Okay, not only spring but also summer is over….
It always amuses me to have people ask enthusiastically “how was your summer?” or “did you have a good summer?” as if our lives somehow change dramatically for the better for 3 months of the year. I don’t think Australians ask that question of each other but I haven’t lived there for 14 years…. So, seeing as I live in America, and I’ve lately been asked the question a lot, I’ll respond.
My summer started off well – in the last week of June we had one of the manservant’s friends stay for 4 days and on the day he left an Australian friend of mine arrived for 9 days. These appear in the credit column along with the unseasonably “cool” weather; not much heat or humidity this year and I really, really, loved having my friend Pierre visiting – it was a great 9 days with him. But unfortunately the debit side of my summer-ledger was heavy … first we had an unexpected death of someone really close just two days after Pierre left. This has really rocked us and will be forever marked by the cremation taking place on July 23rd, my birthday; a day which, prior to this year, I have always loved and celebrated with vigor. Ten days later we were at the ocean on a miserable day to scatter ashes. Then our roof had to be totally replaced after numerous leaks sprang. We did the due diligence thing and got 4 quotes which were so disparate it was ridiculous. About the only thing they had in common was the square footage to be covered! One company didn’t even bother going up onto the roof!! We chose the guy we found most personable which might not be the best way to select a company but his quote fell in the middle which met that old “dismiss-the-highest-&-lowest-first” method of selection. And then, just after we’d double-mortgaged ourselves to pay for the roof, we had to sell the first born to pay for a bathroom repair! The floor had to be ripped up looking for a leak; a leak we only realized we had when the kitchen ceiling plaster started falling down! Oh, so yes that section of ceiling also had to be repaired. A new floor, tiles and timber in the bathroom – and a savings account started for a pedestal to hide that plumbing. And now it looks like the $100 cheque I sent to the Princess for her early-September birthday might’ve gone to Austria in-spite of my block printing of “Australia” on the envelope!!!
I’m really happy to be entering autumn and I’m sure people are somewhat sorry they asked about my summer.