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A little lonely

It’s been a weird week here for me. I’ve struggled a little in that I’ve been feeling a little lonely. It’s hard to explain as I’m not unhappy here, I’m enjoying the quiet though some days it might just be a bit too quiet. I have yet to make any friendships, it’s difficult in such a small town where there doesn’t seem to be any women my age that have similar interests.

I am grateful this week that I have started my online course and have filled up a couple of days with study. I help out in the girls classroom a couple of mornings a week and that’s been great too. On Monday I have a meeting to discuss the possibility of me being able to do my voluntary hours for the course at the girls’ school. The teachers I’ve spoken with are really keen for me to get started and there’s been talk of some possible casual work in the future which would be fantastic.

Linden’s been working a lot of nights and weekends this week and I always enjoy hearing the stories of the people he’s met and how diverse his work is here. He seems to be really enjoying the change. He’s even talking about buying a couple of cows!! He sure is embracing this country life. His vege patch is coming along and some of the plants seem to be thriving. He’s got lots of plans for the rest of the garden and I’m sure it’s going to look beautiful in a few months time.

The girls are adjusting beautifully and have made some lovely little friends at school. There has been the odd tear or two when they miss their friends back home, but mostly they are happy here. They’ve started going to swim club on a Thursday afternoon at the pool near their school (about 20 minutes drive away). It’s a great afternoon and not at all competitive which suits us just fine. They are only trying to improve their times each week and don’t worry about what anyone else is doing. There are lots of different swimming abilities and it’s so good to see them all just having a go and having fun with their friends. In between swims there is always a game of handball going on. They are loving learning to play handball and have now got all four of us out in the backyard of an afternoon playing.

I took the girls to The Channon Craft Market on Sunday which was a lot of fun. Lucy got herself a henna tattoo and they both picked up a colourful tie dyed shirt (Alice even getting to make her own under the guidance of the beautiful stallholder). We bought a few little Christmas gifts but the best part was the people watching. So many colourful characters to observe.

We’re getting our first visitors this weekend and I’ve been busy stocking the fridge and pantry and cleaning the house this week. My sister and her husband are visiting for 4 days and we can’t wait! I just hope they don’t get too bored.

Until next time x

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November 18, 2016 - 8:39 am

Siobhan - Nice to see you all settling it. Such a huge adjustment for all of you! Hopefully, you’ll find a nice little group of ladies, who can fill those friendship gaps! It’s a time you will all no doubt treasure!

November 21, 2016 - 1:21 am

Andrew - Nice close-up shots, Lucy in the window, sunset (?), and the pay-off on the trampoline for all those hours of gymnastics. Henna is certainly fascinating and tye dying seems eternally coming back. Eliza mentioned to me last week she missed Alice and wondered how she was doing. Perhaps Alice could write to her class, so the teacher, Ms Clark, could read it out, and invite people to write back as a class or as individuals as a writing project. The girls might get a few drawings even! It might take some time to build some friendships, local radio and CDs were my salvation when in quiet places. Now when Ive got a break from passing vehicles, boat motors, dogs barking, and motorbikes being revved, I deeply spend time listening to quiet sounds like leaves in the wind or hundreds of bees in a tree we recently saved. Getting into the community via school and study are effective, or you could join a committee of some kind. I think you had a nice time with your sister. Ive got a friend doing a retreat at the place you were working, Im seeing him next weekend there and before he comes here we’ll get to look around at the cockle shell construction in the old convent. Gwen Dundon wrote that the boys who lived there is the early 1800s calcified piles of cockle shells by the water to make mortar for the building, and celebrities came from Sydney to Woy Woy then by boat to Kincumber to open it when it was finished. Anyway, I thought of you working there when taking to my friend today about next weekend and his retreat this week. Im thinking of paddling there in the kayak across Brisbane Broadwater, then Christie can meet us there in the Tarago and we’d all drive back together. Anyway, let the peace take hold, dont resist it, listen for the sounds of the place, and keep a creative mind in writing and with that camera. Im sure you’ll be fine. Cheers A

November 21, 2016 - 3:31 pm

admin - Oh thanks so much Andrew, that’s lovely to read today. How interesting about the Retreat. I worked there for 18 months and had no idea about the cockle shell construction. Fascinating. I hope he’s enjoyed his time there. It really is a peaceful place. The grounds are lovely and quiet and from what I hear from attendees they always seem to enjoy it there. Hopefully the staff have looked after him.

I did write to Ms Clark when we first arrived and sent through some photos and a story of how Alice was going but I didn’t hear back from her so I’m not sure if she received my email and/or shared it with the class. I hope she did. I can send another one to her and see if she gets it.

I really do enjoy the peace and quiet here. There are lots of different bird species to enjoy. The little blue wrens are beautiful.

November 21, 2016 - 3:33 pm

admin - Thanks for taking the time to read my post Siobhan! We will definitely look back on our adventure with fond memories. It’s really a great place for the girls to spend a few years in. I’m starting to really enjoy it here.

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