ALIVE BUT NOT KICKING.
|Aging old fart.|
What a bugger is growing old before you think it's time to.
Long gone are those heady days of no responsibility and political incorrectness, that have been replaced by the garbage that infects our planet today.
Long gone also is waking up after a heavy nights sleep on the front deck of the surf club at 6:30am and paddling either the surf ski or Malibu out the back for cleansing of ones body and soul in the sacred surf.
No more body surfing with all of my surf lifesaving companions and no more long drinking sessions at the Newport Arms or Mona Vale Pub consuming that magnificent amber fluid that prevented us from dehydrating.
Today, if one is fortunate to have 2 to 3 hours sleep, one awakes, usually with terrible cramps in either the legs or feet and injects the insulin, then swallows a bucket full of multi coloured tablets and stumbles off in the direction of the kitchen to prepare and devour a meal that wouldn't satisfy a dormouse. Then onto the lounge, turn on the gogglebox and fall asleep for at least the next 2 hours or so, missing what you wanted to watch in the first place.
It's not all bad news though, many years ago I was swept off my feet by a beautiful and cheeky brunette who very soon became the missus and it was because of her love and support that I have survived to this day. One bonus happened to be this well put together female enjoyed downing the odd noggin of slops as well as a good quality drop of either red or white vino. All was not lost.
When I left my beloved surf club I burnt too many bridges and lost touch with many people I simply should not have, whereas my good wife Gabi maintained a large circle of close friends who I was fortunate to meet during the early months of our relationship.
All of the relatives on my side of the family throughout the years have all achieved immortality and those who live on have moved to unknown regions and sadly are no longer part of my life. Gabi however has managed to keep in touch with and has remained a close knit member of her relloes. Once again, during those first months together I was introduced to many friends and family members, who in a short space of time welcomed me into their circle. Gabi's friends quickly became mine as well and what pleased me no end was how her family members accepted me as one of their own.
I still have crystal clear fond memories of those foodie night gatherings with good friends, particularly the Chinese and Italian evenings. We would commence eating at 7pm and the last course would be served at around 11pm.
What has made life more than just bearable has been the many family gatherings that bring just about everyone together and are responsible for many a culinary masterpiece from not only the girls, but from some of the boys as well. At almost every new excuse for a celebration, the bar seems to be raised higher when it comes to the catering.
I have always considered myself to be truly blessed to be a part of this lovely group of people.
They also breed like rabbits. At just about every gathering there appears to be either a new tiny girl or boy, or a well rounded fat female tummy.............
|Gabi (Birthday girl)|
|Matriarch Margaret and Batesy (Birthday boy)|
|Sarah and Renae (Kylie and Patrick)|
|Alexander (Carly and Ben)|
|Violet (Jasmine and Paul)|
|Carter (Sarah and Tia)|
|Annelise (Carly and Ben)|
Speaking of well rounded fat female tummies......
|"Bloody hell Sarah, don't sneeze" |
The above photos were taken at, what was for us a small family gathering to celebrate the 70th birthdays of Father Kevin Bates and my good wife Gabi. At Xmas we tend to block out the setting sun at Pirate Point north side of the Hunter River, Stockton, Newcastle.