Friday, November 6, 2015

Guy Fawkes, a dinner and a 4-year-old

Yesterday was Guy Fawkes day: "cracker night".  But we are not allowed to own or use fireworks these days in most of Australia.  You now have to go to New Zealand to honour that historic and fun tradition.  We are now "safe" from ourselves.  Good that the Kiwis allow people to take their own risks.  And I see that Von has introduced Hannah to her heritage in that regard.

But all was not lost. The evening was still a good one for me. I shouted Jill and Lewis a pre-Christmas dinner at the "Sunny Doll", my favourite Japanese restaurant.

Anne and Jill have a lot in common.  They both do a lot of travelling and both read a lot of books.  So they chatted around 2 hours away without scratching the surface.  They are both very chatty ladies but they listen too, which is not true of all chatty ladies.  Lewis and I were left to chat to one-another for a fair bit of the time but Lewis always has plenty to say so that worked too. We had plenty of laughs anyway.

Lewis is a good example of how much we owe the Ashkenazim.  He was a pharmacist for most of his life so is pretty cluey. But he has had rather a lot of bad luck. Despite having lowish blood pressure he had a rather bad stroke shortly after his retirement.  But he fought back against it and has recovered very well.  He can drive again etc.

And he immediately took an interest in the subject of stroke.  He involved himself with other stroke patients and helped them with rehabilitation.  And he became such an authority on stroke, that, at age 82, he gets called on to give medical students a talk on the subject.  And, among the many other things he does, he also became a "visitor" at the "Wesley", a private hospital that we all go to for medical services in our old age.  So he goes around the wards just offering a friendly word and a friendly ear to people laid up in their hospital beds.  He could just stay at home and watch TV but he has got that restless Ashkenazi energy and likes to be active.  So he is well-known and appreciated at the Wesley.

But the Wesley is very popular and has only 500 beds (public hospitals often have over 1,000) so there are occasions when they are "on bypass" -- i.e. they tell the ambulance service that they are full and cannot take in new patients.  And that happened recently when Lewis had a bad turn and the ambulance was called.  After they had put Lewis in the ambulance and asked him where he wanted to go, he said the Wesley, of course.  But the ambulance did not move off.  He asked them what was the problem.  They told him the Wesley was on bypass. He said to them:  "Tell them who you have get on board".  They did and the Wesley immediately  accepted him

He told me that story last night and I pointed out to him that what happened was a good example of what one of my favorite Bible texts says.  In Ecclesiastes 11:1 we read: "Cast your bread upon the waters, for you will find it after many days" (ESV).  In other words, do good without thought of reward and a reward WILL come.  He earned and got the special treatment he received.

I ordered for all of us at the restaurant, as I know the offerings well.  We had a dish of tempura vegetables to start and I ordered Chicken Teriyaki Don for Jill and Lewis.  I had my current favourite, which is Omurice with pork --  and I ordered a Pork Belly bento for Anne.  It is quite a big bento there so everyone was impressed by it, including Anne, as I knew she would be.

Chicken Teriyaki Don

And now for the 4-year-old.  After the dinner Anne told me a little story about one of her sons when he was 4.  I have always found age 4 to be the most gorgeous age for a bright child.  They do and say such funny things.  I adored Timmy and Joe at that age.  So Anne's boy at age 4 had figured out the clock to some extent.  And he noticed that he usually got his lunch at around 12 noon.  So promptly at noon he would sit himself down at the kitchen table waiting for his lunch and would yell if he didn't get it.  Anne was of course not always ready to give him his lunch at exactly that time but her son's actions certainly hurried her up.

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