223. Sunday 6th November 2011. Still at North Mackay and the housepainting begins…

Monday 31st October 2011.

Up at first light for a walk around nearby The Gooseponds.

I noticed a strange fruit lying on the ground under an equally strange leaved tree. Another walker stopped to tell me she thought it was a Sausage Tree.

Odd shaped sausages on the Sausage Tree.

What the…!!! Sausage Tree!!! Since childhood I always thought sausages were made by the butcher! A bit of research shows, in fact, it is a Sausage Tree. You would not want to eat the fruit which was very heavy and seems to have a skin as tough as Rhinoceros skin. The Google results explain better than me. http://waynesword.palomar.edu/sausage.htm and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kigelia

Tuesday 1st November

Along with Francy I spent the day cleaning, repairing and modifying things around the house. Our brief is to carry out maintenance so the house is functional. Lights which umm err, light. Doors which open and close. That sort of stuff. All security screens and doors cleaned and solidly in place. All nail holes, old door fittings and dents in walls to be filled with plaster and sanded. Venetian blinds on all windows. Interior and exterior walls painted white. Today we completed windows and doors and plastered where required. We will allow two days for the plaster to dry before sanding and preparing for painting. Sixty four litres of paint were delivered along with a new gas stove and oven. Things are moving along. By 3pm Francy and I had had enough and called it a day.

Wednesday 2nd November.

Woke at 4.30am to get the CO-PILOT dressed, fed, packed and off to the airport to catch a 6.45am  Qantas Link flight to Brisbane where she changed to a Qantas flight to Melbourne. She called me on arrival at Brisbane and during the call I heard lots of frantic emergency sirens. Fire trucks, Ambulance and Police in the near distance. We hear sirens every day but there seemed to be many more at once. Later when I was leaving for Bunnings I could smell wood smoke and assumed there was a house fire in the area. Tonight on the news I heard there was indeed a house fire, right here in North Mackay and there was a fatality, a 56 year old man. The Police are treating the fire as suspicious and had detained two men, located elsewhere in North Mackay and they were “assisting Police with their enquiries”.


Apart from some hardware and grocery shopping I only did some sweeping and tidying around the house today. Maybe tomorrow the mantle of enthusiasm will descend upon my shoulders once more.

Thursday 3rd November.

Enthusiasm woke me at 5.30am. After a walk around the Gooseponds I started sanding the plaster we had inserted in the holes in the walls. Then the walls were wiped down to remove dust and finally the floor was swept. I removed all fittings from the bathroom in readiness to start painting tomorrow.

Friday 4th November.

Enthusiasm is waking me earlier at 5am. I spoke with Enthusiasm about waking me so early and asked if it could maybe let me sleep a little longer.

Hmmm. There is something wrong here. I should be sleeping until at least 8am.

The plumber/gasfitter arrived, installed the new stove and oven and looked at all the other plumbing jobs and promised a report and quote. I painted the bathroom ceiling  and cornices then sourced some moulding for a few walls. In the afternoon I washed and polished the rear of WWWGO.

The local TV news advised the 56 year old man who died in a house fire had committed suicide. Being the thoughtful type he left his dog outside. According to the news report the dog kept trying to get inside. How sad all round.

Saturday 5th November.

Well! My little talk with Enthusiasm yesterday seems to have paid dividends. Enthusiasm woke me at 6.15 this morning. A nice walk around The Gooseponds before the day heated up. In my walks around the GP I have noticed the huge variety of trees, most of which I cannot identify. Some are obviously native. I saw another strange fruited tree, similar to the Sausage Tree, with similar coloured fruit but looking more like Potatoes. And, as my Google research shows, that is what the tree is called. The Potato Tree. It is part of the Nightshade family of poisonous trees. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solanum_erianthum

Further in my wanderings I also found an Itchy Tree. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lagunaria

When I was in primary school, these trees were growing around the perimeter of our school grounds. (What sort of twisted mind did the gardener have? Planting itchy trees at a boys school was sort of an invitation to evil. Countless years of pre-pubescent boys finding the ripe yellow itchy fruit, breaking the skin and placing the mass of barbed hairs down the back collar of another unsuspecting boy and watching the fun as he writhed in itchy discomfort, trying to disrobe and rid himself of the assailant “bomb”. Of course once rubbed the hairs cling to the skin causing an awful itchy rash for the rest of the day. The more you scratch and itch the worse the situation becomes. Some fun, huh!)

I spent the day painting the bathroom. With luck it will be finished tromorrow.

Sigh! I would rather have a day of rest.

Sunday 6th November

Another early morning walk around the GP before painting began.

Little Egret sighted while walking The Gooseponds.

Water Lilly pads on The Gooseponds.

I am so pleased to report that after another sweaty day in the bathroom, the painting of that room is now complete. Three coats of white paint were used to hide the colour underneath. Add a splash of colour in the shape of red bath-towels and silver venetian blinds and it looks…Wow!

Only another six rooms and a hallway to be painted before we start on the outside.



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