Preparing for the Sunday night Red Eye

It’s Sunday evening. It’s been a warm day in Perth. I’m sitting on the balcony of the hotel I’ve been staying in. I hope the people on the cruise boat down below don’t mind that I’m sitting here, wearing just shorts, and sipping on a glass of wine. Because frankly, the last week has been super-super-busy, and if they do mind, I don’t care.

First, there was a reasonably intense two-day work conference in Sydney (with associated socialising/working at night). Then on Tuesday night, there was an evening flight from Sydney to Perth, arriving in Perth at 9.30 local time (after midnight back in Sydney). That was followed by a two-and-a-half-day work conference in Perth which involved a lot of training, a lot of talking and some after-work socialising where we continued to talk about work. I figure I did my 38 “rostered hours” in record time this week.

Maralinga by Lin Onus at the Art Gallery of Western Australia. A stunning work about the atomic tests conducted in Australia during the 1950s. A young woman holds tightly to her mother, as the winds from the blast from the explosion. A shameful part of our history.

“A week of highs and lows” is how I described the week to a colleague and friend in a text message. We were both supposed to go to another work-related social activity on Friday night, but by Friday afternoon/evening I was exhausted, and so I retired to my hotel room. Though I could have gone back on Friday, I decided to tag on a few extra days in Perth at my own expense. It’s such a long way to travel (five hours), that I figured I couldn’t miss the chance for some friendly catchups, a bit of tourist exploration, and some relaxation.

Aside from yesterday’s food tour, I also paid a visit today to the Art Gallery of Western Australia and caught up with a friend for lunch today at Little Creatures. So yeah, despite the busy times I’ve experienced over the last few weeks, I feel like I’ve had a weekend. I feel quite relaxed. I’m catching the red-eye back tonight (leaves Perth at 11.35 pm, arrives Sydney at 6.55 am), so I’m hoping for a sound night’s sleep. Hoping…

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