Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Country Week Update

Day three at Country Week, progress report.
Weather: Bad unless you're a farmer. Cold, wet, windy, stormy, wintery. Not so bad for us hardy souls from down south but spare a thought for the indigenous kids from the Kimberley whose first experience of Perth is Arctic weather.
Some of the mes I watched yesterday were played in appalling conditions. I think there'll be fierce competition for the indoor sports coaching jobs next year!

Buses: !!!!! The two charter drivers, who coincidentally happen to be women, have been inept to the point of jeapodising our program. We were due to leave for 10 pin bowling at 5 yesterday arvo, the buses arrived at 5.30, and then proceeded to go completely the wrong way and end up stranded in peak hour traffic right in the centre of the city! Consequently we had to cancel bowling and go straight to dinner at Joondalup. I sat down with them for 20 minutes to clarify times and directions over dinner. The result? They got lost again on the way home!
NB. Hogs Breath Cafe was good as usual although the kids struggled to get through the monstrous servings of Missisippi Mud Cake for dessert, which we had bought for them as compensation for missing out on the bowling.

Health: One kid has gone home with his foot in a cast, although to be fair, he did the damage playing football in Busso before he came. I took him to the hospital yesterday for x-rays. They put him in plaster and gave him crutches. This morning I dropped him off at the train station. He's happy cause he'll get to which the EJ Whitten game on TV tonight!
One or two other knocks, twists and strains, all of a minor nature.

Accommodation: Good, apart from the cold shower yesterday morning! The manager is not happy cause he spent $500 getting the three hot water systems serviced the week before we came! He's sorting it out today.

Hire Car: I got upgraded to a Commodore Omega. Apparently that's a good thing judging by the look of expectation on the face of the woman at Hertz when she gave me the news. I smiled and said "thanks" as if I knew just what an impressive gesture this was. I didn't.
The car is nice, and powerful, I've spun the wheels twice taking off from the lights but I'm blaming the wet roads.

Catering: Sunday night, arrived at Dominos to pick up our 110 pizzas to be met with confusion and head scratching. "We rang you half an hour ago to confirm pick up at 7.00"
No you didn't! I rang you at 1.30 and confirmed the details, 110 pizzas, 6 o'clock, $795.
More confusion: "We cooked those for you last Sunday night!"
Sorry boys, your mistake, when will my pizzas be ready?
OK, but this time you deliver!

Post sccript, in discussing this situation with a certain other CW manager from an unnamed school called Newton moore, they picked up their/our pizzas from the same Dominos at 6.00! And sure enough the number Dominos rang at 5.30 to confirm the order belonged to him!
It turned out ok, the kids got fed.
I treated the staff to a selection of gourmet pizzas from Chelsea Pizza for which they were grateful and appreciative.

Meanwhile the lunches arrived on time and correct yesterday and thw two late inclusions received the lunches of the two late withdrawals, one of whom even had the good planning to have the same Christian name as his replacement.

Today the weather looks clearer and brighter although as I look out the window I see there's a a bank of nasty black cloud looming on the horizon.
Just got to buy some footy shorts for a kid who needs them, pick up some ice, and head for the sports grounds.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Your Time Starts....Now!

It's Time. Time to go. Spike is at work, Mrs Holt Press has taken Sport Boy to Australind to play tennis for the day, it's just me left, I've finished the home stage of packing and I'm about to depart for school. In an hours time all the kids will be there, 127 of them, and by 12 we'll hopefully be on the road to Perth for the beginning of Country Week. It's been a long time in the planning but I think we're ready. It's the third time I've been the school country week manager and hopefully it will go as well as the first two times. The weather reports for Perth are not great for sport but wonderful for dams and farmers. We're hoping to have pizza at the Kings Park lookout tonight but ultimately the weather will determine our venue. Competition kicks off tomorrow morning after the opening ceremony and runs until Friday lunchtime.

My schedule will be a little different though because on Friday morning I'm meeting the Footy Trippers at the airport and the 9 of us are flying to Melbourne via Adelaide. We need to make a tight connecting flight in order to get into Melbourne by 5pm then off to the MCG for Collingwood v Essendon. There were 83,000 people at the Essendon v Carlton game on Friday night so the crowd is likely to be something similar this week and even though we've already got our tickets, getting to the footy in such a huge crowd will be a challenge.
So, it's two and a half weeks of sport, footy and adventure ahead. It's times like these when I really love my job!

I need to get to work and pack the PA, collect the cheques to pay for everything, tie up any loose ends and get ready for departure.

Bon Voyage.

Friday, June 26, 2009

One Day to Go

I have been working long hours all week because next week is Country Week: we leave at lunch time on Sunday and everything has to be finished and ready before then, not just for Country Week but also for the Melbourne Footy Trip. We fly to Melbourne tomorrow week and will be away for 11 days, we being 7 kids (6 boys, 1 girl), Favourite Daughter and I, 9 in total.
We're going to 6 games, 5 in Melbourne and 1 in Adelaide on the way home.
So, between these two major activities there's been a lot to do. I'm relieved to say that I'm almost there, having knocked over some major chunks of it in the last few days.
Mainly oose ends and small details to deal with tomorrow and then packing on Saturday, fitted around one last shift in the taxi Friday night and coaching the soccer team on Saturday afternoon.
I will be reactivating one of my other blogs for the next few weeks while I'm away, the MelbourneFootyTrip blog. I'll leave a link so you can follow our adventures if you feel inclined or you can find it on the sidebar.

I had the final coaches meeting this morning, making sure the staff are all ready and prepared for our week in Perth. It's always a good event but the weather forecasts are pretty ugly so it may be a cold wet week of sport in the city, which might be good preparation for a week of cold wet footy in Melbourne the week after!
I had the final briefing meeting with the footy trippers at lunch time and they are all excited with only 8 sleeps to go!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Cats v Dockers

Sunday, my birthday, was eventful for a few reasons. Sport Boy and I drove to Mandurah and caught the train from there, something I've been wanting to do for ages and well worth it as it turned out. We had stopped at the Caltex servo before Bunbury to buy a packet of chewie when the lady behind the counter said "Hello Marcus". It was Diane, the lady who gave me the Grand Final ticket in 2007! It was lovely to see her but sad to hear that her Mum had passed away recently after a brief battle with cancer. It was her Mum whose ticket I received because she had woken up sick on the day of the game and couldn't go.

We got off the train at West leederville and had to wait for The Heir to arrive so stepped into the Patisserie on the corner to get some lunch. Sport Boy ordered a pie and sauce. While we were waiting I noticed a group of three sitting at a table and the gentleman had a large number of Docker's badges on his hat so asked him if I could have a look at them. I explained my badge collecting as the reason I was interested and he said, "A friend of ours who died recently had a lot of the same badges, you might be able to have those if you want them". I was a little surprised but never one to be backward in coming forward I said I'd love to have them. By then Sport Boy's pie had arrived and I asked them if we could join them at the table to which they happily agreed.

The waitress forgot to bring the sauce so I went to the counter and got one of the little sauce dispensers that fold in half so you can squeeze the sauce out of the hole in the middle. For some reason it was very hard to open and I had to keep applying more and more pressure in an effort to get the sauce to flow. All of a sudden the immovable object was overcome by the irresistable force and sauce exploded everywhere, all over the pie, and the table, and the drinks and utensils and...... right into both Sport Boy and the lady's face! Right in the eye in fact! I couldn't believe it, there was a mix of pandemonium, panic, pain and pangs of laughter as we all tried to right the situation, grabbing serviettes to clean up the mess and trying to get the sauce out of Sport Boy's eye, and the lady Docker fan. There followed great laughter and much taunting and ribbing as they stirred me about my inability to open a sauce sachet, and rubbing it in as they each in turn easily managed the same feat when their food arrived!

Then the younger of the three said, "That's it, you're not getting the badges now!!" which set us all off laughing again. I was glad they took it in such good spirit considering the disturbance I'd caused to their pre-football lunch.

Finally The Heir arrived to rescue me from my embarrassment and we set off for the game. Birchy was waiting for us at the gate, I'd offered him my spare ticket when the kid from school I'd bought it for decided not to go.

He was pretty happy with the game because Freo took it right up to Geelong, leading at 1/4 time and drawing level at 3/4 time before the Cats class finally sank the gallant Dockers. Shannon Byrnes was the star, kicking 5 goals in a best on ground performance.

My enjoyment of the game was tempered a little by the obnoxious behaviour of three blokes sitting behind us who were LOUD, rude, critical, derisive and unpleasant to listen to. I finally couldn't stand it any more so I turned around and challenged their behaviour. You just know that was gonna be a popular move and they got stuck into me for having the audacity to turn around or criticise them! In fact, the sum total of their defense was "Turn around and shut up!"

I told them I didn't have a problem with them barracking, just the things they were saying and the swearing and obscenities in front of my son, not to mention all the other people sitting near them, including their own children. They were pretty aggro and I have to admit I thought they were going to clock me one but to their credit at least they didn't resort to physical violence, just verbal abuse. The Heir and Sport Boy both said later they thought one of them was going to hit me! I apologised to the bloke sitting next to me (pictured above) for causing a scene and he said "Not at all, you did well", he agreed that their behaviour was not acceptable, and another Freo fan sitting near them also gave me the thumbs up in support. It is not easy to confront people about their behaviour, nobody likes being told, and with alcohol in the mix it has the potential to be volatile. I could have just sat there and put up with it. But in the end I thought "why should I?" Why should someone be able to upset other people or ruin their experience by their obnoxious behaviour? And if no-one stands up to them they'll just keep doing it because people are intimidated or don't want to get involved. I don't like getting into these sort of situations but at times there seems to be a magnetic force drawing me into them! I wasn't rude or aggressive but nor did I back down from my stance against their anti-social behaviour, and in the end, although they continued to mutter and criticise me, they did actually tone it down a bit.

Football stirs up people's emotions, I know that only too well, but that doesn't mean that all decency and logic and reasonable standards of behaviour should be dispensed with just because you're at the footy. That's what I reckon anyway.

I was glad not to get beaten up on my birthday though!

The couple sitting next to me were over from Geelong for a holiday and had decided to go to the footy. When I told them about my upcoming trip to Melbourne with the kids they gave me their son's contact details as he works on the Synchrotron project in Melbourne and they suggested he would be happy to show the kids around while we're over there.

BTW, the most obnoxious of the three blokes I'm talking about is the one with the purple jacket in the very top right hand corner of the picture above. Hopefully he's not a friend, or a relative of yours!

Birchy and I had a laugh and a tussle after the game, reliving Cameron Ling's punch to the stomach of one of the Dockers when the game got a bit heated.

NB. Sport Boy has had the last two days off school with conjunctivitis. It suddenly occurred to me as I was writing this post that the sauce may have been the cause!!

Monday, June 22, 2009

Cats Deliver Birthday Present as Requested

Geelong didn't let me down on my birthday, beating Freo by 19 points.
A good day was had by all, or nearly all. I'll elaborate tomorrow.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Number 48

It's officially my birthday, number 48 in a sequence, although it's till late Saturday night if you know what I mean. Later on today Sport Boy and I will head up to Perth, rendezvouz with The Heir and Birchy, and go to the footy, where 75% of us will be cheering for the Cats to beat the Dockers. As Birchy said to me on the phone, the only danger is that there is absolutely no expectation on Fremantle to win, and that's when they're a little bit dangerous, not much, just a little bit! Mind you, they should have won last year being 6 goals up at one stage but the Cats got up to win by a point when Pavlich hit the post rather than kicking the winning goal in the last 30 seconds.

!!! We just had a 3 second blackout but I'm glad to see that Blogger managed to save the start of this post, at my age it can be hard to recall stuff!!!

After the first "busy" night in the cab for a few weeks I didn't get to bed till just before 6 this morning so having to get up and coach the Cornerstone U12s soccer team at 10.30 was a struggle. I thought I was going to fall over when I first got out of bed. A shower revived me sufficiently to get to the game, with three minutes to go till kick off! A quick pre-game address, "Play like you did last week, same line-up" ..... "Oh! Emily's away....and Daniel's back.... ok.... Daniel, you play where Emily played, out you go" Stirring stuff I know!

Seemed to do the trick though, we were 3-0 up at half time and won 5-0, with Sport Boy scoring a hat trick with three very well taken goals. All this against a backdrop of torrential rain for the first 5 minutes so that everyone was completely saturated for the rest of the game, with intermittent showers just when anyone looked like drying out. To be fair, the sun did come out in the last 10 minutes of the game, prompting me to say, "Gee it's warm!" as I mimiced taking my rain coat off! The soccer team have hit some really good form, the line-up is working well, it's all good.

Sport Boy went to the final try-out session for the country week team this arvo and is celebrating his selection in the final squad.

I looked at a couple of garage sales whose proprietors were braving the stormy weather, bought some socks and jocks at Rivers then came home and slept for a few hours so that I'm not too tired to drive to Perth and back tomorrow.

Mrs Holt Press went to church this evening.

I woke up about 8 and watched the footy with Sport Boy. Spike is out at a friend's birthday party but he and a couple of mates will be home soon as they're staying here for the night.

Did I tell you it's my birthday?

Friday, June 19, 2009

Plugging Away

Work, meetings, country week prep, an interview with Australia's delegate to the United Nations Youth Assembly, more CW prep, a headache, volleyball and VB refereeing: That sums up my day. I'm finally winning the battle with the country week preparation, having completed a few big tasks in the last couple of days. It gets pretty busy as the time draws closer and I become a little nervous about getting everything done in time. Today for the first time it feels like I'm going to make it.

Both kids made it back to school today, and survived!

Mrs HP has worked every day this week, and survived!

That's good for the bank balance.

Big Brother the Accountant is home but recovering slowly from his head injury. I was going to see if he wanted to go the footy on Sunday but I doubt he'll be fit for that.

BTW, did I tell you Sunday is my birthday?

Go Cats.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Sick, Sensible, Straight Forward, Strange

Both of the boys have improved: not enough to go to school today, but I think they'll both make it tomorrow. I took Sport Boy to the Dr this afternoon but he couldn't find anything wrong with him to explain his breathing difficulty, everything was clear and in good shape. He suggested it may be anxiety related and to try and get him back into normal routines and back to school tomorrow. Therefore he came to soccer training with me this afternoon and survived that OK.

We had home group with Stu and Deb tonight where we discussed some of the proverbs, the sensible, the straightforward, and the strange!

"Train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old he will not depart from it" (the sensible)

"The rich and the poor have this in common, the Lord is the maker of them all" (the straight forward)

"The slothful man says 'There is a lion outside! I shall be slain in the streets!'" (the strange).

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

All is Not Well

Neither Spike nor Sport Boy have been to school this week, they are both crook. Spike has bad headaches and general "unwellness". Sport Boy has been having a lot of trouble with his breathing, tight chest, dizziness, headache, backache and miserableness! He is not a happy camper when he's sick. The breathing problems are exacerbated when he lies down and that in turn can bring on panic attacks. Neither Mrs HoltPress or I know what to do to ease their suffering, nothing has worked so far. As I've said before, there is nothing worse than seeing your children in pain and not being able to help.

They are both "sleeping" sitting up on sofas in the loungeroom, the only position in which either of them feels comfortable at the moment.

Meanwhile work carries on for the parents in the family; things are starting to get pretty intense in preparation for country week and the trip to Melbourne, I ran an upper school assembly today to announce the country week captains and various other CW related business. One of the staff said I did a good job which was pleasing because it felt a little uncomfortable at times.

I worked right through until nearly 7 o'clock tonight trying to catch up on stuff that needed doing. I was scheduled to have another testosterone implant this afternoon but no chemist in town had stocks on hand to fill the prescription so I've had to postpone it until Friday. I wasn't happy but there was nothing I could do about it.

I found some relief by beating the ladies at Scrabble Club tonight! I had enough testosterone reserves for that thankfully.

BTW for those who haven't remembered, it's my birthday on Sunday, the day Geelong play Fremantle at Subiaco Oval, no prizes for guessing what I want as my present!

I am closing in on the half century, only two years to go.

Monday, June 15, 2009

The People You Meet

Mrs HP is home safely from her weekend in Northam but she has a very early start in the morning, getting up at 4.30! She has to drive VTES up to Bunbury by 6am so she can catch the train to Perth as she flies home to Germany tomorrow. It's been hugs and goodbyes from friends and people all weekend.

I spent the morning in bed after driving the taxi last night, and the afternoon on roster at the gallery. One couple who visited the gallery turned out to be from Ballarat and when I told them I was planning to take the kids on the footy trip up to Ballarat for a a day and night while we're in Victora they gave me a number of names and possible leads on people who might be able to arrange some accommodation for us. It turned out that the bloke is involved with the Vic Country U18 football team who play in the National Championships so we may meet again at Docklands in a few weeks, and perhaps in Ballarat too.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Margaret River 5 Cornerstone 6

I had the privilege of coaching one of the best games of soccer ever this morning between old rivals Cornerstone and Margaret River Tigers. With three minutes to go till kick-off it looked like we'd be playing with 9 players but Georgia and Jack arrived in the nick of time. One of our best players, Daniel, was out, having not fully recovered from last week's mid-game asthma attack so the defence needed reinforcing and there were no subs to call on. Graeme can take credit for the suggestion to move Jacob to midfield, leaving Sport Boy and Jack as the only strikers.
Things didn't start well with MR scoring two quick goals and a little later a third before our kids started to settle and create some chances. Sport Boy was in sparkling form, "the best game I've seen him play" was Paul Brown, his country week coache's feedback. Ben C scored our first goal, nicely taken from a breakaway and Sport Boy added a second before MR scored again to make it 4-2 at half time. A few of the kids weren't happy with the refereeing and were letting that distract them from the game. The ref was my mate Glass Dave so I have to be careful, especially as he reads my blog, but I'd have to say I think he missed a few free kicks! And a reasonable penalty appeal! At half time I emphasised the importance of accepting the ref's decisions and getting on with the game because whether the ref is right or wrong they're not going to change their decision no matter how much you protest. I told them it was a great game, both teams were playing really well and to go out and do their best in the second half.
I was not prepared for what followed. We scored, then we scored again, really well taken goals to draw level on 4-4. Every kid in the team was playing out of their skin, what they lacked in skill they made up in determination and hard work, chasing, tackling, fighting for the ball, putting pressure on the opposition and combining together to set up chance after chance. Their finishing was exceptional and before long we had hit the front, 5-4. I can't remember the order the goals were scored in but Ben C got 2, Jacob got 1 and Sport Boy ended up with a hat-trick as we went 6-4 ahead! I was pretty excited by then, and I wasn't alone, the parents and supporters were clapping and cheering and urging the kids on. MR weren't to be beaten easily though and they scored with three minutes left to make it 6-5 to us. The last couple of minutes were a bit nerve-racking but the kids defended heroically and the final whistle went to signify a famous victory. It was a GREAT game and the parents clapped the kids all the way off the pitch. My after-match speech was over-flowing with praise and superlatives for every member of the team. I was very proud of Sport Boy who had a great game but all the kids did a great job.
It was probably the best game and the best win in the 4-5 years I've been coaching them.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Work Work Work

Spike and VTES are away on a school retreat so the house is quiet and not subject to loud unpleasant music for a couple of days.
Mrs Holt Press is going to Northam in the morning for another one of her training weekends.
That will just leave Sport Boy and I to fend for ourselves. He has a busy weekend planned, tennis Friday night, soccer Sat lunchtime, country week try-outs Sat arvo and tennis in Bunbury Sunday arvo. The life of the modern 11 year-old!

I've been busy at work trying to get things ready for country week which starts on June 28. It has been more difficult than usual this year for a variety of reasons so I'll be glad when it's all done and we're on our way.
The footy trip to Melbourne is immediately following country week so I need to be ready for that as well. I got tickets for the Crows v Dockers game at Footy Park today. There is the minor issue of swine flu to deal with but I'm hoping that the hype will settle and we'll be OK.

Thursday night is volleyball night, I played one game and umpired two tonight. It was my best game of the season so far, I even managed to hit a few decent spikes and make some blocks and my serve was cranking along nicely.
There's a masters footy game in Margaret River tomorrow night which I'm hoping to play in, I'm not driving the cab until Saturday night so I should be available.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Big Brother

Mum rang while we were driving home from the football on Sunday night with some bad news: Alan, aka Big Brother the Accountant, had had a bad fall and fractured his skull! He'd be in hospital for 48 hours observation but it didn't sound too bad, if you know what I mean? (I'm not sure I know what I mean so don't worry if you don't!)

I spoke to Lyn tonight to get an update and realised that the injury was more severe than first thought. It's not life-threatening but the doctors have been concerned enough to keep him in hospital and run a battery of tests on his heart and brain. Along with the fracture he has bruising and some "minor" bleeding on the brain as well as bruising and soreness on the rest of his body.

The good news is that he has improved significantly compared to the first two days and is sitting up, eating and drinking and has now regained his memory of the accident. He had been clearing branches and garden waste in preparation for the verge collection and had climbed on top of the growing pile on the verge in an effort to squash it down and subsequently fallen off, smacking his head on the footpath. Ouch!

Sounds like he'll be out of action for a while yet but at least his condition has improved.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Catching Up

The Big Hairy Cat, Cam Mooney. The footy was good on Sunday, Mrs Holt Press, Sport Boy, The Heir and I all went. I was confident even though West Coast played well and we didn't belt them like we did last year but Mrs HP was a Nervous Nellie and The Heir got a bit agitated a couple of times. There were some great passages of play but none more memorable than when West Coast's McNamara broke clear of the pack and ran towards the 50m arc to kick the ball.....in the wrong direction! Shannon Byrnes gratefully accepted and duly kicked a goal for the Cats! A true LOL moment!
A measure of the high standards we put on Gary Ablett now is that we felt he had a good but not outstanding game, only to learn that by the end he'd had 43 possessions!

VTES at the Yallingup Maze last weekend. She really enjoyed finding her way around the maze, as did Sport Boy. I liked it but felt that the raised walkways between some sections detracted from the challenge as they enabled you to map out your route a lot more easily.
Still well worth the visit though.

Sport Boy enjoying Barcelona's victory over Manchester United in the European Champions League Final a couple of weeks ago. We got up for the 5am replay rather than the 2am live telecast!
I hosted a group from a Uniting Church Leadership course this morning who came to quiz me about my leadership style and role in the school.They asked a few questions. I talked a lot! They seemed satisfied and happy with the outcome. There were a few familiar faces in the group, including one who tried to disguise his identity in his usual Diesel way but Broadie couldn't fool me.
This arvo I coached the junior footy team in a game against Clontarf up in Bunbury. We lost but it was a good game, inaccurate kicking cost us any real chance of victory.
I didn't get to watch it but I was very pleased for Roger Federer when he won the French Open last night to equal Pete Sampras' record of 14 Grand Slam titles and became just the 6th man to win all four Grand Slams in his career.

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Australia 0 Qatar 0 and That's Good Enough

Mixed results in the soccer today. Cornerstone U12s lost 4-1 to MR Gladiators this morning but tonight the Socceroos qualified for the 2010 World Cup Finals in South Africa. Seems like a reasonable trade off.

I had a dreadfully slow night in the cab tonight, only 4 customers in my first 5 hours!!! It got a little better after that but nothing to blog about.

Only a few hours sleep then we'll be up and heading for Perth for two important occasions:
Lunch with The Heir to celebrate his 22nd birthday,
and going to Subiaco to watch Geelong play West Coast.

Glass Dave was taunting me this morning with the ridiculous suggestion that the Eagles might win!
I told him I would run up and down his street naked if they did!
Mrs Holt Press was aghast, and Glass Dave didn't look too impressed either!
For everyone's sake it's probably best if the Cats win.

Saturday, June 06, 2009

Just the Ticket!!


I got tickets to the StKilda/Geelong game today! After the disappointment of yesterday when it looked pretty hopeless I've been on a high all day!

I logged on this morning chasing a couple more tickets to the Cats v Eagles game on Sunday and buoyed by success there I randomly tried the website for tickets to round 14. Imagine my surprise when my request for 1 ticket went through! Emboldened I tried for two more, and got them as well. For the next 10 minutes I kept buying tickets two at a time until I had all we need for the Footy trip.
By this time I was full of bravado and proceeded to buy 6 more for Patesy who will be over there and is chasing tickets. He was pretty stoked when I told him the good news when I got to work.
I even rang Cam in Melbourne and told him to get on the web if he wanted to get tickets.
All day I've been sharing my good news with people, pretty much everyone I spoke to in fact!!
The boys on the trip were very happy when I informed them we had tickets to the biggest game of the year.
And there was more good news when I heard back from a high school in South Australia to say they would be happy to accommodate us for the couple of nights we'll be in Adelaide on the way home.
It's all good!

BTW, did you hear the good news? I got tickets to the Cats/Saints game at Docklands in round 14!!!!!!! Wooohooo!!!!!

Friday, June 05, 2009

Blogpost # 1000

This is my 1000th post on Holt Press 2. What a shame it's so unexciting!

I've been blogging for a little over 4 years.

I have "countless"readers, by which I mean, each time I count them, there are less.

I originally posted on "Holt Press" but was unable to transfer my original posts when I made the change to the newer version of Blogger a couple of years ago.
You can go back and reminisce about the good old blog days here.

My success at computer repair appears shortlived! I seem to have a virus that wants to install large quantities of mystery stuff and has caused my anti-virus software to run away and hide! The joys....

Sport Boy survived his footy debut, and according to Mrs Holt Press he loved it. Sadly he came down with a bad headache again tonight so we'll have to see what shape he's in in the morning.

I finished booking all the tickets for the Melbourne Footy Trip today. I ended up having to pay a bit more than we wanted which means either raising the price a bit or reducing some of the stuff covered in the trip. Either way it will still work out very cheaply. There was some disappointing and frustrating news today. Despite the AFL and Ticketmaster websites saying tickets to the St Kilda v Geelong game wouldn't be on sale until June 19, it now appears they are sold out!!!!!!
I am not happy!
It makes the AFL's refusal to move the game from Docklands to the MCG all the more annoying. Some 50,000 people will miss out on the chance to see the most anticipated game of the season.
As much as I love AFL football, there are times when I really don't like the way the game is run!
At this stage I can see me and the kids hanging around outside the stadium watching the game on the big screen and hoping to get inside for the last quarter!

At least I'll get to see the Cats this weekend when they come to Perth to play West Coast, although again, sadly, the game is sold out and I could only get two tickets when there were 6 of us wanting to go. Everyone wants to see the Mighty Cats!

Seeing as we're talking football, here's another Dennis Commetti quote:

Matthew Carr and brother Josh played for Fremantle and Port Adelaide respectively and both wear the number 9. Inevitably they were bound to collide one day.

"That's a tough one for the umpires. A two Carr collision and both with the same rego"

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Can he Fix it? Yes he Can!

Mrs Holt Press and I went to see the new Russell Crowe movie "State of Play" last night and both really liked it. It's a political thriller with a journalist as the central character and plenty of surprise twists and turns to keep you guessing.
Tonight we went to our new home group with Stu and Deb from church. I haven't been part of a home group for several years, since before we moved to Busselton in fact so it's good to get back into it. We discussed what it means to be a man, and a dad, cause Stu went to a blokes camp on the weekend and had some interesting experiences. Coincidentally my Dad rang while we were there; he was returning my call as I needed to ask him a favour, which he seemed happy to grant me. No doubt I'll hear about it in comments if he wasn't!

The biggest news of late is that I have succeeded in repairing my computer. It crashed a while ago and has been largely dysfunctional since. I took it in for repair but they told me it was a software problem and they couldn't fix it. I rang the NEC helpline but they were pretty limited in their ability to assist. I bought an external hard drive to back up all my files/pictures/music but the computer wouldn't talk to it! However, I persevered, used a second XHD to transfer everything from the PC to the new XD via the old XHD and the laptop!
Several hours of moving many Gigs of data later and plenty of double checks to be sure I had everything, I was finally ready to tap the F8 key and hit "Repair Computer". After that it was pretty straightforward and quick. I had a nice clean new computer again which seems to do everything it's supposed to. Next came the reloading of programs, Office, printers etc.
I haven't uploaded the music and pics and stuff yet, hopefully it too will go smoothly.
This is the biggest job I've ever undertaken on a computer and I'm feeling pretty pleased about it, as are the rest of the family who once again have access to it.

I'm now sitting in front of the TV watching the replay of the State of Origin and enjoying seeing Queensland belt the cockroaches.

Sport Boy spent another day at home today but the good news is he is much better and looking forward to going back to school tomorrow, which just happens to be the day of their winter carnival, and his debut playing footy for the school. He's played soccer all his life so he's pretty excited about the change of code.

Oops, NSW have just scored another try and the maroons are only 6 points in front!

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

The Cats (and Saints) Go Marching On

History was created again on the weekend, never before have two teams been undefeated after 10 rounds in an AFL season. Geelong put last week's close call behind them to chalk up a 64 point win over Essendon, who were sitting in 4th place and getting some good press. Playing Geelong these days is an extreme reality check and that's how it turned out on Sunday.
StKilda are also 10-0, having beaten 16th placed Melbourne.
All eyes are looking towards round 14 and the Game of the Year when the Cats play the Saints. Sadly the game is not being moved from Etihad Stadium to the MCG so the crowd will be half the size it could have been. The real issue for me is that my football trip to Melbourne with a group of students is definitely going ahead and we are going to be there for round 14! Will we be able to get tickets? I certainly hope so! (Let me know if you have any good leads!! Saints members who aren't going etc as if!!)

Mum and Walter came to stay for the night last night, it was great to see them, especially as Mum has been away in America and France for the last three months. I looked through all her pictures of Paris and the south of France, it is very beautiful and if her stories are any indication, she had a wonderful time. She brought back berets for all the grandkids and for me a NY Mets shirt and some very cool sports badges to add to my collection, including a Tour d'France Yellow Jersey badge.

They headed home this morning because Big Brother the Accountant and the two girls were calling in for pancakes on the way home from their hiking weekend at the Shannon.

We took advantage of the beautiful day and Monday holiday to take Sport Boy and VTES to the newly opened Yallingup Maze which was good fun and very well done.

Favourite Daughter rang this evening after her weekend in Broome, they had a great time, lots of swimming at Cable Beach, markets, meals, movies etc. Things are going very well for her up in the Kimberley and she's earning more money than she ever has before too which I'm sure she's enjoying.

Spike is home from the State Youth Games, very sore and tired after all his physical exertions. His exams start this week so there will be mental exertion aplenty, or there ought to be!

It's back to work for me too tomorrow. With just over a month until Country Week, followed immediately after by the Melbourne Trip, life is going to get busier for a while.
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