December 25th, 2023Just sayin’…
By Donna Kelly
Kyle and I are having an orphans’ Christmas this year. I literally am an orphan now, and one of his parents lives in another state and one in another country.
Now it may sound sad, especially if you are used to big celebrations, but we have had some of our best Christmases alone.
Two were in Queensland, one in Cairns and one on the Gold Coast. The Cairns one was quirky. We bundled up some chicken and bread rolls and champagne (simple tastes) and headed to some waterfalls known as the Crystal Cascades.
It was really hot and muggy and we ate and drank a little and then decided to go for a swim. But the water was dark and we kept thinking about crocodiles and in the end we freaked ourselves out and packed up the picnic.
We then headed back into town, watched a James Bond movie at the cinema and then had dinner at a Chinese restaurant – which was packed with Chinese tourists oddly enough. Wouldn’t you think they would be at an Australian restaurant sampling kanga and emu meat. Eating the coat of arms of Australia.
Quick fact. The emu and the kangaroo were chosen for the coat of arms because neither of them can walk backwards. So Australia is always moving forwards. Hmm.
The second Queensland orphans’ Christmas saw me working for the day. I was a Japanese speaking driver guide – back in the 90s – and the day started with picking up my itinerary from a darkened Gold Coast office about 3am then driving to collect my passengers from Brisbane Airport about 4.30am.
Then it was a day of fun, taking them to their hotels, then off to a sheep/ whipcracking place for breakfast, then Movieworld for the day, then out to dinner.
Kyle, who was not working that day, kept calling asking when I would be back. I finally turned up about 9pm and found a veritable seafood feast spread out on the floor as an indoor picnic. It was fantastic but had not been without difficulty.
Kyle had gone to buy all the goods from a local supermarket but at the checkout his card was declined. The staffer, instead of saying “do you have another card?” said nastily “you don’t have any money in your account”. So Kyle said something equally unpleasant back and stormed off.
Of course, he rallied, worked out his finances and returned, after a shift change, and shopped again. He is nothing if not determined.
Not sure what we will do this year, but I am sure lots of food and drink will be involved. And a few calls to friends and family. Maybe a present or two.
It’s been another funny, peculiar, not ha-ha, year. Covid is still sort of wandering around, but at least we don’t have that same fear which I don’t think anyone from other states understand.
And that terrible accident has taken its toll on many people and continues to be in the headlines.
So I hope you get a chance to have a bit of a silly season. I think we all need a bit of silliness or joy or whatever makes you smile. And drink the champagne (unless you are an abstainer!) and eat the pavlova and spread a bit of good cheer.
Our next edition is out January 1, 2024. The New Year. So this is my chance to say thanks for reading, for advertising, for supporting and for enjoying a publication that is all about Connecting the Community.
Have a wonderful Christmas, or whatever it is that you do, and catch you in the New Year. I hope it’s a good one, without any fear. Just sayin’…