The Household are in Katoomba for the weekend. It’s effing cold. So effing cold that I feel like calling it the four-letter word that it is rather than the euphemism. But this is a family blog post, so I’ll restrain myself.
It’s so effing cold that I wore my vintage Esprit puffer jacket last night while watching TV, despite the gas heater being on “high”.
The illuminated sign outside Katoomba RSL said it was 6 degrees as we were driving home yesterday arvo -after a brisk glance at the Three Sisters – I don’t think it was taking wind-chill into account.
We’re staying at a cottage called Minerva. For FREE. IT’S AWESOME. An old friend offered the place to us when it didn’t rent out for the weekend. It’s very comfy and cleverly kitted out. (If you’d like to stay there for the weekend, go to http://www.minervacottage.com. Unlike us, you’ll have to pay … Ha ha … I think that’s what Sprog 1 calls teasing.)
We had a lovely Saturday. I made bacon and eggs for breakfast, then we went to the Toy & Railway Museum. It was effing freezing. Even inside the museum. It cost $40 to get in, which might have felt like better value if I wasn’t shivering so hard I could barely focus on moth-eaten exhibits. But if you’re into dusty Barbie dolls and toy soldiers your heart might be warmed even if your fingers aren’t.
Afterwards we wandered across the road to the lookout to check out the view. Then Husband and the Sprogs went for a bush walk. I begged off, using the excuse that I didn’t want to screw my back up again on the “uneven ground”. I drove to the end of the trail, found a sunny spot, cranked back the car seat and had a kip. I never usually kip during the day. I am obviously getting old because this is the second time I’ve done it in as many weeks. I’m still annoyed that I passed out during The Lorax last weekend, Sprog 1 says it was fab.
We had lunch at a wonderful restaurant called Leura Garage. It used to be the actual Leura Garage so there are tyres and mufflers everywhere as arty, decorative touches. Husband and I shared gnocchi with saltbush lamb shank ragu, a salad of potatoes, Nundle smoked trout, green beans, mission olives, baby spinach and soft quail eggs and shoestring potatoes, rosemary salt and aioli. It was our very own Festival of the Potato and it was absolutely delicious.
We shivered our way down Leura’s main street afterwards, popping into a toy shop for glow-in-the-dark lizards and funny goggly eyes that you hook over your fingers to make hand animals. Very cool.
On our way back to Minerva we grabbed a loaf of sourdough at a great bakery in Katoomba’s main street called Hominy, checked out the Three Sisters, then adjourned to the dining table for our first game of Cluedo together as a family (Mrs Peacock did it with rope in the kitchen).
I cooked a pot of curried cauliflower soup (1 chopped onion, sautéed, 2 tsps Ayam curry powder, 1/2 cauliflower, 1 litre chicken stock … Simmer until cauliflower tender. Add 1 cup of coconut milk and purée. Delish.)
Then I slumped on the couch polishing off cheap white wine while Husband and the Sprogs played some complex boardgame called Game Of The Year.
After we packed the Sprogs off to bed – Husband reading them Deltora Quest while I slumped on the couch a bit more – we sifted through Minerva’s DVD collection and watched Midnight Cowboy (depressing) and The Accidental Tourist (meandering).
Today, Husband and the Sprogs are off to the Scenic Railway while I clean Minerva, collect dirty underpants from every bloody room in the house and do some extra slumping on the couch with my iPad. Then we’ll finish off the cauliflower soup with some Hominy Turkish bread and head back to The Big Smoke.
Despite the bitter cold it’s been quite lovely and relaxing. Despite the free house and cauliflower soup it hasn’t been cheap. But – as financially irresponsible flibberty gibberts often say before filing for bankruptcy – it’s been fun.