Moving Forward

I haven’t written lately for a variety of reasons but mainly I just didn’t feel like it. I’m working on getting my fitness back which is going well. I’m working with getting our pup Peanut trained up. She is now 4 months old. I’m meeting up with friends and cooking more. I’m just taking more time from reading many blogs and trying to keep up with comments. I only comment on a very few blogs now. As much as I love the blogging community it takes a long time to read every post and comment then follow up with more comments. So now I am commenting sporadically. Too much screen time is just getting me down so not doing it as much.

So…moving ahead….

I’ve just finished the Australian debut book by Erin Hortle, The Octopus and I. It is a story of a local woman’s journey dealing with cancer and octopi. Good reads describes it as:

“Lucy and Jem live on the Tasman Peninsula near Eaglehawk Neck, where Lucy is recovering from major surgery. As she tries to navigate her new body through the world, she develops a deep fascination with the local octopuses, and in doing so finds herself drawn towards the friendship of an old woman and her son. As the story unfolds, the octopuses come to shape Lucy’s body and her sense of self in ways even she can’t quite understand.”

Our book club will be discussing it in the first week of April. I’ll report back then.

I finished listening to Homer’s Odyssey too on audible and really enjoyed it.

The Golden Flea: A Story of Obsession and Collecting by Michael Rips

For decades, the Chelsea Flea Market on the west side of Manhattan drew shoppers seeking treasures in booths crammed with vintage dresses, ancient swords, glass eyeballs, Afghan rugs, West African fetish dolls, Old Master paintings, and more. In The Golden Flea, writer Michael Rips shares his experiences with this extremely interesting part of New York City.

I’m about to begin Marilyn Robinson’s book Gilead for our May book group read. Will read that in April. It wasn’t a book I’d pick for myself but I will see where it takes me. I know her books are popular but I don’t have any experience with them.

Heather Rose & Craig Silvey

My friend P and I went to a Fullers book launch recently. Their events are located across the street from the book shop in a large hotel conference room. There is a wine bar within the room so every time they hold an event we go along. We take turns shouting the other a glass of wine, enjoy the hour’s event from 5:30 to 6:30 and then walk around the corner to a local sitdown/takeaway Japanese restaurant for a quick bite to eat. We really enjoy our bookish evenings out. The most recent event was the launch of Craig Silvey’s book Honeybee. Heather Rose (more recently the author of Bruny and several other books) facilitated the event. The room holds 80 people socially distanced and it was a full house. I really enjoyed it,

Good Reads describes the beginning of the book as:

“Late in the night, fourteen-year-old Sam Watson steps onto a quiet overpass, climbs over the rail and looks down at the road far below.

At the other end of the same bridge, an old man, Vic, smokes his last cigarette.

The two see each other across the void. A fateful connection is made, and an unlikely friendship blooms. Slowly, we learn what led Sam and Vic to the bridge that night. Bonded by their suffering, each privately commits to the impossible task of saving the other.”

Craig is from Western Australia and as the young person in this story is a transgender person he discussed at length immersing himself into the Perth/Fremantle’s trans community. He is a very humble and gentle man and expressed his opinions to the audience who received his comments with enthusiasm. I really enjoyed the event and would love to read this book. Currently though there is a long waiting list at the library for it.

We had a sad day on Sunday when our brain injured lovely old Uncle Buck put himself to bed and did not want to move again. Our vet friend came to the house and sedated him as we said goodbye and gently put him to sleep. Uncle Buck’s death will put another bell in our Japanese maple Pet Memorial tree. We now have 8 bells for the pets of our past 30 years. He was badly injured as a three week old kitten, was quite disabled and not expected to survive his “kittenhood.” However he thrived and lived another 15 years. He had a lovely, safe and happy life and we have funny memories of him. He will live on in our hearts for the rest of our lives.

Ollie does try hard to be gentle with Peanut but he often gets carried away.

Ollie continues to be selfish with his toys with Peanut. If he has a favourite toy and Peanut wants to play with it, Ollie takes it from her quite gently and tries to walk out of the back door in order to hide it somewhere safe in the yard. However Peanut has worked this trick of his out, follows behind him, takes it back and puts it in her bed or runs away with it. The two of them keep us laughing all the time. They have become the best of friends and get up to all sorts of mischief. We just love them. Eddie’s biological brother also came to visit a couple of weeks ago. Eddie lives in the Hobart area too. He was born to the same parents as Ollie but 8 months earlier. We now know Ollie and Eddie’s parents have been spayed and there will be no more litters from them. We thank them for having these wonderful boys.

As I’m taking the bus into town I am constantly chatting to people I don’t know or observing those who make me laugh, or raise my eyebrows, shake my head or just enjoy. This week I met Kaye as I sat at an outdoor cafe in my neighbourhood waiting for a very delayed dentist appointment. Kaye sat beside me. Dressed in new jeans, a crisp, ironed blouse and trainers she told me she is 88 years old. She goes to the gym each week, has coffee out and reprimands older people who won’t get out and socialise or exercise. She is a live wire and I laughed at our conversation we had about our prime minister who is Scott Morrison (nickname SCOMO) who she continually referred to as SCUMO). I couldn’t agree more. Our federal politicians are a national disgrace and the sooner they are gone the better. I’ll say no more.

I have been doing photography and spending quite a bit of time continuing my lessons with Adobe Lightroom Editing software and Photoshop. I do enjoy learning these skills though there are so many to learn I will never reach the end.

That sees me through most of this week now and I hope to be back again with another rundown of life in southern Tasmania. We have been Covid free now for more than 325 consecutive days so life is fairly normal here. The vaccine roll out is beginning but thanks to our federal parliamentarians they haven’t got that right either so we continue to wait. Stay safe and enjoy what you can.

I won second place in a print competition with this photo of Odie at the photo club challenge last week. It came with a lovely bottle of red wine. We sure miss this guy.
Until next time…

Author: TravellinPenguin

I live a retired life in Tasmania, Australia. I love books, travel, animals, photography, motor biking and good friends. I indulge in all these activities with the little Travellin' Penguin who has now shared five continents with me. We love book shops, photography walks and time with friends as all our family is in USA and Canada. I enjoy visitors to my blog so hope you'll stop by.

24 thoughts on “Moving Forward”

  1. I do so envy you being able to go out and about – your part of the world certainly had the right idea how to deal with the pandemic. And such a lovely post – thank you for sharing these bits of your life. So sorry about your lovely cat, bud so enjoyed seeing your lovely dogs! πŸ˜€

    Liked by 2 people

  2. What a wonderful feeling to be Covid-free for almost a full year. Your politicians may be bad, but they did one thing right.

    One of my favorite things is to strike up a conversation with a person I don’t know while I’m waiting somewhere. I miss that a lot. I do talk a lot to folks who stop at my Little Free Library.

    I’m going to say a big yes to Gilead. I’ve read it three times, I think, and each time I enjoyed it more and more. It’s not a big action story, and the character development is slow, but at its core it has a deep understanding of human nature. Okay, that’s my two cents.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Peanut is such a great name for your pup! πŸ˜€ Thanks for sharing these bits (pets, books and life!) with us, despite the time and effort it takes to do so. I have been faring badly with mine. :p
    Very sorry to hear of Uncle Buck’s passing. Those 15 years must have been a real blessing. And congrats on the prize winning shot of Odie!
    Also, I will have to check out The Golden Flea now. Sounds like my cup of tea. πŸ˜‰

    Liked by 1 person

  4. it seems easy for blogging to develop into a sort of low level anxiety, having to do a post periodically… it’s the difference between writing one when you feel like it and having the computer tell you when to do it… i know i fight the compulsion sometimes… sorry re Uncle Buck; i love cats… and flea markets…

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Thanks for telling me about The Golden Flea. I spent long periods of time in NYC years ago but had no idea about the huge flea market underground. Really liked the book which I read on the OverDrive library app.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. I can appreciate how you feel about blogs and blogging. I’ve cut down on the blogs I read (yours stays!) and have been spending less time on the internet. I’m sorry to hear about Uncle Buck. Bless you for giving him a happy life.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. What a wonderful post. So full of various things, telling a lot about your life for the moment. I think we are all suffering from a fatigue due to the situation. You are lucky though being able to roam around freely. The situation in Europe looks desperate for now. We are still trying to keep up and hope for better times.
    Reading is a good way to await better times. Although you have a lot of time on your hand, you don’t always have the energy to do something. My blogging is also down and it is sometimes an effort to sit down in front of the computer.

    I love flea markets so I think The Golden Flea will be a book for me. I am trying to follow challenges to reduce my TBR piles so mostly concentrating on that. I am reading Rachel Holmes’ biography on Eleanor Marx which is very interesting. Amazing character indeed. Being in Austria for the time being I am also reading up on Austrian history and the Habsburgs.

    Your pets are absolutely adorable, love the photo where Ollie tries to calm down Peanut. Amazing how clever they are.
    Take care and enjoy your trips.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Love hearing of the antics of Ollie and Peanut, they should have starring parts in a video diary (another skill you could explore after the photography editing education is done)

    I hear you on the time involved in visiting and commenting in blogs. Would love to do more but just can’t fit this in.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. LOL I read a lot of blog posts by email, but I always have to visit your site to see the photos of the dogs:)
    My Amber is selfish with her toys too, but it’s me she hides them from. Each morning when I make the bed, she carries on like a two-bob watch until I find ‘Bunny’, from wherever she’s hidden him. Then I throw him for her to fetch and off she goes again to hide him. I bought half a dozen of these squeaky bunnies from the Reject Shop for when it simply must be washed, but I can’t fool her with a clean one at all.
    Yesterday a tennis ball landed over the fence from next door, and she brought it in for me to throw, and then she rolled it under the bed. And of course, she couldn’t get it out. So it was me down on the floor with the broom handle…

    Liked by 2 people

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