This has been our best trip to Brisbane. Ever.
And I’ll tell you why – it wasn’t just that I got to hang with ALL my kids because Miss19 was over from Perth to help celebrate Master22 graduating with a double degree from university. I mean that was great, but something else happened to top even all that.
“The next left,” I told my wife.
“Alright,” she assured me.
I was listening to the voice on the Maps app on her iPhone and relaying the instructions as she drove through Brisvegas. This was a big thing for a girl from a town which has perhaps ten sets of traffic lights.
But then Tracey has always loved Brisbane and wanted to move there so she could enjoy the flashy lights and even flashier shopping centres. In fact, my unwillingness to return to Brisbane to live has been the topic of many ‘discussions’ during previous trips the last fifteen or so years.
“Left,” I reminded my wife.
“Yeah, but where?” she asked me.
I usually drive in Brisbane but we’d just been to the Devereaux family Christmas party and I was a bit too tipsy to be in charge of a vehicle. To be honest, I was a little too tipsy to be in charge of the iPhone. A couple of missed turns meant the trip was now taking so long I was struggling to remain in charge of my bladder.
“It says to take the next left instead.”
“After this one?” she asked as another street sign disappeared into the darkness behind us.
“No, it meant that one. Hold on, it’s rerouting us again.”
I know these iPhones are just devices with no emotions, but I swear I could sense longer pauses between it working out new sets of instructions which I felt sure were being filled with whatever the electronic equivalent of a sigh and eye roll are.
And still Tracey was doing better than me when I ventured out on my own in search of milk earlier that day.
You see, my iPhone is older so it doesn’t have Maps. Or, more specifically, it’s so old it takes ten minutes to update my emails, so something as instant as Maps is…well, it’s not an option.
But I used to live in Brisbane so I wasn’t worried. I mean how much can things have changed in twenty years?
Just tell me, is it an issue for anyone else there’s no way to turn around if you accidentally find yourself in the tunnel lanes? That’s a little too convenient, don’t you think?
Kiddies, don’t believe everything you read in fairytales because I swear the old witch from Hansel & Gretel didn’t die in an oven related incident. She is alive and well and has moved on from gingerbread houses to lure in children. She’s now designing signage for the toll tunnels to snare unwitting and dim-witted drivers down into the bowels of the city where they must pay to re-emerge in the wrong part of town.
At the first set of lights I wound down my window and caught the attention of a passenger in the work vehicle beside me full of blokes in high-vis.
“Which road do I take to get to Tarragindi?” I asked, trying to sound casual. It didn’t bode well that three of them looked back over their shoulders and the other two laughed.
“You see that hill over there?” one of them said, pointing to a hilly knob several postcodes away. “If you just go beyond that you’ll be close enough to ask a question like that.”
“I’ve changed my mind about wanting to live here,” my wife said when we finally reached our destination. She was stressed and so lost she was surprised when I told her to pull into the driveway of beautiful renovated house we’d rented for five days. “I don’t want to live in Brisbane anymore. I’d never make it home alone.”
If I’d known all I had to do was drink beer and let her drive for half an hour to change her mind I’d have done it a long time ago and saved myself fifteen years of grief.
And best of all, this means I won the ‘we should move to Brisbane’ argument. With my wife! I don’t want to make this week all about me, but people fly across the country and people get degrees all the time, but this just never happens.
This has been a truly awesome trip.
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It really does make a difference Thanks.
“Raising a family on little more than laughs”
LOVED seeing you Mishi, and Geoffrey, you floor me with your attitude and achievements. Love you both! XXX That was a fantastic couple of days 🙂