The end of blogjune and happily watching The Tour de France and the #couchpeloton of those watching #sbstdf and Tweeting Also having a couple of days off work and going away for a short break. As opposed to much of Australia who are in lockdown but not Melbourne for once! At my place of work we await the reveal of the transformation in mid-July (read restructure) to lose another 300 jobs. Having already gone through two rounds of voluntary redundancies it will be tough times. So stay tuned for blogjune 2022 for the next update I guess.
First time back at my physical workplace rather than working from home today. The campus seems quiet. More shops than I recall closed in the AGORA (the centre of the campus) than when last on campus in March before our last lockdown. It is also intra semester break so that contributes to there being a lack of student life on campus. And having been a COVID hotspot the staffing in the library seems to be small. I blogged about this earlier this month We are also conservatively transitioning back to allowing a higher number of staff back to the workplace as the rules have only recently changed from 25% to 75% of staff in a workplace and the change of directive to work from home if you can to be more relaxed and open in that regard.
A late afternoon ride. Here it is on STRAVA Not as dedicated to the early morning ride these days. Appreciate having a quieter and slower Saturday morning these days with the possibility of a sleep in. Particularly at the moment with chilly Winter mornings there is less momentum to get out and ride. This is one of my regular short rides that I developed during lockdown as it stays within a 5 km radius of my home and takes in views of Green Gully which my house backs onto and takes in some views of Brimbank Park. There is also the bonus of an outdoor gym at one of the parks along the way to do some minor weight training.
In addition to the interior home renovations was some significant roof work. When the handy man who did my interior first came for an inspection and quote he started by looking at my roof. Initially he thought he could do it but he deferred to a roof specialist as he saw it as a big job. The chap that did the inspection then sub contracted and came back with a couple of quotes. The ones that took on the job were interesting.
They seemed to be okay at first but during the time that they were undertaking the work there seemed to be a lot of excuses. Too hot. Too windy. Too wet. Sorry boys at another job. Traffic. Another job that I had to finish off. The first day of cleaning the roof left an awful barrage of broken bits of tile, mortar and dirt all around the surrounds of the house and garden. At the end of the job, just the day before another lockdown, it was all done. In addition the chap who had done the original inspection came back a few times and patched up the spouting that had some rust holes. All in all a good job and good to know that it is all in place after 30 years of neglect for the 50 year old house.
After the Bright holiday in late January we had arranged for a handy man to prepare and paint our kitchen/living room, lounge room and hallway. After twenty years of neglect and a number of cracks with house movement post the drought there was much to do. To clear out the rooms was quite an undertaking. We have an enclosed decking so much of the furniture was stored there. Without the kitchen being accessible we moved the fridge to the lounge as we could place some furniture in the middle of the rooms to be covered up.
The handy man was amazing. He turned up early each day. Was up for a chat when required but just diligently worked away getting the complete job done in eight days.
We took the advantage of having the lounge room cleared to also get new carpet laid. With a lockdown and a delay of supply that happened about a month later.
I read this article about office culture and practice having worked from home for more than a year I concur that instead of having to justify to work from home the mind set is more so justifying the need to come back to the office. The question now of how to work and the nonlinear office hours mentality of working 9 to 5. From March I had started to go back to the physical workplace two days a week. However in the last week of March our library was a COVID exposure site and a number of library staff had to isolate for 14 days. I was in the fortunate position in being alerted by colleagues, getting tested, getting a negative result, talking to the COVID hotline and then getting a call back from the Department of Health to not have to undergo the full 14 day isolation. Where as 22 of the other 25 library staff who were present on the day had to. Which included being called upon during the week by Department of Health staff and an army office to check in on them but also to check that they were isolating. During this week there was a significant outreach within the library to assist those who were isolating. Being an eye and ear for them. Assisting where possible with getting food to them. Offering to take pets out for walks. In some ways the experience brought the library together to support one another. Having just started the process again to come out of a lockdown situation the return to the physical work place will no doubt be a lot more cautious, less enthusiast and slower I imagine. As we tick off our yearly (and delayed due to COVID) staff appraisals (Career Success) and look towards the daunting University “transformation” read restructure to be revealed in mid-July it will be a rocky road ahead.
After a strict lockdown and an increase in being to travel from home 5 km, 25 km zone, to no zone, for the last few weeks the next progression is that we have been allowed to go outdoor swimming again. Last blogjune I wrote about swimming after a much longer restriction. The outdoor pool was at 27 degrees. The air temperature was around 15 degrees. The bonus of this week as opposed to last week was that you could use the change room, but no showering. Changing at the side of a cold outdoor pool was not so fun. I was plugging away with my laps feeling fairly mundane thinking I might give up. However a younger faster swimming joined in the lane next to me. That sparred me on to extend the distance I had originally intended to go for. Results are recorded here on STRAVA
I went into the city for Men’s Table tonight. An exciting night as two new men joined our table for the first time so an anticipation to get to know them, see how they’d fit in, and an unknown of what personality types they had. Also the change of dynamic for our existing group to grow with two new members. They were great and fitted in very well and were open to share of themselves. A testament to the existing group that they felt comfortable to share from their first night. There was also an exciting but anxious reality of lockdown rules and being allowed out within the 25 km zone and having a facemask when outdoors. We had to have table service by rules not the usual go up to the bar to order drinks and our meals. When I left the car there was still some time before the zone became unrestricted so I paid a parking fee. However when walking further away I had the doubt of whether I had locked the car and whether the car locks itself after a period. All fine when I returned to the car after a great night. Locked.
Dinner Plain is beyond Mount Hotham. Primarily it is a snow resort. However in Summer there are still a raft of activities that can be done there. On the last day it was suggested that as a group we go up there for a walk and go out to dinner. It was suggested that the parmas at one of the restaurants there was one of the best they’d had. Being Summer and just past lockdown one of the group who suggested the parma checked the availability and booked us in for dinner on Dinner Plain.
Most of the group went up in the afternoon and did the Dead Timber Hill Walk The place we went to for dinner was unfortunately understaffed and were trying to work with an app to individually checkin and order your meal. However it was not working well for a large group. The Parma was okay but maybe not as good as it had been hyped up to be. We left early enough to come down the mountain still in day light and rested up in anticipation of packing up and heading home the next day having said our farewells to the group.
The group decided to go to Lake Buffalo on one afternoon. It is 24 kms beyond Myrtleford so took some time to get there. I have never been there before. It would be a nice place to go on a hot day and take a picnic to. There are no shops there so you need to take supplies with you. There were some with boats and jet skis on the lake and some swimmers in the water. We sat around talking and played games.