Had a great time at Lane Cove National Park last Easter Sunday. We spent it with some relatives and friends. Ananda especially had a blast running around. There’s so much Australia has to offer when it comes to enjoying the great outdoors. They have lakes, beaches, hills, mountains and anyone who enjoys the open air will really find many places to his liking. I have been to Teregal, Kiyama, and a few other places and I can’t wait to bring my family there. One of these days, perhaps.
What I find peculiar though is the weather. Under the autumn sun, one can feel hot but when you go to the shade, you feel the cold creeping in. I still have to get used to that.
Lydia, Mio and I have gotten our anti-flu shots. At least we are ready for the winter season.
Nino, Ala’s boyfriend arrived a few days ago from Manila, and that same evening, they drove with friends to Byron Bay, some 10 hours away by car, to watch a blues festival. Just last week, the Stones performed in Sydney for 48,000 thousand people. If I had known about it, I would have gone. Last night, ACDC performed as the finale number of a 3-day rock festival. By the 28th of the month, Larry Carlton, a jazz guitarist is performing in a small venue in Sydney. I feel like taking Mio to watch. That should be fun.
It’s too bad U2 canceled their gig here since Bono’s mom has fallen ill and so he took a break from touring to be with her. Looking forward to other gigs coming this way. It seems that Sydney has a lot to offer also for concert goers.
On the eve of Easter, we went to mass at the Church of the Holy Rosary and it was a looong one. Manila has long masses too during Easter but I can’t seem to recall them being this long. Apparently, a lot of things go on during Easter ceremonies here including the baptism and confirmation of new converts. They also had too many songs and readings that night. All in all, the mass was close to three hours. It was also a cold night. Mio and I were freezing as we walked back to the car while Lydia was kept warm with her ‘hot flashes’ (which I call ‘power surges’. Ha ha!). The chill, the stars, the company and the fact that it was our first Easter mass here made it all quite memorable. All those things aside, how can it not be? For years and years, Easter mass for us who lived in the Philippines had always been a sweltering and humid summer affair. The contrast did not escape us as we groaned at the prospect of a ‘tank top’ Christmas which is Oz’s hottest time of the year. This IS the land down under after all.
I just read an interview I did before I left Manila and I was actually jolted by what was written. I seem like a different person now compared to when I gave it. At this moment, I feel so distant about the feelings I had expressed in the interview—the tiredness with the political situation, the inertia that seemed to plague life back home and the pessimism. I just feel so different now. I feel awakened, revived, energetic and on learning mode. As I suspected would happen, I already am meeting new aspects of myself which were not challenged enough to express themselves back home. Everyday, I face uncertainties, even fears and meet them head on–new ways of doing things, new information, new places to drive to, new situations, etc.. And knowing them, befriending them until I can tame and make them part of my new but ever growing comfort zone is what I try to do. And I feel such a sense of bigness each time I do it. Truly, the unknown is just another ‘me’ I haven’t met! I am creatively expanding, growing while settling in this part of the world and imprinting myself on it!
In my case, whoever said that you can’t teach an old dog new tricks was not talking about age for sure. I am over half a century old but still crazy enough to jump into this adventure. You are only old when you don’t want to learn anymore.
It’s time for a haircut and I am at this point where I can’t decide if I want to grow my hair as I used to sport it in the 70s, or shave my head completely. Hey, after all, I’m in a new place and I can be whoever I want to be—a hippie or skinhead. Mio wants me to grow my hair. (I tell you, he’s a real 70’s soul born in the wrong century!). But growing it means having to groom it and all and I don’t know if I like to go through the trouble! So maybe I should just go skinhead. Lydia’s been daring me to do this! Since my forehead keeps expanding anyway, unahan ko na kaya? But then, it may be too jarring for people who will be watching me in concert in two months. If I do, at least I may resemble Ken Wilber, my idol! Decision, decisions!