What do you do?

At 6.00am I woke. I was a kitchen worker, a mother. At 8.30am I dropped the last child off and became a paid worker. Sometimes I worked with people, sometimes with paper, sometimes with a computer. There were no fancy schmancy things like breaks, or cups of tea or lunch until I left at 1.55pm. At 1.55pm I became a housewife. A housewife in the supermarket, buying things for a repeat of today, tomorrow.

At 2.10pm @ home, I was myself. Eating chicken and mayo and artichoke sandwiches all by myself.

At 2.20pm I got in the car to drive to kindy to become a mother again. In the blur between 2.20pm and 5pm, I was a cricket taxi, a cook, a placater, an errander, a husband taxi. The blur from 5pm until 7.15pm was intensive mothering, though not of the kind which means I remembered to make the short people clean their teeth. They treat teeth cleaning as an occasional event, and make comments to visiting family members which reveal their parents' lackadaisical approach to Essential Parenting Activities 101.

I will write about the bits which are not above. I fancy some foccaccia and one of the things about living in Wetville is if I want foccaccia (not what the supermarket claims as foccaccia, but the stuff which tastes like Carluccio's), I have to make it myself. I decided to try a long rise so I put in 1/2 a teaspoon instead of 1.5 teaspoons and now it is on the bench to rise all night. If it works, then I will post the recipe. It is indeed true that my body works better without bread or without much bread, but it is also true that salty, olive oily foccaccia is divine on the tongue.

I began to sew the pink twirly skirt for the smallest outlaw niece. I knitted some more rows. Of COURSE I am still knitting sleeve one.

I thought again of parochialism and self determination in response to a recent comment, and once again ended up thinking about peak oil scenarios and how they might compare with 19th century West Coast transport and trade (stronger links with Melbourne than with the East Coast of New Zealand). I recalled how Canterbury wanted nothing to do with the West Coast until gold was found and then the race was on to build a road (very difficult, many gold-fevered Cantabrians caught a boat from Lyttelton around Nelson and down to Hokitika and this was also treacherous) and tack the West Coast onto Canterbury Province and thus get a share of the gold tax. Echoes of this issue can be found today in discussions of whether the West Coast gets an appropriate share of the money made from our coal mines.

Favourite Handyman, who hails from Auckland, commented once that whereas Auckland was a dirty word in many parts of New Zealand, on the West Coast it seemed not as bad as being from Canterbury.

We don't deal in wide circumferences in our loyalties here in Wetville. When FH and I first fell for the West Coast, we were on holiday in Westport and came to enjoy Green Fern, an organic lager locally brewed. When we moved to Grey District, we naively asked for it in liquor stores and pubs. Err hello, this is Monteiths country, we don't serve Westport beer here.

There are moves afoot to amalgamate the councils, or maybe it is some other administrative unit, but Buller won't have a bar of it. The three mayors have no love for each other it seems.

Throw our lot in with the rest of the South Island and cede from the North? Not likely, may as well go to Aussie if the Cantabrians are going to the run the show...


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