|The most delish chocolates EVER!|
|a sweet little boat in the harbor|
|The parents with the Opera House in the background|
|Mira on the Manly Promenade|
Last week Mira went back to Uni, David came back from a week in Belgium, and his parents arrived a few days later. David loves to bring us gifts after he travels and this time he brought us more chocolate than I have ever seen. I guess he really loves us, or he figured "when in Belgium…" The truth is, it was all artisan chocolate so the pieces were small and packed a flavor punch.
We saw his parents on Friday, but they had actually been in Australia for a while. They decided that since they were coming all this way, it would make sense to do a tour, then see us at the end of it. They took two weeks to go to Uluru, The Great Barrier Reef, Melbourne, and Sydney. I think they had a good time, but both of them were pretty much exhausted by the time they got to us. We tried to keep the touristy things to a minimum while still having fun and showing them a slice of our lives here.
Last Sunday we went down to Circular Quay (pronounced key) and took the ferry over to Manly. We got delicious fish and chips, and some macarons from Adriano Zumbo - yum on both accounts! There are tables and benches all along the beach promenade where his parents were able to sit comfortably. After looking at the sand and waves for a while, we strolled over to the outdoor, pedestrian mall and looked at the shops, people, and a little art fair that was on. There was someone playing guitar and singing beautifully. When we got closer we saw that it was a little boy (about 11 years old). There was a sign in his guitar case that said he was giving all the money he made that day to the local women's shelter. I got very verklempt over that, as anyone who knows me could guess.
When I was at work last week, a woman was talking to me about visiting her daughter in Abu Dhabi. She was saying that it is hard to have family spread out so far away, but at least we can get on a plane and visit; at least we can use facebook and skype to stay connected. She was commenting that when our ancestors ventured out to Australia (or in my case, America), they were cutting ties with their families and there was a good chance they would never see them again.
The trip for David's parents was, I am sure, a once in a lifetime thing, and it was nice that they had the strength to do it. I realize that most of my friends and family will never come here to visit due to cost, health, or other reasons. I know that I will need to go back to the states to see people. I can do that. I do feel a little overwhelmed at the thought of trying to see everyone, and I do hope that some people will visit. Either way, I try to stay in touch with this blog and with email, and even snail mail. In this day and age, there is no reason not to.
|a beautifully weathered old home|
|this view reminded me of the riverfront in Bath, England|
|The Harbour Bridge and if you click to enlarge you can see Luna Park|
David and I are still very focused on the idea of living in the moment, making the most of what we have, and letting our loved ones know that we are grateful for the time we have with them. With that in mind, we had a nice "date" week-end after his parents left.
We took the train (not so far) out for a Saturday night dinner invitation to our friends in Burwood. It was our first time to this suburb and we were pleasantly surprised at how nice, lively, and charming the high-street and neighborhoods were. It was a lot of fun chatting, laughing and eating delicious food. Nicole and I realized we both have a knack for coming up with clever t-shirt phrases, and Aaron and I admitted our mutual respect for Freudian psychology.
Sunday morning, David and I did a big grocery shop, cleaned the house, and headed out to see a wool exhibit and explore another neighborhood. We walked through The Rocks and down to an area called Walsh Bay. We had been there once before at night to see a play, but I had never seen the neighborhood during the day. It is one of the original port/shipping areas of Sydney. The piers are still in tact, and all of the old warehouses have been converted to apartments, shops, or art spaces. The houses and the streets just back from the piers are charming and very historic. Many of them are being restored and there are plaques all around telling the stories of the original settlers. Surprisingly, there were very few people around and it felt like another time and place all together.
|yes, I made my scarf out of wool|
|a very cool venue|
|the actress Tilda Swinton modeling the sweater|
|just fun to look at, not to wear thank you.|
The exhibit is called Wool Modern, and is part of The Campaign for Wool which seeks to promote the use of wool in current fashion and design. Of course, I love anything to do with fibers, especially natural fibers, so I was very excited to go see this. Some of it was gorgeous and glamorous, some was quirky and outrageous, but all of it was stimulating and exciting. It is comforting to me to see the link between the past (traditional fibers) and the future (avant guard design).
On our way back to catch the bus, we stumbled upon a crowd of stylish people outside a big white tent that said "Australia Fashion Week". I didn't even realize it was going on! I am going to have to figure out a better way to stay up to date on the art/style/design/fashion happenings in this buzzing town. I saw one of the girls from Australia's Next Top Model. She looked so sweet. I had no idea what was happening in the tent, or who all the people were, so we just went on. Anyway, David had already been generous enough to do whatever I wanted that day and I was already saturated with inspiration. We were hungry for dinner though, and I had brussel sprouts at home waiting to be roasted and more chocolate for dessert.