Friday, December 24, 2004

'Twas the night before Christmas....

And I've got bed sheets to wash, clothes to pack, gifts to wrap, and finances to worry about (Body Corporate fees for the next quarter arrived yesterday - a nice little Christmas bonus!)

Heading over to Merilyn's this evening for dinner. Depending on the weather tomorrow I'm planning an early trip to the beach before heading to Mittagong and then onto Basin View.

Very much looking forward to a few days of quiet. Was going to get my hands on the borrowed laptop to take with me - but have decided that if I want to write I can do it the old fashioned way with pen and paper. I'll Pick up the laptop post Christmas and make sure I've got everything I need to take away then.

It's funny - I've been deliberately not writing the last few weeks - saving all my ideas for Clarion. As a result my mind is full of ideas (most of these will probably vanish when I come to actually putting them on paper).

The first package of Clarion Stories for critique has arrived - this makes it all seem very real and very close - I guess that's 'cos it is! I've worked my way through them and made notes - so I'm feeling very efficient.

The office is very quiet this afternoon with just Kathy and I holding fort. The Mayor's just dropped in. We're shutting up shop at 3.00pm. From the silence of the phones I think everyone else in Sydney has already declared it the holiday season!

Ho, ho, ho to you all.

Wednesday, December 22, 2004

Eleven sleeps to go!

Starting reading Margo Lanagan's 'Black Juice' the other evening (Margo being one of our Clarion tutors). It's really, really good and I'd highly recommend it. That's if you can get hold of a copy of it. Emma lent me hers after a trip to the local library and a visit to Galaxy Books failed to produce.

I'm starting to prepare for what I'll take away with me. Terence has provided one of the absolute essentials - a Brisbane Street Directory! This dramatically increases my chances of actually finding my way to Nathan Campus of Griffith University on second of January.

Of course what clothes to pack is another tricky one, and how many pairs of shoes to take?

The conveners have found $150 for each of the three apartments to use towards our Week 1 grocery shopping. Being a car owner I volunteered to do a supermarket visit on the Sunday afternoon before induction and sent out an email to my roommates asking them to forward any special dietry requirements. It seems they don't care what they eat - but they're fussy drinkers! Soy Milk, Orange and Mango Juice and Decaf coffee but no food requests. Hmmm guess I better stack the shopping trolley with basic 'c' essentials like chocolate, champagne and caviar!

Monday, December 20, 2004

Friday night was our staff Christmas Party. The team from my office had all agreed that we'd glam it up with feather boas. Having never caught a bus wearing a feather boa previously I did notice that I seemed to draw some attention.

At about 11pm I made 'kicked on' and head into town to meet up with my mate Peter and some of his friends. Lots of fun but I paid for it on Saturday.

Saturday lunch was a get together with some of the Sydney based Clarionites at Nathan's house. It was great! Everyone seemed to 'click' and we had some good conversations about writing, what we think it will be like and lots of humour. Still being a little tired and emotional from the previous evening I'm not sure I gave my best first impression - but I figure I've got six weeks to redeem myself.

So I"ve now met: Mark Barnes, Emma Munro, Deborah McDonall, Nathan Burrage and I already knew me!

A lot of them have written novel length pieces. Am lost in admiration!

Saturday night was a bit of a pre Christmas catch up at Wahroongah with Random, Noel, Tom, Chris, Zoe and Peter. Then on Sunday out to Camden to catch up with Gail and family - and Terence last night.

Was absolutely wonderful catching up with everyone - but am very much looking forward to a quiet, early night at home tonight!