Down Time

Posted in Mixed Nuts on August 8th, 2010 by MadDog
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I’m finding it difficult to post daily here on Madang – Ples Bilong Mi.  Not much is happening in our lives that is not of a very personal nature. It occurred to me today that now is not the time to slack off. Aside from casual readers and those who enjoy our pretty pictures, many friends and family members visit here to find out what we are up to.

Well, if you’ve been reading lately, you know that life is pretty much on hold until we find out and take care of Eunie’s health problem. We have been as healthy as horses for decades, with only the occasional bout of malaria or an infection here or there. Very few of us are lucky enough to live a long and healthy life and suddenly drop dead.

It is worse, of course, for the ill one. Few people enjoy suffering and Eunie has been through a lot of pain for the last couple of months. The uncertainty inherent in living in a place with limited medical facilities doesn’t help. Illness is also rough on loved ones and friends. Being a natural-born worrier, it has been particularly taxing on me. The truth is, I would happily trade places with Eunie. Sadly, that’s not possible.

So, Eunie takes care of herself, I take care of her, she takes care of me and we both take care of the strains of illness that affect us as a partnership.

What I did not realize until a comple of days ago was that I was showing a few cracks in my composure. I needed to take care of myself. I needed some down time. I’m no good to Eunie if I fall to pieces.

So, yesterday, I tended to my needs for a while:

For me, this is usually a simple exercise. All that is required is a quiet place in pleasant surroundings, a beer, a cheap cigar and an engaging book sufficiently exciting enough to shut out the worries for a couple of hours. Above you see me with my “not too bad for a sixty-six year old dude” legs propped up on the table getting some down time.

Notice the very classy apartment. Well, you can’t see much of it, but I will tell you that it is quite nice. It is a gift from dear friends in Madang. We also have the use of a car from other friends. Someday, I am going to acknowledge all of the wonderful friends and co-workers who have made it possible to get Eunie to Cairns and settle us in for whatever is in store. Right now, the list is still growing and I don’t want to leave anyone out. I do not know what my frame of mind would be right now if I had to think about housing and transportation expenses in addition to all of the other costs of relocating for an unplanned and enforced “vacation”.

Sweet Lorraine had it all set up for us to attend a showing of award-winning marine movies and still photos:

Eunie wasn’t quite up to it, but Lorraine knew what she was doing when she urged me to come.

I feel a strange smugness when I look at expensive gear which I’ll never be able to afford. I think about how much money people blow on this kind of gear and I tell myself that my images are just as good as theirs. These “sour grapes” ploys help get us through life, eh? How much money have I saved by not  buying the biggest and best? I don’t know, because I’ve already spent it on other things:

When I see someone driving a big, expensive car that guzzles petrol like it will last forever, all I can think is, “What a dope!” It makes me feel better.

Here is the ticket to the show:

Don’t ask me why I showed it to you. I collect tickets. I have tickets from Vienna subways, Rolling Stones concerts, and oh, so many more esoteric venues. I even have the little bracelet from the hospital when I had my appendix removed in 1990.

Well, I’m running out of steam.

Here is my darling Eunie getting some down time. I am so happy that she is painless for the first time in more than two months. They are giving her some really good dope that makes her a little loopy for a couple of hours after she takes it.

Then she has a nice nap when she comes down.

God bless her. My woman.