Ballarat North

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  • Day166


    March 25, 2020 in Australia ⋅ ☁️ 16 °C

    Wednesday 25. No flights, poor communication, what to do? Trying to get the news and research alternate flights was proving impossible on 3G. Even sitting outside the information centre to use their public WiFi was not helping. Time for a move.

    We decided to ask Kerry &John if we could go back to Macedon to get things together.

    On the way we dropped off at Carole’s, Bun’s sister, to have some lunch and to say goodbye. We walked the 4 miles around the lake in Ballarat that was used for the rowing competitions when the olympics were held in Melbourne (1956).

    We then drove on to Macedon to try to get through to the travel agent and find out what’s going on.

    On Wednesday evening were advised by our travel agent to register with the British Consulate for “rescue flights“ as there are now none available.

    Kerry has worked with Quantas all her working life. The network of cabin crew know what’s going on, what’s flying, what’s stopped etc. Kerry found out that Quantas flights were all full up until they stop flying at the end of the month. Qatar airlines are still flying and British Airways are flying from Sydney via Singapore. Malaysian Airlines are still flying but we have had three flights cancelled so far.

    On Thursday we contacted the British High Commission to be told that they wouldn’t be doing anything yet, we could try gong to the airport to get a standby flight, to stay safe and to carry out the advice of the Australian Government. Bun pointed out that the advice was not to go to airports etc. We researched available flights, BA looks the best for us. Some airlines appear to be profiteering with tickets costing many thousand GBP for a one way, economy ticket. We thought that we’d give the travel agent one last chance and phoned them on Friday evening (UK 8am) and told them we felt abandoned, that they weren’t supporting us etc. We were told that they couldn’t do anything if airlines didn’t release seats to them la la la. We booked flights directly with BA for Sat 11 April.

    On Thursday we arranged to move to an AirBnB at Riddles Creek, about 10 miles away, from Friday, despite having received a number of offers to use houses or stay with Kerry and John. However attractive the offers are, we don’t feel we can have anyone move out of their house just so that we can move in. We also feel that Kerry and John have been incredibly kind and accommodating; dropping by “for a cuppa” has actually been 4 stays for a couple of nights or so. We see them as a “fall back” option and it’s no longer fall back if we are staying there. What would we then have for plan B?

    Having done all of this, there are a lot of discussions starting in Australia about another phase of travel restrictions. Queensland, South Australia and Tasmania unilaterally shut their inter-state borders. We were in Victoria and need to get to Sydney in NSW. Travelling to NSW is further complicated by the fact that our rental car has to be returned to Melbourne and we are not allowed to have a drop-off out of state. not allowed to go inter-state.

    What to do?
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  • Day106

    Day off with Rhubarb Pie

    March 15, 2020 in Australia ⋅ ⛅ 16 °C

    Today Marika and I were free so we could sleep as long as we wanted. I walk up shortly before 9 am and got up to have breakfast.
    Ok, I was already awake once when Megan and Tracey were getting up to get to work but could fall asleep a little bit again.

    Unfortunately, Anton didn't show up to drive Flair and have Dolly on the lead rope behind. So Tracey asked me around 9.30 am if I could wake up Marika and ask her what they should do.

    So she got up and went straight out to drive them and came in for breakfast afterward.

    We took it super calm until around 12 pm when we decided to go into the city for some shopping.

    We found some pretty cool sunglasses at Kmart 🙈😂
    Was too hard to decide which ones to buy, these are my favorites 🤣🤣

    We even tried to buy some food, but you need to take what you can get.. The pasta was sold out.. 🙄
    It's crazy...

    In the afternoon I baked a rhubarb pie for everyone. I was really feeling for a rhubarb pie since a couple of weeks and now I finally did one 🤗😋

    More we didn't do today. Marika is having a cold and not feeling super fresh so we were only cooking later in the evening and watching a movie together with the other once.

    Marika met Pat, the owner in the stable when she shortly went out to check the training list for tomorrow and gave her 1000$ for me as a thank you for all my help 😳😳
    So amazing. Didn't expect this.
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  • Day107

    Day 6 at Anton Golino Stable

    March 16, 2020 in Australia ⋅ 🌙 7 °C

    Another early morning. It's cold outside today. But a little bit warmer than yesterday I would say.

    Same routine in the morning. Just a calmer day today, all horses are only jogging today. So we don't need to fix them so much and everything was going pretty easy today.

    The one-year-olds were only walking in the walker today is we were actually done around 1 pm already! Nice 😊
    I am recognizing almost all horses now and even know where to find their paddocks, so I am more and more taking them in and out now. 🤗😉

    After lunch Marika, Jack and I had a little nap 🙈

    At 4 pm Marika and I went back to the stable to take in the horses that are sleeping inside, fixed some wounds and put some wraps on and them we were feeding them and fixing the food buckets ready for tomorrow morning.
    5.40 pm we were ready with all.

    Back inside we both had a shower and then fixed some grated potato-carrot cakes, or whatever you want to call them, for dinner.
    And of course rhubarb pie with ice cream as a dessert 😋
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  • Day101

    Day 1 at Anton Golino Stable

    March 10, 2020 in Australia ⋅ ☀️ 20 °C

    Today I got up early, 5.30 am to be ready to go with them to the stable at 6 am.
    The first thing I got to do was taking out some horses from their boxes, check the temp, pick their feet, change their rug and kick them out in the walker. During the day I did this a couple of times.
    In between, I helped them to gear up some horses as well, picked up some from the walker, washed a lot of horses and did as much as I could to help them.

    Around 10 am Marika, Anton, the boss and I went with 3 horses to Melton for trials, training races.

    It took us around one hour to get there. Once we arrived we loaded of the stuff onto the sulkys, took the horses and went to the stable area. All got a fast stopover in the pee box, as they don't have boxes here for the horses.

    After that, we started to fix them straight away and Marika went out with the first one for the warm-up. In this stable, they actually are warming up the horses! That's not so common here in Australia.
    Back in, we got the other two ready and Marika and the other driver, Jason, went out with the other to warm them up as well while Anton and I got Elvis ( his real name is Dreamcatcher) ready for the next trial. As soon as Marika and Jason were back inside Jason had to drive out with Elvis for the trail. So I and Marika fixed the other two horses ready while Anton went up to the track to watch Elvis.

    Marika and I had the other two ready when Jason came back inside so we had just to take off the bike from Elvis and put it on Kiwi.
    While they went out for the next trail I was suddenly alone with Elvis. I didn't really know what to do and how they want me to take care of him, so I just did, what I thought should be right. I took off all the gear, checked the plus, walked him for a while and gave him a nice shower. So Anton was happy when he came back from the track 😊

    We got the other two horses quickly ready as well, packed in all the stuff, they wash all at home and got going really fast again.
    We stopped at KFC for lunch and even I found something to eat 😉

    Back home we were loading of the horses and five them before we kicked then out in their paddocks, loaded of the stuff and at 3.30 we were ready and went inside for a calm afternoon. We went to buy some food and I found German bread!!! I can't believe it! Really good bread!!

    And we even found some L&P from New Zealand, for tonight's dinner. 🤗
    Around 7 pm Marika and I was cooking dinner and around 9 pm we went to bed. As I didn't sleep so well last night I was pretty tired.
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  • Day104

    Day 4 at Anton Golino Stable

    March 13, 2020 in Australia ⋅ 🌙 17 °C

    Today was a calm day in the stable. We had online horses to high, swim or go on the treadmill.
    So all was going pretty easy and smooth in the morning.

    After all horses, we're done training, Marika and I started to fix the one-year-old so Antin could drive them today as well.

    We were basically done with all the rest but there were still 2 babies left so we all were doing some extra cleaning and organized a shelf new until the last baby was outside and we could have lunch. Even though we hadn't so much to do today we got ready at 2 pm, quite late.

    Marika and I had lunch and then went for a nap.
    I am really not used to this anymore 🙈😂

    The rest of the evening was calm, we all watched a movie together but anyway went to bed pretty early, tomorrow gonna be a massive day, we have like 20 horses going fast tomorrow 😳😅
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  • Day105

    Day 5 at Anton Golino Stable

    March 14, 2020 in Australia ⋅ 🌙 11 °C

    Today we had a massive day in front of us.
    Glenn is always free on Saturday and Sunday and Daniel has vacation from today on. And all the horses are going fast today.
    And Jack can still not do so much because of his hand and he also needs to fix the tracks all the time. So Marika, Megan, Tracey and I gonna have a lot today.
    The day anyway started pretty calmly because a few horses had lost a shoe and we had to wait for Anton to show up and put new shoes on them.
    But them it got pretty busy. The first 3 hours went petty good anyway. Anton, Marika, and Tracey were driving the horses and while Megan and I are fixing everything inside. Took them in from the paddocks, put them in the walker, geared them up, washed them, fixed them and kicked them out again. After a while, we git more and more behind so it was actually good that there was a heat with only two horses in the middle so Tracey was also inside and could help us to catch up again.

    So, in the end, we were done earlier than we were all expecting.
    Pat, the owner showed up around 12 o'clock and started to roll up some bandages, clean up behind the horses and washed all gamashes as well. First I felt bad, that he was helping but Marika told me, that he is usually doing this on Saturday's.
    So it's not because Megan and I did a bad job inside.

    We were totally done at 2.20 pm and took a beer together to celebrate that this day finally is over 😂
    Marika just said: Good you are here at the moment, without you we would have been totally fucked. 🙈😂
    Even with me, we were almost fucked at one point.
    I really had to step in and take quite much responsible as Megan is pretty new in this job and she sometimes gets a bit lost. She needs to learn still a lot but she is really trying to do her best all the time.
    And with only me and Megan inside to fix the horse I ended up coordinating and fixing a lot more than before. But I obviously was impressing Pat, as he said to Marika that I do such a great job and he will pay me for it good. Not that I am expecting it, but it's nice when someone is really appreciating my help like this. 😊
    All the other do as well of course and they thanked me a lot for it and got really happy to hear, that I will stay definitely one more week to help them while Daniel has vacation and Jack is still not able to work normally again 😊

    We had some lunch and decided to have a girls night with take away and a movie tonight.
    Of course Jack was allowed to stay with us and even Megans boyfriend Chris came to stay over the rest of the weekend. 😉

    So we had some pizza and Chinese food in the evening and watched a movie together.
    Nice end of the day. 😊
    Tomorrow Marika and I are free and we gonna sleep soooooo long 🥳
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  • Day108

    Day 7 at Anton Golino Stable

    March 17, 2020 in Australia ⋅ 🌙 11 °C

    It was still cold this morning. Pusspuss, the stable cat, was very happy to see me this morning. Probably because I have been starting to feed her 😉
    Today we have a lot of horses jogging.

    We were supposed to go to the Ballarat Racetrack with around 9 horses for the trials but Anton changed his mind yesterday evening as he could not find another driver to drive the horses. We were actually happy to stay home 🙈

    Everything went on as normal during the day.
    We git ready around 2 pm in the stable and Marika and I were back out at 4 pm to take in some horses, fix some and feed them all. We were a little bit faster today and got ready at 5.20 pm.

    Back inside we were discussing what to eat and wrote a shopping list and then went shopping. We could buy PASTA!!! 🥳 Amazing!

    We actually got all we needed.
    So nice.
    Today's dinner was mashed potatoes with fish! 😊😋
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  • Day109

    Day 8 at Anton Golino Stable

    March 18, 2020 in Australia ⋅ ☁️ 24 °C

    Today it was already much warmer in the morning.
    Megan is free today and we have a lot of horses going fast today... So this is going to be funny...

    They first went out with the jogging horses, while Tracey and I fixed the horses for the first heat ready.
    When Marika, Anton, and Glenn were done jogging the horses, Tracey and I had even the horse for the second heat in and started to fix them.
    I gonna be inside alone while they go out and train four horses and Jack is out fixing the track 😬
    So I finished the horses for the second heat, fixed and took out Cam in his paddock and started to gear up the third heat while they were out.
    So we all washed the first heat horses and kicked them out before Marika, Anton and Glenn went out with the second heat.
    Tracey and I brushed and fixed the jogging horses fast and while she was driving them out with the quad to their paddocks I fixed the horses for the third heat totally ready and then we both started to take in the horses for the fourth heat as well.

    Back inside they helped out washing the horses again and taking in the last one for the fourth heat, even started to gear them up.

    So while I was inside alone during the third heat, I got the fourth heat ready and fixed as many horses as I could from the first heat until Jack came back and helped me with them. So we got them all ready before they came back.

    During the fourth heat Tracey, Jack and I fixed as many horses as we could, had Freda out in the walker and Elvis on the treadmill and I went out with him to swim him as well.

    It went pretty good I think, we got ready in a good time but driving the one-year-olds is taking quite much time. But we had a lot to clean up as well so around 2.30 pm we were finally done.
    After a quick lunch, we took a little nap, before it was time to get back out and take in the horses, fix them and feed them.

    As Megan is gone I got to take care of her cat and the bird she is trying to raise at the moment. It was three from the beginning but two of them died on the second day. But this one is getting stronger and bigger with every day 😊

    I am feeling a little bit like I might get a cold and the hot and humid air during the day today was not helping me at all. But I felt already better during the evening but anyway I went to bed early to get a good sleep.
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  • Day111

    Day 10 at Anton Golino Stable

    March 20, 2020 in Australia ⋅ ⛅ 11 °C

    Pretty calm day today. Most horses were jogging or going on the treadmill.
    Marika went to the racetrack with Akky around 10.30 am and Anton will leave later in the afternoon with Owen to Ballarat Racetrack.

    Anton decided to not drive the one-year-olds today and to give them a break now for a couple of weeks/month. We kicked them all out together in a big field. Oh they were so happy 😊

    We were ready in the stable shortly past 12 o’clock. So we went inside and had lunch and watched Akkys race together shortly past 1 pm. He was winning super easy! 🥳
    After that, I was laying down a while to read a book.

    Marika got back here around 3 pm and we went to the stable at 4 pm to take in the horses and feet. Anton was fixing Owen on his own and left at 4.30 pm.

    We got done pretty fast and went back inside to shower and then watch the race from Owen. And even he was winning his race easy 🥳
    Really good day for the stable!

    The rest of the evening was pretty quiet.
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