30 January 2013

I'm back! We're all safe and settling in

We finally got our phone and internet back this morning. What an incredible couple of days. Kerry, Sunny and Jamie arrived, not mid-afternoon as they expected, but at 9pm. I was starting to get worried. The roast chicken and vegies I had cooked for them was transferred to the fridge early in the evening and I sat in the lounge room knitting, listening to the wind and rain. They couldn't call me because the phones and internet were down but when I saw that first flash of light when the truck drove down the driveway, everything was fine again. I was so relieved to see them.

This is our little one lane, dead-end street. All that debris on the road surface was shaken from the trees during the fierce winds we had the other night. The larger branches had been removed.

Hanno had driven up with them and they were all exhausted. Even though they had a couple of friends to help pack the truck, it was up and down two stories with no lift, so they didn't finish until the evening. Then they had a 200km trip north in the rain. Poor little Jamie was asleep and Kerry carried him in, took off his shorts and let him sleep under a gently moving fan. They got their frozen foods into our freezer, packed their cold food in the Esky, had drinks and showers and everyone was in bed. We all were up at 5am the next morning because the truck had to be unpacked over at the new house and back at the depot at 9am. Hanno went with Sunny and Kerry to help unpack, Jamie was still asleep so it was just him and me. :- ) When he woke up, he came out to the kitchen, smiled when he saw me, put his arms out to be picked up, then decided to run through the house looking for Sunny and Kerry. When he didn't find them, he wanted to see the chooks, so we got some bread and went outside to feed them. He had a quick play outside with the sun shining, then we went inside for breakfast - blueberries, a piece of toast with Vegemite and a cup of milk. 

After breakfast, I changed and dressed him, and we read some books. He has a favourite book about cats and this time, he realised the ball of wool the cats are playing with in the book is the same wool that I use. So after saying "wool" about 20 times, we went on to the next book. It's wonderful to be with him at this stage of his life when he's learning so much. His dad came to pick him up after he returned the truck, Jamie gave me a big kiss and cuddle when he left and off he went to his new home. Kerry had some good news too. His work called to ask if he could come back to work early. He was supposed to go back tomorrow. He apologised and said he couldn't, that he'd just moved his family from the Gold Coast to the Sunshine Coast and they hadn't organised the house yet. The woman then asked if he needed extra time at home to do that and offered him an extra week off to help get his family settled. Sunny was very pleased. It will be such a help to have him there for an extra week and for him to have the time to show Sunny the shops, beaches, libraries and church.

Thank you all for your comments and messages of love and support for us. We all appreciate it - every one of us. It's like living in a kind and caring neighbourhood were neighbours look out for each other. I wish all our real neighbourhoods where more like this but hopefully we can help change that in the future. I'll be back tomorrow to write about the importance of homemakers during disasters.

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