I woke early and fluffed around doing jobs until eight am at which time I had planned to go and get ready, when Monie said, “You know its daylight savings weekend aye?” “Yep”, I answered. “So its an hour ahead of what it used to be?” Monie replied looking up at the clock. “Yep, Arrrgggh!” I answered realising it was an hour ahead of what I thought it was. I dashed up the hall, threw on some clothes and boots and headed out, now late.
‘God damn it’, I chastised myself as I drove within the speed limit. When I got there the parking guy said, “This is a four wheel drive aye?” “ummm, yes” I answered unsure what was going to come next. “and you are wearing boots?” he asked peering in the window….”Ummm, yes…” What the hell was he going to ask me to do? “So can you park in the paddock to free up other spaces? he explained and expecting a yes pointed to the guy in a hi-vis vest as he moved to the car behind me. I went slowly forward with…”but I have never driven it as a four wheel drive and have no idea what to do” on my lips as the next hi-vis guy leaned in and said, ” follow that ute and don’t stop”, before stepping back and motioned the next one forward. Gulp. I slipped around a little in the pouring rain but was soon parked and negotiating the mud back to the entry. Thank God Gilbert was coming in tonight. He will have to drive it out for me.
We had a whole weekend exhibiting at our local lifestyle expo which ended up being pretty good. Different to the massive Auckland Home Show which takes a good day to get around, so many exhibitors you get dizzy with options and most of them come from Timbucktoo. ‘This is much better than the city one’, we heard over and over. It was a neat community atmosphere. Here, no matter what you were looking at, the stands were local suppliers and every which way you turned was someone you knew. At our stand we had three great draw cards.
Our steaming hot spa bubbling away, had people unable to resist dipping their hand in and imagining the jets pulsating on their back. They went into a dream like state and their eyes almost crossed.
Plus we had a draw for a Phoenix Italia Birdbath, which gave us the opportunity to tell them we made them ourselves. Most were surprised at this and thought they were imported from either Italy, or maybe China. Whaaaaat!
Thirdly we had an outdoor furniture setting made out of recycled tyres and sooo comfortable we had people coming back especially to try the seats as they heard people talking about how amazingly comfortable they are.
All in all a great weekend and worthwhile even though it poured with rain the whole weekend. Our stand was by the coffee cart, the food hall and entertainment area. Everyone paused here as they decided what to eat, drink or to enjoy the music of young musicians, most of whom were awesome. We greeted old friends with gusto, put names to faces, reconnected with some we hadn’t seen in ten years and met new people who had just moved into the area.
I asked someone if they would like to be on my database and her friend enthusiastically encouraged her to add her email to my growing list. “You know how you get heaps of emails in your inbox?”, she explained to her friend. “Yes”, her friend nodded. “Well, she continued, I go, delete, delete, delete, Oh YardArt! Save. I save that one for the big computer she explained looking at her. I wait till I get home so I can read it properly with a cup of tea, and sometimes, she tells us about her holidays, and whats happening at home and everything! I love it! Its like I’m getting a letter from a good friend. Yes sign up for those, they are cool!” We were all laughing at the end of this and so cool getting that feedback.
We had a couple of dicks. Trust me they’re everywhere. One told me he can make a gas fire under a stainless steel milk vat, heat the water for the same effect as a spa only much cheaper. “What if you get home from work and your backs killing you and you just want a hot soak?” I ask.
“You just fill the spa with a hose, he explains, and then light the fire or the gas and it starts to heat. So, yeah, you have to wait a while, but it’s just like a spa.
“What happens when the water gets too hot?” I ask.
“You have to get out and let it cool of course”….”and if it gets too cold while you’re in there?” I muse. You just start it heating again”, he tells me, like I’m pretty thick.
“…and what happens to that water afterwards, cause we’re on rain water and can’t waste any, especially in Summer? I wonder aloud. “Yeah, you have to empty it out cause there’s no filtration etc but its fine in winter. There’s plenty of rain then”.
…So not really like a spa at all then??? More like a very uncomfortable stainless steel vat/bath thing. Dickhead…
And then two of the most beautiful people arrive at our stand, full of smiles. They had been Mum’s neighbours for a few years before she passed away and were the best! As we hugged each other tight she told me she had cancer and was just finishing her treatment. That they were trying to think positively but it was Mum who had told her to go to the Dr if she had any symptoms and catch the bastard early. She was grateful to Mum whose warning was the thing that made her get things checked when she did, and hoped they had got it early enough. We hugged again as our tears blended on damp cheeks as she told me Mum was looking after her, even though she wasn’t here anymore.
We laughed as she remembered Mum being a fighter and deciding to paint the fence on the shared drive. How every fine day she would get out on her walker and paint a few more boards and refused any kind of help until the last day she had just a few boards left. How they went down and helped her do the final one and then another neighbour arrived down with wine and glasses, another with crackers and cheese, another with dips and breads and how they ended up having a street party in the driveway as they admired her work. That fence was about 50 metres long so no mean feat for someone over eighty and on a walker after a hip operation!
Mum posing by the fence.
It was so nice seeing them again and after they left my mind ran with memories of them coming and sharing one of our Friday night dinners with us. How Mum pulled out the Croatian brandy after dinner and we had so many laughs. How another time at one of Mum’s birthday nights we invited her down to have a drink with us and she texted him and said…”for gods sake get some decent sounds down here, these girls are all dancing around a radio!” and ten minutes later there was a knock at the door. I opened up the door to find him there in his jamas armed with the latest gear and speakers to give us music for the party of our dreams, leaving after setting up and starting the pre-programmed set for our chosen style.
How hard it was taking around a box of Roses chocolates with Mum’s handwritten card telling them how wonderful they were and how much she appreciated them just a few weeks after her passing.
What a great weekend and I was absolutely exhausted after two days of laughing and talking but enjoyed every moment.