On the basis that life is a journey, this relatively small twelve months of it has been a busy one.
As with other years, family have made up a large part of what occupied our time: whether through thought, words or action. We have raised three interesting children and now, as adults, they continue to surprise and delight us. This year has seen them all settle into relationships and not that it matters, but we are happy with their choices. Its their lives they are creating now but it's easier for us if we like who they are with.
In order of official relationship status, Sarah married David in July, Sam and Jacqui were engaged in October and Chris and Carly (and the delightfully inquisitive and witty Cameron) have been an item for more than twelve months. The partners all have their strengths, their commonalities and their differences. As time progresses, perhaps the differences will become less important as our sense of family grows. With all the creativity, intelligence and verve that David, Jacqui and Carly bring to the table, we will have our work cut out for us when the grandparenting officially starts.
Sue and I had our travelling curtailed in April when Sue's back and my growing distaste for the work of camping led us to sell our camper trailer and leave canvas for good. It was an easy decision in the end. Our last trip - the Great Ocean Road - ended up in cabins and a long, slow drive home nursing Sue's back. We contented ourselves with weekend day trips mostly, seeing some of the rougher and more remote places within a few hundred kilometres of home. Of course, there was always Yamba in July.
We have fixed our travel problem by purchasing an Avan Cruiser late in the year and look forward to being on the road for at least part of January.
Unfortunately, we lost a friend when Jenny Gibbens died in the early part of the year but it must be said that her funeral was truly a celebration of her life. Each of the speakers coloured parts of the picture that was Jenny in glorious colours.
Sue's year has been one of constantly maintaining the fitness of her back, changes at work which have made her much more comfortable with what she does and the adjustment to not being able to pot (that's ceramic not plant). She has completed several art courses and her portraiture work is outstanding. She is as reliable as ever and the friend everyone wants and needs.
My poetry has gone very well this year, having been made a Cafe Poet by Poetry Australia in February. The poetry group I established at Cafe 2340 - the Postcode Poets - have gone from strength to strength and other associated projects with the library and art gallery have been successful. I've done gigs all over the place. I also became a community presenter for the Black Dog Institute and an interview about my life I recorded with Richard Fidler will air on Conversations (ABC radio) in January. A third book of poetry is on the way, probably mid 2014.
Enjoy the photos at the Photo tab . Merry Christmas and more travels in 2014.