The Diplomat’s Anthem – 16th March 2023

My respected enemy, my hated friend
Our love to hate may never end
A battle of wits, a game of pretend
A hold on hope on which we depend

Today I’m feeling:
Happy, content and later, tired. The temperature is perfect at around 7 pm and I feel like going for a walk but there’s nowhere really to go. I could walk just for the sake of it but feel that my house is so comfortable it’s challenging to motivate myself by this time of day. I think about walking to Daytripper but I usually go there with my laptop to either work or write and I don’t want to carry a bag with me all that way. First-world problems in a third-world country for this entitled white boy.
Today I’m grateful for:
My work situation that allows me so much free time that I sometimes struggle to fill it appropriately. I got home before 10am and have been doing all sorts of little things from reading to cleaning to vacuuming and suddenly it is evening already and I wonder where the day has gone, and everything is ok. If I wasn’t doing (what feels like) a whole load of nothing I’d have to be at school usually teaching or on days like these with no classes filling up time with useless activity. I’m so lucky.
The best thing about today was:
Seeing lots of excited happy kids at school for the graduation ceremony. If they weren’t graduating they were preparing to present gifts to their friends and siblings. It’s funny to see some of the ‘bad’ students celebrating in this kind of traditional ceremony and it reminded me that the kids have a cultural understanding of expectations which I will never have and which sometimes brings us to odds. While pushing them with all sorts of possibilities for their futures they understand their realities which I can’t see.
What was out of your control today and how did you handle it?
Not much really. A car freshener I ordered online got refunded as it was out of stock and the computer repair shop called me and advised they couldn’t access the data on the old drive which is a minor inconvenience as about 99% of my files are backed up. Nothing too wayward today.
Something I learned today?
Despite wanting to watch less youtube I found an interesting new channel from China by journalist Miao Xiaojuan.
The AFL season starts today and there will be 4 umpires on the field now and the bench will have one sub plus 4 to interchange. Swans play on Saturday and I will watch on Sunday.
What am I looking forward to?
I’m looking forward to going to Australia in October. It’s been five years since I left and I’ve been the happiest I’ve ever been. Australia is what made me though and I am very fond of it there. It will be good to catch up with Hayden and Jochen and to look around my old haunts to see how or if they have changed.

I took this picture because this climbing plant has suddenly found its wheels and trying to overgrow everywhere, reaching out to find new attachments. The remnants of last year’s growth are still stuck up in the tree tops, dead and decaying yet still stuck. I have to fight it back this year.

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