It’s been a funny old 18 months. It’s probably longer than that, and funny probably isn’t the best word to describe what’s been going on, but I’ll stick with it.
I seem to recall a Seinfeld episode where George decided to do everything the opposite of what he thought he should do. It worked out well for him. I’m not doing that yet, but right in this phase of my life I seem to be working in an opposite, or mirror image of what is normal for me.
A good example of that is the weekend just passed. In normal circumstances I might leave the city for a weekend in the bush or beach. These days I travel from the beach to spend my weekends in the city.
Saturday morning I loaded Rigby into the car and off we set for the big smoke. The freeway was sparse of traffic going that way, and I was in a more mellow mood than usual. Usually I’m an active driver. I like to go, and that means I’m generally travelling a few kilometres quicker than the next guy and will overtake many more than overtake me.
I’ve come to realise that driving in many ways is an expression of the inner man. It feels true to me. I think as I do because I can’t stomach being passive. Tagging along behind the guy in front of me taxes my impatience. I don’t want to let things happen. At the same time I like to think I’m smart about it. You see a lot of desperadoes zooming down the freeway zig-zagging through the traffic. Like most people I shake my head at that, and not just because it’s inelegant to zig-zag like that. There seems something fundamentally dumb about such drivers, both in the sense that they incapable of doing anything else, and because you know that they get some kind of macho thrill from it. Gimme a break.
I’m more measured than that. I’ll set my speed and I’ll sidle up to the car in front of me before switching right to overtake. I’ll then get back in the left lane and repeat as necessary. It’s efficient and unpretentious.
This last Saturday though I didn’t really even do that. I set the cruise control for a change at a tad above 100 kmh and sat contentedly in the left hand lane. I was in no hurry, and felt no hurry.
The reason for my visit was to drop Rigby off at a potential dog-sitter. Much as I love the mutt I can’t look after him all the time, particularly now I’m marooned in Rosebud. I can’t leave him there, but when I’m socialising, as I was Saturday, I can’t take him with me.
Whisky had told me of a friend who loved dogs, was perhaps a bit lonely, and was happy to take in Rigby. I had my qualms about it. I’m as protective of him as any parent with their child. I had to feel secure. Plus there was the suggestion, given my circumstances, that it might be an extended stay. I didn’t want that.
So anyway I took him for a bath in Elwood while I had breakfast, then dropped him off. Gave the lowdown and drove away.
The rest of the day passed. I got a massage, caught up with Cheeseboy for a Corona, and ended up at another mates on the other side of town. I’d been invited to an art exhibition by the cute artist I met earlier this year, and suggested he come with me.
We spent a couple of hours there drinking bubbles and chatting, mainly, with an alluring Belgian.
From there we went to the Brunswick Green for a beer in the beer garden. It’s a cool pub playing some great music – the Kinks, some rare Beatles, the Doors, even Jefferson Airplane singing Somebody To Love (there’s a song I never hear out). It’s the side of town I don’t get to a lot, though I like it. More grungy, pretty earthy. We probably looked a bit of place, as well as likely being the two best looking blokes in the place. Not that there was much competition. There seemed to be tables of lesbians, a butch convention, for not a fem was in sight.
Enough of that then, we ended up having dinner at a Argentinian restaurant in Fitzroy.
Yesterday I did loads of washing at my mate’s place, and went out for coffee. By 4 I had to pick Riggers up. I’d received progress reports the night before – he was having a great time, and had even jumped into a pool. He ran to me when I got there though, and wouldn’t leave my side. He’s daddy’s boy. All the same he seemed pretty happy – which is he is just about all the time, and so was she. We agreed then, next time…which will probably be a couple of weeks.
Then we drove back, leaving the city to spend the week down the beach. Such is life in my bizarro world.