Out of Home Adventures: Day 26

Friday 13th April – Gwelup

We enjoyed having Matt visit us at Roleystone on Sunday again. Tin, unfortunately, forgot we were at Roleystone and took him to Merton Street. No one was there, and we told Matt that if our guests had been home he would have been in for a treat as Michael is a very good cook. Still, he enjoyed his dinner – or at least, ate all of it – might have been just hunger!

We asked Marie and Geoff if we could stay a bit longer, and they agreed. Stephen had worked out the bus/train details for getting to the doctor’s surgery for more bandage changes and getting to choir. It was also easier for me to go with Marie to see Mum on Wednesday, rather than packing up the Winnie to drive to Greenmount.

Yesterday morning it was very wet, and after we had packed up we had to wait about half an hour for the rain to stop so that Stephen could do the umbilicals (power, water and waste water hoses). We managed to get away at about 12.00 and took the highways to Gwelup, rather than going via Graham Farmer Freeway. Our GPS took us down a nearby street, and as Eversley was picking us up, it would have been good of me to let her know as her GPS took her that way as well. We found a little vegetarian place near where the choir now rehearse in Hay Street. They will add a little beef or chicken to the dishes for extra money.

We still have a lot of chocolate left over from our travels and took some along as a small contribution to the supper. We are once again in a Union building, and although there are teething problems, it is a very good location for Stephen and I and we would would happy for it to continue. The union have said that we can use their tea/coffee, biccies and milk if we like. Our supper person will be away next Thursday and she suggested that instead of someone taking over, we should just use what is there. In our usual democratic way, we all thought this sounded a good idea.

The caravan park is fairly discretely hidden behind a wall. This suburb is really going ahead with lots of two story houses on small blocks, yet there is the lovely stretch of lakes and wetlands, and a large golf course, providing lots of green. The caravan park itself is leafy and green with a couple of small ponds and lots of birdlife. The pitches are reasonably well spaced and we have a large one where we have parked on an angle to try to get level.

pond (1 of 1)

We got to choose our spot and could have been overlooking the pond, but we chose to be a bit further away because of the nearby children’s playground. There is a large camper’s kitchen and some ensuite toilets/showers a short walk away. There are three dump points and we are fortunately located quite close to one of them.

We have had some sunshine this morning, but it is mostly cloudy. Staff are using leaf blowers at the moment, so after putting out the washing to dry I brought it back and put it out of the way in the shower recess. The things are mostly dry, just feel a bit cold.

We are nearly at the end of this adventure and I would be feeling very sad, except that we will be setting off next Friday to go to Fairbridge. We will keep the Winnie at home until after Fairbridge, then take her up to Roleystone for a two month rest.

We had our first choir rehearsal with Working Voices last night with Mike and Lesley. It was really enjoyable to have Mike conducting us again. He is being paid for Thursday nights, but refused to let us pay for his extra time when they went to the Wednesday night rehearsal at UWA, and for going with us to the Homless rally tonight. Horrible to feel that we are just not that comfortable with Raelene even though she has been with us for a couple of years now. She is already objecting, via email, to the choir’s choice of songs for Mayday, yet it is our choir and we know what our audience likes. The Mayday event isn’t a concert for us to perform at, we are there to provide support for the unions in their fight for workers’ rights.

We had a lovely time staying with Marie and Geoff and really enjoyed our time of being ‘carers’ for Glenn. He was on absolutely his best behaviour, even when I reminded him about tablets and injections, etc. We went out to the nearby Chinese restaurant on our last night, and although having him with us meant we would need to leave the restaurant more or less immediately after the meal, we still wanted him to be a part of the farewell. We had Banquet No. 2 and had enough leftovers for a little box each. Stephen and I had ours for lunch yesterday. We were very hungry and it was good to have a have meal easily prepared shortly after we arrived.

We feel that we could easily do it again – we really only had three days without Marie and Geoff being there for at least part of the time. As parents of a man with disabilities who has trouble communicating, having an able bodied man with good communication skills felt relatively easy. However, his schedule of outings is complicated, with different money needs each day, and there is still a lot of work involved in his care for Marie and Geoff. They also take him away for holidays with them quite often. Having diabetes is an added layer of complexity.

We also have Mum’s problems adding to our stress. Of course, it is relatively easy now that she is in care, but because we see her often we are still affected by her unhappiness and anti social behaviour in the nursing home. She is paying a lot of money to being in care, so we should feel justified in letting them manage the problems.

Today we plan to go into town during the afternoon by bus and train, and Eversley will take her car to the train parking area so that we don’t have to worry about getting home again. The public transport is much better at the Ascott caravan park, but we wanted to experience being in the Gwelup area and it gives us a chance to catch up with Eversley.

We are having quite a lazy morning, with time for a bit of music practice and for me to catch up on this blog.

We’ve had an updated itinerary, which is still a draft, for the choir tour in China and I am getting quite excited to be going. We are mostly going where we have been before, but as we have done quite a bit of travel in China that is perhaps inevitable. Still, I am looking forward to going to those places again.

I’ve decided on a very light camera/lens combination which will be easy to carry, and have still to make up my mind about which laptop to take. I’ve got a very light, rather under powered one, that puts me into dongle hell as it only has one port, or there is my old 13″, with two USB ports, a HDMI port, and an SD card reader, in other words, with lots of lovely ports. It is a little heavier, but less complicated. The older laptop is a late 2012 model, but has a beautiful screen and is pretty fast due to the 1 TB SSD upgrade we did a few years ago.

I could, of course, just use my ipad with an external keyboard – but I know I will want to have an actual computer, especially once we are in England and staying in an apartment.

Best to publish this now, I am rambling and getting rather boring!




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