Labour Weekend

I once had a baby on Labour Weekend. I had thoughtfully managed to avoid Bathurst – which in those days was on Free To Air television. I suspect the ambiance of the occasion permeated through to the womb because the baby arrived the following weekend with the disposition of a racing car driver and an abiding love of the sound of any high performance engine,  but that particular Labour Weekend was not only appropriately named but also the high point of all my Labour Weekends since.

I put my disappointment down to the name Labour.  Why not ‘Take it Easy” weekend or, “Slackers Weekend,” but because someone called it Labour Weekend the nation has seen it as a challenge and risen to meet it head on.

And October?  We all know October weather isn’t always that flash, though sometimes it is possible to strike a bit of sunshine that makes you go giddy enough to haul out the shorts. In our house we are labouring so it doesn’t really matter what you wear so long as you turn up and sweat. So far this weekend I’ve broken the handle on the fork and bent the spade. The reason for this is that I am obviously very strong and the weeds I’m trying to dig out of the garden are perhaps a little bit stronger. It may also have something to do with the fact that despite these wonderful garden implements having pretty little brass plaques on their handles, they’re now 20 years old and have decided to call time on all this work. I sympathised but I found other, smaller tools and ended up burying seeds in unmarked rows and planting exotic things wrapped in newspaper that I bought last week at the supermarket. I admit by the time I found them, the exotic things wrapped in newspaper (aka aubergines) looked like they could do with life support but I’ve got faith that the inevitable cold front coming through tomorrow, will perk them up. Experience tells me I  now have 2 weeks before I need to go back out into the wild and count how many lettuces have survived the snails. I will go armed with spray for the roses and a new fork for the cooch and dandelions that will have regrouped underground and begun to take over the bare spots where I haven’t yet had time to plant the annuals.

What is the saying- suck it up and smell the roses?


I much prefer the one that says ‘Forget Labour Weekend. Stay indoors and write your novel.’




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