Saturday, October 25, 2014

high tea at home

Today's afternoon tea (Nathan's grandmother's scones)..

pot obsessed

I have a new favourite shop. It's called Mr Kitly (I've told Nathan that he can go there to buy me presents – and not only when it's my birthday, Christmas etc). I discovered the shop only a few weeks ago and went there last weekend to buy a pot for my office bromeliad. I was like a kid in a candy store and had to go back again today to take another look. I ended up with these colourful little hand-made ceramic pieces. So cute. The pots are pictured with another new purchase, a Phalaenopsis javanica orchid.

lights out

I blacked out yesterday afternoon. I was having a lie down at home and got out of bed too quickly. It's never happened to me before. When I awoke, I found myself lying on the floor and the dog was staring at me from the bed. I had a bit of pain on the right side of my body (I think I must have hit the side of the bed on my way down) and I scraped my elbow. Nothing major...luckily I didn't hit my head. Hmmm....things certainly aren't the same as when I was younger.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

dinner drama

We caught up with some friends tonight for dinner at a restaurant in South bank. The restaurant is situated on the first floor with a lovely view of the Yarra. We took a table next to the balcony.

We were having a great time when, all of a sudden, there was a commotion coming from the next table. We turned around in time to see a young man tumble from the balcony, bounce off the shade cloth, and disappear onto the footpath below...with a very loud thud. It was an action movie. People were screaming and gasping from inside our restaurant and the sidewalk below. The guy must have fallen at least 5 meters. Someone yelled out "call an ambulance" so I dialled 000. I was told that the paramedics were already on their way and that an off duty ambulance officer was already on the scene.  

The poor people at the next table saw it all unfurl and were interviewed by a police officer who had come up to our restaurant. I noticed an Asian lady on the sidewalk take a photo in the direction of where the man would have landed. After a while, the busker nearby returned to playing his music.

The diners sitting 'al fresco' at the restaurant would have got quite a fright seeing a body land next to them. Fortunately the guy was not in view from where I was sitting but I heard he was bleeding from the head. We heard he had gained consciousness so hopefully he is ok.

This is the second time I've seen someone fall off a building in Melbourne.

super saturday

We went to the South Melbourne markets on Saturday morning. It has become a bit of a routine. We take the dog so she can have an outing. We always go somewhere nice for brunch and then I do a bit of a shop.

I bought some unusual banksias for the dining table vase. I love the zig-zag shape of the leaves and their greyish underside.

I usually also end up buying some random ingredient for a weekend meal. This week, I couldn't resist these octopus tentacles. I'm thinking I'll attempt a Greek classic – oktapodi krasato – for Sunday lunch.

Later in the morning, we headed over to Fitzroy to check out the Vivian Maier exhibition at The Centre for Contemporary Photography.
I'm in the process of redecorating my office space. So...after we finished at Fitzroy, I took advantage of the flexicar to drop off a large piece of artwork and a nice plant at work. I bought a bromeliad that I'm hoping will do ok in my office (I have a large window but no direct sunlight). It has lovely 'speckled' leaves.
On our way back, we decided to go to Port Melbourne for dinner so we went home to retrieve the dog so she can have another outing – and a visit to the beach. This is Truffles moments before she launched herself towards a couple of other dogs on the beach. I love seeing her play with other dogs and run on the sand.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

a day off

I had Friday off. I needed a break (plus, I have way too much annual leave, which I need to take before the end of the day here and there doesn't really make much of a dent but it's better than nothing). 

I took Truffles for a walk to the supermarket in the morning. I was surprised to see so many people walking their dogs (Don't these people have to be at work?). I bumped into one of my neighbours who was out with her pugs, one of whom (the older one) is slightly belligerent and always growls at Truffles. Near the supermarket, Truffs made friends with two schnauzers and I had a nice chat with the very good looking owner. 

Later in the morning, I caught up with a gallerist friend of mine who recently retired. I hadn't seen her for most of the year. First, I was away, then we were both away. We are such busy international travellers nowadays. It has only been a month or so when we have both physically been in the same city. 

We met at Richmond Station and went to a couple of nearby art galleries in Richmond (I bought an owl sculpture) before making our way to Victoria Street for vietnamese. My friend is soon going to Vietnam and Cambodia for a holiday and has started getting ready for the trip by immersing herself in vietnamese cuisine. She told me she had pho twice this week already. 

We went to my favourite restaurant on Victoria Street. It is called Co Do. They specialise in the other vietnamese noodle soup, bun bo hue. I love the taste of the bun bo hue soup but less keen on the congealed pig's blood they normally throw in it. So... I usually end up mixing my phos and my buns (and order a special beef pho with bun bo hue stock). It is a total corruption of two dishes that are perfectly delicious in their own right – but the waiters always oblige. My friend had a stir fried fish and vegetable (she was pho–ed out).

After a very long lunch, my friend and I parted ways. I took the 109 back towards the city and went on a quest to find an oil burner in Collingwood. For the last two weeks, I have been going around Melbourne in search of an oil burner that, let's face it, I could probably have made myself by stealing stuff from my own laboratory (it would certainly be so much cheaper). This burner must have been featured recently on some design blog or tv show or something. It seems to be sold out everywhere. I was only 'partly' successful at Collingwood because I managed to buy only half the contraption and will have to wait a week for the most important component to arrive, the round bottom flask (i.e. the bit that you actually put the fragrant oils into...hmm, I might just pilfer a temporary flask from work in the meantime).

Turns out the shop where I bought my oil burner was right near The Peel, which I haven't been to since the time some twink thought it was acceptable to put his hand between a female friend's leg on the dance floor.

I decided to go up to Gertrude Street to catch the tram back to the Docklands. I got off the tram at the upper end of Southern Cross and was shocked to see that they have created a giant 'anti-terror' advert using the stair case. It reminded me of the 'be alert, but not afraid' adverts following the September 11 attacks. Such a sorry state, the world we now live in.

As I was walking home, I bumped into pug neighbour again. She was with her dogs. "I hope you haven't been walking your dogs all this time," I said. She laughed.

I made roast duck for dinner and was delighted to learn later that Malala was co-recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize.

I had a great day.