The story of the filthy old man

Denise claimed I kept her awake all night with my snoring which I staunchly denied and will maintain my denials until someone can produce evidence in the form of a tape recording!

Mum had to get Trace a cheque to pay her deposit on her new flat so we three (mum, Trace & me) popped up to Caloundra. Went to the building society then to the realo, where we fortunately didn’t get served by the horrible girl, then poor Trace had to go to work. Mum and I went to the post office – I sent Stevie and Nicole postcards – then strolled along Bullcock Street. Naughty me bought a t-shirt. Weather is all Queensland perfect which means way blue skies and way too hot..

Back at Coronation Avenue, dad & Denise had tidied up so we took off for Denise’s place. Here Kelly and Drew had tidied – or rather had woken up half an our before we arrived and run around like lunatics pushing things into cupboards the way I do! Sandy was missing for a while but then turned up in the cutlery drawer.

Drew was playing some decent music until mum told him it was awful and he felt he had to turn it off. GOD! Some things like NEVER change.

Talking of this, he’s got a collection of posters on his walls like Star Wars and the ilk but on the back of his door is his collection of tottie. There’s Britney (natch) and (oddly) Catherine Zeta-Jones but there’s also heaps I’ve never heard of and even some Drew’s never heard of either!

This time I got the Grand Tour of the house. It’s absolutely lovely (even Kelly’s room looked fit for human habitation) and very airy. It’s all open plan so hard to air condition but with the verandah and corridors and French doors in virtually every room, the breeze just flies through, making it comfortable. The dam is very tranquil with lilies popping up and Kelly’s fish trap overflowing with…water.

Kelly & fish trap

Peter is working on a bench to put down on the bank and cultivating a rain forest to shelter it all – it will be a wonderful spot of glorious seclusion. it’s obvious that they are all very happy there – it’s a very happy house.

While at the dam, Denise managed to displace a massive, Indiana Jones sized spider web with her head. With a scream of epic proportions which almost made hearing an impossibility, arms flailing and feet dancing, she freaked out.

A sudden noise in the water had me thinking a croc had leapt from up (Kelly reckoned it was an eel) but figured we were safe as the pain to it’s ears would have sent it flying back.

Belinda (Kelly’s friend) came over so I met her. She’d been out delivering her CV to the world at large but had misspelled ‘personal’. What IS the Queensland Department of Education coming to? Belinda is a funny name. It’s like someone really wanted her name to be Linda therefore created for her a sort of mantra for everyone to chant every time they said her name: “Be Linda, Be Linda, Be Linda“! Or maybe they just wanted her to grow up to Be Linda Evangalista.

ANYWAY we sat and watched Banzai – hilarious as always – and had rolls for lunch and a cream bun. Lordy, Lordy, how long has it been since I last had a cream bun? Totally yumbo!

We left at about 2:30 to avoid the traffic – not sure what traffic. The coming home from school traffic? The old ladies out shopping with their trolley’s traffic? Anyway, we avoided it. Mum & dad’s new car which is purple and pretty cute, has wonderful air conditioning, except dad gets too cold if the temperature falls below 20 so I still swelter…

When we got back to the house mum & dad told the story of the flat which the filthy old man lived in and we took over. We were living with the grey nuns at the time and dad wasn’t cause the grey nuns HATED men. Mum was pregnant with Denise so they reckoned I was about 3. Dad was working at Davis’s and heard that a flat, virtually over the road, was coming on the market because this filthy (literally) old man was shifting out. Dad rang mum and said to get over to the realo and check it out. Mum then rang Auntie Mollie and they both went, leaving me at grandma’s – thus explaining why I don’t remember anything about it as I’m sure I would have been scarred for life.

The realo warned them it was bad and heightened their fears by assuring them it would be extensively fumigated and all the contents thrown out before anyone moved in. well, mum says it was totally disgusting. The place was crawling. Just that, crawling. When they opened the front door the smell almost drove them back into the street. Dad reckoned you could smell it from Davis’s – not really, I just put that in for a cheap laugh…). Auntie Mollie volunteered to go on alone, sending poor pregnant mum back onto the street but mum persevered. She’s been pregnant before and not much could be worse. Nausea built on nausea as they squelched from room to room almost carried along by the vermin and insects. Underneath the evil funk was, apparently, a very big and serviceable flat.

Piled high in the kitchen – a mountain formed naturally by the constant increase of material, sort of like erosion in reverse – sat 100’s of empty Kit E Kat tins. Needless to say the guy had eaten the cat years before.

Mum and dad were desperate to get out into their own place, where they could actually live together so they decided to take it. The council napalmed it twice and the family – with the unknowing help of Brighter Homes and their infinite supply of wallpaper – mucked in and redecorated everything until it shone and sparkled. Ahhh! Happy ending. It was a lovely flat and we lived there till we shipped out to Oz.

Having rested and reminisced I went for a walk along Anthony’s Way to the Power Boat Club. Lots of changes in 2 and a half years, most notably the removal of the caravan park and the addition of a few very big blocks of holiday flats. The pelicans still resident and plentiful.


I sat and wrote up my journal in the late afternoon sun and sitting in the lovely sea breeze then walked back via the bottle shop for a few well earned beers.

Had spag bol chapter 2 for tea then (after King of Queens) we played Rummikin until 8:30 when I suddenly appeared to have taken a sedative, my eyes drooping, my brain shutting down. Damn, the return of the jet lag!

I fell onto my bed and was asleep in a nanosecond.

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