Monday, October 24, 2011

TELL ME WHY... (9 down)

(Here we are sharing/counting UP Forty Days and Forty Nights of our lives, our last on the inner-west side of town and, eventually, some of our first on the other (far) side of town, where we envisage some big changes coming our way. Thanks for joining us as we remember, celebrate and experience gratitude for our time here, and sometimes feel completely overwhelmed and exhausted by the changes underway!)

...I didn't like Mondays. Because now, I quite enjoy them. For me, it's a day to take stock of house, the cleaning, the washing, the cooking and baking, a day to consider the week ahead and slowly begin all of the beforementioned household tasks, which I seem able to do with a relaxed approach because the week hasn't quite picked up pace yet. The rain today has only added to the subdued nature of this Monday.

And today, I've been thinking about the beauty of having made such wonderful local friendships over the past four and a half years living here in this village. Yesterday we shared a lovely morning tea with friends who live just around the corner, followed by a quick drop-in to others and afternoon tea at home with another lovely batch. Yesterday was one of those times that we turned to each other and looked for reminders of why exactly we're leaving. Thankfully the reasons didn't need to be spoken but, having enjoyed a Sunday such as yesterday did bolster our committment to staying in touch with all the great friends we've met on this side of town.

I find it amazing to think that some of these friendships I'm referring to blossomed from the community 'mother's group' that I joined following Elsa's birth. You see, here (and all over Australia I believe), the hospital and/or midwife sends the contact details of all new mothers to the relevant (usually the closest) 'maternal and child health centre' and the nurse at that centre contacts the new mum to arrange a home visit and invitation to attend a local 'mother's groups'. It sounds a little institutionalised but really, it's a great local service provided by the State Governement and administered through the local municipality. Our local nurse is a wonderful,caring, non-judgemental women and I've often felt very grateful for her advice and interest.

Initially, I baulked at the idea of a 'mothers group' which I imagined would feel completely contrived and ingenuine and though I found it awkward at first, I quickly began to look forward to our weekly gatherings. We were perfect strangers, 'thrown' together with seemingly little in common beyond our new parenting status but those initial series of meetings established by the nurse somehow morphed into years of self-directed, meaningful, supportive and enjoyable interactions and from that has come some lovely friendships which are definitely worth celebrating! So many memories worthy of an abundance of gratitude. And a reminder that perhaps us humans have more in common with our neighbours (both locally and in every other sense) that we realise. We certainly have the ability to look past the differences; it would be nice to see more of it at a global scale.

And if anyone's interested, 'Elsa's Newspaper' is forecasting hail and rain for today but sunshine tomorrow.

We made it through the rain today to share some lunch from Heather Dell, a local institution.

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