A day in the bush

I had an appointment to see my doctor yesterday morning. In conversation I mentioned that my wife and I, in spite of our age and my walking difficulties, intended to continue living where we do, some kilometres outside the city limit on a small 40 hectare (100 acre) property. We live upstairs with a grandson and  two of our sons live downstairs in a granny flat. The doctor laughingly declared us ‘mad’ as there is so little to do ‘way out there’.

It made me think of what  happened here yesterday. Was he correct in his statement? As I said earlier, we are five at the moment – my wife and I, 2 sons, one in his mid 50s and one in his early 20s and a grandson a few weeks older than his young uncle. So I’ll try and list what happened in this out-of-the-way, boring place.

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We like what our neighbours look like.

My wife and I, in this cold spell, slept in a bit late. Excusable I think at our ages. Then she got up and worked in the garden for a while, while I did a bit of clearing around the inside. We both went together to my doctor’s appointment as she likes to check that I tell him everything. But she wasn’t let in because of social distancing, only the patient could enter the waiting room. So instead she went window shopping. The doctor had been one of my interns when I was director of surgery here so my visits are always interesting. He decided that I was still alive and I left with a few renewed scripts.

My wife was waiting at the door and led my off to buy something she had seen, for our kitchen. Having made the purchase, we were on our way home when she realised that she had left my prescriptions on the desk when she had paid for the new ‘thingamebob’. So we returned and while she went inside I had a call from our older son asking us to buy some masking tape for his painting job. So we had a trip to the hardware store. We got home just in time for lunch; then

  • I worked on the revision of a small book I wrote a few years ago for the medical students in Arba Mintch. It’s taking a while as now I’m planning a wider distribution, probably as an e-book.
  • my wife replied to email notes and wrote letters.
  • I had a return call from my tax man, which didn’t give me the answer I desired. C’est la vie.
  • I received a quote for a lift to help me up the stairs; I don’t like the idea but getting up and down them is getting harder. Not cheap but maybe necessary.
  • We got an email electricity bill. Our new solar system has cut two thirds off the last bill.
  • We had a lovely email from the mother of the adopted little baby about whom I wrote a post earlier. A baby is born
  • I had a discussion with the sales person about a water pump. I need to get water pumped from the dam to our house – about 500 metres, but fortunately over pretty flat ground, so there is not a great height to lift the water. It’ll need to be sorted out soon if we want to keep some green grass around the house.

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  • Then my wife took our grandson for a driving lesson. He has never wanted to learn but if he is going to live here he’s going to have to become independent, we can’t spend the time taking him everywhere he needs to go.
  • My older son and our grandson spent most of the day painting. Then our son went to do some basic preparatory work to prepare for a fencing project starting with our neighbour on Saturday, on a boundary fence.
  • Our grandson  spent hours after the evening meal writing music. He’s good at it and beginning to get some sales now.
  • Our younger son is an apprentice mechanic so he spent his day at work. When he came home he did some work renewing the thermostat in our farm Patrol vehicle.
  • After the evening meal, a short Bible reading and prayer. While the others scattered to their various activities I sat down to watch the next episode of Judge John Deed. I don’t think much of his sex life, but appreciate his stand for justice.

So Doc, I think there’s enough to do here! Maybe if we moved to town we’d be bored!

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We like the morning and evening ‘paintings’

Dominic Cartier

It’s cold and wet…

African sunset

It’s cold and wet , and I’m not feeling so hot today. Therefore I thought I’d take a look through the last couple of weeks photos from around our house. You may find them interesting.

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Looking through a new sliding door which our son had put into the dining area, onto a patio which he had just built. A very handy son to have around the place!
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Looking West from the patio.
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We just discovered a patch of white ants in the kitchen floor. Another job for our son and fixed already. 
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He gets to do a lot – here trimming the tops of the Japanese Bamboo which had got to about 8 metres!
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These two pups (about 7 months) are sisters from the same litter. I hadn’t realised that in dogs you can get multiple fathers at the one dropping. They love sleeping at my feet when I’m in my office! The mother was a German Shepherd. One part kelpie, the other 2 parts shepherd.
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This dam leaked badly. Another job for the son with a friend, spreading polymer. This absorbs water and sinks taking fine mud particles with it. It seems to have worked but with the recent rains we’ll have to wait a while to be sure.
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I am back to front, or maybe top to bottom, as this is a sunrise taken from the patio shown above. We live in a beautiful spot.

Hope you enjoy it

Dominic Cartier