Walking on Eggshells

She  opened her eyes to the sun streaming in the window.
It was quiet. Not a sound.
He was not beside her , she breathed a sigh of relief.
She silently prayed that the day would remain just like this, but deep down in her heart, she knew it was unlikely.

How she came to be in this situation saddened her.
She had gone into the marriage full of hope and happiness.
Where did it all go wrong?

She remembered the first time he let fly at her.
There was no apparent reason.
He yelled, stomped on her feet and slapped her across the face.
She was in shock.
Whatever happened to the mild mannered man she had married.

As quickly as it started, it stopped.
He was full of remorse.
He would never do it again, he said.
He did not know what had come over him.

She trusted him. She believed in his words.
Until the next time.
Oh yes, there was a next time. In fact, many next times.

After each time he was sorry.
Soon she started walking on eggshells.
Afraid to even look his way, just in case it set him off again.

She could not leave. She was in a far away country, no family or friends there.
She was lost and forlorn.
He did not give her money, nor let her out of his sight.

She was trapped.
She spent her hours trying to work out a way to leave.
Would anyone help her?
Would anyone believe her?

Back in those days it was  unheard of to leave a husband.
It mattered not that he was abusive behind closed doors.
It mattered that he was seen in public as a great bloke , one who worked hard to support his  very quiet and private wife.

If only someone knew the real story.
If only someone could see behind those walls.
If only someone could see the eggshells she had to walk upon to keep the peace.

Those eggshells became deeper and deeper.
She had to tread more lighly than a snowflake landing on the snow.

She withdrew into herself. A broken woman.
She became ill from worry and the beatings.
This did not please him.
He became more and more violent.

He asked her about her home country.
She glimpsed a ray of hope.
If only I could get back there, she thought.

She had a plan.
Please don’t make me go back she begged of him.
She knew he would do the opposite to what he wanted.
She begged and begged not to go back.

It worked.
He sneered at her and announced they would be leaving his country and moving to hers
so she better get used to it.

In her heart she felt a wonderful happiness
She knew then, that this horrible life would soon  end.
She would be able to be free from this monster.
She may not have anything but the clothes on her back,
but she would be free.

The eggshells would be left behind.


How to cope with a cheating husband or partner

Where do I begin.?

It is not the nicest feeling to learn that the love of your life obviously does not have the same feelings  .
Love, honour, loyaly and trust are strong words.
I had no qualms living by the rules ,but the ex did.
After several years of marriage things started to change.

Late nights at work.
This was never the case in the first few years of wedded bliss.

Muffled phone conversations.
No mobile phones back then.

Lots of phone calls where no one spoke if I answered.

I was very naive back in the day.
I was loyal and trustworthy so did not suspect my partner to be anything but that as well.

As time went on and more things happened, I started to suspect foul play.
Too many unexplained instances were occuring.

I asked him about it.
Why was this happening, who was that on the phone, the list goes on.
He avoided answering my questions.

I was turning into a nagging unhappy person.
I was looking for answers.

I found myself sneaking about, looking for him, hoping to discover the truth.
But did I really want to know?

Maybe it would be better to just pretend all was well and good.
After all, he still came home, he still provided handsomely and was a good Father to the kids.

I tried to turn a blind eye.
It worked for a while, but always at the back of my mind was the question.
Surely it would not be too difficult to find out.
But what would I do when I did find out?
Another dilemma.

It all seemed too difficult.
Out of the blue, he came to me and suggested we should try an “open” marriage.
The guilt must have been getting to him.

I was against this suggestion though.
I could see absolutely no benefit to me ,and all to him.

It would mean he could go out wooing anyone he wished and it would be ok because we had an open marriage.
Life just sucked at that particular time.
I thought it over. I shed many tears. I had sleepless nights.
I certainly did not want to go out with anyone else whilst married.
But, it could mean I would find out who the third person was.

I gathered all my strength and agreed to the open marriage suggestion.
Somehow a weight was lifted off my shoulders with this decision.
I hatched a plan for mine and the childrens future.

Go for it, I told him.
He was so happy.
He thought he was going to have his cake and eat it too.
Maybe he was for a short while.

I duly found out who his lover was.
She was a poor silly thing with not much idea  about anything.
She went about busily telling everyone that  she was his lover and that I was agreeable.
I drew the line when he wanted to invite her for dinner. At our home!

I made arrangements to meet her,  without him present.
I asked her what her plans were.
She told me he had promised to marry her.
What a sucker.

I told her he had several other girlfriends  that he had promised to marry as well.
I told her he invited them to come to our home. (lies)

I  asked why she had not been invited to come to our home, when all the others had come.  (more lies)
She broke down. She cried .

I did not feel bad for lying to her.

She vowed to never see him again.

My plan was done.
Revenge was had.
I left the next day with my head held high.

He contacted me, begged for another chance.
It will never happen again he said.

Too right it won’t.
I never went back.
My sanity returned and I realised life was much better without the cad.

The Pilot

Our eyes met across a crowded room.
Just for a few seconds we were the only two people in that room.

Sounds like the stuff from movies, but no,
it does happen in real life.

Back in the 1970’s.
Somewhere in the South Pacific, in the prime of my life , things like this happened.

I am sure I am not the only one to have experienced these kinds of happenings.

There seemed to be a party almost every night.
Not just any party, but ones where the elite and famous of that particular place  attended.

I mixed with all manner of people, some Politicians, Heads of State and others working for the United Nations.
It was a multi cultural world.
Folk from all over Europe, Polynesians, Australians, New Zealanders and Americans.

Every week for several weeks I found myself locking eyes with that same man.

Time went on and I decided to do an island hop. I bought my ticket and waited to board the small plane.
Seems like I was the only one boarding that particular flight.

I was pleasantly surprised when the pilot boarded…

It was him.

The one who I had been gazing at for the past few weeks.

He introduced himself as Dave.

He knew who I was.
He had made it his business to find out.
This was going to be a great trip.

Just the Pilot and I.

Dave invited me to sit next to him in the cockpit.
He showed me the workings of the plane and made me feel right at ease.

The plane was scheduled to visit several different islands and as there were no other passengers  Dave suggested I go along to all of them with him..
My stop was one of the first but he told me he had to go back there later on as he would be sleeping on that particular island.

I did not argue as I was getting a free ride and going to islands I had not visited before.

Dave was from the USA and was a single guy. This was music to my ears.

We got along like the proverbial house on fire.
Chatting about all kinds of things.
Much laughter followed by a fair amount of flirting.

Before I knew it things became hot and steamy.
Hang on though, who was flying the plane.?

Don’t worry, Dave whispered, the auto pilot will take care of the plane.
This was a first for me.
It was a little unnerving ,but I trusted Dave knew what he was doing.
Besides, it would not be the worst way to leave this earth.
I would probably be unconscious before we crashed.

Nothing bad happened to the plane though.
That auto pilot knew what he was doing.
We landed at the first island and dropped off supplies.
Then onto the next.
We visited six islands altogether. Had a romantic  seaside lunch on one of them.

All too soon it was time to land back where I was originally heading.
Would you like to come and stay with me for the night Dave asked.
Of course I would.
He was a fun guy.
He wined and dined me that evening.
We talked a lot more and then he had to go back and start his day flying.
He promised to pick me up the next week.
He did just that.
When I disembarked at my stop, Dave gave me a big hug and suggested we do it all again some time.
I did many trips with Dave.
He was a top bloke.
After a couple of years we went our separate ways.

Me back to Australia and Dave back to the USA.
I often look back with fond memories on that special time.

The Mile High Club

I had  always thought this was a mythical club.
I mean to say, who has sex in a crowded aeroplane? Is it really possible?
Well, yes it is possible. The Club exists.
Furthermore, it does not take too much effort to join.
Back in the late 1960’s  early 1970’s. The time was ripe for free love, don’t give a shit what anyone thinks, and the era of the Hippie.
Aids had not yet reached our shores and sexually transmitted complaints were few and far between.
We may have been Hippies and whatever  else but we were clean people.
There were few drugs getting about, people still worked for a living, even Hippies worked.
I was traveling alone.
Flying from Melbourne to the South Pacific.
Next to me sat an friendly kind of chap. He was easy to talk to. A good few years younger than I as well.
We chatted about all manner of things before the question came up.
” have you joined the Mile High Club” ? he asked.
I had to admit that I had never had the opportunity and that I had thought it a myth.
Hell no, he said, it is real. Everyone needs to experience it at least once in their lifetime.
Well, that was all I needed,  a little encouragement and a kind good looking bloke.
Those little knee rugs the airlines used to provide were ideal for the first contact.
No one in the surrounding seats even suspected anything was going on.
When the heat became a bit intense it was time to move on to the toilets.
This is where the real business is carried out. 
This is where one becomes an inductee into the Club.
All too soon the loudspeakers were asking people to return to their seats and buckle up.
I have to say, it was a great trip. The time went quickly and when the plane landed I was smiling..
I never did know his name.

Saturday Night at the Movies (and more)

Saturday night at the Movies and then the Dance.
This was a weekly event, not to be missed.
I lived a good half hour drive from town and, luckily for me, one or the other parent was always willing to drive me into town so I could go to the movies.
My Mother would usually attend the movies , just to make sure I was behaving.
Dad, on the other hand , would go and play night bowls at the local bowling green.I could sit with whomever I wished on Dad nights.
I was always hoping it was Dad who ferried me into town.
There was a boy I liked to sit next to and if Mum came along my plans had to change.
No boyfriends until 16 she used to say.
Heck, I was 13, old enough in my eyes anyway.
Dad trusted me.
Several of my school friends would be at the theatre as well.
They were allowed to sit next to boys.
I disliked my mother immensly at this stage of my life.
Party pooper she was.
Later on I realised  that Mum put herself out to take me into town.
She probably did not like many of the movies let alone all us squarking teens.
At the time though, I felt hard done by.
How embarrassing to have ones Mother sitting in amongst the group.
Later down the track I realised that Mum was the one who suffered, not me.
Many a great movie was seen. West Side Story, Psycho, The Sound of Music, Spartacus  and many many more.
It was at was at the movies that I had my first kiss…
Obviously on a night when Mum was not in attendance.
How exciting was that.
I don’t remember talking to the guy but he leant over and gave me a quick kiss.
On the cheek, very discreet.
My heart was racing and I was overwhelmed by this kiss.
His name was Athol. I will always remember that.
After the movies my friends and I moved on to the Town Hall for the dance.
Mum would drop me off at the Town Hall door and then she would go and visit my Grandmother until it was midnight.
Yes, surprisingly the dance ended at midnight.
There were great local  bands pumping out the music. No DJ playing  records.
We had the real thing.
Most of the dancing was ballroom style.
Waltzes, foxtrots, pride of erin and many more. Everyone knew how to dance.
There was no alcohol allowed and anyone who misbehaved was sent out of the
The girls would all sit along the wall waiting to be asked to dance.  The boys would walk along eyeing us off and then pick someone for that particular dance.
Most times a girl danced with a different partner every dance.
Boys had manners back then.
They dressed well and were polite.
Athol always came around to the dance.He would always ask me for the last dance of the night.
If a boy asked you for the last dance, it meant he was a bit keen on you.
That was our special time.
Not many words were spoken, we just danced. Somehow no dialogue was required.
A girl knew when a boy was keen on her.
Mind you, he never did kiss me again.
In hindsight, I guess he wasn’t really that keen or I would have  received more than that one kiss .
All too soon it would be midnight.
Time to go home.
We bade each other farewell and hoped the next week would go by quickly so we could do it all again.


Caravanning is not for everyone.
In fact I would say it is not for the faint hearted.
My first experience with caravanning was about twenty years ago. I was so excited.
A new way to holiday.
By all accounts, from friends, strangers and aquaintances, this was the only way to holiday.
First a van has to be purchased.
So many decisions. Singlebeds or double?
Ensuite or no ensuite . No ensuite means less water to carry. Water is heavy. 1 litre weighs I kilogram.
The average caravan has about 400kg payload. You may think 400 kg is a lot of weight, but no, it is not. If one has extra water for shower and loo then this can quite easily take up 200kg of that weight allowance.
Then there is the kitchen.
Gas bottles, stove , microwave, let’s throw in a camp oven and a slowcooker. And don’t forget the coffee machine.
By now you are up to over 300 kg.
Gosh. Who would have thought these things weigh so much?
Still plenty of allowance though. Linen, outdoor chairs and table. Of course you need a barbeque as well. Hoses, a shovel, a mat so the sand does not come into the van so easily. Oh, almost forgot the annexe. Might need that too. That annexe must weigh at least 40kg. Hmmm.
What next. What have you forgotten. Oh dang, you might need some clothes and food. How could you forget those things.
Time to weigh it all.
Oh no, 600kg. Gosh there wasn’t that much in the van, surely not.
Go home, unpack half of it and try again. Better result. Down to 399kg.
So, hook it up to the tow vehicle making sure you have the right size vehicle to safely tow the van. Check lights and brakes etc and fix what isn’t working.
By this time you are starting to wonder if this caravanning thing is going to be a holiday or just a lot of hard work.
Definitely a lot of hard work.
Time has come to begin the trip. All good for the first 100 kilometres.
What is that noise? Was that smoke coming from the van wheels?
Uh oh, the car is running a bit hot.
Better stop for a while under a shady tree.
What? No trees to be seen anywhere.
Temp is over 40C. Press on.
Hey, there is a nice river down that slope. Pull in and stop for the night. Ahhh. The serenity. Beautiful sunset and calming waters.
Actually, this caravanning thing seems pretty good after all.
Be prepared for lots of things to go wrong.
Take an extra suitcase of patience and a whole bagfull of humour.After that first initial trip, you are sure to be hooked on the van life.
It gets easier each year.
Just a word of advice though.
If you are vanning with a partner make sure you are the best of friends. There is no where to escape an angry or frustrated partner. Hopefully this may help some of you decide on whether or not to give it a go.

Mums Chooks

Mums’ Chooks
My Mum had chooks.
Lots of them.
40 in fact.
Mum decided to go to the UK to the Chelsea Flower Show and asked me to care for her beloved chooks.
Ok, so my sons and I moved out to the farm for a month so as to care for these creatures.
I have never liked chooks.
Dirty filthy things that they are.
Chooks are canabalistic, they will attack and eat a sick member of the flock.
All in all, I do not like them.
Heck, I do not even like eating eggs, but, Mum loved her chooks so I steeled myself to care for them in the best way I could.
The first week went without incident. Let them out into the paddock in the daytime, collect eggs, feed them some grain and lock them up at night so the foxes do not get them.
Nothing to this I thought.
One morning I went out to do the daily chores and disaster had struck.
Every chook was covered in fleas!
I know not from where these fleas appeared.
What to do.
The chooks would surely die if not relieved of their fleas.
I remembered I had some chemicals to spray on my horses when they got itch mites.
Maybe this would do the trick.
I sprayed the chooks, actually almost drowned them, but they recovered and no more fleas to be seen.
Phewww that was a close call.
A friend came to visit.
Between us we had 4 black dogs.
These dogs had never shown any interest in the farm animals so we went inside for a cuppa.
All was quiet , we talked and talked, then it was time for the friend to leave.
Where were the dogs?
After a couple of whistles ,the dogs appeared, oh no, was that feathers on their mouth?
Better check the chooks.
8 black chooks and 7 white ones dead.
Dead as dodos.
Just lying there like they were sleeping.
What was I going to do.
Mum was due home in a few days.
I dreaded facing her.
She was a savage woman at times.
Especially if something happened to her darn chooks.
I was beside myself with worry.
I sat there aimlessly flicking through the local paper, looking for I don’t know what.
Suddenly I saw it.
The ad.
Chooks for sale.
I quickly rang the number.
Do you have any black and white chooks I asked.
Sorry was the reply. Only brown ones.
Oh no, I can’t replace them with brown ones.
The place down the road has black and white chooks the lady told me. Maybe you can get some from there.
I rang the next place. It was a chook farm. Poor things locked in small cages laying eggs all day and night.
Heck, now I was feeling sorry for chooks. Must be getting soft.
The man agreed to sell me the required number of chooks. Not cheap either.
I went to collect them.
Golly gee, the chooks barely had a feather on them but you could just make out their colour from a few tufty feather on their heads.
Ok, put them in boxes, load up the car and off we went home.
The noise and stink was bad. Very bad.
By the time I arrived back at Mums place the whole car stank and was covered in liquid chook shit. Ughhhhh
I released the critters into the pen, they were joyous little bald things
savouring their freedom.
I could relax a little now.
Next morning there were loads of eggs in the nests. Must have been a thank you from the new residents.
Mum returned and first thing she did was to go out and count the chooks.
All there! Whatever happened to the feathers she asked.
I pleaded ignorance and said they just dropped their feathers overnight. Maybe I fed them too much barley and they got hot.
They are laying well though.
Til the day she passed, Mum never ever knew the truth.
As a goodwill gesture, she left me the chooks when she passed.
I gave them away!

snippets of my life as it is and how it was