shapeofthings: (Diva)
Tonight I threw a belated Christmas/New Years gathering for my Hobart friends. The combination of not having cooked in well over a week, plus having Chef Espen on hand to help out meant I went a little over-board in the catering. I fed 8 of us and could have easily fed 12. There are enough left-overs now in my fridge and freezer that I'm not going to have to cook for the next week, plus I've accrued several new bottles of wine.

The evening was a riotous success, however, and it was great to finally get my friends together to meet each other. It's just a shame [ profile] geodyne couldn't join us, but that means there will have to be a next time!

So what was on the menu?

  • Home-made roast garlic hommus with crudities

  • Pear, caramelised onion & OMG cheese (sheep & cow's milk with grape pressings - powerful) tart (gluten-free, of course)

  • Black quinoa mushroom & pea pilaf

  • Dahl fry with basmati rice

  • Chicken, olive & asparagus fritata

  • Kangaroo & lamb meatballs with native spices and pepperberry-elderberry sauce

And for dessert?

  • Watermelon, orange, mint & toasted almond salad

  • Mixed berry tartlets (gluten-free hazelnut short-crust)

  • Panforte

Friends were asked to bring a contribution. Martin brought enough anti-pasto to have fed everyone without me cooking anything (I had to stop him putting everything he'd brought out), Kat contributed some rather tasty salami and a bottle of red (still unopened), Nat brought another bottle of red (half drunk) and Mark and Anita brought some home-grown pink-eye potatoes and broad beans, which I'll cook another day, a bottle of white (almost finished) and a dessert wine (one glass drunk by me).

I totally over-catered, but I had much fun spending the entire day exorcising the culinary ideas that had been building up in my head for the last few months that I was never going to cook for just me. Plus I got old friends together and introduced good people to each other. It was a grand event. Now I just need to deal with the vast amounts of food remaining given my freezer is now chock-full and the fridge is heaving.

Good food, great friends, sweet life. Happy new year.
shapeofthings: (bloop!)
Yesterday... it was only yesterday but it feels half a world away. Yesterday we went to Freycinet, rocky peninsula half-way up the eastern coast; a world of pink feldspar peaks and turquoise bays. Yesterday I fell into a paradise of rock, sand and sea.

We'd spent the night in Swansea, in a little cabin by the beach (my friend [ profile] playdoe_man and me). The afternoon before was rainy and I delighted in racing through the shallows in the rain, ankle-length skirt billowing out in the sea, the smell of rain, salt and sand so evocative of childhood: the camping trips in Easter with inevitable rain.

But Sunday, she dawned in style, the sunlight slipping past the curtain edge waking me at half-past five, summoning me back to the beach to bask in her beauty. The day was going to be spectacular, I couldn't wait to hit the road.


Heading back, I hammered on the other door til [ profile] playdoe_man emerged, sleepy-eyed and grumpy, and threw the day at him. Time to go, Allan, time to go. By 7 am we were finally on the road. Freycinet: an hour along the road, a different world. Come with me... )
shapeofthings: (Diva)
Blah, the change to Summer Time always throws my routine out. The clocks go forward but my body clock does not budge and I find myself unable to sleep before midnight.

I have been doing some pen & paper writing, so my poor journal is getting a little neglected. My apologies. I haven't been doing anything particularly exciting though. A very quiet weekend at home was had, catching up on much-needed sleep. Saturday was wintery, with snow up on the mountain. I stayed inside in my thermals all day. Sunday brought the promise of summer and I sat outside in the bright sunshine for three hours, reading a book.

I haven't been for a proper walk in the forest in far too long. Five weeks since I've been on the mountain. I'll make an effort to get out this weekend; hopefully the weather will cooperate (I was going to be poisoning gorse on an island in the Franklin River, but that's been cancelled now, so I'm a free agent yet again).


I really should write a post or three about my Victorian adventures. I've been back for 5 weeks now and am still yet to write anything. Let's see...

* Saturday August 20th - flew to Melbourne, recovering from the 'flu. Lovely dinner out with K, [ profile] wonderloey, [ profile] trissemeister, [ profile] wilso & AJ

* Sunday 21st - Hello larangytis. Day 1 of 6 with no/limited voice. Slept, lazed around and generally did very little until I lost it and cleaned K & WL's kitchen

* Monday 22nd - K and I drove down the Mornington Peninsular, exploring Portsea, Sorrento & the old quarantine station & army base right out at the end of the peninsular. In the rain. Lost voice entirely on the way home, enjoying the experience of a proper Melbourne traffic jam (not moving anywhere for a good hour)

Mornington6 Mornington2

* Tuesday 23rd - off to Daylesford with K and [ profile] nurseysarah for a totally mute day of pottering about in 2nd hand-bookshops, crafty shops and foody places with a lovely stroll around the lake. Lots of driving and a very late night, capped off by a personal relevation, clearing an emotional blockage. Benfits of laringytis: nobody can hear you cry.

DaylesfordSwing1 DaylesfordFriends

* Wednesday 24th - sleeping in and running errands in Melbourne city. Caught up with L and talked/mimed through a recent misunderstanding that looked like costing us our friendship. Investigated interesting-looking places and bought a hiking backpack to take my camera gear as well as some decent-sized memory cards. Failed to buy a set of Cokin filters due to no customer service and insufficient knowledge of what I was looking at.

* Thursday 25th - K and I set off to explore Gippsland. Meandering drive down to Inverloch, exploring the coast road, a walk along the inlet and sunset at Cape Liptrap lighthouse. An evening of wine, port & local cheeses, cozy in our hired cabin.


* Friday 26th - up and on the road by day-break, headed to Winsons Promontory National Park. Arrived to find most of the park still inaccessible following summer floods, but made the most of the parts we could get to. Lovely walk up Vereker Outlook. Very long drive home via Dumbalk & Mirboo North, thinking I could make a life somewhere like that. Exhausting day, voice returning.

PromWalk PromWallaby
PromTrail PromDewDrops

* Saturday 27th - up before the sun again to take K & WL out for their surprise: a sunrise hot-air balloon flight over the Yarra Valley. At least that was the plan. Due to morning fog it was past 10 am when we finally got into the air after several hours of waiting around. The operation was run by cowboys but fun was had (although it turns out balooning is a little too sedate for me). Home for an afternoon of doing laundry and packing.


Balloon9 Balloon6 Balloon3

* Sunday 28th - home again, home again and realising how glad I was to be so. There's nothing like leaving to make you realise what you've got. Utterly exhausted, back aching and off to work again in the morning.


Boo to not being able to access the mosaic maker I've been using from werk. You'll have to deal with odd-sized photos instead (if I wait until I get home this post will never happen).

Right, on with the day then. There is much work to do and many new adventures to plot. Well, just as soon an I finally catch up on sleep...
shapeofthings: (Diva)
Right now I'm enjoying digging into chocolate pudding, but ealier tonight this is what I did:

Taiko1 Taiko2

I took my first ever taiko lesson and it was seven different shades of awesome. My upper arms ache and I have a blister on my left thumb and it was all so very worth it. :)
shapeofthings: (Default)

Tomorrow morning I pack my bags once more and fly home to Hobart. I have had a most excellent little holiday, but I am ready to be home again now. I've had a chance to put my brain back together a little better and I think I'm ok to cope with my day-to-day reality once more.

I am tired, my muscles are a little sore and after 6 days of laryngitis-induced near-silence I finally have my voice more-or-less back. Grand adventures have been had and shall be posted about once I'm home and have sorted out the photos. I'm on an alcohol and cheese break as of now for the next month or so while my body recovers from the abuse and neglect of the last 3 weeks (work trip to Brisbane, back in Hobart but too sick to do anything, then far too much wine & cheese in Victoria).

Life, eh?
shapeofthings: (bloop!)
I had a truly excellent day at work today. I spent an entire 5 minutes of it in front of a computer. The rest of the time I was out and about doing things I really enjoy and marvelling that I was getting paid for it.

Lia-lights Lia-Govenor

My current project involves a good deal of stakeholder engagement (i.e. talking to people in all parts of the business) and requires me to learn more about the sorts of things we do. So to that end I'd arranged to visit one of the power stations nearer to Hobart to chat to one of my "stakeholders" and at the same time get myself a personal tour of the place and take a few photos for the handbook I'm going to be putting together.



I picked Liapootah station because I know R, the production manager there and he's a top bloke. Turns out it was also the right choice for a total geek like me. Liapootah was built in the 50s and hasn't really been upgraded, so it's full of cool 50's and 60's hydro-electricity tech: all analogue gauges and nixie tubes. And because I was so clearly geeking out, R took me into the bowels of the place to explain how everything works.

Tarra-pipes Tarra-penstock

After the sweet tour I then got to drive about and photograph some of the external stuff, including a lovely drive up the forested mountains in the mist in a brand new, high-tech hybrid car.


So I had a lovely road trip, a brilliant tour and some outdoor time, got paid to take photos and made good progress on my project. Day of win!


May. 21st, 2011 02:33 pm
shapeofthings: (Wellington)
I just wanted to say that I am so in love with life right now.

I know the most wonderful people, I live in a beautiful place and I'm just so hungry for everything that life has to offer.

Thank you, universe.

(and yes, I'm sober)
shapeofthings: (Me)
Dear wonderful Melbourne-type people,

I am travelling to your fine city next week for work and have managed to extend my trip to be there for the entire weekend (28-29) as well.

I currently have no plans, other than to spend time with as many of you lovely, lovely people as I can manage.

What's happening? Where should I stay? What should I bring?

Yours in anticipation,

T. =o)
shapeofthings: (Wellington)

Good morning!

I have no idea why I'm awake an hour before the sun this morning, but I am, so I decided I may as well get up and see what the day has to offer.

I got back from Cradle Mountain yesterday evening, tired and completely blissed out on life. I had a fantastic time, trekking about a beautiful place with brilliant company. My friend Nat and I have drifted in and out of each other's lives for 19 years now, but after this weekend it feels like we've finally got to know each other properly, as remarkable grown women. I have many pretty images to share with you all.

Reality has been something of a rude shock after a long weekend of wilderness bliss, though I did very much enjoy a long soak in a hot bath last night! And now it's the start of a brand new day. The sooner I head into the office, the earlier I can escape this afternoon, so I'd best make the most of this pre-dawn never-when.

Love & light,
T. x


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