Posted by: jkirkby8712 | February 21, 2012

Saturday, 18th February 2012 – a few hours sitting around an elusive airport departure lounge!

A coolish dull and overcast  morning, and with a gym appointment at 9am, I was a little shocked to not wake until an hour before – usually like to be around and up for a couple of hours before I head there! Feeling very tired, was almost tempted to  forgo this morning’s session, knowing it would be a hard one, however, we got there, and despite a weary start on the bike, and a bit of apprehension as to how successful I would be this morning, in getting through all the activities, we survived, under the guidance of Linda, who was the instructor who initially introduced me to the program five weeks ago, and had suddenly decided to bring on this ‘new’ format of exercises we started last Thursday.

Shortly after 10am, after a visit to the newsagent, and a brief chat with Hazel McKay from the church whom I ran into in the street, it was off to my Saturday morning treat at the Blues Plus Café –  I’d mentioned to Helen Hall [another lady from the church], that she could always find me there after 10am of a Saturday morning if  ever she was in town at that time. Haven’t seen her yet, and again today, I had my drink [plus a slice of raison bread this morning] with my own company.  Back home, where I had a brief chat with the elderly neighbour who was busy trying to clear up the mess left on his part of the nature strip, by the workmen who have been laying the pipes in the roadway over the past few weeks [expansion of electricity connections apparently]  – I still have my segment of the nature strip to attend to [next week, I hope].

An exciting Saturday afternoon!   I’m sure I would have preferred to have been at Clarke Oval watching Adam play cricket, however  –  everyone over at Goonawarra either working or unavailable, as was Susie working.  Shirley’s aunt from Brisbane, who has been staying with Win [her sister, Shirley’ mother] in the Granny Flat for the past few weeks, returned to Brisbane this afternoon. Someone needed to drive her to the airport, and it seemed that someone was me – not much notice mind you, were lucky I had no other commitments this afternoon! Anyway, no problems, we attended to that, picked up the two ladies [one 90+, the other in her 80s I think] and drove them down to the airport. Thankfully, because they both had walking difficulties, I was able to park reasonably close to the departure area for Val’s plane – more than an hour before departure time, which was good as it turned out. SA bit of a mix up in her booking arrangements – supposed to have being someone organised to assist onto the plane, and off at the other end, and James had in fact confirmed all that this morning. But no, at the check-in counter, no record of any of that!  Anyway, all that was eventually organised, although Val was concerned that it would actually happen, right up until departure time [which was 30 minutes later than the scheduled time – most of ‘Virgin Blue’s’ flights seemed to be delayed for one reason of another today.  As it was, I made the ladies walk a little further than I would have preferred [was worried myself all of the time that one of them would collapse on me!], and when we finally did get to that elusive departure lounge for her flight, we then had a one hour wait before she was allowed to get onto the aircraft – with assistance as originally requested! Val had wanted me to wait with her until that point, and that was fair enough, as her sister of course also wanted to wait with her until she left.  It was just an extra hour or so at the airport that I’d not counted upon, and any plans I might have had to drop in for a look at Adam’s cricket match, disappeared.

Of course, as is usual with these things, when one’s traveller does leave, it happens very quickly, and almost before Win had a chance to properly say farewell to her younger sister, Val was gone, down the causeway, on the arm of a flight attendant,  into her plane.   Meanwhile, Shirley’s mother and myself began the long walk back down through the airport terminals, etc, and across to the carpark.  We could have stopped for a drink or something along the way, but I think Win was keen to get home after the long wait.

One thing I did miss this afternoon, was another race by the fabulous racehorse, Black Caviar –  at Flemington, going for its 19th win from 19 races.  Most of the previous 18 wins had been relatively easy. But this time, she was up against another champion and rival, in Hay List.  With 400 metres to go, Hay List was matching Black Caviar, stride for stride – usually at this point, Black Caviar would be beginning to streak away from all comers. At 300 metres, disbelief began to spread around the Flemington crowd  –  ‘their’ horse might be about to lose!  The ‘chips were down’ but the courage of the horse was put to the test, and Black Caviar hung on to win by a length and a half. A near record run for the 1000 metres, was a test of that courage, and just how hard the horse had to fight to keep Hay List out [a brilliant horse in any other company].  I didn’t see or hear that race, but we got back to the car in time to hear the post race comments.   I didn’t have to explain to Mrs S what was happening – she was familiar with the Black Caviar story.  Jockey, Luke Nolan, praised Black Caviar’s courage, marvelled at her ability and acknowledged how privileged he was to be associated with the mare.  According to the trainer, Black Caviar is unlikely to run again in Australia before heading overseas, whether that be in Dubai, or at Ascot.

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