I met Monte when he was 16. I was 15. We were rowing at our private schools (eyeroll, so stereotypical) and we met at a Head of the River after party. He didn’t want my phone number, he said we’d see each other at the Nationals in QLD the following weekend. He ended up chasing down my phone number anyway, and thus began the evenings of ridiculously long phone calls.
So, fast forward 24 years and here we are. Living in Tasmania, the place we fell in love with on our honeymoon. Five babies, four of whom are this side of heaven. We like our careers. We’ve had three houses: two we renovated because we were young and energetic, and one we built, because we were you and energetic and slightly crazy. We have the property, with the animals that we grow for food and company. And the strawbale house, which we are pretty proud of but want to change slightly.
I think we’ve been through quite a lot. Including some national rowing gold medals, because that’s how it all started.
When Monte’s mother died in December, he said he didn’t feel like having a party anymore. However, as his birthday came closer, we decided to invite some friends around for a BBQ. What made it even better was that Monte’s sister, Sarah, and her family came to stay as well.
There was good food, good music, great company. There were children running around the backyard after midnight, and grown ups sitting by the fire to the wee hours of the new year. The dogs had a great time too, but by midnight they were asleep by the fire.
And just like that, we saw in the new year and celebrated the awesome Monte, with the people we love.