How do we get it done?

Hi ho, hi ho … it’s off to work I go …

I can’t quite believe I’m about to do the office thing again without achieving much at home since late September.

There’s still a layer of builder’s dust over everything. The back room is still filled with crap. A spare mattress base still remains on its side in my bedroom. The mattress still lies on its side in the hallway. There’s still mould between the bathroom tiles. My new overhead cupboards in the kitchen are still empty. I haven’t lost a gram of the extra 10kg I’m carrying …

What have I been doing with my time? Well, I’ve been a bit obsessed with launching Drinks Digest and also creating a website for my freelancing work, which I’ve called HotHouse Communications … stay tuned …

After a year of flexible working arrangements, it’s also a bit weird to be heading into an office five days a week. How will I find time to get the youngest an eye test? How do I drop off/pick up the dog from the groomer? How do I put the slow cooked pulled beef in the oven four hours before dinner?

So many questions without answers.

I really don’t know how parents squeeze all those tasks into their working weeks.

Anyways, my weekend …

I was a bit at sea on Saturday morning because I didn’t have my normal walk with friends. We’d organised to have a special Christmas one today instead – in a scenic location with brunch afterwards – but my new job got in the way of that.

I felt quite bereft as I walked to the coffee shop alone. Luckily my friend Mel was heading into the city and made a mistake with the bus timetable, so had 30 minutes to kill. My house is on the bus route’s busy road, so we parked ourselves on my front fence for a natter. I was very happy to have a friendly face and conversation.

In the late afternoon I headed to DD’s place. We planned on a swim at my favourite beach, but bloody bluebottles spoiled our fun. Fortunately DD suggested we try Palm Beach instead and it was blissfully stinger free.

We had a glass of rose on his front lawn afterwards, then wandered down to the local Chinese restaurant for a feed – curry puffs and satay combination … yummmmmmm.

As for Sunday, blimey it was full on. It started with me having a panic attack at 6.30am when I checked my emails and thought the youngest had gone off the rails. I got a message from the bank saying she’d made a $30 transfer at 1am to a girl I didn’t know for “Malibu”. I went a bit postal, convinced my 14 year old was drinking booze at a sleepover. I sent a very stern text message demanding she call me when she woke up.

It turned out “Malibu” was a bikini bottom that a friend had purchased for her. She also reminded me that Malibu wouldn’t be her choice for sneaky boozing because it contains sugar, which she hasn’t consumed for 18 months. Good point. So I climbed off the parental ledge.

Then I made my first visit to the jail since COVID lockdown and had lunch with my friend Megz afterwards (pictured main – my face looks wonky because I sat on my sunglasses and buggered them up). Inmates have only been able to have in-the-flesh visits in the last couple of weeks, it was all via video link before that.

They took our temperatures in addition to photographing our eyeballs. Visits were limited to 30 minutes. We had to wear masks the whole time and were only allowed to bump elbows to say hello and goodbye. It was a strange scenario considering how mask-less the rest of our lives are at the moment. But it’s great they’ve allowed some form of visiting prior to Christmas and it was lovely to see Kathy.

It’s not the merriest of times for prisoners, however. They’re not allowed to get Christmas cards any more. All mail is photocopied and the originals are destroyed. Apparently it’s because people have found ingenious ways to smuggle drugs into the prison like in kids’ paintings.

After jail I headed to Maroubra for an early dinner with my mates Sue and Guy (we met at work-based childcare forever ago and have stayed in touch over the years). There was much laughter, which was a welcome boost to my low mojo levels.

OK, gotta go. I’ll give you the rundown on contracting life tomorrow.

Song of the day: Dolly Parton “9 to 5”

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