maggies and magpies.


Most Australians do not appreciate the magpie bird. I have to be honest i didn’t either until our tree-change. Every year we watch the news reports of magpie birds swooping city bike riders, post men and school children. In our own Village, I have viewed a number of weird and wonderful bike helmet creations, festooned with spikes; as well as ice cream bucket hats with eyes glues on the back, to deter magpie attack.

However, since moving to our rural acre, I have reflected and slowly grown a new respect, and dare I say, ever an appreciation of magpies. Most days I share two slices of bread with the birds; an assortment of parrots, galahs, plovers, minor birds, recently kookaburras and magpies. At one time we had five, yes, five bush turkeys, which was surprising as we had been led to believe that they were solitary creatures. We can only guess that the leaf mound our male created was really something and attracted a harem of ladies!

I did try leaving out wild bird seed in a dish on the ground, but it was a disaster, ending up in not only five bush turkeys but also a couple of gate crashing rats. We are on the hunt for a stylish and functional stand alone bird feeder. In the meantime, a couple of times a week I take out the bread crusts and talk with the birds.

This week, as soon as I walked out onto our patio, five magpies swooped in to sit on our fence. I walked up to within a metre of them, and as I did so they all burst into song. My husband said it was their way of saying “feed me!” .  He was also worried I was about to enact a scene from “The Birds”! I prefer to think they were serenading me, “Oh lovely lady that doest feed us, how we bless you and bask in your kindness and beauty” as birds do.

They continued singing for their breakfast until I broke bread with them, upon which they forgot my very existence in their endeavors to cram as many bread pieces into their mouth before returning to their family or favourite eating spot.

In those moments I think I lost five years in age, and made a memory that many people will never experience. Beauty can be found in surprising  things and unexpected moments. Slow down and enjoy the good life.

The sixties, not that sixties, my sixties


I turned sixty this month and a series of events have celebrated my birth and continuing life. Yesterday, it was a mother-daughter afternoon at a day spa. I had the complete treatment with massage, vichy shower, facial, manicure and pedicure. After three hours I was jettisoned onto the street in fake foam thongs (flipflops in other worlds) and  warnings not to mess up my nail treatments.

This morning upon the throne, I had cause to reflect that my bum really did feel as soft as a baby’s bottom!

I also enjoyed a lovely nights sleep, until 10.30 in the am. Life is good, at times.

Next week I am lunching with my besties. One if celebrating her 60th birthday this week, so we are sharing the lunch celebrations. We were  group of eight in high school, but now, two live lives that do not allow then to join us. So, there will be six to lunch and a husband or two who could not offer a reasonable excuse for not joining us. One friend I met in kindergarten, and she of course if BFF.

I can tell we are all excited to see each other again; its been a year or two since a major group gathering, because we keep messaging each other. It’s nice – bit like our teenage years when there was a round robin of telephone calls to confirm Friday night activities.

It’s nice too, that we can all celebrate turning 60 throughout the year. I am the second one this year. Number one had a party, which only two of us attended. It was nice though to see her so happy, remarried some 20 odd years after her divorce. I chose a series of small events – family lunch by the shore, spa day and friendship lunch for mine. I think friend celebrating this week is having a series of family and friend lunches too. Quiet joys and making memories.

My only issue is how to make my manicure last until the weekend for our luncheon. I wanted to garden this week, so I guess I have to find some thick gloves. Do you know it is my very first professional manicure. Yes, and I am sixty, so it proves that you can still experience “firsts” at any age.