Love and martinis

I’m a bit knackered this morning as I was a dirty stop-out until 11.30pm last night.

Tia Maria is hosting pop-up espresso martini bars at Moonlight Cinemas across Australia over summer and I was invited to try the Centennial Park one out.

Even better, there was a screening of Love Actually too … and my sister came along as a belated birthday treat.

Getting there proved to be a bit of a nightmare though – I’d been warned there was limited parking so I decided to catch a bus …. then I heard the city was gridlocked due to the climate change rally, so I ended up in a cab. My sis got trapped in the traffic chaos, but had a gun cab driver who somehow managed to get her to the cinema just in the nick of time.

The Tia Maria Bar was serving Tia Espresso Martinis, Tia Popcorn Frappes and Tia and Tonics. We tried the first two but didn’t get around to the tonics.

We got to live large and sit in ‘Gold Grass’, where we could order coffee cocktails to be delivered directly to our bean bags as we snuggled under Tia Maria blankies.

Our famous fellow VIP guests included Britney Hockley, the lass who got dumped by Nick Cummins (aka The Honey Badger) in the final episode of his season of The Bachelor.

Britney was wearing denim on denim with white ankle boots, which gave us lots to discuss as we sipped our first martinis at the bar while we waited for the movie to start.

I am so out of the loop, I didn’t know who anyone else was. Apparently the celebrity guests included singers Jess and Matt, who have just released their new single ‘Know About You’, loved-up couple Tim Dormer and Ash Toweel, and reality TV stars Lisa Clark and Sogand Mohtat. The PR tells me that recently married Renae Ayris was also there gushing about her stunning Hunter Valley wedding to celebrity personal trainer Andrew Pap.

Nup, no idea who any of them are.

It was weirdly cold last night, so those blankets came in very handy. The heavens also decided to tease us by sprinkling a few tiny drops of rain. I’d have been quite happy to be drenched if it would have helped put out some of the awful bushfires burning around the outskirts of the city.

When we struggled to our feet after the movie we agreed that maybe we were getting too old to sit in bean bags for a few hours in the cold, as our backs were KILLING us.

It was also waaaaay past both our bedtimes.

Fortunately, the cab gods smiled on us and despite hundreds of people pouring out of the venue at once, a yellow vacant light wended its way through Centennial Park in the darkness and stopped to give us a lift.

It was still really freaking late by the time I got home.

But it was fun to see Love Actually for the 50 millionth time and murmur with my sister about how hot we thought all the blokes were in it … I even fancied Bill Nighy a bit. He is brilliant in it, as is Hugh Grant … and Colin Firth …

And a special mention must go to Emma Thompson for when she mops her tears in the bedroom then heads to the end-of-year school musical.

My sis and I have both been there, done that.

PS Here’s a bit of trivia for you: the original Espresso Martini was invented in the early 80’s in London by a bloke called Dick Bradsell. According to legend, a supermodel walked into his bar and asked for something that would “wake her up and mess her up,” and so the Espresso Martini was born.

PPS Here’s another bit of trivia that startled my sister: a lot of people hate Love Actually. There has also been a lot of muttering about the bloke who is secretly in love with Keira Knightley’s character being a creepy stalker. We didn’t think so, but we did agree that all the fat jokes in the movie were a bit un-PC in 2019.

Somg of the day: Billy Mack: “Christmas is all around you”


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