It has been a long time since I wrote a post on here, so I thought I had better redress the situation. A lot has happened this year, and although some of it has been a litany of misery, there have been some bright spots.

If you can bother trawling through previous posts, you will remember that I was badly affected by the floods that ravaged parts of Northern NSW in April this year. After a sojourn at a friend’s house for five months, my cat and I returned to my little flat here in the Boambee Valley. It is nearly unreconisable from the vision of dated axminster and Fantastic furniture items that it once was. Now it is repainted, recarpeted, retiled and yes – renewed. Its had a facelift, and now it is dressed up to charm with beautiful furniture courtesy of my insurance company and the Freedom Furniture catalogue. My telly is up to date, the huge sound system I wrote about earlier is installed and occasionally I give the neighbours a blast of my ecelectic taste in music.
It was music that sparked this post.

Ten years ago I was emerging from my second skirmish with adolescence. I had returned to NZ after my marriage ended and had enjoyed a seven year stint of catching up on all of the sex, drugs and rock and roll that I had not had the chance to explore during my adolescence.  (being ‘born again’ at 18 and married at 20 put the kybosh on that). I suppose it was my mid life crisis, but I did have a lot of fun being a 43 year old teenager. One of my discoveries was music. It was not the music one would expect a the 43 year old woman to enjoy, but the beginnings of a flirtation with bands like Tool and Korn. It was also around the time of the grunge era and I fell in love with the Seattle sounds of Nirvana and Soundgarden. And I liked it loud. My neighbour in the next flat in the old converted Victorian mansion was my age. She liked Barry Manilow and Neil Sedaka.  They were singers who made me want to vomit, or at perhaps slash my wrists. She was stymied by the sight of this middle aged mutton dressed as semi spring lamb woman head banging to some amplified sounds probably more fitting to a teenage boy’s bedroom. We seldoms spoke at the comunal clothesline.

That was then, this is now. Most of my musical travesties have gone to new homes via Ebay. However, I have a lingering fondness for Radiohead, Massive Attack, Basement Jaxx and more. Add in Groove Amarda, Faithless and more. Listening to them took me back to my second teenage hood.

Then, when I hit my fifties, and back in the loving bosom of my family here in Australia I found that I was enjoying classical music more. But, I had never appreciated or understood jazz. Then I had an ephiphany. At the ripe old age of 56 I found myself listening to singer Melody Gardot. It was jazz like I had never heard it. It was a revelation. Her voice is raw yet subtle, with nuances of heart felt life experience in every note.

So. Does that mean I am grown up now? Can I say goodbye to Tool, a band I saw live 12 years ago in the Christchurch town hall?
Or, is it ok to admit that I have just broadened my taste? When I finally got the monstrous sound system wired up in my tiny pad the first CD I played was ‘Blister in the sun’ by the Violent Femmes. This was closely followed by Talking Heads ‘Burnin down the house’ (not an invitation to be taken literally as having the house ‘flooded’ was enough of a negative experience to put me off being accosted by rogue elements) I played them loud with my sub woofer ( not a dog I discovered) blaring to let the neighbours know that if they can use chainsaws at 6am, then I can add my own version of sonic hell.

Point is, I guess I have finally matured. I wear flat shoes because they are comfortable and natural fabrics because they are also comfortable. I am tired of makeup that melts in the 39 degree heat and push up overwired bras that make you feel like your mamaries are ensconced in chicken wire. I am just me. A complex middle aged woman with eclectic music tastes and a flash pad filled with mod cons and Freedom furniture in a flood prone area.

So, does this mean I am grown up now? Will I start reading the Financial Review and join the local bowls club? Will I let my hair go gray and will I start saying “now when I was young… “to any poor soul who will listen? No, I don’t think I am really quite grown up and probably never will be, thank God. I like being the quirky, complicated self absorbed person I am, so if my changing musical tastes are any indication, it just means that I am merely broadening my horizons.

And, the muscial ephiphany will NEVER include country and western music. It makes my flesh crawl with revulsion.