Catch Up Post

On Wednesday night we got another bunny from Penrith vet. He’d been desexed that day, and Mark picked him up after work, and set him up in the middle of our kitchen. Not a marvellous place for a bunny to live, but we are running out of space for new creatures. New bunny is a mini lop with siamese markings. He looks a little like a sock monkey, and has been referred to as “monkey boy”. He is extremely cute, and I have pictures I will post soon. He and Blueberry would make a fabulous couple, and I am wondering if the person who is taking her would consider a couple if I can bond them.

Wednesday night we went to Bev and Ted’s (Marks parents) for dinner. I had told Ted that Mark was struggling with his new life as a teacher, so the four of us put our heads together to try to work out some strategies for making his life in the classroom a happier one. Mark is a wonderful teacher, and he cares deeply about his kids, their happiness and educational outcomes – but he has never been able to be the bad guy, especially with kids. I’ve never had a great deal to do with children, but I have spent enough time with the species to know that if you aren’t consistent, and there are no repercussions for bad behaviour, then the kids will happily crush you and do a happy dance on the shattered fragments of what used to be your feeling of self worth. Monsters.

I, on the other hand, have no trouble being the bad guy. I was so deeply unpopular at school that I had to learn what it was to be me, and really learn to be ok with who I am. Once you’ve been there, someone not liking a decision you’ve made isn’t upsetting, and it’s easy to mantain consistency. It’s also bloody hard to back down and admit you’re wrong, but I’m getting better at that now. Kinda.

Thursday night, Kerry spoke at a public forum in Epping about West Papuan refugees in Papua New Guinea. Kerry visited PNG a few weeks ago to see for herself the reality of the only other choice for people fleeing West Papua. If a person has been politically active in the West Papuan independance movemnet, and they want to leave the country, theoretically they could apply in person at the Australian Embassy in Jakarta (as long as they could get th Jakarta without being detained or killed), or they could flee to PNG.

Papua New Guinea has a refugee camp that has been in existance for over 20 years (and some people have lived there for that long). Despite deep sympathy for the plight of West Papuans, the PNG government has very few resources to share, and the refugee camp (which is extremely isolated and difficult to access), is only now having water tanks installed to ensure a continuous supply of clean drinking water. Aid agencies have supplied basic healthcare and some schooling for children, but this is not a gateway to any sort of future, just a holding pen.

That is the reason why 42 West Papuan refugees cut down a tree, hollowed the center to make a canoe, strapped 2 outboard motors on it, and made their way across the ocean to Australia. Not because they wanted a better life – because they wanted any life.

A priest from West Papua put his three teenaged sons onto this boat, and when he was asked why he put his children in such a dangerous position, he replied, “Because I wanted them to live”.

Australia helped to create the problems in West Papua, our governement has a responsibility to the people of Australia to behave ethically towards people who ask us for help. John Howard withdrew the motion to have all refugees processed away from Australian soil, but please make sure you let your local member know how you feel about these issues. Australian politics seems to be very much centered on taking care of interest rates so that middle and high income earners can maintain their comfortable existance, while low income earners and the disenfranchised are ignored.

And in knitting news….

The Swallowtail Shawl has be plagued by my inability to count. Last night I frogged about 6 full rows (which takes much longer than knitting 6 rows), to find a missed yarn over. All well and good, but the mystery is – how did I miss this ? I count at the end of every row, and when I get to the centre stitch of a pattern row. So if I missed a stitch that far back, I must have miscounted at least 8 times. And, you would assume that the pattern would be out. Wouldn’t you ? Well – it wasn’t. It was all going swimmingly for ages until I was a stitch short at the end of a pattern row.

At least I had beautiful music to listen to. Mark picked me up after work and took me to listen to the final rehearsal of Coro Innominata before their sunday afternoon concert. I usually attend all of Marks concerts (since the first one I saw the day after our first kiss), and will only miss this one because I HAVE TICKEST TO THE CIRCUS!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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