Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Leisurely week

More notes for the gratitude list... Although I've failed to commit to any kind of creative activities I am feeling quite happy and content with life so far this week.
I didn't know until Friday that it would be a long weekend... I rarely pay attention to time and date, I only work four days per week and don't watch the clock so am usually somewhat oblivious to those dates which most minions await eagerly... I don't salivate for that end of week reward like so many workers do. I'm pretty happy about that!

I should have known it was a long weekend since we'd planned to go camping with friends but it was a short trip and didn't require any planning so I didn't give any thought deeper than; grab the gear and hit the road. Sam is still recovering from the effects of shingles, with some pretty severe neck pain lingering so I negotiated a pretty sweet deal for camp. It might not sound much but I was actually able to ride my bike out to the camp and home again on the proviso that she can go home to sleep in her own bed each night; I would stay and look after the kids. Fantastic! A chance to get out on my bike! The cam wasn't far out of town an easy ride to a property on the Elizabeth River just behind Noonamah Pub. So on Saturday we packed our camping gear into the back of the car, Sam picked up a friend and her daughter and we made our way to camp, according to our preferred mode of transport!

I rode with a friend and we took the cycle path out as far as Howard Springs then continued out through the back blocks looking for a short cut back to the highway. We actually added about 5 km to the trip and eventually got back on the highway at Girraween Rd. Fine with me, I was just happy to be out cruising around on my bike. The high pressure tires and newly packed rear wheel made the ride so much easier than I expected. 3 hours riding in the heat of the day was enough for both of us and we rolled into camp thirsty but amazingly not sweaty.

 Bush Bread and Jam

Camp was just what the Doctor ordered! There were plenty of other kids there and plenty of room to run around! No hassles! We had a bit of a talent show with about 5 acts, mostly the kids showing off their skills on guitar, flute, keyboard and our new friend Basil played ukelele while trying to teach us to sing a Luritja folk song... Great fun and chance to let our hair down! On Sunday we made dampa and Rosella Jam with no recipe, just some rosellas, sugar and the grated skin of a lime. It turned out the best jam I've yet tasted!


Monday being a public holiday I decided the kids and I could stay on another night. On Monday we had a game of soccer which I wasn't really fit for. Out of condition and with no actual sporting skill I tried to compensate with raw enthusiasm. Not a good idea! By the end of the day I had one foot scratched up bleeding and full of pandanas barbs while the big toe on the other foot had swollen and was beginning to turn purple... possibly fractured, lucky I didn't notice the colour until after the game, I'd hate to have let the team down.

Ride home was an easy 2 hour cruise, with a slight southerly breeze pushing me along.

This morning I had no work and two tickets for breakfast at the casino, which my mum had sent up out of sympathy for Sam. We decided no time like the present and at 9:30 found ourselves feasting on the smorgasbord breakfast. Those places bring out the worst in me! Even though I didn't pay for our breakfast I was determined to get my money's worth and ate much more than I normally would for breakfast. Once again I was sitting in the bizarre and surreal world of the Cassino restaurant, looking through tinted glass at the manicured garden, the horizon swimming pool, palm trees and the smooth as glass surface of the sea beyond Mindil Beach.

This time something different. A photographer who had been setting up some pretty fancy equipment was soon joined by a bunch of models (more than half a dozen of them) all wearing one piece bathing suits, high heeled shoes and jewelery... WOW we didn't expect to see that today! We watched them conduct their business with models adopting all the usual poses for the camera. Now this is surreal! Watching the young girls going about their business really was entertaining! How awkwardly they moved, attempting to get up the stairs in their extremely high heels as their knees were knocking together from the cold morning air. What an odd combination of attire! Their hair was long and blow waved all boofy, make up, the lot! Who hangs out at the pool looking like that? Jewelery and high heels? The more we watched the more weird it looked to us. Once each girl had completed her shoot she had to go and huddle down in a corner with the other girls.. all looking a little bit different but all essentially the same. They looked like sheep corralled into a pen waiting to be sheared, or slaughtered... Bit sad really, it reminded me of watching Ben Stiller mindlessly responding to the commands of a photographer in Zoolander.
What do you call a bunch of models anyway? A gaggle? A pack? A troupe?

I'm so glad I was there to see this bizarre show. It got me wondering what is it all about? What was the shoot for? Who was in Charge? Who gets the Glory? Who gets paid? Was this exercise all put together to sell jewelery or was it bathing suits? Maybe stilettos? Who will earn themselves a reputation? The models or is it the photographer who is the professional here? What do they do when this is over? Where is the next job? What is the novelty? (We've been seeing models posing in the same positions wearing the same shit for years... but they're still doing it. Why are we so easily stimulated by the simple convoluted image of a woman appearing in such familiar but unnatural circumstances?

You can find me loafing here!

After a one hour breakfast Sam dropped me down at the Nightcliff foreshore where I met some friends and sat in the shade of a Casuarina. They chatted but I was distracted and just pondered the beauty of the coastline, the sea and the sky, the eroding clay stone, trees clinging to the edge of the land and birds diving for fish in the sea. Another day to be glad for.

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