Johnny leaves for Brisbane at noon. We spent a delightful evening together last night. When Claire rang to thank us for JB’s birthday dinner, cooked by Johnny, I spoke tentatively of JB; he had not been his usual outgoing self. Although we have known him for over fourteen years, Johnny and I still have no idea what JB feels or in what way we can help. Since he and Claire are also having relationship problems, their troubles have multiplied. Johnny and I are desperately busy to be of much use, but if we have them over for Sunday dinner, it will revive all of us. We enjoy their company and need a break too.
Now, back to Cost Accounting, I am quite far behind. I am getting confused between applied debt and budgeting, especially the information used to calculate the total budget. I don’t have much time because the assignment is due. What a rare luxury it is to be able to study for a whole day.
14th October 1982
Later today, Monika, the kids and I plan to go to the beach while mum is at her clinic appointment; our dinner of liver, eggs and noodles will take relatively little preparation. We’ll have passionfruit meringue and passionfruit jelly for pudding.
Nathaniel and I had enjoyed our breakfast on the lawn early in the morning. After gardening for half an hour and cleaning the bathroom, I have settled down to my studies. It is still relatively early. Nathaniel has been in and out of the little room and seems half-asleep and uncooperative, but wanting further contact. He started on one puzzle while I set out two more. Suddenly, his shoulders slumped. Overwhelmed, Nathaniel complained he couldn’t do them. After dumping out the pieces I had started putting back into the boxes and refusing to help put the puzzles away, he was sent out of the room. After crying for a short while on the couch, he went in search of his mother.
19th October 1982
I telephoned Helen Douglas about having Barbara stay at home for the next two days. She mentioned that Graham King was annoyed that parents were told of possible transfers to Quay Street before he had officially informed them. She was so helpful and offered to send Barbara with Mrs Jeffrey to assist with her swimming class on Fridays. I also let Young’s bus service know that Barbara would not be on the bus today or tomorrow. After cleaning the laundry wall, I phoned the RACQ regarding the towing bill and Yeppoon High about their Cleanathon. I’ve organised a few jobs for Barbara to keep her busy when she is not resting: move mango leaf mulch onto the plants, hose the garden, and brush soap and oil onto the lemon tree. Barbara is presently in front of the television.
Last night Gareth was quite upset after a phone call from a friend—Denis rang to say his family were leaving that night. My mood became rather gloomy after Johnny pointed out that I was spending too much time on Methodology and not enough time on Programming; that the course was about computing, not methodology. He was concerned about the poor effort Gareth and I put into our studies and wondered what we could do about it. We both went to bed quiet and somewhat distant. This morning was the same. I had discovered more gloomy news: several large bills had accumulated and now I must do a bank reconciliation.
20th October 1982
Nasty, nasty, nasty. Johnny tells me I should not go to the Yeppoon Town Planning Conference as I am not yet in control of my studies. I think I ought to go because our subcommittee of Emu Park ratepayers did a lot of work on the Livingstone Shire Strategic Plan. Also, this would be the perfect opportunity to meet some of the more active members of the Yeppoon community interested in town planning, in particular along the Capricorn Coast, and to gauge what the interest is. I wonder how many people from Emu Park will be there?
Is Johnny right? Well, yes, he is, because my track record on subjects taken so far, sadly, is not good. Most other activities seem to take higher priority than my studies. However, I would enjoy the conference because it would be stimulating and thought-provoking. The last two enjoyable outings for me were the methodology tutorial for external students and the town planning meetings in Emu Park; I cannot, at the moment, recall any other times.
My head hurts with tension. One feels worthless, hopeless and frustrated.