Sunday, May 24, 2009

Colours of Autumn

After suffering the horrible effects of the head cold all week, I finally succumbed to it on Friday night and crawled into bed with a throat full of razor blades, at 6.30pm, staying there until 6am on Saturday, then spending Saturday grumbling about the house in my daggiest tracksuit pants, complete with ugg boots. I cancelled my appointment with the chinese doctor whom I've been seeing for my sore shoulder, I cancelled my dinner that had been arranged with some dear friends whom I was keen to catch up with, I grumbled by txt msg to the boyfriend that I was `bored witless' having to stay
 home all day, and I went back to bed at 9pm.  This morning I woke to a warm wind blowing dust into the atmoshphere which resulted in a spectacular sunrise. Captured on the Nokia N96 mobile phone camera - it's a bit hard to get the focal depth, but as they say `you get the picture'.  The photo of the maple is also captured on the Nokia, but was taken in clear daylight and within a good focal range. The continued drought in the Southern states throws up strange phenomena. The local birds love my garden because I have mulched so deeply and I water on the days I'm allowed to.  
The deep damp mulch is full of worms and wood slaters and all sorts of other goodies for birds. I hadn't worried about putting water out for the birds, because my property backs straight onto a creek, which is permanent.  Yet this morning as I stood looking out my bedroom window at the front of the house, I saw a fat glossy black rook, approach the end of the hose lying in the garden and stick his beak into the opening, seeking drops of water. Maybe he likes the taste of chlorinated water? More likely he is just like us humans, why waste effort flying over the houses to the creek, when he can have a drop of water from the hose. The hose does have one of those `stop' end fittings on it that don't allow water to flow unless a nozzle is fitted, so I was suprised that he would get enough water from it to encourage his efforts.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Roll on the communications revolution!

I've spent a fair bit of time over the past 2 and a 1/2 weeks, flying. Not virtually or metaphysically, but really. In the air in aeroplanes. Brisbane, Sydney, Canberra, Rockhampton. This weeks trip was to Rockhampton. I woke in the middle of the night on Sunday with a sore throat. Realising that I'd been sleeping with my mouth open, I moistened my mouth and shut it and went back to sleep, with a nagging bloked nasal passage and vague headache. 
Up in the air on Monday morning all was going well until we began the descent to Brisbane.  My left ear began to block up. I pressed against it, I swallowed, I held my nose and blew gently into the cavern of my skull, all to no avail. As the descent continued, the pain increased. We landed, I had nearly three hours to wait for my connecting flight to Rockhampton. Long enough I thought, to regain control of my eardrums. As the plane lifted from the tarmac of Brisbane airport I realised that this would not be fun. Now my right inner ear began to sympathise with my left. Unfortunately they were not in total sympatico. Somewhere in between the two of them, my sense of balance was being distorted. The interior of the plane began to move disconcertingly as my stomach moved with it. The rising tide of nausea had me in hot flushes as I struggled to find a place of stillness for my vision to rest on. I could only gain relief by telling myself that it was OK, this was a result of my brain playing tricks because the delicate balance sensing mechanisms in my inner ears were sending distorted messages. The interior of the plane really wasn't melting in front of my eyes and I really wasn't falling through the seat to the floor.  I made the landing in extremes of eardrum agony and stomach rebellion. Unfortunately the next day, I had to make the return trip home. Imagine my dismay as I buckled into my seat in the Dash 8, and the airhostess kindly informed me that this flight was making an extra stop in Gladstone. That meant up and down to Gladstone, up and down to Brisbane, up and down to Melbourne, before I was finally home. It only took until the `up' from Gladstone for the nausea to set in.  Add to this mixture the fact that storms were driving across the SE of Qld. We bumped and bucketed our way into Brisbane.  
Fianlly home, I managed a reasonable sleep, and I have got through today at work, still with a head that feels like an over ripe watermelon and a stomach on the point of rebellion.  All of this to do a presentation that could have been done by video conferencing.  Roll on the communications revolution!