Gordon Wiegold left his job as Editor of the Canberra Times Sunday newspaper for a change of pace and bought a milk run in beautiful Laurieton to be more of a father to his family. The pace has changed all right – it has picked up rapidly. This is a day in the life of Gordon Wiegold.
2.00am: Rise and shine, checking the daily weather forecast, latest sports results and news highlights are a must, so it’s onto the Web as I start on my rice bubbles, toast and cuppa.
2.45am: depart home as quietly as possible and load up at the milk depot, which takes about half-an-hour. Luckily I can do this with my eyes closed now as, sometimes, they literally are at that hour.
3.30am: Deliver milk to my home customers. One young fella meets me with his mum and dad on the steps at 5am most days, so he gets rewarded with a choccie milk each Friday.
6.30am: By this time I’ve delivered to nursing homes, four bakeries, a fruit and veg shop and one local servo. For a quiet town, there’s still a lot happening while everyone’s asleep.
6.40am: The guys at Colonial Court Bakehouse ask me to taste test a new pie … great, I’m helping out and having brunch at the same time.
8.20am: Continue to service shops as Mum (Kim, who works at Port-Mac Hastings Council full time) drops two youngest kids off to me (Chaz 6 and Tahlia 9, Tyson, 13, is in high school). They used to be thrilled to ride the milk truck, but now it doubles as a study vessel as they cram last night’s missed homework in before I drop them off.
9.30am: Finish delivering milk to shops and head to Queen’s Lake Retirement Village. All my customers are friendly, but these residents are ultra-nice. The only time they get angry is when I short change myself and they run after me to give me my 5 cents back and tell me I’ll never get rich unless I charge full price.
10.30am: Back to the docks and hear the day’s news off the other milkos. Even if a customer knows the ‘grapevine gossip’, they’ll still ask you in case there’s more to the story.
11am: Stock take and order for the next day – can’t forget the order. If I had to milk the cows, the shops would never get it.
Midday: Time for a snack (remember my midday is about an office worker’s 4.30pm) then a quick nanna nap. If I sleep for less than 30 minutes, I’m refreshed, any more than that and I’m tired all day.
1.30pm: Take care of any bookwork for milk run and catch up on any jobs I need to do for the Chamber of Commerce, footy club and plan my After School Care sports clinic.
2pm: Put some dinner on so it’s ready for Kim and kids later on – tonight it’s a lamb shanks stew done in slow cooker. It will also keep until I get home later on.
2.50pm: Pick up Chaz and Tahlia from school, hear the world according to both and might stop in for a quick snack before heading to clinic.
3.05pm: 35 kids at St Josephs test my endurance for an hour of sporting games and challenges, and it helps if they throw balls at me in case I nod off.
4.05pm: Time to ferry Tys to his footy training and get ready for mine at Port. I play AFL for Port Magpies, and we made the semis this year.
5.15pm: Leave for Port and pick up Dave ‘Beaver’ Balaam, who gives me 45 minutes of arguments and sledges – which usually wakes me up again by the time I get to training.
7.30pm: Out of puff after all that running and it’s back home to see the kids before their bed time at 8.30pm.
8pm: Catch up with Kim, have a bite to eat – a wine or beer is also good – and it’s time to charge my milk computer and printer for tomorrow’s run.
Been a busy day … that snooze button might get a workout tomorrow!