Yes, Raincoaster, I am shouting. Bite me! This has been a year worth damn well shouting about!
We started the year waiting desperately for the hearing date for our MRT appeal, with Mr O in Qatar, the children in Nigeria and I was here in Australia. We were advised the hearing was to be the day before I was flying out to visit Mr O. We won in February and I visted Mr O in Qatar the very next day. On June 3 my family came home. Since then we’ve had a whirlwind seven months getting four children established in a new country, new home and new schools. Mr O completed Certificate II in Horticulture (Landscaping) and got his “L” plates for driving on the “other” side of the road. I started a new job during this time as well. I have made a fair start to our book, Love versus Goliath.
For any visitors new to our history, this has been a MOMENTUS year for Team Oyeniyi. I’m not going to be bashful: I’m damned proud of how much we have achieved this year, with the support of some very valuable people: our families, friends, legal team and health professionals!
Our top commenters of recent times, based on the WordPress stats page, have been:
- Elizabeth of Mirth and Motivation
- Nancy of Spirit Lights The Way
- Pip of Piglet in Portugal
- Erin of Momfog - Erin and I started together, from opposite sides of the world, so as “newbies” we had a special support connection!
- TiTi of One Cool Site Blogging Tips
- Veehcirra of Veehcirra
Many thanks to you and all our wonderful visitors and followers for a terrific year for our website. We have reached a page view count of over 56,000 and have Google Page Rank of 4, while alexa.com has us at (today) a reasonably respectable 862,924. You all helped so much!
Tonight, New Year’s Eve, we will take our children to the City of Melbourne celebrations: a free concert and fireworks. Then it will be home before midnight to watch the midnight fireworks on TV.
Happy New Year everyone. We wish you and yours as great a 2012 as we had a 2011. For us, 2011 has certainly been a year not to be forgotten!
Edit: Since publication, the WordPress “stats monkeys” have sent us our annual report! 19 sold-out performances in the Sydney Opera House? I’ll take that!
The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 50,000 times in 2011. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 19 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.
We are SO, SO looking forward to this. Mr and Mrs O are sneaking away for a romantic night in resort spa soon. The financial reality is there are many other things we SHOULD spend the money on: school books for 2012, the contribution to the school building fund, new runners for a certain young man who seems to go through a pair a month.
Mr O is rather worried we are spending the money – he wants us to have the time away as much as I do, but because he is not yet earning money himself, he feels caught between a rock and a hard place. I know on some level he would rather I bought clothes for myself.
Earlier in the week, the beach days were looking like Thursday and Friday. By this morning, today’s forecast was 24 C with “increasing sunshine”. Yep – it increased alright – at 5 pm when we were on our way home from Anglesea.
It really was not the best day weather-wise at all, but the kids seemed to enjoy it. We’ll go back later in summer when we can hopefully be a little WARMER!!! They just can’t stomach cold food and that is what we eat at the beach! Working on that one – I suggested they couldn’t eat ice-cream on that basis, however the logic didn’t seem to wash.
Despite the cloudy, cool day I got slightly (at least I hope it is only slightly) sunburnt. Again my family can’t believe it – how could a person get sunburnt so easily? Yes, well, caucasian skin is just very susceptible to scorching.
So what happens AFTER Christmas in a household like ours?
We shop, have a date night, watch soccer (not me) and go to the beach (tomorrow’s planned excursion, weather permitting).
Boxing Day. I see a few Americans talking about Boxing Day around the place, so presumably the idea has cottoned on. Either that or they are really British and I only thought they were Americans. I’m too tired to try and figure it out! If you don’t know what Boxing Day is all about, Google it! I’m too tired to find a link for you! There we go, there is a Wiki link after all.
Boxing Day in Australia is a public holiday but also a huge, huge retail sale day. So of course all the retail staff are NOT getting that public holiday. It is the public holiday you have when you are not having a public holiday. Confused yet?
We shopped. Miss O 1 scored four new dresses, Mr O got jeans, a couple of hats (the man loves hats) and some new runners at a great price, the boys stocked up on shorts and Ts, Miss O 2 had got shoes, shorts and tops before Christmas so she missed out on THE SALE day. Even Mrs O got a couple of dresses, a top and a pair of trousers. I didn’t want to buy anything, I want to lose this weight first, but on the other hand walking around naked is not a good look, not to mention in some places one can get arrested, so I had to get something.
The content of this chapter of Love versus Goliath has been published earlier on this site in a different context. Here I have re-worked those two articles into a chapter of the book. Please let me know your thoughts. Is there sufficient detail? Does this paint a picture for you? As the reader, have I reached out to you to encourage you to want to read more?
Sadly, there is more to my story than I care to remember, then or now. I’d stored the memories away in the back of my mind somewhere, safely locked away where they stayed out of my daily life.
Melanie had commented just a few days before I should try to ensure I concentrated on the positives of progress to date, rather than the negatives. She was right, I should have been doing that. There had indeed been positives and I was most grateful for those. I continued to be haunted by the possibility a result will come too late as we juggled the waiting with the risks to my family’s safety.
Apart from the precarious situation my family was in, my own childhood made coping with the situation particularly difficult for me emotionally.
There is always a “but”, isn’t there? I have 10 days to write a sizeable chunk of our book. My intention was to spend time each morning, before the rest of the family arose from their holiday slumbers, writing with a target of reaching 50,000 words before I go back to work.
I was up at 6 am this morning in order to speak to a literary agent in San Francisco. I then checked my emails. This is what I found:
Dear BigPond Member
This email is to let you know that the speed of your BigPond® Broadband service has been slowed because you have reached your monthly usage allowance.
Of course, you can’t incur additional usage charges on your BigPond Liberty® plan – but the speed will remain slowed until the end of your current billing cycle.