Monday, May 01, 2006

Remember to breathe

Waking up at 6am to the news has its up and downs. It was surreal on 9/11, and it was fantastic this morning. I don't know about you, but I'd given up on those miners. They hadn't really been foremost in my thoughts, but I'd taken a mild interest because my family has a mining bent to it and it was always one of those things that could have happened to us.

But to wake up on May Day and hear the news was a real buzz. I'd been trapped under a stack of Rubbery Underarms all evening yesterday and didn't get the newsflashes. It's not often you hear something that evokes such hope and happiness, as well as that bittersweet tinge that the family of the dead miner must be experiencing. These are such powerful emotions and I savour these moments because most news just leaves me numb and helpless.

It takes me back to when I was stuck in the house soon after Bumblebee's heart operation, expressing milk and bottle-feeding at all hours of the day and night and working through my own depression and hope issues (single parent to a newly resurrected infant). My saviour was Radio National, and it was the same month of Princess Diana's death and the Thredbo disaster. Hearing of Stuart Diver's survival was a similar buzz, and I stayed with the story every minute of the day and night. I hope these men survive. They're not out of danger yet. The odds are with them, since the mining company is skilled and careful, and they have a whole community helping. And they've got a whole country on their side.

Something completely different, but interrelated in the sense that it added to the general sense of goodwill this morning, was the drive into school today. Bumblebee and I were in the car sitting behind a stationwagon that had dark tinted windows and a specially-caged back section to hold a dog. We were laughing because the dog, a jet-black lab-something cross, had his head sticking out of the window and was woofing gleefully at anything in his vision.

This continued most of the way to B's school from our house, as both cars were going the same way. Suddenly the black dog put his head back inside the car. And reemerged as an old brown dog! It was such a shock that Bumblebee and I squealed and started giggling afresh. The car windows were so dark that you couldn't see much inside, so it was impossible to spot two dog bodies from what we thought was one dark mass of dog body.

The old brown dog put his head back in, then the young black dog came out again. He went back inside, and out came... a brown and black rottweiler head! You can't believe how funny this was. It certainly didn't look like there were three dogs in that car.

At that point we reached his school, and lost the stationwagon. But we both felt very positive about life at that moment. I guess a glimpse of Cerberus always helps put things in perspective.

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