The word for the beginning of 2016 is SOCIAL. I have caught up with friends more often in the past three weeks than I did in all of last year. Really. A contributing factor is that we are living in a boat that is intolerable in hot weather, and that all of my friends have kids that are on Summer holiday. Thus, as Small DB and I took a nature walk this morning and the sun grew hotter and hotter, I took a punt and called E – who lives in the leafy cooler climes of Emerald in a house that is not a boat.
Countless times I have griped on this blog about my lack of car air conditioning. It seems silly to pay for it to be fixed all because of maybe 15 unbearably hot days each year. But every time the unbearably hot day comes to pass, I curse myself thoroughly. The only person more heat intolerant than myself is Small DB. She sits whimpering in the back seat splashing water over herself from her drink bottle, trying to keep her shit together as heat rash blooms on her back.
The drive felt long. LONG. But it was worthwhile 🙂 The Smalls spent the day playing with their friends – in the sandpit, on the deck, in the playroom, pillow fighting, patting Guinea-pigs and grazing on the food that E and I provided, even as we nattered like magpies. It has to be remarked upon – the coalition of the Curlies (Small DB and Small OR) – exactly the same age and stage – when they are together it is as if they give each other permission to unleash their special powers. They plot mischief, whisper secrets and have an occasional spat.
We stayed for dinner and then drove away, munching plums and grapes with tummies full of ginger cake and bolognese. At the top of the gravel road that leads to the driveway we stopped. I had been trying to get back before the sun went down because I wanted a photo of it. I left the car in neutral and we all got out – the wind had cooled and the sky was smeared with pastels. Small DB clutched an agapanthus flower that Small OR had given her just before we drove away.
Small Z drove the car, sitting on my lap, the one kilometre down the road to the gate. Small DB drove down the driveway. We found M sitting outside, looking at the sunset and the water that was lapping at the pontoon.