Monday 12th September 2016

The van was booked in for a service today, and for whatever reason (I missed that part) Troy booked it in with Blackburn Kia’s service department, rather than just our local mechanic. So after dropping the children at school I had to drive to Blackburn, leave the car, and then find some way to entertain myself for three to four hours.

My original plan had just been to go for a long walk and then read in the library for a while, but it was raining and so that lost most of its appeal. Instead I walked to the train station and took the train to Box Hill and went for a walk around the shopping centre there.

I’ve never walked around that shopping centre. I went there once, years ago, when I took Emma and Nicholai for a train ride (we stopped there and had lunch, then turned around and rode the train back again) but I had no idea what shops there were there. Today I walked around all the market section and went to BigW and a couple of smaller stores, bought some fruit at Woollies and sat down to read and eat lunch. It also makes me realise all over again how rural we are here. It was so busy there today, and all the stores had their signs in English and something else, and their market section was pretty extensive and included an Asian grocery store. It wasn’t just all generic white mums with their little ones in prams, which is all I see at the shopping centres I usually go to!

It felt weird though, just walking around. I don’t do that. I go shopping if I need something, and I tend to go where I know I’ll be able to buy it and then get it and then get out. And even with that I am moving towards buying online whenever I can, and so going shopping even less. I mean, generally speaking I really don’t like browsing shops that much, and I hate that sense of unreality I get in enclosed shopping centres, like I’m not quite there. Which really sounds weird now that I’ve written it down, but it’s the only way I can think to describe it.

Anyway, it wasn’t bad today. I spent a while in BigW and bought some long sleeved t-shirts and a jumper for Nicholai, since they were on sale. I know we’re going into summer but they might fit him next year too, and even if they don’t they’ll get handed down to Jericho and Soren. I bought two pairs of pyjama pants for Soren to grow into next year too.

It wasn’t raining when I caught the train back, so I went for a walk around Blackburn. I caught some pokemon, and also took over a pokemon gym which was a first for us. Jericho and Soren were most impressed when I told them about it later. I bought Jericho a book at the op shop, which reminded me of how much I used to love going op shopping for books with Rose when I was at uni. That’s something I could do more of now though, going around to op shops and seeing what I can find. I have so many e-books to read that I never think of it, but it might be good to find some new stuff for the kids to read.

I did some test patches on the walls with the paint we bought on the weekend. I think I like it. I’m slightly concerned that grey will look too institutional, but in the context of our lounge and kitchen I don’t think it will. There’s not actually as much painted wall as you might think, (whole end wall is brick, open plan between lounge and kitchen, big windows etc) and we have a lot of stuff packed in to the space so that grey walls should just make a nice, neutral background to it all. I’ve done three test patches – in the loungeroom there’s one between the window and door on the front wall, and one underneath the window space to the kitchen, and in the kitchen I did it beside the kitchen window and down to the tile. I thought those three places would give us a reasonable idea about what it will look like with light, and with the existing tile and trim. Anyway, we haven’t made any decisions, but I guess now that I’ve splashed on three test patches I’ve really committed to painting it all.

At least my hand felt better today. Saturday night I felt dizzy when I stood up to go to bed, but rather than sit down like a sensible person I just kept walking until the floor rose up and whacked me one. I fell down the step from the laundry and managed to inflict two huge scraped bruises on my shins, and somehow hurt my knuckles and ring finger on my left hand. I honestly thought I’d broken my hand at first, it hurt that much. It still hurt on Sunday, but I could move it so I figured it wasn’t broken. It was too sore to go to school and shovel mulch at the working bee as I was supposed to be doing though, so Troy took the kids up to the school and I stayed home by myself for the morning. It’s still bruised and tender today, but usable.

I am slightly concerned about Emma at the moment though. She’s really settled so well into high school and seems to be pretty happy, but I am not sure how the friend situation is really going. She talks about the other girls so I know that she’s got people to hang around with and isn’t feeling isolated, but I’m sure that any of them are becoming real, true friends for her. I asked her today if she told anyone at school about winning her hockey grandfinal, and she sort of said, oh no, they wouldn’t really be interested. It just struck me as kind of sad, that she doesn’t have a friend that she can really talk to and share things that are important to her with. It made me really wish she’d got into the accelerated learning class though. Maybe with those kids she would have found someone who is a little more serious and into reading and the things that she is. I don’t know, like I said she isn’t exactly unhappy or anything, but it’s something I will keep an eye on. It’s actually a pity that hockey has finished really, because that forty five minute drive was the best time to talk with her.

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