Sharp stabbing pain. Left hand side of my chest, below the heart. I inhale a shallow breath, stab. Exhale slowly the same amount of air, stab. This continues for around 30 minutes, grimacing through the pain, trying to find relief through breathing differently. No relief. I rotate my body slightly to see if elevating my chest will provide relief. Nothing. The stabbing continues. The pain commenced around 5am. After a little self diagnosis I decide it isn’t a heart attack, probably some muscular damage between the ribs. Having such a well formed, dare I say sculpted muscular chest, it is a surprise I don’t feel the pain like this on a regular occurrence.The caravan was silent, it was 5am and I was in agony. I decide that 30 minutes of agony was more pain than most men could handle, so turn to Caroline for comforting and reassurance.
“It’s probably your muscles. You were lifting both the girls over your shoulders last night”. Caroline rolls back to face away from me. Falls back to sleep! I get out of bed and take something for pain relief along with some anti inflammatories. Back to bed. Slow, steady breathing. Still in pain, the stabbing continues. I wait for the medication to kick in – about thirty minutes after taking the tablets, I start to feel relief. I can picture the muscles surrounding individual ribs relaxing more and pain sensors being slightly numbed by the pain killers. More relief is provided, the pain subsides. Time to continue writing about day 30!
Ava wakes again quite early. She goes for a wee on the makeshift portable ‘potty’ we constructed, which is literally a sturdy builders bucket with a children’s toilet seat on top. “There’s Trixie, there’s Trixie. He is having a tea party with Baby and Dolly. You are so naughty Trixie!!”. After telling Ava numerous times it is too early to get up, I decide it is better to get Ava out of the caravan, wash up the BBQ from the previous night and give Caroline and Audrey some more rest time. For the record Nonna, this is a regular occurrence, probably most mornings and she is getting a cup of tea in bed too! So who owes whom Nonna?
For breakfast we do bacon and egg wraps, cooked on the Weber. Yum. Such a fantastic way to start the day with a little bacon and eggs! The girls once again devour their breakfasts (we can’t work out if it is due to the abundance of fresh air, or because they are tiring themselves silly, but it is such a refreshing change from the constant meal time battles we face when at home). After breakfast, the girls play with some of the boys that are staying in the camp, making cubby houses out of sticks. From such a young age the difference between boys and girls is apparent. Our girls are happy to join in, play mum’s and babies and make houses, while the boys use sticks as guns and swords and are continually fighting each other. Ava got caught up in two minor altercations with these boys. It took all my might not to retaliate or use a larger stick!
Amazingly, our first stop today was not going to be a winery! We headed to Gnaralup beach, for some beach time for the girls, whilst I sat off the small jetty and threw a line out – hoping to catch a few fish. I could see from the jetty that Caroline was having a great time sun baking, while Ava and Audrey had put on their cossies and were braving the cold water. Audrey was first in the water, splashing around and dunking her head under the shallow waters. Ava was a little more reserved, kicking and splashing from the sideline.
I returned my focus to catching fish, using artificial (plastic) bait. No luck at all, however had two great conversations with some dads that wanted to show their sons what fish looked like. I may currently look a bit like a fisherman at the moment, but unfortunately don’t have all the skills. Possibly ‘all the gear and no idea’..
Once again proving how small the world is and holding a belief that some things are supposed to happen, when speaking to one of the fathers I was talking to on the jetty, I asked him what he did for a living. He replied, I conduct wine tours of the Margaret River. “Oh, which one” I replied. “Flying Corkscrew”! I put two and two together and realised that he was taking us out for my birthday on Tuesday. “Great, looks like we will be seeing you on Tuesday”, he replied “Lachie?”. How small is this world of ours!!
No fish in the bag, we drove through Margaret River in search of some Riedel glasses. We both agreed that drinking fabulous wine from plastic wine glasses may not do justice to the lovely bottles we are drinking in Margaret River. After searching a few shops along the main Street, we discovered that no shops have glass tumblers, so we settled on some up-market plastic tumblers and will give them a try out tonight.
Back to the caravan park, the girls and I had a sleep over lunch time while Caroline read her book in the sun. When they woke we headed into town to the river of Margaret River, to feed the ducks with our bread scraps. Caroline pulled me up on a few occasions, commenting that I was having too much fun and the girls should be doing the feeding – she was probably right! I enjoyed trying to throw the bread scraps past the adult ducks to the juvenile ducks, giving them a chance to fatten up. Most attempts were successful, however the adult ducks were pretty quick to get the bread!
Returning to camp once again, the girls continued their games of making a cubby house, Audrey playing with a little baby and watching the boys being boys. There were the odd occasions where boys were giving Ava a hard time. Over a month ago, she would have cowered to our side and stayed with us. Thirty days into our trip and she is telling the boys off, asking them to be fair and to share. She is standing up for herself – so good to see!
At 3.30pm we had some V.I.P guests arrive at the camp. One of Caroline’s dearest friends from the UK, Vicki and her partner Karl. They have recently arrived in Australia for a six month holiday and have come to spend the week with us in the Margaret River – Brilliant!!
After a good catch up session sitting in the grounds of the caravan park, we then headed for our early dinner, a 5pm booking at a restaurant down the road. I volunteered to be designated driver (as had Karl), so Caroline and Vicki enjoyed more than a few glasses of a local cabernet merlot, accompanied by a few pizzas. The girls were well behaved, completing some artwork at the dinner table, dancing to the live music completing twirls and other manoeuvres in front of the singer. Ever so soon it was well past the girls bed time, so we decided to call it a night and part ways to tomorrow.
The plans were partially set. We would head to Cheeky Monkey Brewery and Cidery around lunchtime tomorrow, a multi purpose visit. It has playground facilities for children that look fantastic, has great food and booze options, and we get to catch up with two groups of friends there! Vicki and Karl will be joining us, along with Mark, Amanda and possibly Duncan. With Mark and Duncan finishing their IronMan event in new PB times, I am sure there will be many reasons to celebrate! Congratulations guys, a fantastic effort!
I have just taken a prophylactic anti inflammatory before bed time as can feel a slight niggling in the same spot. Hopefully if allows for a peaceful evening and a good start to day 31!