So a quick catch up on what’s been going on since mid-September…
* Helen F at MetCentre coffee shop.
* Jenny G’s birthday lunch at Verandah with Alisia, Richard and Michelle.
* Josie at Bungalow 8 for Good Food Month. Great lobster, average service.
* Josie at Cruise for Good Food Month. Good spatchcock, absolutely TERRIBLE service. Will never go back.
* Stephanie, Anny, Helen and Alison at The Tea Rooms for Good Food Month. Awesome fish and desserts. Excellent service. Must go back!
* Sandra T at Kables for Sandra’s birthday and Good Food Month. Awesome fish and desserts. Excellent service. Must go back!
* Michael G for his birthday at a little place in an arcade near Wynyard. I think he enjoyed his day more after a relaxing (short) lunch.
* Dave at North Sydney Yum Cha place. Hadn’t been there together in ages. Was very yummy and quick service. Then we went to Aldi, as everyone raves about it – I don’t understand!
* Jenny G, Alisia and Richard at 41 for Good Food Month. Much better than expected! Again, yummy food and quick service. I’m going to miss Good Food Month!
* Dave, Marshall & Lucy at Redoak. Was lovely to see them – as the last time was in London in July last year.
* Thai with Dave at Rowena & Charles’ place. Was great to see them. They’d just gotten back from the States. Had a great catch up and watched “Office Space” on a wall projector!
* Dave, Murray & Roberta at Catalonia. Think I got too drunk on yummy mojito’s. Sorry for being so noisy all.
Not very much recently. This will change very shortly!
* Dave had a gig at Chinese Laundry. Really enjoyed it. Was happy that we had a few friends come along too – Tad, Murray, Josie, Heath, Lee (and apologies to anyone else I have forgotten). Hope he gets another gig there soon.
* Paul Ritch at Lost Baggage. Well it was the Sunday night of the long weekend. There were loads of EXTREMELY messy people. Typical crowd for Lost Baggage. And so I didn’t really get to enjoy a lot of the night unfortunately. Paul Ritch was good, but no matter where we were, got pushed and shoved and trodden on. I ended up wanting to leave before Paul Ritch left, and I was lucky that Dave wanted to go home too. I just wish the crowd were not so bloody thoughtless at Lost Baggage parties, as they get great internationals that I want to see. These problems rarely happen in Berlin!
* Deetron at Chinese Laundry. Not as crowded as usual, which made it much easier to dance. Unfortunately Deetron wasn’t inspiring. I’d been really looking forward to hearing him, but he played like he wasn’t sure what to play, and it was very obvious. It just lacked flow. We ended up leaving after an hour, and having a very early night.
* Went to the Japan travel talk at NSW Art Gallery with Helen F. Was interesting, but it was not exactly what I wanted to do in Japan. Will have to go sometime though.
* Went to the remaining Monet’s World The Cultural Background to Impressionism lectures at the NSW Art Gallery, with Jenny and Marg on 21/9 (followed by a lovely lunch in the café) and Alisia on 19/10 (followed by a lovely Monet tour & High Tea with Alisia, Helen, Mark, Oksana and Philippa). Topics were:
21/9 Proust and Impressionism – Terence Maloon
The madeleine is the moment. More than any other writer, Marcel Proust embodies Impressionism in literature. In preparation for the exhibition, Terence Maloon has been re-reading him and gives us a taste.
21/9 Impressionism and modernism – Professor Roger Benjamin
Monet’s long life as a painter encompassed the transition to modernism. Roger Benjamin has long studied the changing schools of French painting, and presents the historical perspective.
19/10 The moment: a quest for reality in Monet and Woolf – Professor Russell Meares
Monet represented a great change in Western consciousness, when the nature of reality became the issue. Woolf, like Monet, attempted to grasp the experienced moment. Russell Meares, emeritus professor of psychiatry, explores the theme of consciousness, reality and art.
19/10 Monet and the Impressionists: an introduction – Terence Maloon
The exhibition’s curator concludes the course by talking about the paintings in the newly-opened show at the Gallery.
* Monet and His World Symposium with Ros and Marg at Art Gallery of NSW. This was a great day. Started off at 8.15am to see the new Monet exhibition, before it opened to the general public. Ros and I were very happy! Lots of great talks by various people, the one I liked the most being Dr Shackelford from Boston. Great light lunch, great stuff to buy at the exhibition and great company. I hope I get to more of these in the future. Specific details about the Symposium:
This symposium is structured in two thematic parts. The morning session focuses on Monet, his impact in America, Japanese influences and fascination for water; the afternoon considers his precursors and his legacy.
Speakers: Dr George TM Shackelford, chair of the Department of the Art of Europe and Arthur K Solomon curator of Modern Art, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Prof. Emeritus Virginia Spate, formerly Power Professor and chair of the Department of Art History, University of Sydney; Terence Maloon, senior curator of special exhibitions, Art Gallery of New South Wales; Dr Christopher Allen, lecturer in art history, National Art School, Sydney; Dr Chiara O’Reilly, lecturer in Museum Studies, University of Sydney; Dr Roger Benjamin, research professor in the History of Art, University of Sydney.
* Got an ergonomic assessment at work. Doing a lot good, but not with my hand. Have had to change quite a few things – no shortcuts on the keyboard or alt-tab.
* Did a seminar at work on how to get a good night’s sleep. Quite interesting really. Trying to do more of what they suggest.
* Went back to my Hand surgeon. It appears that my hand is getting better – yay! I’ve had to change how I type and make sure I take more regular breaks. Still am not 100%, but hopefully will be eventually. Gotta go back in 3 months if it’s still not good.
* Dinner at the Arthouse (including cocktails :)), followed by seeing Bill Bailey at The State Theatre, with Juliet, Lisa & Matt. Bill Bailey was hilarious. Dave should have come, but he didn’t think about it until it was too late. So much music, so hilarious. Would definitely see him again.
Dave and I celebrated 10 years together 🙂 Dave just reminded me of our first date, where we snuck an entire pizza (in a normal pizza box) into George Street Cinemas, and watched an awful movie (Last Days of Disco). This time, we went to Marque for dinner, which was good, but not awesome. Will try and put the menu for the night up shortly. The first 3 dishes were questionable. The rest were lovely, but it wasn’t an experience like we had at Tetsuya’s earlier this year. Will be going to Melbourne shortly for more celebrating.
Went to Adelaide to visit Dave’s family. The weekend involved:
· A horrid flight to Adelaide (over an hour late, and people who talked at the tops of their voices the whole way).
· Dinner at Belgian Beer Café (food really yuck too) and then tried to cheer ourselves up with our favourite gelato (not our favourite anymore).
· Dessert from my favourite Chocolate café (yum!).
· Dave’s niece’s first birthday in the (very cold) Belair National Park. Was great to hang out with Dave’s relatives and friends. A bit of warm weather would have made the day perfect! Thankfully a gourmet ice-cream van turned up (I kid you not) and I had a peppermint tea to warm me up 🙂
· Dinner at a place that Paul recommended. Best rabbit I’ve had in Australia yet. Yummy desserts. Awesome service too.
· Breakfast at the same place. Best pancakes ever. Dave had the best Eggs Benedict ever. Will definitely be going back there.
· Shopping in Rundle Mall and beyond. Loads of walking, found some books and chocolate.
· Hanging out with Dave’s mum at her place, and with his sister and niece too.
· Much better flight back home.
All in all, a fun weekend. Hope to get back there soon.
Movies and TV
* “The Tender Hook” at Roseville, followed by dinner at a noodle place with Juliet. Not a bad movie, but not brilliant.
* Tried to go to Night Noodle Markets for dinner with Dave and Josie, which didn’t happen as the queue’s were ridiculous. So we had dinner at a Japanese place on George St (Dave and I both had a horrible reaction to the food later that night), then dessert at Passion Flower (yummy Green tea and Lychee ice-cream with crepes for me) followed by “Burn After Reading” on George St with Josie. I thought the movie was very funny, and Dave was not that impressed by it.
* Dinner at The Mandarin Centre in Chatswood, followed by “The Duchess” at the Mandarin with Fiona, Juliet and Lisa. Was great to catch up with the girls, but the movie was SO depressing. Great acting and great costumes but what a MISERABLE story. I think I like stories with some element of hope in them – there was none in this.
* Watched lots of great shows with Davo this month. In Treatment, Dexter, Entourage, Little Britain, Pushing Daisies, Breaking Bad, The Office (US), House MD and 30 Rock.
* The High Tea Party at Stamford Plaza Double Bay with Juliet and Lisa. Now this is my type of day! Apparently it’s a yearly thing, and I’m planning to go back next year. Got so many things included in the very reasonable price – hairstyling (Yep I did), hand massages (Juliet and Lisa did), manicures (not this time), fake tans (nope), lingerie model shows (we all went to one), yummy high tea, whilst we had a mini fashion show (although it would have been nice to have had more than 2 choices of tea, but the German sparkling wine was great), Kinder Bueno’s, photos with your friends, and a bag of goodies (including the German sparkling wine) to take home with you. They also had mini markets – I got some tea, some hot chocolate and a fridge magnet about chocolate. You could buy clothes, jewellery, bedding, and various other bits and pieces. Thanks to Juliet for suggesting this!
* At The Westin as part of Good Food Month with Josie and Alisia. I have to say, this is a great value high tea. The cost is a bit more than usual, but there is SO much food. I got the Moet high tea – I’m getting a taste for champagne lately! The food was brilliant – it was a strawberry theme for the dessert part. And it was in a lovely part of the Westin, although we were originally worried about sunburn, as it was 2.30pm and under a glass ceiling. Thankfully, we got some shade pretty quickly. We said goodbye to Alisia, and Josie and I headed to the Hippo lounge for a few drinks, and then back to the place she’s housesitting for a short time. Got to play with a gorgeous cat, Miso. The other cat, Vivian, is too cool for fun!
* Managed to start cleaning up my mess at home. I can now see my desk!
* Alisia, Sue and I tried to go to the book-club at Sydney Community College. We were mostly prepared. Started by having cocktails at the Grace Hotel, and walked up York St. On getting there, we found that it wasn’t on. I wandered up 4 flights of stairs (as the lifts weren’t working after 6pm), to be confronted by the head of the GEOS school, who knew nothing about it. Apparently, it wasn’t term, so nothing was happening there. We didn’t have a contact number with us, so we gave up. Sue ventured home, and Alisia & I headed up to the Night Noodle Market instead. Which were closed due to “uncertain weather”. So we decided to head to the Sofitel, and had a lovely dinner (sushi for me and scallops for Alisia), followed by the Good Food Month dessert (Tasting plate consisting of a dark chocolate creme pot, white chocolate cheese cake and chocolate macaronade, served with a glass of Brown Brother’s dessert wine). Yum Yum Yum! Terrible start, but great end to the night. We since found out that it was at Leichhardt! Not sure why the information originally said York St. So the lady was nice enough to give us a refund.
* Dave & I went to Dad’s overnight. Got there very late, but made the most of it. Dad, Ros, Dave & I drove to Robertson in Dad’s new car. He’s SO proud of his new car. It’s a Ford XR6 Turbo, and he’s put white stripes along the side. Yes, it’s not my cup of tea at all, but Dad loves it. He made me drive it, and I felt ridiculous. The funny thing was, it handled very well, was very smooth to drive, and very comfortable. I just wish it was a cool car – like a classic Porsche or Mercedes or something. I don’t think Dad would agree!
In Robertson, we went to the World Famous Pie Shop. Not sure about the pies you eat there (they were pretty ordinary), but the ones we took home were great. Then we went to the cheese factory, where Dave & Ros found some great cheeses and related foods (muscatels, tapenade, marinated olives, breads, crackers, etc), and I found some great lime sorbet and rocky road. We looked around at some of the shops near it, and Dad was fascinated by the gothic shop, where you could buy gothic bridal gear. Dad’s just become a marriage celebrant, and he doesn’t mind the sound of marrying goths 🙂
On the way back, we drove through Bowral to pick up more supplies (food and wine and Frangelico and other alcohol). It involved stopping at Dan Murphy’s – that place is HUGE. It’s bigger than our local Coles. Found loads of good beverages in there. We’ll never have to race to buy wine locally before we go to Dad’s anymore!
On arriving at Dad’s, we ate, drank and were EXTREMELY merry, whilst watching episodes of Little Britain. I’m very happy that nobody convinced me to mix drinks though – as I didn’t wake up with a hangover. Poor Ros, she was the worse for wear.
All in all, a very fun night. I’m gonna miss Phillip’s antics when he moves out – not long now.
* My beautician and hairdresser are both part of the same business. They are both very reasonably priced, especially for the centre of the city. But lately, everytime I go to the hairdresser, it takes absolutely ages. I had an 11.45am appointment on a Saturday morning, and needed to be out of there by 2.20pm. In that time, they should have been able to do my colour, protein treatment, cut, wash and style. But they kept me waiting a WHOLE hour, before they were even ready to start. So I only had time for a wash and style. I was REALLY REALLY mad. At least they charged me a lot less than usual, but this sort of thing should not happen. So, I’m looking thinking of looking for a new hairdresser, something I really hate doing. Will see how the next appointment goes.
* Quarter end, so EXCEPTIONALLY busy.
* New contractor, Daniel, to assist whilst Kelly is on maternity leave.
* Financial Controller, Rodney, is leaving us to go to Saudi Arabia to work. And the head of Finance Systems is leaving us too.
* Got a great pressie with the Annual Report this year – a $150 Greater Union gift card. Last year was a 4gb iPod – nothing was going to beat that (well, we can’t expect more costly gifts in this climate).
* Corporate Services Pizza lunch, near the CFO’s desk. Was happy with the Gaytime I got for dessert. Not a fan of pizza though. What is it with guys and eating meatlovers pizza? BLEURGH!
* Went to the CPA Congress for a seminar (Extending insight session – the essential accounting standards update), and two master classes (Excel Macros – beyond the basics and New manager’s toolkit). I really like the master classes – very interactive, and very informative. They were at Darling Harbour, so Teresa and I had lunch there each day (Meat Food & Wine Co the first day, and a Thai place the second). Will definitely go back to Meat Food & Wine Co again! Caught up with Alfred, someone who used to be in our department. And ran away from another person I used to work with.