rush” at bedtime – showering, tooth brushing and pyjama donning duties were expected to be performed at lightning speed. Sprog 1 doesn’t do anything at lightning speed.
Bizarrely, the lightning speed bit seems to have overshadowed all the other amazing stuff – fishing, paddle-boarding, disco, swimming, bonfire, cookies and milk for supper every night …
Kids are funny.
But I am so, so, so glad to have her back. My heart was pitter-pattering all the way to pick her up.
She bought us souvenirs – a pen for me, a spoon for her dad, a ruler for her sister and boomerang for herself. She said my pen was because she kept imagining me writing shopping lists.
It’s only been a week, but she seems taller and older. And so polite to me. So kind to her sister.
I’m sure it won’t last. But I’m enjoying it while I can.