Thursday, July 23, 2009

Sarah Blasko

I took Zinni to a Sarah Blasko concert tonight. Here's her latest clip.

Wow. Sarah Blasko. How to describe her?
Delicate, dainty, strong, powerful. A pure voice which she uses richly. A small woman who owns the stage. Quirky.

Musical talent poured from Sarah and her band.

Zinni had friends at the concert and the teenagers were generous enough to be happy to have me sit near them - though I did jokingly promise to pretend I didn't know them to prevent others thinking they were uncool to have a mum with them. Zinni commented that she enjoyed going to the concert with me, that it was good to do something so memorable and fun together.

Yet in the midst of all this enjoyment I missed my husband.

While listening to and watching Sarah I ran through possible descriptions of her to give my friends, and I came to a favourable comparison of Sarah with Joni Mitchell.

That's when I missed Robert. Robert introduced me to Joni Mitchell's music soon after we met - he owned all her records, which I still have and still play. We went to her concert at the Sydney Opera House when we were just married.

While I enjoyed having my 16 year old Zinni by me, I ached for my Robert. He would have loved this rare and intimate concert in a small community hall, the skill of the musicians, the beautiful music. My Robert didn't know the music of Sarah Blasko but I know he would have taken great pleasure in it.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Found, but not found

I've just spent some time searching for a pen pal I started writing to when I was 11. We wrote to each other reasonably regularly for 20 years, and then, well, then life with small children took over both our lives.

I've searched for Ellen on the net before and always been a bit surprised that I came up with a blank. In my thinking it's the pen pal types of old who embrace social networking sites, so I searched a little more thoroughly today. I've found the man who must be her husband, I've found the three people who must be her children. I can see photos of them. I'm sure it's them. They're on each others friend lists, they live in the right suburb of the right American state. I've even found Ellen's sister with maiden and married last names attached. These are the right people, but my heart is heavy as I see me friend Ellen is not on any of their friend lists. Her youngest son Kevin, 2 years older than my Zinni, has a look of sadness and desolation.

I would dearly like to contact her husband, but I fear that would be rude and out of place. I have not written to Ellen for 14 years - though perhaps I have sent 1 or 2 Christmas cards in that time - so to contact her husband now, when the evidence points to her death, seems to be in poor taste.

I wonder how I'd feel about one of Michael's old friends contacting me. It's happened. I didn't mind. I like to know that others still think of him and have fond memories of him.

If Ellen has died, I would like to express my sadness to her husband, but... Oh, maybe I don't want to have my sad fears confirmed.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009


I wonder where my ability to do nothing without guilt has gone?

Today I have played guitar hero with my son, washed, hung out and retrieved 2 loads of washing, remade beds with clean sheets, provided home made meals for lunch and dinner, re-organised our picnic basket with more appropriate cups and cutlery, and generally kept the household wheels turning over. Yet I haven't attended to a long list of jobs that must be done and I have spent time chatting on line and reading my novel and so guilt is trying to take my day of vacation from me.

Bah! I say to guilt. I will work with more enthusiasm tomorrow after resting today. This is a truth my being seems to have forgotten and I'm making a determined effort to reclaim it.

On a side note, the novel I'm reading is Moby Dick. Proclaimed as the greatest novel ever written by an American on its cover, I find this to be a false claim. I'm going to persevere with it, for beneath the flowery language there is a good story, but oh my, I wish Melville would just get on with it!!

Monday, July 13, 2009


A couple who I'm friends with live their lives in the public domain via facebook. The husband posts over the top smoochy comments to, and about, his wife which make me wonder what the true state of their relationship is - though perhaps I'm being unduly cynical, because away from facebook I think their love and respect for each other is genuine.

Anyway, today they are tootling on about their 18th wedding anniversary.

I find myself unable to respond because every response I think of would be seen in the light of my widowedness. See what you think of the responses which immediately came to mind:

Enjoy every second you have together.

I'm still ahead by 49 weeks.

'91 was a good year to be married, '86 worked better for me.

Had my first miscarriage in '91. Memorable year.

Enjoy the milestone. You never know when the journey will end.


Jealousy's a bitch ain't it?

And once I'd responded here I was able to make a suitably happy response to their facebook celebration. :)

Saturday, July 4, 2009

It couldn't last forever

We joined in celebrating the engagement of friends today. A large, happy group met at a local park and enjoyed the beautiful winter sunshine we are currently being blessed with. (After seemingly endless weeks of rain, the sunshine is truly a blessing.)

Davey took his favourite soccer ball, the one he's had for 5 soccer seasons. I asked if he'd rather take his newer ball, but no, he wanted to take his old faithful. It used to be shiney red and in primary school he carried it to school and home again everyday, so he and his friends could play soccer at lunch time. Davey's received a new soccer ball every season for the last 4 years, but this one has remained his ball of choice.

He likes the softness of the casing of this ball. Despite it's dilapidated state:

15 or so boys and young men joined in a good humoured game of soccer. Then a stray staffordshire terrier happened on the game. The dog obviously enjoyed a good competition. I could see the possibility of trouble ahead, but didn't act. I actually didn't realise at this point that the dog was a stray, dogs are allowed in the park and I thought it belonged to one of the young men who seemed to take him in hand. I looked at Davey and he didn't seemed concerned so I continued chatting. Of course, within the next minute the playful staffy had locked his powerful jaws on the ball and it was no longer round. This time when I looked at Davey I knew how dumb I had been.

One of the young men extracted the remains of the ball from the staffy's jaws and Davey walked over to our car with it as tears fell down his cheeks.

I went and chatted to him as he collected his composure - no embarrassing Mum hugs or anything, just a few words to let him know I understood. He regrouped and rejoined the game as another ball was scrounged from the boot of someone else's car.

Once we got home he pumped the ball again, but it's had it's last days of fun with Davey's feet. We'll try sealant on the punctures, but, reality won't change. I don't think Davey will throw the now useless ball away though, as it was the last soccer ball his Dad ever bought for him. It's an irreplaceable item.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Being human is a struggle.

I'm currently avoiding talking to my sister and I can't tell you how much I hate it.

I like to think that I'm not a person who gets caught up in pettiness. However, yet again, I'm proving to myself that I'm as ordinary and as human as everyone else, and a lot uglier on the inside than those I aspire to be like.

I wish I could be the bigger person, take the higher road, without being self-righteous.
I wish I could stop myself from biting back with family.
I wish I could be as generous to family as I can be to others when it comes to overlooking faults.

I was going to write 'I wish I knew how to mend the broken fence', but I do know.
I wish I had the humility to take the action and have the grace to swallow words of self justification.

I don't though, because I suck. Blergh.