Last weekend, in Albany, I took my mum to a farmers' market.
Out the front of the boatshed where it was held, a young woman dressed up as a tree and wearing a face mask was trying very hard, through the somewhat confusing medium of tap-dance and mime, to persuade folks to vote for the Greens.
I didn't see anyone from the ALP or the Libs, though the seat is held by Wilson Tuckey (ye gods).
There was a bloke from the Nationals, however, who tried to thrust some election pamphlets at me.
"No thanks," I said, "I don't live here."
"Aren't you lucky," he said to me with a big sigh, not at all ironically.
I've sort of tried (not really very hard at all) not to talk politics here, both because some of my dearest, most wonderful friends are Libs, and in light of the sort of work I do. You know ...
So we were talking this morning, as I ironed my shirt to go muralling and David packed Maggie and me a lunch, about Kerryn Goldsworthy's post this morning, in which she mused about what the words "the Prime Minister, Tony Abbott" would mean to her and her loved ones.
And to the country, and its image overseas.
And I said that after reading that post, I'd been wondering about my absolute dream fantasy PM.
I'm rather fancying someone who looks like Hugh Jackman, has a fabulous sense of humour, a couple of languages, a firm and intellectually sound grasp on world politics and economics, a great sense of personal style, humanitarian leanings, enormous sympathy for the arts, and the balls to tell the mining industry that they'll do what they are bloody well told to.
David scoffed and said: "Well, my fantasy PM is erudite, well-thought-through, worked her own way up in the world, loves her footy, and looks like Tilda Swinton."
Another lovely weekend in Albany, this time for my Mum's 81st birthday.
On the Big Day, Lily and I took Mum and Dad to the Porongurups, where we were stunned by the silence among the tall karris ...
... and enjoyed the cool greens, and the occasional shower.
After a picnic lunch we stopped here for afternoon tea.
Can you see the enormous red-flowering camellia beyond the palm fronds? It's over 60 years old, about 3 metres high and absolutely covered with blooms.
Someone obviously planted it in the perfect spot.
Right out the back, next to the orange tree, there was this fabulously simple structure, which I photographed — with Dad sitting in it "to give you an idea of scale" — thinking I might like to build one in my backyard, when we eventually get a house.
I'm imagining a long table instead of two small ones, and lots of Christmas lunches and summery dinners there. (My idea of summer is obviously tempered by the recent months of winter ... of course, a third of our real summer will be too stinking hot to want to sit outside at all, even in a rustic dining pavilion!)
Dad, who is supremely handy and has built at least four houses from the foundations up, reckons it wouldn't take a lot to build, and so long as it was demountable, it wouldn't need planning permission. Good one.
:: The flar at the top of the page is, I think, a kunzea. A native flower, blooming everywhere right now, much to the delight of the bees. And the golden wattle is looking amazing.
... that old Aristotle was a bugger for the bottle ... but did you know, had you any idea, that Schopenhauer was such a misogynist arsehole?
Click to get a bigger image, and start reading halfway down the left page ...
In case you can't see a bigger image when you click:
Schopenhauer's disparaging view of women [writes author Christopher Janaway], concentrated to most corrosive effect in his short essay, On Women, has earned him some notoriety. To what extent it should single him out from any of his contemporaries and predecessors is debatable ... What is not in question is the vehemence of his rhetoric on the topic:
Only the male intellect, clouded by the sexual impulse, could call the undersized, narrow-shouldered, broad-hipped, and short-legged sex the fair sex; for in this impulse is to be found its whole beauty.
Throughout their lives women remain children, always see only what is nearest them, cling to the present, take the appearance of things for reality, and prefer trivialities to the most important affairs. This it is the faculty of reason by virtue whereof man does not, like the animals, live merely in the present ... In consequence of her weaker faculty of reason, woman shares less in the advantages and disadvantages that this entails.
There are few compensating virtues. Schopenhauer ... is convinced that they [women] cannot reason very well, and have shallow characters. Their interests are 'love, conquests, ... dress, cosmetics, dancing'; they regard everything as a means to winning a man; dissimulation is inborn to them 'just as nature has armed the lion with claws and teeth, the elephant and boar with tusks, the bull with horns, and the cuttlefish with ink that blackens water'.
And: 'Generally, speaking, women are and remain the most downright and incurable Philistines.'
(From Schopenhauer, by Christopher Janaway, published by Oxford University Press)
Just thought I'd share that with the sisterhood.
Incidentally, those are not my scrawlings and scratchings. This entire book, from the library, is full of it, with notes in margins and all this stupid underlining. A lot of it is in what seems to me to be a mature hand. The work of one of those respectable older persons, I imagine, who deface public property and then spend the rest of their time whingeing about skateboarders or indolent youth.
There is so much to dislike in and about these two pages, isn't there?
The gorgeous Maggs plied me with cups of hot frothy coffee and played lots and lots of Harry Nilsson today as I got on with the mural. This one's almost finished, save for a bit of a touch-up here and there.
I also have to floralise (my own word) the remaining big white discs. I've been waiting for colour inspiration, and I'm thinking bright, bright orange or hot, hot pink. Then there are to be a few bugs and critters in the low grass and foliage for kids to find while they're waiting for their mums or for Maggie to cut their fringes.
I'm veryrelieved to report it's been a hit so far with Maggie's clients, especially one young woman, who thinks a mural like this may be perfect for her children's library ... and who has taken my card ... (much excitement at this prospect).
:: At home this weekend there'll be more knitting, and quite a bit of sewing, and generally doing nothing more strenuous than walking the dog. Bliss!