"Midnight adjusting well to her new home here at Kalorama".
January 1stHappy New Year!
A bit thrilled as I start a fresh paper diary. In the office I have a complete bookcase full of my work 'real' diaries. Very handy and at times I open one at random, an check out flimmering dreams of plans and sometimes dark intentions. Mostly notes and positives from each day that rolls on by.
I call Merelyn to wish her a Happy Birthday. Mark was meant to sing to her with me but he went awol here at Ailsa Craig, doing yard work I assume, so just a solo effort.
I feel a bit hungover today but I had no booze, so that is strange, maybe the residue of 2023, a year of extremes. But we both survived intact and happy.
I chat to Wendy Smith, she penned the recently released "The Quiet Ones, Skyhooks , AC/DC and Me" book. A really fun phone conversation, lots of laughs. Our time, our bands and some similarities.
I am cleaning part of the kitchen roof and the Robbie Porrit "Taguatelly" art falls off the wall, the metal wire snaps. My grandmothers ancient tea canisters stop it from falling but a piece of the art breaks off which I succeed in repairing. It made me think of good thoughts on Robbie so I look him up on Facebook and give some of his new art a "like". He lived at Nick (Seymours) place for awhile, we all played volleyball together and during Punk songs he was one of the few people who could out Pogo me. Nice memories.
January 2ndIf Shirl from Skyhook was alive he would of turned 72 today. I try to picture him in my mind, that wonderful smile, a few more surfer wrinkles around his eyes. A sad day when we lost Shirl, Skyhooks never recovered from that. How could you? he called me out of the blue, just 2 weeks before he died in the helicopter accident, I was heading out the door and decided to turn around and grab the phone. So happy that I did. I never dreamed it would be the last time that I spoke to him.
I am up early so drive to Pinchapoo and leave some donations in the drop bin for Kate around her homeless project. It all helps. It's one I continue to support as much as I can.
My first day back at the Salvo's and it was hard to return. I'm only a volunteer so can finish any time but I like to believe I am doing some good. Once i got my rhythm back it was fine, a bit of an epic day and by afternoon the giant tin "barn" became a sweat box and we all suffered a bit. Some went home early, I hung on in there. Little bloody trooper that I am...or idiot.
I am home and dig out my "B" Bowie silver boots. They are pretty much dead, the elevated sole gone on both but they kind of work as an archive item so clean them a bit and keep them aside for a possible future project. Maybe to go in one of the boxes for "FAN"? I sure have danced to a lot of bands in those boots.
January 3rdI chat to our electrician Jason about adding new lights. Like the one I now have in my part of the office. So one for Marks area and 2 for the kitchen, they will be great and we won't go through so many light globes. An endless pain up here on the mountain.
It's Marky's Youtube Wednesday and todays footage from the Finn Brothers USA tour around the second album. The Finns covering Split Enz "Six Months In A Leaky Boat" what a classic. It's from Winter Park, Colorado. July 18th 2004. The one thing I remember is the large number of people coming up offering me bags of free pot. No arseholes either, every person was really nice to us. Tim really enjoyed this clip, he reminded me that Neil's voice was affected a bit by the higher altitude and he is right, I do remember that, very rare as Neil's voice is usually super strong even on top of Mt Everest. HA.
Anyway this ones great, so check it out and big thanks to Marky and those fabulous Finns. Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bWEkj7q2nEw
In the afternoon I drive to Tapscott Centre at Mooroolbark, just down the road a bit. Marks at home waiting on our electrician as it looks like he is now installing the new lights in the office and kitchen. It's hard to get a good electrician in 2024 so we try to be flexible around his other work. The gathering of Kays friends and most of her family is this smaller hall but in a beautiful bushland setting. I keep my end of our "deal" and wear red socks and jocks... a bit of a bet Kay and myself made. I talk to family and friends and it's nice to find out all of these other things about her. The Boys turn up so it is extra good to see them. Lots of laughs and some tears and I know Kay would of loved that.
I need a coffee afterwards and some treats so I head to the bakery and the girls look after me. I sit at our regular table and have the thought that Kay will no longer turn up and sit here. Just as I think that a red King Parrot lands and watches me. It's just sitting on the chair opposite, I smile. Nice sign.
January 4thA grey old day, i so wanted to sleep in but people are depending on me at the charity so I drag my body out of bed and have a shower. In hindsight I should of stayed in bed, it was one of those rare days where the entire world seems like it is angry and insane.
My boss is away and the second in charge turns up, feels sick and goes home. She does the basics so we can open. Some of the staff seem distracted and at one stage no one at the register and a line of 8 people. One lady cracks it and storms out, the next tells me off like it is my fault. The third tells her off for telling me off. It picks up a notch. I go across to Woolworths hoping for some sanity. I find two ladies fighting over the last pineapple. I'm not talking the odd bad word, I'm talking , going to punch you, wave the pineapple like a weapon. Someone hassles the checkout girl next and she looks like she is going to cry. I go to walk across the road and a fender bender car accident happens. A much older lady gets out and it ends with her spitting in the mans face. FUCK! What is going on. I'm back at the charity and told 2 head honcho's were turning up. Why today. Oh well I go into the Book Cave and it looks amazing. Stocked, neat, kind of frigging perfect. They turn up and I am relieved, they love my area and one of the main guys admits he is a huge fan of The Smiths. He attended their last ever gig, so we swap Morrissey/Marr stories. The book and dvd donations are out of control today, I really am drowning and that is rare, i usually juggle and find a way. Today i fail, and thousands of books later I surrender and go home. I put in an extra 45 minutes and don't even bother writing it in the log book.
I call in home and have a shower. Tell Mark there is no way on earth I am cooking and it is Pizza and Beer (we never drink beer) just need to wash today's craziness away. Duncan at Olinda Pizza makes us dinner and I grab a six pack of Corona from the bottle shop. I run into Jed who is outside with his guitar and give him a beer. We are chatting to animal rescue girl Feefee so that is nice. I need to get home and put today far away, I still ponder what the hell was going on, too much craziness for me.
January 5thI check the bakery girls Xmas lotto ticket and we all win $16.00 so I reinvest in another ticket for this Saturday with our profits. It was either that or we all get 80c each. I'm sipping my coffee outside and I meet locals Mark and Ingrid. They both love music. Mark has been on Rockwiz as a contestant. They are a really nice couple.
I buy some Tarzan's Grip as I have run out of glue for Project X. I go online and buy another item for it, but it's coming from Darwin and will take a week.
Sad news around one of our mates, so I decide to make a larger batch of Chocolate Mousse, my intention to drop 2 of them in for dinner. I add some of Pauline's oranges (juice) and a tiny bottle of Cointreau , so it will have that dark chocolate orange flavour. I pick some wild raspberries for the top and an edible flower. They not only smell great, they look great. Into the freezer carry bag and off I drive, off into the Kalorama night. I tap on the door and go surprise. They are so stoked, it felt great. Just like a food delivery guy off I go into the darkness, head home.
We watch "My Name Is Alfred Hitchcock". What a great movie, it is like Hitchcock is speaking to us from beyond the grave on all the things that make his movies so special. We loved it. So many clever ideas too.
January 5th.Miss Kitty now wakes up for sunrise every morning. So I am out of bed at 5.21 am. What a glorious sunrise it is so I take some photos for Sheepbook and Twitter.
I sit with the old guys in front of the bakery. For some reason Peddycoat Junction comes to mind, which one of us is Uncle Joe? Not me, I'm not moving kinda slow. Nice laughing with these guys, they probably think i am a bit of a young smartarse. Ha! Fooled them.
I arrive home, make lunch and work in the yard for a few hours. At 2.00 I am in the office with Marky, he is doing some preproduction stuff for Project X. Midnight is here with us, just napping in the cool, a happy kitty. She sure is growing.
40 years since we first got the wonderful Hairball the cat. She was such a great cat, we miss her like crazy. We are fortunate, all three cats have been brilliant, unique (though Midnight does look like Banshee). Mark sends me some hairball photos for social media so I will put them up tomorrow.
January 6thI am up at 5.21 to feed Midnight. A truly amazing sunrise yet again.
I put together some fruit and vegies from the garden and make more juice. I am shocked that Mark kind of likes it. Now that's weird, in a good way.
Kofta and pasta for dinner and we chill out watching "For all Mankind". What a great show.
January 7thIt was hot last night, tropical. Not much sleep, tossed and turned under my single cotton sheet. I got up and made sure Midnight had water as I worry about her in that fur coat, I promise to put a zipper in it for her.
I finish another course online around "Project X". Sip my coffee with some friends and watch the rain arrive. I check the 2nd lotto ticket at the bakery and we win $17.50. Up $1.50 so tomorrow I'll cash it in for a third for us all. Fortune favours the brave.
Most of today I curl up and read books. I start and finish Wendy Smith's "The Quiet Ones-Skyhooks, AC/DC and Me". It's a fun read , a lovely time capsule. Worth having and I like the photos.
In the evening I work in the office, just for a short while. We are expecting really heavy rain and some flash flooding on the mountain, similar to what NSW and Queensland have just had so I walk around the property and get a few things ready. Well as much as one can.
It rains the entire night, i keep the window open as I sleep really well during heavy rain. I was born during a massive storm so maybe it is entrenched in my dna? HA.
January 8thWell i was sleeping fine till Midnight decided to use her litter tray at 2.30 , so I emptied that and did my zombie walk into the kitchen. I fell asleep at some strange time.
I'm driving to Olinda and they certainly had a lot of rain, peoples drive ways washed out onto the tourist road, pot holes and trees down so parts of the road closed. Our place, all fine. I'm sure my vegetable patch will love this weather. It's still warm, so feels like we are in North Queensland.
I give Midnight her half of a worming tablet. So yes she hated it and my hand has lots of scratch marks, but all done for 6 months. Such an effort.
It would of been Paul Hesters birthday today, he would of been 65. So i think of our little mate a lot today and put some images up on social media. Even now the sadness of his suicide rolls over me, we all feel useless over it, that one thing doesn't change.
I spend a few hours in the afternoon organising some emergency bits and pieces around the Victorian flooding. Disaster centre at Bendigo and looks like one at Rochester if they are needing it. Not as severe as last time, so far about 6 houses lost. Still rather unexpected.
Lasagne for dinner, which I whipped up, much to Marks delight. So i am in the office working while it cooks. Mark checks on it, and the tray flips, my favourite baking dish smashes to pieces and our dinner is on the floor mixed with broken ceramics.
I arrive back at the main house, Mark looking guilty and he is shocked how ridiculously calm I am. We can always buy another baking dish and I'll go out and order food, didn't even slightly freak me. It's nice to have this calmness in my life. Plus I remind him that way back in 1975 I did accidentally break his torch, so we are at long last even.
While out I call in and box up supplies for the flood areas. I meant to do this earlier, so might as well while I am off mountain. Foggy even on the main roads. No cars, it is rather creepy.
January 9thAm glad the flood waters have dropped down around Bendigo and Rochester. So sad to see so many dead floating cows, what a horrible way for an animal to go. They expect Shepparton to get hid in a few days as water finds it's way down stream. I hear from Kate and her Pinchapoo crew who offer help- as always she is awesome. It just seems perverse that the flood emergency centre is again at the Tom FLOOD sports centre. Many familiar Disaster teams, well one was missing (cough. All talk no action), at Bendigo and Rochester. Poor Rochester, just relieved it isn't as bad as last time. The Mayor seems like a good guy.
I'm at charity at some crazy time, too much driving today. I am feeling worn out. It was relentless again, half of Melbourne must be clearing out their cupboards, in the end we had to say "no". Thankfully Lachie is back so I get my morning coffee. I am happy to finally head home and have a power nap.
January 10thI've given myself most of the day off. Drink my coffee at the bakery and people are commenting on my shoes. I call them my "Thunderdome's". Such as "Mad Max movie "Welcome to Thunderdome". They have hundreds of metal pointed studs wrapping around them. Insanely small for my feet compared to my comfy airwalks but I'm sitting and sipping so a display item. Plus a company closing down and they cost me (drumbeat) $1.00. Yes you read right.
Suns out, am hoping the same in flood areas so some water can evaporate.
I pick a few vegies and buy the rest. People ask me why I prefer the purple carrots. Well the purple pigment contains 28 times more anthocyanin antioxidants than those in orange carrots. So happy Mark is enjoying the Dark Heart juice that I am making. Gotta keep him healthy too, so we can have some insanely long life together. We will be the oldest couple in the world and the happiest. What is our secret- CHOCOLATE. LOL.
A wonderful email from Tim Finn. On Monday 15th my Youtube channel turns ten years old. Yes a decade of videos going up and hopefully enjoyed by the masses. 4,300,000+ views, 724 videos and 5.19 subs. Incredible. The first clip I put up was live Split Enz "Outer Mongolia" and Tim got back to me with some details around it's creation, so that was good of him.
It's Wednesday today and Markys latest live video has gone up. It is Crowded House playing the Palais Theatre in Melbourne. March 26th 1992. "There Goes God". But it has this brilliant Intro, that's what make it extra special. I love that Mark searches out those rare unique performances of songs, sometimes quirky , sometimes they just make you smile. So check this out here, you won't regret it.
January 11thAs Lou sang "It's such a perfect day...". Today it all seemed to roll along at a wonderful speed, everything fell into place, and work was terrific. Good luck popped surprises my way. I found a musical instrument for Project X that I will rework but it will do the job. A lady give me a brand new monolith black baking tray, which is perfect to replace the one Marky broke, so I am happy over that. I dropped two massive bags of more donation items into Pinchapoo and a few more are building up. So Kate and team will be happy with that.
The two bills are paid, so zero bills, we like that.
I arrive home put my feet up in the hammock and Mark volunteers to give them a massage, can it get any better than this.? Probably not. Chat to Wendy later on and I think she has found me one of the two slightly beaten 1950's suitcases that I am searching for. Yes never ending projects.
January 12thMiss Midnight having her breakfast when the sun is rising and it is a giant orange ball today, going to be a hot one.
Lovely coffee and the girls give me some sort of freebee new item and it's delicious. All the older guys are in and we sit out the front and talk rubbish, laugh and pick on each other. I am called "The Kid" because I am the youngest, I think they think I am way younger, I am not. My nickname with them changes every week.
I work in the art room for an hour and reply to emails in the office.
We clear the post office box and New Year cards from Mary Ann, Michelle K and Ayisha arrive so that is really sweet.
Marks latest Youtube Wednesday effort has already had over 600 views. Very cool, thanks everyone and so glad you enjoyed it.
It is really warm after lunch so I decide Midnight needs a bath. Plus this time of year there can be tiny grass ticks on the mountain, they are not terrible but they can cause cats to scratch a bit. So yes folks, I'm out the door in search of shampoo for my Pussy! My Mrs Slocombe moment. I drive to the vets and get some shampoo , it's dermcare and fairly light as I don't want to stress her or get a reaction. Nice to see Moss the vet again.
I fill Banshee's giant red bath and in she goes, she doesn't like it like Banshee did but she isn't too crazy. Eventually she calms down. Towel her and she spends the next few hours drying, grooming herself into the fine beast that she is. Bath time is over. I survived.
January 13thIt certainly was hot last night, Ailsa Craig has still remained cool. I get a fairly solid sleep but both of us endless dreams.
I'm having my coffee at the bakery and run into the 3rd Peter, who we call Pete so it is less confusing. He doesn't have a Mark though, just a Josie. Nice to see him. Moss wanders up and asked how Midnight liked her wash.
On the way home I decide to be adventurous so turn into Osprey road near the small electric power plant, I park the car and go for a 2 minute walk to Burkes Lookout. It has stunning views and on a clear day you can see the city and bay. Ten years ago it was a "Best kept secret" but these days hikers, bike riders, big family groups all know about it. The Paraglider ramp is still at the spot and that gets used at times. I guess putting it up here on my Diary page doesn't help. I can't recall if Marky has been here before so I'll have to encourage that soon. I have this tree stump higher up that I sit on. A bit King like I admit.
More heavy rain for North Queensland as a monsoon trough arrives. A friend at Dunbar tells me they had 152mm within 5 hours.
Work around the house for the rest of this Saturday.
In the evening I email Neil (Finn) one of our Enz clips for the Wynyard Tavern. It has that little cool piece at the end where Mary Finn, their Mum comes up to Tim and gives him a hanky for his stage sweat. Hopefully he will like it.
January 14thNot much sleep last night, I think i had too much caffeine, and my brain ticking over as it does at times. Midnight restless too and seems to of needed to have the need to snuggle up close. Of course she purrs like a radioactive geiger counter and right in my ear.
Today is a day to get things done, while the sun is shining. I take my project book to the bakery and sit outside and draw up some designs. They are having a new floor added so that adds some freshness to the place. I mind some customers dogs today, one is called Summer and she is so happy to sit with me while i scratch her chin. Not sure what Miss Midnight will make of the doggy smell on me.
Tomorrow my (our?) Youtube page turns ten years old. We are going to put something up to celebrate, even though it is a Monday.
So many video clips on the page : https://www.youtube.com/@petergreen2534 so have a bit of binge and go to this main link and see what we have on the page. Ten years , really that is incredible, and a huge shout out to Marky who picked up the challenge and ran with it, adding fresh video gold every Wednesday now. But without you guys we would have no audience, so thanks for returning time and time again and enjoying all the clips. Mark says he does it for the fans and you know, he really does.
I'm assuming Neil checked out some of the other videos on the Youtube page as this morning one appeared on his Crowded House Facebook page. Which is great as it means a lot more people get to see it. Thanks NF.
Such a beautiful Sunny Sunday, I'm spending it in the garden working. It's been a decent Summer, not to extreme but I am certain that will happen. Hot days are arriving soon.