If we do indeed come back in some form or another I would be pretty happy to be a galah. These birds have the BEST life, swooping and diving and chasing each other all over the countryside, maintaining a constant chatter amongst themselves (a perfect fit for me I hear you saying!) We have a large group of them that live on our property and they are a constant part of my day, always together, never alone, as they graze on the seeds in the grass or clamber above on the tree branches creating mayhem wherever they go. They are like cheeky teenagers who just want to have FUN at every given opportunity and like to fly through the gaps between the house and the garage at high speed and low to the ground creating a wind tunnel as they pass through like B52s. They always make me smile.
It is a beautiful time of year to be outside. The sun is shining and the sky is blue but there is that cool Autumn air that feels so fresh and is so conducive to a walk through the fields with the dog at my heels or running ahead to explore the clear streams that run through them and to scrunch through the fallen leaves . I can embrace working in the veggie patch at any time of the day without fear of getting sunburn and the heavy overnight dew makes it easy to pull up the weeds. As soon as the sun goes down however we turn our thoughts to cosying up in front of the fire with a meal of slow cooked beef cheeks and a bottle of red wine and lately in a rather senior pensioner type fashion we are eating earlier in the evening and are happy to head to bed earlier too. We still don’t set an alarm unless we have an early appointment, rather we are content to wake up with the sun and ease into the day ahead. The mornings are currently misty and magical before the sun rises to burn it off and I love nothing more than rugging up with a steaming mug of coffee and sitting outside watching the world wake up….
We are back to enjoying friends visit us after the hiatus of the wedding celebrations and three long time buddies joined us for an overnight stay last weekend. It was meant to be for 2 nights but I had a rather unplanned visit to the dentist with a grumbly tooth and found myself having an implant 36 hours later. (The Gods have obviously decided that I am to have NO money this year) However, on the upside we are still counting our lucky stars that despite not being in The Big Smoke we have wonderful local professionals to look after us. The doctors and dentists are as good as you would find anywhere. Specialists are a little harder to find but are also only needed occasionally so we are very lucky. A few glasses of good wine together with a couple of painkillers and I enjoyed our get together as if nothing had happened!
Despite the gaping hole in my mouth I was able to enjoy a day in Sydney catching up with the boys for a joint celebration of Tom’s birthday, Mothers Day, Sam’s new job and Cams 65th birthday (which went relatively unrecognised as it was the day before the wedding.) We all had a lovely laid back dinner at the ever popular Bar Reggio in Darlinghurst who are in the fantastic situation of running 2 sittings every night and being packed out for both of them. The whole place was rocking by 6.30pm!! I love catching up with my adult kids and enjoying their banter. I also love that we are all happy to go somewhere convivial and take our own wine and not have to always do”BIG” dinners. I look forward to their visit to The Meadow in a couple of weekends time. It is great that they have somewhere to escape to every now and again and after just 24 hours the city feels like it’s a whole world away and they go home well fed, rested and ready for the return to the rat race! If the newly Married One could pop over from Honkers too I’d be a happy bunny….
We had a relaxing weekend starting with an early morning walk with the Chocolate Drop along the Shoalhaven River while the river was as still as a pond and the reflections were wonderful. Hundreds of black swans were there looking just like statues until a certain brown dog raced into the water to retrieve her ball, she loves nothing more than a good swim!! The river is a very tranquil destination for fishermen, artists and walkers alike. We enjoyed a quick coffee at a local cafe and went home for brekky contented and happy to ready to attack the garden!
In very exciting news (for us country bumpkins) Telstra is coming today to connect us to the NBN and dragging us into the 21st century with fast broadband (or so they have promised) so I am getting this finished just in case they bugger it all up and I become internet-less for weeks… This connection for people outside of the major cities is wonderful and is inadvertently affecting property sales in the area as it is perfectly possible now for people to work efficiently from home for part of the week and then commute to the City for the rest. This is very dependent on their careers of course and it is mostly those in media and online businesses that can take advantage of it. A life/work balance is definitely becoming more achievable for those people that can be flexible. I read recently that in one survey over 50% of workers would be prepared to earn less if they could work 4 days a week or work different hours to accommodate childcare or be able to live in the country for 3 days a week!! I feel extremely lucky to be able to live this way and never take it for granted.
Berry was teaming with people this weekend, here to see the Celtic Festival and our streets were inundated with men in kilts and dogs sporting all sorts of tartan. Jousting and plenty of bagpipes were all part of the festivities and we are constantly amazed at the variety of things that draw people to our small town. Classic cars, camellias, tractor shows, horse jumping, small farm shows, poultry, gardening, spinning wool, you name it we have a weekend showcasing it! The locals embrace many different “things” and most weekends the Showground is packed, which has a flow on effect to our cafes and shops. The imminent opening of the Berry Bypass will only make it so much more pleasurable to spend time in the village with all those drivers intent on reaching their destinations further south hopefully driving past and making things a lot quieter and more pleasurable in town. We are walking the new Berry Bridge on June 18th ahead of the road being opened to traffic. The bridge makes up a 620 metre section of the closest part of the new Bypass and it will be a memorable day for all of us who are looking forward to Berry returning to it’s quieter former self. Plenty of people will still stop, being the perfect 2 hour distance from Sydney, but we won’t have the huge trucks coming through town and it will make the journey much faster for those travelling south too. A win win situation!
In the meantime the nights are getting longer and colder and the fire is weaving it’s magic keeping us cosy inside. We are embracing the slow cooker and all the old favourite British puddings as winter announces it’s arrival next week. The veggie patch is full of spinach, broccoli, leeks, brussel sprouts and asian greens and the rhubarb is giving us a good excuse to make a crumble, golden topped and served with homemade custard using our own eggs. Does life get any better????