Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Day 25....in which we upload photos to our computer

I write this post with tears in my eyes. Why? Because it's the last one for a long time in which we have photos.

Why should I be so upset about this? It's really ridiculous of me.

I thought the other day about how lucky I am. Yeah. I lost photos. But is that really such a big loss? I still have my memories. I still have my family. I still have my friends.

My dad jokes sometimes that if we don't have a video or photographs of an event, it will be forgotten. Will we even remember it happened? I guess that's what I'm afraid of. But on the other hand, there are beautiful things in our life that we don't have photographs of. How about all our dreams every night? I love my dreams. I treasure them. They're some of my best memories. I have no photographs of them. And I wonder...if I did have videotapes and pictures of all my dreams, would the memories of them be as surreal and beautiful?

Perhaps the days, in which we lack photos, will become a dreamlike memory. Maybe in some ways, the lack of photographs will make the memories more precious. I don't know......

Anyway, I guess I should start talking about day twenty-five. This is hard because I can't stop crying. I'm not really that sad....just emotional. It could be because I'm getting my period soon.   Well, so.... if I sound drunk in this post, that's why.

That night (or morning) I dreamed my parents had joined Peter Kennedy's church. I have no idea why I dreamed that.

I finished reading Gough Whitlam's book and started reading Leviathan by John Birmingham.

Our plan for the day was to walk to the farmer's market at Moore Park. I know it was Jack's idea to walk there, but I can't remember if it was his idea to go there in the first place. I know it wasn't part of our original plans.

Gina works around there. I know one of the reasons we went there is to see her. But is that the true and only reason we went? At this point in my life, I feel it must be. I'm so totally in love with Gina. I'd walk ten miles through streets that smelled like vomit just to see her. She is that awesome. Back then though...I know already I liked her a lot. I just can't remember if we went to Moore Park to see her. Or did we actually want to go to the Farmer's Market?

And if it was Jack's idea to go to the market in the first place, did he want food or was he just eager to see Gina again?

We're like the Gina fan club here. When some people have a decision to make, they ask what Jesus or Brian Boitano would do. Our family asks what Gina would do. Okay, I'm exaggerating a little. We don't do that....yet. But we COULD start. And it would be awesome. You can't email Jesus or Brian. But I CAN email Gina.

Before all the Gina and food stuff happened, Tim went on a run.



He's a fit man. Running gives him the physical and mental strength to do important tasks like putting sheets back on the doona.

Jack and I got bored waiting for him to return from his run. We decided we'd start walking to Moore Park. He could meet up with us later.

I think Tim and I were a tiny bit nervous about getting to Moore Park because we had an awful time finding it last year.

This time things started out quite well. We walked south on Crown towards the direction of the park. Then we went east on Fitzroy. Something about Crown must have impressed Jack because he mentioned wanting to live there. It was the first time, in a long time, that Jack showed interest in moving to Australia. I did tell him though that if we lived in Australia, we probably wouldn't be able to afford living so close to the CBD.

We got to what seemed to be Moore Park.



The problem is once we got to the park, I had no idea where to go. I forgot what the farmer's market area looked like. There was a little playground at the beginning of the park. We stopped there for a few minutes.



There was some kind of Korean War memorial nearby. I remember that.....

As we walked (or maybe from the playground) I could see a big mansion. It looked important. I thought maybe the farmer's market was around there.



We walked towards it. When we got close enough, I saw it had nothing to do with any farmer's market. It was a private school for boys. I think I actually wrote about it in one of my biography posts.

Oops. Now we had to walk all the way back through the park. That wasn't so bad because we saw beautiful trees and parrots.

We crossed the street and walked through all these sport places. I think there was a stadium maybe. Then finally we got to the Moore Park Entertainment Quarter. I felt bad that I had gotten us lost and had made Jack walk so far. So....I let him get a drink. We explored the food stands a bit, picked up a couple free samples.



Then I plopped us down in the grass. There's a lot of fun stuff for kids there and Jack was eager to start wasting all our money. I was mean though and forced him to sit with me and wait for Tim. I wanted us to stay still so we could hurry up and all be together again. It's hard to meet up with your husband when your child wants to jump from place to place.

Tim got lost too, but he finally arrived.

We let Jack do some fun stuff.

He did this thing:




We also let him go on some bouncy castle thing.



I had talked to Gina and she said she wouldn't be able to meet with us until a little later. Tim and I debated whether or not to eat lunch. I voted yes. Gina had never mentioned having a lunch break, nor had I mentioned eating with her. Plus, I figured it would be hard for Jack to wait. I figured if Gina DID want to eat lunch, we could eat dessert while she ate her meal. I finally convinced Tim this was a good choice. We walked around looking for our meal.

I picked a pumpkin salad. It was so cute. They serve it in a little Chinese take-out container. I sat back down in the grass and read my book while waiting for Tim and Jack to arrive with their food.



I don't remember what Tim ate. Jack got a sausage roll.



When we finished eating, Jack wanted to go to the playground. This is where we ended up meeting Gina. I think though, that once she arrived, we went straight back to the market. Gina ended up getting the exact same salad I had gotten. She's a fan of it. I didn't love it so much. I was starting to realize that I like pumpkin in theory more than I like it in reality. I'm not sure I'm a huge fan of any type of squash. Although I do like pumpkin as a dessert.

Speaking of dessert. While Gina ate her pumpkin salad, we ate sticky date pudding. Jack and I shared it. Maybe Tim shared it too? Or maybe he got his own dessert. Oh! He did get his own dessert. He bought Anzac biscuits. It was the first time we had ever tried them. I wasn't too impressed...at least not with these particular ones. We bought Arnott's ones later and I loved those.

After we ate, we went back to the playground. Jack climbed on top of the equipment, and from there he played game show host. He made up trivia questions and we had to answer them.



I just remembered something; well, with help from my notes. Tim took Jack to the playground earlier so Gina and I had a chance to talk alone. We had a fun conversation about Australian food. And maybe this is when she told me she's a huge fan of Lost. I was so excited about that. First of all, since I get very passionate about things, I like it when I find other people who are this way. Second, Tim and I watch Lost too. We love it.

Well, eventually Gina had to return to work. We said good-bye and tried to find a bus back. I don't remember the exact details. It wasn't easy for us, but not as big of a struggle as last year. I do know that one thing we learned, on this day, is that you actually have to flag down the bus in Sydney. If you just stand there waiting, they pass you by. This might not be true for all bus stops, but for some of them it is.

I don't remember much about being back in the apartment. I think we probably just rested. I know we uploaded the photos to the computer. It would be the last time we uploaded photos from this particular camera.

In the late afternoon, we headed to Stanmore to visit Michelle and her family. It's kind of fitting that we went to Moore Park on the day we saw Michelle, because Moore Park is part of our how-we-met story.

For those who don't know....here's the tale.

I met Michelle in 2007 at Darling Harbour. Our kids were both playing in Tumbalong Park. I think we sat near each other and started chatting. We had a lot in common. We had a nice conversation about breastfeeding and stuff like that. I really liked her and thought it would be nice to exchange numbers or something. But I was afraid that would be weird. Hi. I'm a dorky American tourist. Will you be my friend?
Then two or three days later, we were at the Moore Park playground, and guess who appears. Michelle! I lost all shyness and declared this must be fate. We have to exchange phone numbers. We've been friends ever since.

And here we were getting together again. Although something was missing.....

Many pounds.

Michelle had surprised us all with a massive weight loss.

I was so proud of her.

And then worried about her because I had once lost a lot of weight myself. It starts out healthy and delightful, then suddenly the numbers on the scale can't get low enough. I told Michelle my eating disorder story. She assured me she was being careful and healthy, but said she understood how it COULD go in bad directions. I joked that I'm going to demand she send me a picture every week so I know she's not turning into a skeleton.

Seriously though. It seems to me that she's going about things in a healthy and reasonable way. She looks beautiful and healthy, not malnourished. See though. If she did have an eating disorder, she'd take the not-malnourished part as a huge insult. She'd probably cry, run ten miles, and then skip several meals.

Seeing her did bring up a lot of conflicting feelings in me....some being not too healthy. You know, I don't think we ever get rid of eating disorders. It's always there.

There was that part of me that was jealous. There was that part of me that longed for the days people would look at me and say Wow! You've lost so much weight. You're so skinny!

There is always a small part of me that wants to be thin again. I'm not talking about Michelle thin--healthy and slender. I'm talking about tiny and fragile looking. As much as I know it's so incredibly wrong, there's a tiny part of me that's still sick.

But later we were in Hawaii and I saw all these super skinny woman. I realized I didn't find them attractive. I know some of them can't really help it, just like a lot of obese women can't easily change their bodies either. But as I don't want to be obese, I also no longer (for the most part) want to be look like a skeleton either. I realized in Hawaii that I want to lose a tiny bit of weight and that's it. I want to have curves. I want to have big breasts. I think women who have this are the most beautiful. And so physically speaking at least.....they're my inspiration.

Last night I dreamed about it too:  I meet up with an overweight woman in my life. She has lost tons of weight and I don't notice it.  I know something is different about her; but she had changed her hair and I figure that's it. Finally, I realize she's lost weight. In two weeks, she has gone from being obese to horribly thin. But it isn't enough for her. She complains about the tiny bits of fat she has left.

Then later, her old self starts popping up again. Her old hair comes back and fat started popping out. I learn that the the fat has been there all along. She has just kept it wrapped up tightly. But now it's coming out again.

I realized in the morning that this represented crazy crash diets. You lose weight super fast, but then it all quickly comes back again.

Anyway, sorry. I'm rambling here.

Back to Michelle.

She was completely enchanted by Tim. He knows how to play the Cello and blessed her with a mini-performance. She was very impressed.

Tim's very talented at impressing people.

Jack played with Michelle's kids.

We all ate some jelly snakes.

Oh. Michelle will hate me if I forget to mention this.

She has a new dog....her fifth child. Little Rosie. A Labradoodle.

After we gave the dog lots of attention and gave Tim a lot of praise, we went out to dinner. Michelle had mentioned this was a Thai pizza place. Tim and I thought that sounded very unique. We pictured pizzas with Thai toppings. It turns out we were wrong. This restaurant was one that served both pizza (regular Italian type) and Thai food. It's nice to be provided with such a choice.

Michelle's beloved aunt and cousin came to join us for the meal. It was an honor to meet important people from Michelle's life. They were very nice!