Friday, May 22, 2009

Picnic Perfect

On Tuesday Farmdoc and I decided to take advantage of picnic-perfect weather. Maybe the last warm day of autumn. We packed a basket and went through Hayshed Paddock and down to the creek. The goats looked expectant when they saw us but didn't follow.

We chose a flat grassy spot under the pine tree that marks our south eastern boundary and lit a fire.

The water level was high and it was noisy as it rushed over fallen branches. This is the part of the creek where we often see platypus, but this day we didn't see any.

Farmdoc cooked the chops and heated the spuds that I'd baked in the oven.

We ate our picnic and drank red wine out of plastic glasses, reclining on the bank and enjoying the autmn sunshine.

Then I broke a dental bridge. Disaster! We packed up and rushed home to ring around dentists. The earliest appointment I could get was in Hobart so yesterday we drove the six-hour return trip.

'When did you have this done?' the dentist asked me.

'About fifteen years ago,' I said. What I thought but didn't say was that I could work it out exactly because I wrote a short story at the time called 'Teeth', inspired by all the dentistry I had that year.

The story was about the relationship between a dental mechanic and a girl who worked at a post office. While I was writing it I visited a dental technician's workshop and spent an early morning shift at a post office in Armadale, watching the posties sort the mail.

I remembered all this as I reclined in the dentist's chair enveloped in a smock, eyes hidden behind dark glasses, but I didn't say anything because my mouth was wide open and full of equipment.

We came home last night so happy to be back on the farm and now we have to return to the dentist this afternoon. Six more hours in the car. The only good part about it all is that it's cold and grey here and apparently warm and sunny in Hobart. That'll be nice. Almost picnic weather I imagine.

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