• Life Wise Hints

    The best way to start your day

    Where I live in Queensland the days are getting longer and warmer. I will have more time in my day if I get up earlier. I have always liked getting up early. It is such a beautiful time of the day. There is silence, apart from the birds singing. The air is crisp, and the sunrise is an ever-changing landscape of colour and splendour. But is getting up early the best way to start your day? Or is getting up at the time you decide, the best way to start your day?   The five second rule Firstly, we have to get out of bed. This is where the 5…

  • Out and About

    The carnival and coronavirus

    We might be in the middle of a pandemic but in Toowoomba we are celebrating the Carnival of Flowers. The Spring weather is perfect, and Toowoomba has put out the welcome mat to visitors. In Queensland we are in this position because of early lockdown restrictions and the border closure. A visit to Queens Park Botanic Gardens Yesterday my One & Only (O&O) and I visited Queens Park Botanic Gardens. He suggested we take a picnic lunch. But given the crowds I had seen in the park, two days earlier when driving past, I proposed we picnic at home. While wandering around the park I was surprised as I did…

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    Life Matters

    The heartbreaking reality of coronavirus, COVID-19

    The heartbreaking stories caused by the coronavirus, COVID-19 are immense. Every day I watch television and hear them. But are the media concentrating too much on people’s discontent. When the focus should be on how Australia is avoiding a major outbreak of the virus. Entry into Queensland denied As a older Australian I recognise that people are hurting. They are unable to attend a loved ones funeral. Unable to visit a loved one who is dying in hospital or in aged care. But this is the cost we all must pay to save lives. It might sound heartless but funerals are not for the dead, they are for the living.…

  • Out and About

    The mystery of the missing banana

    Getting out and experiencing nature is a great past-time. My One & Only (O&O) and me did this during the week and went for a drive and picnic to Ravensbourne National Park. It is around a 40-minute drive from Toowoomba. We always enjoy a BBQ lunch when going on a picnic. There are wood BBQ’s at Ravensbourne but, on this occasion, we decided to take a picnic lunch. Our lunch was simple, sandwiches (homemade bread) and curried eggs (eggs from our hens). Add a thermos of hot water for a cup of tea, fresh strawberries, and a chocolate treat and we were ready to go. But no, what about a…

  • Socio-Political

    Aged care model of care

    Last Friday I wrote a story titled ‘some kind of wonderful’ that took away from the true message of my article. Today I want to remedy this with a stronger emphasis. The current service delivery model, delivered through residential aged care homes, is institutionalised care. The needs of older people are not adequately meet by this archaic model of care. On 31 October 2019 the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety Interim Report was released. The following is taken directly from the Commission’s website. ‘The Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety’s Interim Report has found the aged care system fails to meet the needs of its…

  • Life Matters

    ‘Some kind of wonderful’ moments

    We are all in the COVID-19 world together which makes me want to look for ‘some kind of wonderful’ moments. When I look around the world, our COVID-19 world, the ‘some kind of wonderful’ moments are missing in so many lives. Living in aged Care Those in aged care are suffering the most when there are COVID-19 community lockdowns. Their ‘some kind of wonderful’ moments are non-existent. I found it very confronting to hear the evidence of Merle Mitchel at the Aged Care Royal Commission. Ms Mitchell is a former president of the Australian Council of Social Services. She knows what she is talking about. In 2019 she told the…

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    Short stories

    Blue Eyed Brad

    In 1993 when I moved to Maleny, Queensland, it was a sleepy little town. It was the place I met Brad, with his piercing blue eyes, his colourful character, and his wife Deb. Not much went on after 5 p.m. in Maleny back in the 90s. There was one main grocery store, owned by Allison and John Frew. Everyone called it Frew’s Food Store.  Even on a Saturday there was no sleeping in if I wanted to stock the pantry for the week. The store closed at 12 noon Saturday and did not open until Monday. Still, we could always buy a pizza or cooked chicken from Nagy’s in the…

  • macro photo of eye
    Short stories

    Blue eyes

    He had the most piercing blue eyes. His silver-grey hair telling a deceptive story, given he was only in the fourth decade of his life. Olive skin, sun tanned and with a sparkling smile. So, I was not surprised when Sue said, ‘He is awe-fully good looking! We both laughed. Sue was old enough to be his mother but that did not stop her from recognising his good looks. Yet, he was not only a good-looking man with blue eyes and great physical features. He was also good natured, generous, helpful, and thoughtful. He came as a great package of humankind. The kind of person you would like to call…

  • Short stories

    The carnival is over

    ‘Turn down the volume’ she cried. All she wants to do is rest. There were times when music bought joy into her life. The passion, the emotion. But now, all she asks for is quietness, peace. She wants others to understand but does not explain. Her silence speaks volumes to me, it is loud and unexpected. Hence, when there is a request to turn down the volume, it is not questioned. She looks at the photo sitting on the wine table in the corner. It may have once been home to bottles of wine, and a random feather from her scarf. It was a sign of good times. But now…

  • Short stories

    Atherton

    I put my suitcase down and looked around. A kitchenette with laminate benches and a laminate table and vinyl covered chairs. It was 60s style. I opened the back door to see the bush behind. As I returned to the car I looked around. My unit was one of around ten others. All in a row with a covered parking space out the front. The place looked run down and in an isolated area. Yet this was to be home for the next month, Monday to Friday, and only a few minutes’ drive to the township of Atherton. Earlier in the day I drove from the Sunshine Coast to Brisbane…