I wonder why I think if I just sit down and talk to "someone" all will be well and I will sort things out and things will be different? I had planned to talk to my daughter about the difficulties I am going through with processing my grief, the loneliness, the frustrations etc but we never seemed to have the time to just sit down and do it. A Salvation Army officer is constantly on call and as soon as she'd sit down with a cup of coffee and a free couple of hours the phone would ring and she was off on a call, or consulting some other service to give a helping hand to someone.
It didn't help that there was a mini cyclone in the early hours 20 minutes drive away on the first Sunday I was there. There were 28 homes wrecked, 28 families made homeless plus two blocks of rental flats damaged as well. Her Corps was on standby for a day to help out at the evacuation centre but local people filled in the needed duties and she stayed home. She did have to do two welfare calls in the area. A young Mum with a couple of kids called for assistance and another family called who had moved into temporary accommodation in a trailer park and had no food. I admire how much she does, she works very hard to be that "angel of mercy" some people think of the Salvation Army Officers as being.
I've just returned from ten days at my daughter's place, ten days of rain! So far both January and February have had above normal rainfalls and March is shaping up nicely. No need to say I took my swimsuit and it never got wet? After all this was supposed to be a summer holiday! I could have danced around the front lawn in the rain in it, if I had stayed longer I probably would have, just for the exercise. I did a couple of walks alongside the Lake in sunny periods on a couple of days so did do some walking.
Long rainy days are bad enough when you are at home and can just put your feet up and relax and watch no-brainer movies and eat popcorn in your armchair but in someone else's house that is difficult - thank goodness for reading, that is how I occupied my time while the rest of the household were busy with their daily chores. I had some time with my grandchildren, talked to my son-in-law, went to various places with Shirley. I loved Mini Music with Mums and toddlers happily dancing around the Hall to various songs much loved by the under-fives and yes, I still remember how to make Incy Wincy Spider climb up the Water Spout. Without the cheerful company I enjoyed I know that so many days of rain with just my own company would have driven me mad.
For the sake of Aussies who are enjoying a warmer summer than we are I will mention that my daughter took me to the Robertson Show last Saturday. It was about 23 degrees (70) when we left Shirley's to drive up over the Escarpment and when we arrived the other side the temp was 11 degrees (50). Let's say we were underdressed for that kind of weather and hussled in and out of buildings as much as we could and stayed for a couple of hours but in the end decided it was just too cold and wet. The light rain then turned to sleet as we ran back to the car, parked away out in the paddock and the car's heater remained on high until we all stopped shivering. That is what Shirley described as an adventure!
I'll now settled back into routine and see where life leads me. I know of events coming up in the church and various other organisations I belong to that I will be able to join in. There will be periods of busyness and periods of solitude. I am getting more used to being alone now. I don't fret about it as much as I did six months ago. I don't know that I will ever like living as a widow but I might learn to tolerate it. Of course I got back to some bills to be paid but hey! everyone does that, don't they?
Summer may linger after the rain finally goes away or it may just be that temperatiures stay at their current lower-than-normal level. I hope there are still some sunny days ahead to enjoy some walking and even maybe another opportunity to get my swimsuit wet.