Sunday, February 05, 2006


I can’t believe I’m hobbling again after I spent Friday climbing hills in the Dandenongs and not falling down. I did have a few minor bruises and scratches from swinging in the trees but yesterday I managed to smash my toe into a door.  Nothing is broken except my vow of no profanity, the colour scheme is spectacular and there’s no pain if I don’t stand, walk or think about it.

Sis and I went by bus and train, going through places I hadn’t seen in years.  We got a little confused looking for Box Hill station until a kind person told us we were standing 3 floors above it.  Sis took the stairs, I took the lift.  Speaking of kind people, I’ve had two polite bus drivers in a week, both of them assisting elderly people (not me) and generally being patient and pleasant.  I’d heard rumours that drivers like that existed but two in one week is spooky.  We had a scenery filled train trip, scenery being graffiti on every flat surface but not up
to the artistic calibre of the Frankston line.

My cousin lives in the hills or should I say up a hill, up a hill and finally up a hill which is the driveway.  He is a zoologist and has an amazing collection of poultry.  We spent hours in the pens collecting feathers and one obliging rooster dropped a shimmering green and black one for me.  I swear I didn’t pluck it or kick the bird in the backside although I should have, he was such a bully.  He had one little white hen cornered and was pecking the bejesus out of her.  They are pecky little swines when they get going, feathers really fly and blood flows.  Gives real meaning to the terms, hen-pecked and pecking order.

I did tell him about my spiders and roaches, no point having a zoologist in the family without taking advantage.  The latest huntsman episode occurred as I checked the letter box and one walked up my arm before I left in the morning.  I think he’s still in orbit.  The black, big, shiny and flat roaches are imports, from America.  X-files again, that one about the CIA robot cockies spying on people.  Australian cockroaches are usually the little brown critters but all of them carry disease, charmers.

I’m not a great fan of the bush.  The gum trees are claustrophobic and when they get together, they whisper.  In winter, they piss rain drops on one’s head and in summer it’s dry leaves with strange animals attached.  I make an exception for flowering gums after spending an hour watching through the picture window, at the birds and butterflies in the blossoms.  Baby parrots are a bit dumb though, they sometimes forget to pull up before they hit the window.

If getting up the drive was a trial, getting down was a riot.  I looked like ‘George of the jungle’ swinging from branch to branch.  A nice taxi driver home too.  Is the transport board putting something in the water?

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