Mama Mia (Day 167)
Mama Mia, we definitely wasn't expecting this change of plans first thing in the morning! The rest of the day was a delight. And all's well that ends well.
Up early to clean the house and be out by 9:30am as we were meeting Nev and Liz, our Airbnb hosts from a couple of weeks ago, for coffee, then meeting up with Angelo, the Artist and on to our next Airbnb before our flight to Tasmania. Vacuumed the carpets, dusted, and got our bedding in the washing machine. Then – a circuit of the electricity stopped. Mama Mia – the washing is stuck in the machine! I got in touch with Amy, our Trusted Housesitting host, sent a long message telling her about the washing machine, hoping she had a lovely holiday, shared what a joy Murphy her dog has been and said “We will be gone by the time you get back. An artist we met on Sunday is taking us out. How lovely is that”. She responded, “…have a great day tomorrow”. Tomorrow? Isn’t she coming back today? OMG! Something was lurking in the back of my mind. I checked the date of the Airbnb - 2nd May. I checked the date of the flight - 3rd May. We have one more day here! Crikey, if I hadn’t of written that, we would have ended up at the Airbnb 1 day early with the keys inside this house! And now we have no bedding – it’s stuck inside the washing machine! How we laughed!
Time was ticking, we met up with Nev and Liz and had such a lovely time with them. They had lent us their Lonely Planet guide of Japan which was very useful. We share our fiasco from the morning and had a good laugh, then Nev proceeded to tell us about a situation that put our little story into insignificance. (This is the short version). They were in Cuba and Liz had her passport stolen just before they were flying home. Managed to get a temporary one. At the airport, they were with Nev’s sister and husband and got chatting…missed their flight back to Oz via LA. The next one – 2 weeks’ time! Managed to get flight 12 hours later to Mexico. Arrived, dodgy taxi driver, hotels full, taken to rough area, hotel had blood on the floor of the foyer. 2 hours sleep, got to border, huge queue, managed to jump this, got into the USA, booked seats on the coach, went for walk, got lost, panic, Liz needed the toilet, went in girlie bar and Nev was chatted up, just by the skin of their teeth got the coach to LA. Nev is such a great storyteller, we were sitting at the edge of our seats, mouth open, a rollercoaster of emotions from shock to laughter. They also shared about their family. One of their daughters Bron and her husband Andrew have 3 children. Cooper the eldest has Cerebral Palsy, sounds like a right character. They were making us laugh at the antics that Cooper and his brother and sister get up to. Bron writes a fabulous blog where she shares their travels, experiences, hints and tips and she loves inspiring others to travel: see http://smithsholidayroad.com . What a lovely couple Nev and Liz are, we so enjoyed our short time with them.
It was time we got back. Angelo picked us up and took us back to his home. We met him on Sunday when he was giving an Art demonstration in Original Oz Art at the Boathouse Gallery We do meet the most delightful people. He showed us around his art studio, Wow – absolutely incredible art, as I mentioned a few days ago, I so love his style of painting. There was a huge one of Marco, one of his sons, and some of his daughter which were stunning. We walked into the kitchen to a delicious whiff of garlic, tomatoes and herbs with Angelo’s other son Tim cooking lunch for us. We discovered that Tim’s full name is Timothy John, the same as Tim. What a coincidence. Young Tim was a bit miffed that he didn’t have a more romantic Italian name like his brother and sister. It was so funny to observe young Tim (he is in his twenties – just to clarify which Tim I am writing about) cook and seeing his Dad checking up on him. It reminds me of our boys and Tim. They are more than capable of cooking, actually, better than us. There is a period of our lives as parents when we need to realise that our children are grown up. We can easily forget that they are no longer small children, they are responsible, capable adults. In a way it is our duty to remind them that resilience is always within them, happiness is always within them, mental wellbeing is always within them and that they are just fine.
We had such a wonderful lunch, Angelo is the archetypical Italian, full of passion and vitality. We so enjoy his company and often he would exclaim “Mama Mia” about something. He loves his native country and got the maps out to see where we went on our honeymoon nearly 26 years ago. I chatted with Tim, an improv actor who wants to use his skills to teach entrepreneurs. We talked about knowing who your avatar client is, defining them, even putting a name to them. This enables writing your marketing to be so much easier. When I ran Career Ambitions with my friend Katherine, for example, one of our avatars was Gordon, a man in his early 50s working in the science industry, a people person, but often felt a bit different to his colleagues. When we wrote our marketing literature, we had Gordon to mind. Tim loved this idea, both for his own business and also to work with Entrepreneurs. Over our time together, Tim (hubby) and I found him to be a very wise young man and a joy to spend time with.
After lunch, Angelo drove us to Dromana which is located on the Mornington Peninsula. We got a gondola up to Arthur’s Seat, a hill rising to 314m above sea level. Despite the weather being a bit misty we could still just see the land surrounding Port Phillip Bay. I can imagine on a clear day, this to be spectacular. Angelo showed us around the State Park, he is very knowledgeable about the vegetation, the fungi and trees, making our walk so interesting. The park also had a few of William Rickett’s sculptures. Both Angelo and Tim haven’t been to his Sanctuary in the Dandenongs, so it was nice to share this with them. The time zoomed by. As we were starting to walk back to the Chairlift, I suddenly saw two kangaroos. One of them was massive. Then two more. We had been saying earlier that we hadn’t seen any in the wild yet, only at Featherdale Wildlife Park. Tim carefully walked forward to take photos. They are such powerful creatures, I am sure they’d be fine, being used to humans, however, it’s good not to underestimate that these are wild creatures. What a great end to a fabulous day! Angelo drove us back home, he looked at the fuse box with Tim and then they noticed that one of the fuses had tripped. Switching this back on, Mama Mia the washing machine is working. Thank goodness for that. Hugs goodbye, I so hope that we keep in touch. Another end to an eventful and wonderful day.