PC #106 – The next few days…

The next few days I’m driving –

Tomorrow I drive about 500mls from Mudgee up to a wine/apple district called Stanthorpe, just across the border into Queensland.

Every year at this time my family – mother, brother & family, two sisters and families – converge on this small country town to have a get-together. My mother is 86, and so we value this time with her each year.

Stanthorpe is mainly an apple growing area, but it also has some fairly desultory vineyards – but it’s the only wine area within driving distance of Brisbane, where my family lives.

There’s an Italian restaurant in town which has an all-you-can-eat buffet, and that’s another attraction. Each year we take it upon ourselves to try and send the restaurant broke the night we eat there.

All this would be good except that the night I’m due to have this nosh-up, the Swans are playing in a sudden-death semi-final – and I’ll miss it on telly. You have no idea what a test this is for me – to miss this game for a pig-out with my mum and my kin.

The next day, I drive 500mls back home. So, a thousand miles in three days. I will keep blogging though, and take some photos along the way…

post boxes

24 thoughts on “PC #106 – The next few days…

  1. Safe and happy travels Bill and Jennifer – have a fabulous get-together with your Mum and other family members.
    ‘Love the Italian restaurant challenge! I’m sure you’ll find a way to keep tabs on the Swans game too! Cheers – Jenny

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    • Thanks Jenny –

      You probably know what Stanthorpe is like – it’s the most unlikely place for an annual family reunion – but my mother loves it there.

      And they drive south a bit and we drive north a lot!!

      better hit the sack now!

      Bill

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  2. Bill,
    As you know i spend a lot of my time with my 96 year old mother. Right now she and my two sisters and are together in our country home. No, not fancy, country. It is such a treat for each of us. She is so solid and vibrant she may outlive us all , but we treasure each day. Enjoy your family.
    Steve

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  3. Bill,

    Family is so very important, enjoy every minute you can spend with them.

    Yet, somehow I know you will!

    Arlene

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  4. Oh Bill, it sounds like such a special time with your family! Its when I imagine scenes like the lot of you decimating an Italian buffet, laughing, talking about old memories -it just makes me ache with wishing I had a family. There will always be another match, but your loved ones are here for such a short time.

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  5. Have a wonderful trip, Bill and Jennifer. Especially cherish the time with your Mom. I would give just about anything to sit down to dinner with my Mom. She headed to heaven about eight years ago. I still stop myself from picking up the phone to call her. Maybe you can convince the Italian buffet to put the game on! Safe travels! Julie

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  6. Bill, have the most wonderful time. Family gatherings are so important, but with the lives we lead today, they don’t happen as often as they should. My mum is an active 87 year old and every visit is special. She lives about 2 hours from me.
    Stanthorpe is such a great place where we stock up on the freshest of produce when we drive through to family in Brisbane. While you demolish the buffet I will cheer on the Swannies.
    Travel safely
    Anne 🍕🍝🍷

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    • Anne, thank you.

      I am sitting here in the salubrious Boulevarde Motel in Stanthorpe – room 10 with a creek view… – and I am smiling as I read your comment here!

      Ys, I treasure every moment with my mum now. She is a real character.

      Bill

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  7. Anne, we go on Retreat twice a year for just a week at a time. Most of us have ministries we can’t leave longer than that. Its always too short!!! As for the haunting -it has never been menacing. We figure that since we are up where the servants would have slept, the footsteps we hear, always a quick pace and in a heeled shoe, are staff answering bell calls through the night. Servants then really had to work round the clock, at the employers whim. We listen as they click click.down the hall -and the people staying on the floor below hear them too. There’s also a green woman who walks around the estate at night, givin g off a lovely light – and we wish them all “Go with God ” and have never been troubled by them. I quite like their company when I can’t sleep.

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      • Bill,as I’m sure you can imagine, its been a hot topic among the Order for a long time. Many people who embrace the Christian faith have a very hard time figuring out where spirits belong in our theology.This is what we think -and this “we” is just a friendly group of us in the Order who have wondered about it too.
        Spirits are the souls of people who just aren’t ready to move on yet. They may have had unfinished business, or been having spiritual uncertainty before they died. God lets them stay in this plane until they feel ready to leave.The New Testament talks about people who suffer with demonic possession, and even states that “God is a spirit” This is a very different belief from what we think of as the paranormal, or dark energies and embodiments of evil. Christian are very aware of the evil in the world. Accepting the existence of simple souls who temporarily exist between worlds is not in any way contrary to Christian beliefs.

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        • Hmmm,

          Okay, that’s good to know.

          What then is “evil?” Because people doing bad things isn’t necessarily evil.

          What’s that saying – the greatest tragedy is that everyone has their reasons?

          Bill

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          • Not at all! Evil exists in thoughts and actions ( both source and process of them)that take pleasure or power from the abuse, suffering,injustice, cruelty and horror of others.Thats a very basic definition, but you get my meaning, Im sure.

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          • Okay –

            the exact quote I was looking for is from a very famous film director, Jean Renoir –

            “The truly terrible thing is that everyone has their reasons.”

            So, Hitler had his reasons. Hitler is regarded probably as the epitome of evil.

            Bill

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          • The human mind, sick or well, can rationalise just about anything. But we are about so much more than reason, or perhaps I am not understanding you. We have a moral code which supercedes “reasons”. “Reasons are irrelevant. What is important -that you did something good, or that you had a reason for doing it?We grow, evolve and “become” by our works, or fruits, not the thought process which got us up off the couch to do them.”Reasons” are fickle -they can be destroyed or recreated simply by changing your mind.

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          • Hi Sister –

            I have not studied philosophy, however one person’s reasons are another person’s evil.

            That’s why I wonder if there is any “evil” as such in the world.

            Some so called acts of evil are done because of mental illness. Is that evil?

            Some are done because of a fervent religious or political ideology. Is that evil too?

            Bill

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          • In my opinion, Bill, in the case of mental illness, no. There is a deliberate element to evil, so in the case of any sort of fervor, fanatacism, politics or whatever -yes, that is absolutely evil. You can’t change the nature of truth by giving it another name.

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