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Some light entertainment.

Just to lighten things up a bit, here’s an interesting series of pictures.

It’s a school in Murrurundi the next town south of Willow Tree.

The first few times I drove past, I thought they were actually playing.

But eventually I caught on.


But first some background.

This has nothing to do with this post, but it sure is a cute picture of me isn’t it?

For all those wanting to know why I’m here and she’s there, this is not the post that reveals all. Go read a magazine or something, and come back tomorrow or the next day, when you may be in luck.

What this is, is a post that explains what ingredients are required to make such a situation work. I’m probably going to ramble a bit, because in truth I’ve never really thought about it, we don’t see it as such a big deal, nor do the people who know us well.

Most importantly there needs to be complete trust. You need to trust your partner, trust that they are not looking for something better, and you need to trust yourself that you aren’t either. If this is the case, the next most important aspect is that you have to be comfortable with being on your own. For some of you with kids, it may sound like heaven to have a break for a while, but trust me you’ll be missing the chaos within a couple of days.

Both MDW and I were latchkey kids so we’re used to keeping our own company. In fact one of the first things I noticed in her apartment when we first met was a picture of an old Greek shepherd tending his flock in the mountains, underneath the picture were the words “If you find me by myself, I’m not lonely, I’m simply alone” And speaking of kids, that’s another essential ingredient, no kids.

Some of the more mundane aspects required are the financial resources to furnish and run two households, that includes not only bedding etc, but fridges, washing machines, TVs, kitchenware you name it. Not to mention owning two houses. Although some of you may actually have a holiday home.

Lastly there is the psychological need for security and this is the crux of the situation. While MDW comes from a land where not only is the puritan work ethic instilled from a young age, there is no blanket healthcare system, no longterm unemployment support and very little aged care. While I, on the other hand come from a socialist country where the value of a job is measured by how much time you get off, and where everyone is cared for. There is no time limit on enemployment benefits, everyone is covered for hospital and medical, and when you reach 65 you get a pension for life as well as discounts on essentials such as telephone, electricity and local taxes.

Put simply, while I chose to walk away from the corporate world, MDW chose to stay and protect her superannuation (and we’re talking big dollars). I respect her decision, she can live with mine. So, there it is.

Now, on the subject of how we got to be in this situation, I’ve written it but its pretty long (two pages in Word, which is quite long for a blog post), so long in fact that I’ m asking you whether you’d rather it split into two posts or posted as one long post. Let me know.

Sometimes they lie, sometimes they don’t

Have you ever been driving along and seen one of those ‘Welcome to..’ signs that bear absolutely no resemblence to the place you’re being welcomed to? Like ‘Buena Vista’, which in spanish means nice view, but when translated to english it means ‘check out the paper mill’. Or ‘Ocean View’ or in my case ‘Willow Tree’. I’ve lived here three years and I’ve never seen a willow tree.

This is heading north on the New England Highway. If you look closely you might be able to read the sign (it says Welcome to Willow Tree). I took the pic through the a filthy windscreen so its a bit hard to see

Then every once in a while, you come across a sign that actually tells the truth. Yep the people who live here are boring! By the way, that’s my Tonka Toy, I’ve had it since 1990. This place is about 20 miles south of Willow Tree.

All those paddocks behind my car belong to Emirates Park Stud, one of the largest racehorse studs in the Southern hemisphere. The fences alone are worth over a million dollars! It’s a big property with millions of dollars worth of horses at any one time.

So, apart from having boring people, they also have a church that looks just like the one on the sign.