I’ve felt very lucky over the past few days to be surrounded by kind people. They’ve taken such good care of me when I needed it.
I drove up to Newcastle on Friday night to see friends I’ve had since I was in high school – I was bridesmaid at their wedding – who cooked me the most gorgeous dinner, plied me with French bubbles and listened patiently as I babbled a mile a minute.
I was the only guest, but we supped on a hot zucchini dip with sourdough, cauliflower fritters with a herbed yoghurt dressing, grilled lamb cutlets and pulled pork buns. All homemade! Wow!
Then my mum collected me at 10pm and drove me home. Gotta love it when you’re almost 50 and still being picked up by your mum.
At 7am the next morning I got a message from my since-pre-school friend/dogsitter Megz to say my shower had gone bung and wouldn’t stop gouting water everywhere. Oh no!
She turned the mains off and I begged my brother in law for yet another favour. He called his mate Stumpy the plumber, who wasn’t available until Monday.
Sad face. Sorry Megz.
To cheer me up, my mum took me to the shops and bought me a strong flat white, curried veggie crepes at Cafe Bon Oz and some undies without holes in them. She’s also promised me all her towels when she moves, so I can dry myself on ones without holes in them either!
Then I drove back to Sydney so I could be nearby in case of additional emergency.
On the way, another old Newie friend sent a message saying they’d heard I was in town and inviting me over for bubbles and Indian takeaway that night. Damn! That would have been sooooooo fun.
Instead, my wonderful sister put me up for the night and drank bubbles with me in her spa to cheer me up.
On Sunday, a lovely school mum friend took me for a bushwalk, we caught up with a mutual out-of-town friend at our local park for a natter, then I scored an invite to the school mum’s house for a roast dinner.
I felt very fortunate as I ate that roast, sipped red wine and chattered to her family. (Mine have been at their dad’s place since Friday.)
Last night, DD took me to the opening of Neil Perry’s new restaurant, Jade Temple, because he knows how much I love suburban Chinese food.
Neil has gone all ironic – the menu features chicken with cashews and Mongolian lamb and lemon chicken and other “classics”. The venue is very glamorous and filled with waitresses bustling around in red satin cheongsams.
I don’t think Neil has quite nailed the ironic Chinese thing yet. The prawn and scallop siew mai were delish, as were the pork belly buns; but the mains didn’t hit the highs you’d expect from a Neil Perry restaurant. We barely touched the salty Mongolian lamb. But DD was very excited to see Neil’s ponytailed head and it was so nice to get dressed up and drive into the city for a special night out together. It’s not what you expect from your chilly Monday.
(Fortunately Stumpy had come to the party and I could have a hot bath and shave my legs before we headed out.)
It’s strange how guilty I feel when people are kind to me – my weird brain thinks I don’t deserve it. It’s a bit like the way I blank out nice things that are said about me (but cling for decades to the bad stuff). I need to work on that.
Anyway, thank you so much to everyone who has made the past few days that bit brighter. You’re all legends.
Song of the day: Bill Withers “Lean on me”