6AM – Mare and Dan wake up. Dan showers, they dress, make lunches (usually a sandwich or wrap, some fruit and Marilee likes to take dried coconut), eat breakfast (Dan has a bowl of Toby’s boring Cereal, Marilee makes two scrambled eggs and a piece of toast) then feed and pet the cats. They do not speak much in the mornings. Dan, despite being physically mobile, will still sleep until around 9AM. [Sidenote: Yes, he has been in class for 1.5 hours by this point].
7AM – They get in their tiny, white Hyundai Getz (four-door, manual transmission) and Marilee drives Dan 10-12 minutes to school at Aviation Australia, near the airport. Often, she drops him off with his bike so he can ride home, rather than take the bus. She then drives herself 20-35 minutes to her school in Mitchelton. The roads are windy, narrow and have high speed limits, so the commute is nothing if not exciting.
7:30AM – Dan starts school. His classes mainly involve sitting in a classroom, watching a power point and listening to this week’s session instructor expound on various topics: (pick the most interesting topics and put them here). They break around noon for lunch and have a couple other breaks throughout the day. When they first started, most students took breaks and lunch in the lunchroom, but now, most join Dan outside for some fresh, Aussie air at breaks. There are 14 other students in his class – some fresh out of high school, others on their 3rd or 4th career. Most are Aussie students, though there is one other Canadian. Some seem nervous about their prospects after this course. I don’t think Dan should be one of them. He is very smart. I mean very, very smart. Here is one of the critters he has met while at school on one of his breaks:
7:45AM – Marilee arrives at work and prepares her lesson material for the day before the students arrive at 9AM. She has 17 adult students ranging from 20 years old, to over 60. About a third are Aussies and two thirds are international students. They break at 12:30 for a half hour, during which time Marilee wanders around the little neighbourhood, admiring the palm trees and appreciating the local grannies who have knit-bombed the neighbourhood.
2:30PM – Dan finishes class and either bikes or busses home. Biking takes him about 30 minutes, bussing takes him nearly an hour. If he bikes, he swaps his school clothes for his cozzie and jumps in the pool to cool off.
3:45PM – Marilee finishes school and either bikes or drives home. Biking takes her over an hour (it’s only 11km but with traffic, and Brisbane’s MASSIVE hills and her ambulatory speed, it takes some time) and driving takes her 10-20 minutes. If she bikes, she swaps her school clothes for her cozzie and jumps in the pool for a swim.
4:30PM – Marilee and Dan sit down and cruise the internet (Facebook, Buzzfeed and sometimes some blogging) until one of them cracks and makes dinner. They often BBQ in their backyard, or make Mexican or Indian food for a quick easy dinner. Sometimes they break down and get $5 value pizzas from Dominos. By sometimes I mean a lot of the the times.
7:30PM – Dan sits down in the office to study. The cats chose their viewing spots to monitor is homework progress.
7:30PM – Marilee watches Glee, 30 Rock or McLeod’s Daughters or something on TV, or reads a book for her book club, or occasionally goes for a walk in their hilly neighbourhood. Sometimes she gardens in her herb garden, goes to yoga, or does crossword puzzles, or plays Yahtzee on the mobile with her sister. Very occasionally she bakes. Sometimes she looks on gumtree.com.au for things that they need to buy (current list in order of priority: futon, vacuum, camping equipment, beach tent, surf-board bag, sewing machine, boardgames, friends).
9:30PM – Marilee and Dan watch an episode of some comedy show, or if a new Walking Dead has come out, they watch that, then go to bed in their queen sized bed.
All the same stuff as Monday happens.
All the same stuff as Monday and Tuesday happens.
All the same stuff as Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday happens.
7:00AM – Marilee drives Dan to school for a half-day. While he is at school, she usually Facetimes her family, plays Pandemic with her sister, does her laundry and packs the car for whatever weekend trip they’re planning. If the house is a disaster, she occasionally does laundry or cleans a toilet.
Noon – Marilee either makes or buys lunch for both of them, and fills the car with petrol.
12:30PM – Marilee picks Dan up from school, they eat lunch in the car while driving to one of the beaches located an hour north of Brisbane. Because of the shortness of time, they usually go to the nearest (and most abandoned) beach – Woorim or Bungaree on Bribie Island.
1:30PM – They check the tide, slap on their sunscreen, set up their beach chairs, roll out their beach towels, pull out their books and settle in for some hardcore relaxing.
2:30PM – They go in for a swim. Sometimes they use the boogie boards they got off gumtree, sometimes they just bob around in the water, watching for sharks, jellies and rips.
2:55PM – They climb out of the water, cooled and refreshed, slap on the sunscreen and settle in for more reading. They repeat this cycle until it becomes too cool, too dark, they become too hungry or the sand fleas drive them away.
7PM – They go find a place to eat dinner.
9PM – They drive back to Brisbane.
10PM – They watch some TV then go to bed.
8AM – Marilee and Dan wake up, eat their usual breakfasts, pack the car and drive to one of the beaches between one and two hours away.
9:30AM-5:45PM – Marilee and Dan select a beach with as few people as possible, set up their lounge chairs (which no one else here seems to bother with), check the tides (to make sure they won’t be swept away soon) and settle in to read. After an hour or two in the sun, they go for a dip in the water, then return to reading for another hour or two. Then they grab the boogie boards from the car a catch waves for a half hour. Having recently purchased a surfboard, they may also surf. Then they go find some food, or eat their picnic lunch (usually sandwiches, strawberries and watermelon), then return to reading until it becomes too cool or the sand fleas become too aggressive (seems to happen at twilight). Then they get in the car, and find somewhere cheap to eat dinner, then drive back to Brisbane between 8 and 9PM. Once home, they change, sometimes shower, and watch a couple episodes of Parks and Rec, or Downton Abbey or the Walking Dead.
Repeat Saturday’s routine. Sometimes Marilee goes to church first.
Extra notes – If the weather is bad (like today) Marilee blogs and Dan reads the whole internet, again. Sometimes he studies or plays with the cats or cleans. They both read a lot. Sometimes they go to Costco or get groceries or drive around Brisbane picking things up off gumtree.com.au
Schedule may vary, week to week.