motorcycles, travel, friendship, respect… I may drift off into WTF-land at times so hang in there.

Life Is Good.

G’day

Like most people, I tend to go on autopilot during the work week, and just do the same old same old: Wake up, go to work, <insert tasks for the day here>, come home, eat, catch up with my family and go to sleep.

Repeat.

I’m guessing unless you’re one of the fortunate few that don’t have to work for a living, this pretty much describes your week day as well.

The weekend is what most of us look froward too.

Pretty mundane right?

I thought so too until a friend said something which gave me pause. In that moment I realised the past 10 months have been extraordinary for The Pillion and I.

2015 Harley Davidson Fatboy Standard (Sorry for the lousy pic)

2015 Harley Davidson FatBoy Standard (Sorry for the lousy pic)

Our youngest, Jaja, graduated from high school in November; and for the third time in five years I was the proudest bloke in the suburb.

That day marked the final milestone for our kids, they had all achieved something neither The Pillion nor I had achieved: They finished high school.

A bonus in having them all out of school meant our vacation patterns would make a serious let turn for the better. No longer can the airlines, tourist operators and hoteliers extort money from us just because it is “high season”.

Does everyone know how to say Customer Gouging?

A month later, in December, The Bar Tender traded up employers. Even though he had been promised much by his then employer, they delivered little.

No training, limited hours and a duty manager with a bad attitude towards his staff.

What a contrast his new employer is.

They’ve given him more hours, more training, and exposed him to more responsibility in a few months than what he had received in the previous two years with his previous employer.

He’s much happier, and has risen to the challenges put before him with aplomb.

With all this encouragement and positivity, (is that even a word?); he decided in January to enroll in a Diploma Of Hospitality at college: Another proud moment.

Photo Credit: Susan Collard - Canon EOS 1100D

Photo Credit: Susan Collard – Canon EOS 1100D

By the end of February, The Pillion and I were on the road. For seven weeks we toured four states, one territory, crossed Bass Strait and covered around 8,500km (5,280 miles).

This was by far the longest and most ambitious vacation we’d ever undertaken, not to mention we were on a motorcycle the whole time. We relished in the adventure and are already planing our next extended vacation.

By May our eldest, The Pillion In A Million was off on another of here world adventures.

In early 2015 she spent two months touring India (Link) and Nepal; in November 2015 she went to Japan for two weeks. This time we wouldn’t see her again for at least 6 months (Yes I’m counting!).

Since leaving us in May she’s been to Singapore, Thailand, The United States, Canada, Mexico, The Caribbean and Colombia.

San Andrés Colombia Ocean Water Slide

San Andrés Colombia Ocean Water Slide – Courtesy The Pillion In A Million

Her itinerary extends into November, but it’s looking more and more like she wont be home until January or February with all the additional destinations she has added in. Plus she’s already warned us she’ll only be home long enough to get a working visa for her next destination.

I don’t envy her, really I don’t… much…

July saw Jaja enroll for a Diploma in I.T. at college. He’d been looking for work for six months with not a single interview. Very disappointing.

It was getting to him and annoyed the hell out of me, because here was a kid that wanted to work, but couldn’t get a break. All the while the nightly news is reporting a shortage of labor and that employers wanted to get more overseas workers in on 457 visas. Grrrrr.

In late August I got a call from “me Mum”.

She dropped a thought bubble in my lap, which has caused us to re-focus the latter part of the year. I might elaborate when it’s all done and dusted; I need to see how it all pans out first.

Towards the end of October there’s a visit the butcher planned for The Pillion and in December I get to see my nephews again while they are up for their grandfathers 80th birthday.

I’m really looking forward to that.

In amongst all of this there’s been 3 rounds of redundancies at work, meet-ups with some most excellent friends from Melbourne who we haven’t seen for ages. (Happy Birthday T-Bone by the way), and sadly the loss of another friend to the Black Dog.

It has been, and will continue to be, an extraordinary year for us. That’s for sure.

I can’t remember another one quite like this one.

But you know what I’m looking forward to?

I’m looking forward to the day when Jaja is remotely manipulating a projector via a whiz-bang network he has designed and built, as The Bar Tender creates one of his specially blended secrete recipe cocktails while The Pillion In A Million regales us with tales of her adventures from abroad.

Life is good.

Cheers


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12 responses

  1. Andy

    Ha..it’s funny when you suddenly realise when the kids get older and depart the nest you have more arse time(times two) on the bike with the better half.
    When they move a couple of states away just gives you another destination to motor over to, Texas(flat south)to Colorado, Rockies /twisty mountain roads on a bike(heaven) don’t need to explain how much I’m looking forward to next summer… I’m even smiling thinking about it…free lodgings too

    Liked by 1 person

    September 14, 2016 at 1:28 AM

  2. All mine are still at home…. Well except the one thats travelling that is.

    I’m looking forward to the day when I’m in your position that’s for sure

    Thanks for stopping by.

    Like

    September 14, 2016 at 8:50 PM

    • Andy

      Yep I couldn’t wait but guess what, just as they get to the stage of being able to string a sentence and actually talk to you, they leave and you end up bloody missing them, funny how that goes…..

      Liked by 1 person

      September 24, 2016 at 8:12 PM

      • Andy I have three. The eldest is currently in Peru and I missed her, she’s been gone since May.

        The other two, both boys are rarely home and always out doing bloke stuff or working.

        I suppose it’s something that, like you, I will have to get you used to.

        Now I kinda know how my parents felt when I moved out.

        Like

        September 24, 2016 at 8:22 PM

        • Andy

          The wife said the same about us taking her mums grandkids (our 3, 2 boys and a lassie, funny that) away, Scotland over to Texas, as you say now we know how our parents felt…. My girls just back from Japan,was in India with her work a couple of years back,they get to see more of the world than us, I suppose as parents we done something right, christ knows what though….lol 😁

          Liked by 1 person

          September 24, 2016 at 8:39 PM

          • Yeah I’m still waiting for the instruction manual for ours 😆

            Like

            September 24, 2016 at 8:41 PM

          • Andy

            You just know if it does come it’ll be in Swedish with a full chapter missing on the teenage years….. And the help centre telephone number will be your mums…. 😀

            Liked by 1 person

            September 24, 2016 at 10:55 PM

      • Andy I have three. The eldest is currently in Peru and I missed her, she’s been gone since May. The other two both boys are rarely home and always out doing bloke stuff or working.

        I suppose it’s something that, like you, I will have to get you send to.

        Noe I kinda know how my parents felt when I moved out.

        Like

        September 24, 2016 at 8:22 PM

  3. I am glad that 2016 has been such a good year for you. Sometimes it is nice to look back at all that has been and realized how good life can be. That gets lost with the mundane droning of going to work every day.

    Liked by 1 person

    September 15, 2016 at 2:09 AM

    • Sometimes get a bit apprehensive when I see the things piling up ahead of me, But, when I look back, it always turned out easier than what I had anticipated. Hind sight is 20/20 as they say.

      Like

      September 19, 2016 at 8:29 AM

  4. LB

    Your vision for the future of your children in that last paragraph is perfect. Just what we want for our children. Happy, hardworking, productive members of society … children you can be proud of.

    Liked by 1 person

    September 19, 2016 at 7:22 AM

    • Thank you Laurie,

      Our main goal has always been that they have an easier time negotiating life than what we had. Much the same goal as what our parents had for us I guess.

      An instruction book at the birth of each child would have been nice though 😉

      Like

      September 19, 2016 at 8:31 AM

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