A mixed bag Christmas treats day

I got up early this morning. The sun is rising early these days – in fact I just realised today is the summer solstice. I went for a 2.5k run before the day got too hot. I’m still improving in my times, despite the weather recently getting warmer and more humid. I’ve been hovering around 13:20-13:30 for the past week or so. I thought today’s time would be slow because of the heat, but somehow I managed to clock 13:03, my best time so far.

Remember the council renovation work on the nearby park, which I posted about a few months back? They finished the work a month or so ago, but I was very disappointed by a set of sandstone stepping stones which the workers laid between the path and a section of grass up a steepish slope. The posted landscaping plans showed a proper stairway installed there, but for some reason they didn’t go ahead with that, and instead simply laid a set of three stepping stones on the hillside – at the angle of the slope. So each stone was at maybe a 20° angle or so to the horizontal. This made them tricky to walk on – not especially so for me, but we have a lot of elderly people in the neighbourhood who use that park, and I could see that they would be difficult to negotiate for anyone of less than sprightly mobility.

So I contacted the council. I phoned up and spoke to the councillor in charge of the landscaping work, and explained why I thought the stepping stones were dangerous, and suggested that – even if the full staircase had been abandoned – the stones could be relaid so they are horizontal, thus forming a set of horizontal steps ascending the slope. The woman I spoke to took my suggestion seriously and said it sounded like a good improvement, and that she would look into it.

And a few days ago, this happened!

New steps in the park

The stepping stone slabs that were sloping have been relaid with concrete under them so that they now lie level, and form steps, exactly as I’d asked for. Nice! You really can get government to do some things if you ask nicely for them.

This morning I had an Outschool ethics class scheduled… Even though I stopped all my classes for a few weeks over Christmas, Outschool has a teacher tool where you can set up time slots in which parents can schedule classes if you have no class already on at that time. I’d set this up early on, when I was trying to expand my enrolments – and forgotten about it. So, of course, a parent scheduled a class for today. I tried to contact them to ask them to choose a different time slot, because I really wanted to keep Tuesdays free, but they never got back to me. So when the time came, I started Zoom and waited for the student…

And they never showed up. Oh well, I get paid for it anyway, so at least it wasn’t a complete waste of time. After 10 minutes waiting, you can cancel the class, which I did. And then a minute later the parent contacted me! But they didn’t complain about the cancelled class as I feared. They requested a transfer into one of the existing Monday classes (which start up again in January). So that’s actually good.

After I picked up Scully from my wife’s work, we went on a drive. My wife had got an order for some dog bandanas from a woman who had met her at the market on Sunday, shed offered to make them and deliver before Christmas. To ensure that, I drove over and popped them in the mailbox, rather than entrust them to Australia Post. It was only about 20 minutes drive, so not too far.

On the way back I stopped at a liquor store to pick up some bottles of wine, since we were completely out of red wine. They allow dogs there, so I could take Scully in with me. And then we stopped again on the way home, at the new bakery in Naremburn that I’ve mentioned a few times. I’d been feeling like some cake for the past few days, and decided to satiate my craving. They had slices of carrot cake there – they seem to have a rotating menu of sweet treats that they go through, as there’s a different selection every time I go. They also had some amazing looking mince tarts for Christmas, so I got half a dozen of those too, which we’ll work through over the next few days.

In between all this, I worked on Darths & Droids comics. Phew! A busy day!

Addendum: And I just fed my sourdough starter, in preparation for baking tomorrow. It’s a significant day, because today my starter is a year old! It was spawned off a friend’s starter one year ago today.

New content today:

3 thoughts on “A mixed bag Christmas treats day”

  1. “I drove over and popped them in the mailbox, rather than entrust them to Australia Post.”

    You what??? That’s technically a federal offense here in the U.S. Only the U.S. Postal Service is allowed to place things inside mailboxes. Mind you, I’ve never heard of anyone charged with whatever crime that is. Nor does it seem to stop a few entrepreneurs from occasionally leaving an ad or business card in the mailbox, but it’s very rare.

    1. Yeah, that’s not a law here. Anyone can legally put things into people’s mailboxes. So you have people wandering up and down streets putting advertising flyers for businesses into everybody’s mailboxes.

      However, this is also why we have “No Junk Mail” stickers, which people can place on their mailboxes. This is legally enforceable. If you have a “no junk mail” sticker visible on your mailbox, anyone who sticks advertising material into your box can be prosecuted. So they’re actually very effective.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *