Dramatis persona*

helenhead Helen Chick

I've always wanted a bumper sticker that said "I'm a female, LDS/Mormon, Scout leading, geocaching, piano-playing, bicycling, mathematics educator with a PhD in maths ... and I VOTE"!

I think this makes me a minority group of cardinality 1!

* Since there's only one of me and "personae" is plural (I think), I've gone with dramatis persona.
September 2020
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Echoes (and being auntie)

Last Saturday I kidnapped the three eldest of my Tasmanian nieces and nephews (aged between 5 and 10) and took them for a drive and a play. First stop was a really good playground, where it was proved that one of the things that aunties are good for is to run around in circles pushing/pulling the big dizzy swing … and where it was further proved that one of the things this auntie is not, is very fit!

There were some curious echoes of the past on this excursion. In addition to my scintillatingly witty commentary whilst driving the car (which provoked mirth in the small but appreciative audience), I happened to start singing “Monday’s a holiday (Is everybody happy? You bet your life we are)” as we drove. The kids started to figure out how it worked, and towards the end were joining in. I suspect that next time we go for a ride we might be able to have it going full bore. I have vivid recollections (actually I don’t, I only have recollections of recollections!) of singalongs in the car when I was a kid, although “Monday’s a holiday” is a much more recent addition to my singalong repertoire. I actually learned “The Irish Ballad” (aka “Ricketty Ticketty Tin” or “The Dead Song”) in the family car … but I don’t think that I should introduce this particular song to the nieces and nephews just yet (maybe “Great Green Globs” is okay, though!)!

The other echo from the past occurred when we came to Pearson’s Point. We had family picnics here when I was a little tacker, and my brothers and sisters and I played chasings over, in and around the old fort ruins that are here. On Saturday I managed to recall enough of that energy and derring-do for a bit of a climb and a commando roll between two levels of the top fort, but nephew Thomas was right: the stairs are much easier! There are a couple of old cannons here, and—now we come to the photographic echo—some 32 years ago I took a photo of my siblings climbing on it. The advantage of being the photographer at the time is that I am not in the picture! My siblings are kind of protected by the fact that the photo was taken on slide film in a not too good camera, it has deteriorated with time, and I took no special care in scanning it, so the image isn’t very clear. Some 32 years later—on Saturday to be precise—I took a photo of the next generation. An additional echo, that I hadn’t noticed until just now, is that both photos show the vehicle du jour: there’s what looks like our white Kingswood station wagon in the first shot (I’m presuming this must have been before we bought the VW bus), and my current green Subaru is just visible in the second.

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