Toowong Time

I have spent the last couple of weeks taking advantage of being in Brisbane rather than in the bush - everything from the mundane (dental checkups) to the cultural (West End’s second hand bookshops) to the tempting (the Greek stalls’ halva and pistachio creams) gets sorted, and indulged in more after a period of relative rural isolation.
I have also been catching up with my friends and colleagues at Gensolve, and we even arranged a beer and pizzas afternoon last Saturday and a load of our friends and ex-housemates turned up.
I have used the two weeks to break out of the cabin Fever syndrome but does eventually set in from working at home day in day out. It's made quite a nice change to work from the office a couple of days this week and last, and commuting by ferry on the Citicat reminded me of commuting across the bay back in Auckland.
When we looked after the same house last year, I went running two or three times a week and each time I varied my route slightly. The outcome was that each one took me past a different section of the North West Brisbane suburbia. This year, I took up where I left off - I continued to explore the network of suburban cul-de-sac roads and paths. On my very first outing, I turned left, left, and left again - and Kapunda street led me into a large tract of urban parkland that sits in between the Western Freeway and the bottom of Mount Coot-Tha. Somehow, I had failed to discover this strip of eucalyptus trees and jogging tracks last year, even though they form a crescent behind the dead end street the house we're staying at sits on.
We have dealt fairly well with the housesitting - we have fed and pampered the cats, supplied them with the correct vittles, hot water bottles, electric blankets, reverse cycle air conditioning, and C even lets them sleep on her tummy. We have also fed the white parrots, and more or less kept the place shipshape. Having animals around does remind me how much I miss having pets, having grown up with both dogs and cats. At the same time though, it reminds me how much hassle it is trying to find someone to look after them when you go away, or even worse, the horror of putting them into kennels. We have been very close to adding a dog to the family several times in recent months-it will probably happen quite soon now.


Alex said...

Do you stick the cats in hampers? Or, do you prevent them from doing what they want to do? Or, is this some new coinage meaning that you pamper them with hats? What do you mean when you say that you keep the cats hampered?

Blogger said...

I wish we had hampered the cats... Would've been a much easier couple of weeks. That was a typo for pampered... and shows I need to wrestle with Dragon Naturally Speaking a bit more... I'm using it for most tasks where there are more than 100 words to type now, but I'm still training it to my pom/jock/nz/aussie accent...