Another good gathering ends

Woke at 7.00am and had breakfast and upon getting my BGL, the glucometer was not working at all. Too much of a hurry to worry about it this morning, I have a big day ahead. So had a shower and changed into my Diabetes Qld shirt, put on my President’s badge and went up to the hall ready for the formalities to begin.

With the formalities, brought everyone up to date with the bushwalking environment and the progress with fundraising with Diabetes Qld. This showed a lot of interest, so hopefully, there will be more involvement next year.

Anyway, the Golden Boot was passed over to the contingent from YHA as hosts of Pilgrimage 2017.

Once the formalities were over it was time to pack up and go home. The first thing I had to do was pack up my display then once packed go back to the van and pack it up. Sue was expected about 11.00, so it was into it. Sue arrived at 11.30 just as the roof of the van was being dropped, so the annex, kitchen awning and fly ends could be packed away. Then the van could be locked down. Sue arrived in the middle of this process.

So the van was put on the car, a few good-byes said and we went home.

Upon arriving at home, it was noticed that we had forgotten to put the extension mirrors on. Too bad now. Backed the van up to its home, parked the car and went and had lunch, then proceeded to unload the van.

The rest of the day was spent preparing for the work week ahead, and relaxing, and gloating how the Pilgrimage went. Had 94 people with all south east Qld clubs represented.

Went to bed early as I was dreary and fell asleep.



Bushwalkers Pilgrimage 2016

Awoke late. Good thing I hadn’t registered for a walk. I awoke though dizzy and a bit sniffly. I went to test my BGL but the glucometer said there was low battery. Was it actually a low battery or was it because it was cold?

As I arose, Andy was just leaving saying we were out of gas. So as I needed breakfast, I found the methylated spirits stove and made my porridge and coffee. After breakfast, went and had a shower and pondered over the strategy for the day. I need to find a gas agent and get gas, batteries for the glucometer, test strips for the glucometer, and some groceries.

I decided to go into Samford and sort out the glucometer, and look for the gas agents in town. Went to the pharmacy and purchased the test strips and the batteries. Then I went for a drive round Samford to find gas. Just behind the shops out on Highball Road is the Caltex/Woolworths Service Station and Swap’N’Go.

So back to the caravan and delivered my purchases. I then checked the glucometer and it was working fine so I took my BGL – 3.5. That is low. Any wonder I am feeling flat!

I then removed the oldest of two gas bottles and went off to the Servo for get a replacement gas bottle. After getting a new bottle, saw it was getting near lunch, so went to Drakes IGA and bought soft drink – Diet Ginger Beer – my favourite, sweets to bolster my BGL and donuts.

I then went back to the caravan and replaced the gas bottle and had lunch. I then went up to the hall and see if anyone was up there. I had the bivvy bags and my Diabetes Queensland fundraising pack to put out. Went up to the hall and there were some people there, so returned to the van and put the needed items into Andt’s car and then drove up the hill to the hall.

I set up the stand and sold some bivvy bags. Some people also took my cards so hopefully there will be donations forthcoming. After I had finished, I decided to go for a walk into Samford via the old rail line. The walk was 0.99 km to the site of the Samford Rail Station. So I did nearly 2 km in the new hiking shoes.

When I returned to Baden Powell Park, the walkers gradually returned. With the returning walkers, the camaraderie had grown enormously and the afternoon tea became interesting.

It was getting time to get ready to hit the Samford Valley Hotel for dinner and so, I went and had a shower and got changed. In the meantime, Andy arrived and had a bit of afternoon tea and a beer.

Headed off to the hall to find who was going to the dinner at the Samford Valley Hotel. Found Evi and Conni and joined them. Had 6 pork dumplings for entree and chicken florentine for mains, washed down with Stella Artois beer. After dinner walked back to the camp and the hall for the bush dance.

The bush dance band, “Stone the Crows”, have been providing the bush dance music for quite a long time. This band is brilliant in getting people up and dancing, especially showing people not familiar with bush dances, like the “Pride of Erin”, “Drongo”, “Progressive Barn Dance”, “Strip The Willow”, and the “Boston Two Step”. I took on the responsibility of taking photos and video of the dance which provided 3 hours of entertainment. This was a chore for some who had been bushwalking for 6 or more hours.


There was plenty of food on hand for the breaks and a great was had by all.

So at 11.45 pm I walked back to the caravan changed into the pyjamas and went to bed. I think I had too much coffee tonight as my visits to the toilet where more frequent and I had hard time falling asleep.

Partying weekend here I come

Woke early due to thoughts about Stacey. Had the day off so had time to compose myself and see how Stacey was when she rose from bed. When Stacey finally appeared she was a totally different mood. She was also off early to assist in running the coffee shop at school.

So the girls were finally off to school.

Now to wait for the real estate agent to arrived show potential buyers the flat. While waiting, I packed my gear and prepared the caravan. The agent finally arrived and showed the buyers around, mainly in the other flat of the duplex as they are identical.

Once he had left, then it was time for lunch and finalise packing. Sue then left to pick up the kids and while the car was out I moved the caravan so I could put it on the car when Sue came back. Sue came back with only Lauren and asked if the girls had come home. No. Then Gemma sent a SMS to be picked up from the BP service station. So off went Sue. Oh great, I am going to be held up and not have much delight to set up the van at Samford.

Finally, Sue cam back with the girls and I put the van on the car and off we went. Deception Bay Road seemed busy for this time of day! Must be just school peak hour. But the traffic crawled along Anzac Avenue to the Bruce Highway. Once on the Bruce Highway, it was a crawl as well… what is going on?

Anyway we are exiting not Linkfield Road, surely that won’t be bad! Then we saw the sign… crash on the Deagon Deviation… that explains it! So it was a crawl to get onto Linkfield Road. Once on though it was a breeze to Samford and Baden Powell Park. On arrival, dropped the van off and then went and registered. Met Andy at the registration and drove the car down the hill for Sue and then I swapped cars to Andy’s to show him where the van is. I said good-bye to Sue and went to the van and opened it up.

It was getting dark so the best was made of the circumstance before heading up to the hall and meeting all the people from the other bushwalking clubs. This Pilgrimage was being hosted by Brisbane Bushwalkers Club Inc. After the meet and greet and walk registration it was off to bed as early starts for some. I did not register for a walk as I had new shoes and needed to walk them in before going on a long bushwalk in case I get blisters.

Teenagers and groomers!

Due to the late start, decided to stay at work a little longer to maintain my hours. After my usual lunch and cup of coffee, went back to the coal face and continued the Excel spreadsheet analysis.

The next thing I knew it was time to go. The work is not boring, it is very interesting to see what can be uncovered.

So get changed, gather my gear together and head home. Due to the late leaving, walked to Central Station and checked out the venue for the meeting with Charlotte at Rush in Post Office Square.

Once on the train turned my mind to the events over the next couple of days at the Pilgrimage, the gathering of Queensland based bushwalking clubs. This year it is at Samford, Baden-Powell Park in fact, just a short drive from home.

After playing games, checking twitter and writing this blog it was time to get off the train, get on the bus and get home.

At home, my eldest daughter decided to go outside into the cold. After a while, I got concerned and scoured out the front, down the side, the back yard and the bedrooms, which proved nothing. I was hungry and needed sustenance to think clearly. So didn’t think much more, and I didn’t even notice Gemma went outside and after a while came back in. I was too busy scoffing into my dinner to notice the problem. Then Sue got up in a huff and said if I wasn’t going to do anything then she’d better go and do it.

I hurriedly finished my dinner and then went outside, to see talking to Stacey. Seems Stacey was asked to meet a person she had met online out the front of the house. She finally came in and was sobbing. Can’t they get it into their thick head how much of a risk this behaviour creates? And how much angst it caused the parents who care about them so much!

After a while Stacey finally settled down.

But I had a terrible night’s sleep!

Commuter woes again!

Woke this morning to the last day of my week. Had the usual preparations before leaving although somewhat cooler this morning. Headed out the door and walked the customary route to the bus stop. The bus arrived as I approached the bus stop but was still 10 minutes to its timetabled departure.

While on the bus, the bus driver was playing around with the controls, opening and closing doors, turning the bus off and starting it again after a few times of this, he went out of the bus and lifted some inspection covers, came back into the bus, lifted the radio mike out of its cradle and having established communications, reported problems with the bus. After a conversation, the bus driver announced that a replacement bus was on its way.

With half an hour between buses, would the replacement get here before the next regular service? We will wait and see! The next vehicle to arrive was the mechanics minibus. He proceeded to check the bus and even reversed it up and down the bus stop to find what was wrong. Apparently there was an air leak so not enough air pressure to apply the brakes properly.

Anyway the next scheduled bus arrived, and we all piled onto this bus. The first bus driver then advised that instead of sending the replacement bus to the Deception Bay Shops, send it on to the Narangba Loop. This run would then complete and the bus driver can catch our bus and meet the run he should be on. Sounded simple to me, but the bus company hierarchy had other ideas! Then after a long pause, the bus company thought it was a good idea!

So, finally at the station and have to wait for the next train, which at this time of the morning is all stations service. Out comes the Macbook, and might as well settle in for an extended trip into work!

Then about Northgate, I felt a tad sleepy, as transport does to me! Put everything down and went for a nap. I awoke at Central Station some time after the train had disembarked its passengers. Luckily it was sitting for a while before heading off to Springfield Central. Could have been really late this morning.

Get to work, change and hit my desk 3/4 of an hour late. This was better than I had expected.

Back to the continuation of yesterday and plough through the data I have accumulated. This is complex!

At 11.15am my area is really quiet. No-one is around! Check my calendar and I’ve missed the Excel forum. Too bad. This is more important, and I am an Excel guru anyway.


The day started of as a normal day. The having missed my normal train had to settle for the one 6 minutes later. Still no big deal get to start work at the same time. Then as the train departed Northgate Station, it seemed to be stop-start. Then the announcement – due to signal failure at Bowen Hills, all trains are using one track (usually its 4 tracks) and so need to wait their turn. This went on through Nundah, Toombul, Eagle Juction, Wooloowin, and Albion stations. As we approached Bowen Hills the train was moved to the right set of tracks. We are going into the city the other way. Then the announcement – due to congestion, this train will now run to Bowen Hills stopping all stations. That is, first stop Roma Street, then Central, Fortitude Valley and Bowen Hills.

Question for me – which station do I get off now? I takes me 14 minutes to walk from Roa Street to work. It takes 12 minutes to walk to work from Central, and there is about three minutes on the train between Roma Street and Central. Hmmm! Think I’ll get off at Central.

When the train stopped at Central, a lot of people were confused. Not used to getting off the train in this direction. How dare they upset my normal travel pattern. Geez people! get a life, it is great to change it up every so often.

So, in to work I went and had the most mundane day I have had for a while. These complex files take a lot of work and need a lot of headway to show progress!

In the meantime I had an email conversation with Charlotte about the March challenge and Sam about the Whale Watching Walk and between us information made its way around.

So before I knew it it was time for lunch. Packed up my lunch gear and went to the small kitchen and had a hearty lunch of the usual tuna and vita what biscuits.

After lunch it was back to the grindstone till I felt a tad weary. Need to go out for a walk. So I walked to Coles and bought some more lunch supplies and shampoo as I was nearly out. Good time to do the shopping as it was nice and quiet.

Back to work and put in another two hours of solid spreadsheeting before realising it was time to wind up the cat and put the clock out.

So out I went, changed and hustled to Roma Street Station. Caught my usual train, sat down and updated this blog. I write this blog on Pages on my Macbook and then at the end of the night or the next morning upload it to the WordPress site.

So the rest of the night saw me deep in thought about where I am, where I wish to go, and where do I wish to take the organisations in which I am in the leadership.

New era has dawned

Today is the day that my car is fully mine (ours! Sorry dear!)

The lease has been paid out, now to await the confirmation that all documentation and so forth are all received, and the refund of excess monies returned to me.

Upon arriving at work, it seemed like the same as yesterday. One other person in my 4-man pod. Then Vinod arrived to announce that he had been away with shingles. Oh great! Thank goodness for vaccination as a young fella!

Day progressed well, especially after that last blog I wrote, it was fulfilling for me and Sue.

Received a notification from Centrelink that due to my eldest daughter turning 18 in August, we need to think about whether to extend the Family Assistance till she finishes school, or put her on Youth Allowance and she can pay her way at home. Need to do the sums to see which is most beneficial.

Was given a new pair of bushwalking shoes (Merrrell) and wore them home. They need a bit of walking to mould to my feet but they are the ants pants. Will wear them around at the Pilgrimage, as I don’t intend on going on walks as I need a rest!

Had a quiet night in at home and then went to bed.

My troubled life

Woke early again. Feeling alright, but I think there is a deep seated reason. While mulling and watching TV, Sue came out and said she had awoken with one thought on her brain. She was worried about whether the money that we are due to be reimbursed from the car lease will go far enough for what we now need to spend money on. She was especially concerned with me having to pay for the flights to Melbourne for the Great Ocean Walk.

This sparked my thinking as I now felt sunk and guilty. I was protecting Sue from the current reality that the burden on me was the problem for the lack of sleep. The PTSD and depression were not helping with the situation. But now it was in the open, I felt a lot better than I have for months. In fact our current situation has been brewing for about 7 years when we first took out the car lease.

The biggest problem I had to deal with was the credit cards. Approaches to banks for assistance fell on mostly deaf ears or was seen through blinkers. The only solution they could advise was to get another credit card and with the lower interest rate, would help pay it off. I tried this once and I ended up worse off when an unexpected expense arose and the only way was to take the available credit card to its limit.

Luckily times have changed and this year I came across a business that took on all my debt and for a fortnightly fee over five years, I would never have to deal with that expense.
Now I am one month down the track, it is working well, with money actually making it to bank and staying there. Also pooling all our income into one account has created better management of our funds.

I have acquired iFinance app and will now track all spending against a budget to get it all right on track. Sue was happy with that. Stacey who is turning 18 next month will stop her portion of the family assistance, so she will have to get Youth Allowance and pay board.

Then, I get hit with another unexpected expense. My bushwalking boots won’t last much longer and I need new ones. Lucky for me a work colleague had a pair of Merrell shoes that were too small for him, so he gave them to me!

I am amazed at this turn around. Now I am ready to take on the world.

Here comes another interesting week

Woke a bit later but busting as usual. Had to get up to do more cleaning so the flat can be inspected today as it is going up for sale. Obviously this flat is not a good investment! If I had the money I’d buy it and just rent out unit 2. Then I could make repairs that I saw fit!!

Anyway, I’m glad I ironed my clothes last night so I have time for this other tasks this morning. So I eventually got dressed and left home with time to spare to catch my normal bus. Then I realised that I need to put money on my go card luckily I have a wad of cash on me.

Commuted to work in my usual fashion, and on arrival settled in with one other in the pod today, the other is still sick. The I received a text from Rahul, the baby was born on Friday night. Congratulations. Took until lunchtime when the official email came out.

Today is a good day for celebrations as this is the last day my car is on a lease. As of tomorrow, it is all mine. Only downside is that I have to pay for everything out of my pocket. Anyway there is a sizeable balance coming my way which will boost us as we set up the expenses like insurance.

Looked at my watch at 11.30 am and was thinking that if I hadn’t received a message from Sue by now, all must be good.

Then it was time for lunch. Moved to the big kitchen and while having lunch was talking to others about my predicament. Need new boots and pants! One colleague said he had a pair of boots my size that he cant wear, so he will bring them in for me to try. Fingers crossed.

The afternoon was continuing on dealing with files until time to go home.. #winduptheclockandputthecatout

On the way home on my usual commute spent time thinking about this blog and perhaps go to Frontier Leadership tomorrow and have a good yarn to them about my current circumstance, and see what I can negotiate. I also need to get the next club newsletter together to publish for Noosa Tourism if they are interested, and for Sam Rowe the leader of the Great Ocean Walk 2016 who is coming along.

I am also torn between my commitments. I am going to the Pilgrimage in my capacity as President of Bushwalking Queensland Inc. the bushwalking peak body in Queensland. I also wish to join my fellow walkers on the Grea Ocean Walk on Sunday on a training walk.

Anyway went to bed and got a good night’s sleep.

The subtleties of diabetes

Woke really early. Have no idea why! Anyway took the opportunity for an early breakfast and the looked around to what tiding up needed to be done, and what needed to go back into the caravan or back shed.

I am waking up these mornings busting to go to the toilet. This particular morning, my left kidney also had a dull ache. Hope it was just because of the damming of the urine and nothing else. Will keep an eye on it during the day!

Sue woke and readied herself to go visit her mother. I ducked out and purchased groceries that would see me and the kids through for the day.

When I came back, washed the car as the mower man had covered it in debris from the whipping snipping and mowing done on Friday.

Then Sue departed and I fed the washing machine. There was a load in the machine from last night I hung out. Then I opened the shed. This shed has a double door and it has settled into the ground that the main door only opens to a 45 degree angle. I tried to open the other door but to no avail. The grass and soil seemed clear. What’s stopping it from opening??! Anyway went inside and had a look at the pile of items to move. I know! If I clear a section of the shed, I can put the rainbow cupboard in the shed for extra storage.

Must get the other shed door open. So back to the shed, I lean on the door then realise, need to take the bottom bolt off. Did so and viola! Open door. Now to clean the corner of the shed and make room for the cupboard. This bit was easy, now to move the cupboard. So, I wheeled the trolley to the cupboard, put the cupboard on the trolley and wheeled it the she. Realising that I need to have the door side of the cupboard facing me on the trolley so I can back into its resting spot, rotated the cupboard and recommenced the move. I stood the cupboard in the doorway and found it was 1 cm shorter than the opening. This is going to be tricky. After a bit of heaving, jiggling, shaking, and brute force the cupboard finished on a layer of bricks.

Then I went inside and moved the items to go into the shed. Once satisfied that I had moved everything to there, I went down to the caravan and opened it and moved those items. In the meantime, I did not realise how much time I had spent doing this and started to get grumpy. I checked my watch 1.00pm – I am hungry!!!

Had lunch and then continued on.

I had moved most things when Sue came home, so the lounge room was looking great.

The rest of the day alternated between club newsletter, blogs and cleaning up, and continued till bed time.

The blood glucose levels all day were in the 4s to 5s range – really good, but I started to have gastric twinges. Perhaps I have a slight abdominal infection and my kidneys are working overtime to flush it out!

I did notice however one of my toes on each foot felt like it had chill blains and I had numbness in the left leg to go with it…Will monitor and I have to see my doctor shortly to get the annual check done.