Tag Archive | socialising

An eclectic music week

Do things. Fun things. 

Say yes to new things. 

Don’t just use weekends to catch up on sleep. 

My new mottos meant one week was a really busy week in March. Busy and eclectic. 

Ages ago I bought tickets for my sons, Mr S and me to see Spiderbait. It was the 20th anniversary of one of their albums. Actually not my favourite album but I hoped they’d play some of my favs in the encore as they were going to play the album as the set. Of course, they played around – it wasn’t just a “studio” sound. For a three piece band they bang out a big sound. 

Spiderbait has been a family fav and now my boys are adults, they still love Spiderbait. A top family fav is when the female sings, and they didn’t disappoint with Calypso. Click on the link and enjoy. If you watched the movie, 10 Things I Hate About You, you may recognise the song. Of course if you’re an Aussie and listen to JJJ, you’d know the band well. 

Spiderbait, live at the Enmore Theatre.


Interesting tidbits of the family going out to a concert together: we went to an Indian restaurant before (working parents shout of course). Oldest boy, who now lives in the inner west and not “the burbs”, wouldn’t let me order Butter Chicken. “You can have that in the suburbs. In the city you have to try something different and not just take time to read the menu and pretend to be considering something different.” Uh!!! Trendy, bloody, inner city dwellers. Hipsters!!!

Second lesson was for my boys. A lesson in sexism that women routinely face. We were standing up the back of the venue, near the entrance from the foyer (where people, mostly men, kept going to buy overpriced, imported beer [hipster influence again]). It was a standing only concert. Men kept pushing past me. Oldest son wanted me to move as I was being pushed – not aggressively but continually. He thought it was because I was in a natural pathway. I pointed out that the pathway would be wherever I was as I was surrounded by tall men, my own and other concert-goers. Who would the walkers squeeze/push/make move? The tall men or the relatively slighter and shorter woman? 

Anyway, a review of Spiderbait doesn’t make my week eclectic. So off to something different. 

Earlier in the week I went to my first opera. Tosca by Opera Australia. In the Opera House. I got tickets from a foundation that aims to encourage people to go to the opera. They subsidise tickets for $20, instead of the  full price of $230. 

I was wary. I have never gone before. Wouldn’t risk $230 on something I might not like. $20 is worth the risk. Well, I loved it. I would go again. I will go again. Next year.  So the foundation worked. It’s got a new convert. 

Of course, the experience was entirely different. As was the audience. Older, for starters. Not that the Spiderbait audience were spring chickens. Many being around 40 to 50. Less leather and chains and tats at the Opera. 

Sparking wine on the forecourt, watching cruise ships sail past. 

Cruise season has begun. Not my scene. Too much like a floating RSL club.

Fancy a glass? Why yes, thank you.



Interval, looking at the lights and the raw industrial majesty of the Opera House design. 

Look up!


Despite two late nights in the week, and one being a week night, I wasn’t exhausted. These things energised me. Doing fun, and new, and novel things build you up, give you a purpose beyond work. A purpose for work. How else will you pay for tickets?

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Sunday in the Blue Mountains

Just back from a most gorgeous day. 

A friend picked me up in her convertible and we escaped the haze from the back burning that is taking place across Sydney. 

The air was crisp and sweet and clear. 


We stopped by a couple of antique shops on the way up to a friend’s weekender. 

A house among the trees. And birds. 


On the back verandah for drinks and nibbles, watched by kookaburras who wait any dropped morsels. 


Inside for a fabulous feast of pumpkin soup, mushroom strudel and salad. And then dessert! Oh, dessert. Choices. If only I had room for more than two. I’ll start with Persian orange almond cake. The sticky date with double serve of butterscotch sauce. 


A quick sing through of happy birthday to me, off to watch the hosts feeding the birds, while admiring the bush, especially the mountain devil, flowering at different stages. 


All too soon we had to join the other Sunday drivers on the road back down to Sydney. 


Back to the haze from back burning which you can see, sitting like a brown smudge low on the horizon. 

A very lively August

  
It’s the last month of winter but no need to hibernate. I’ve been out and about the traps and mixing it up with family and friends.

  • Hosted family from the States. 

Mr S’s  cousin and his wife and daughter stayed with us for a week. That meant mad cleaning, tidying and sorting of bedrooms before their visit. 

While I had to work, we still did some tour guide activities. The weekend they were here was all go go go. We drove up the Central Coast to have morning tea with my sister-in-law. Then we headed to Patonga for lunch. I’ve always wanted to go here but Mr S has an ingrained bent against the Central Coast, perhaps it was all those years of visiting his grandparents. But he was impressed with the natural beauty of Patonga. 

The food was meh. Not great, not bad. But the view, the soft sand which we walked on after lunch, the water, the sky. It was a beautiful day. Not warm enough to swim but warm enough to think about it. 

The next day I took the wife and daughter shopping. First to a major shopping centre. The daughter needed clothes for the new school year. I am so glad we have uniforms in Australian schools. Saves many a mother-daughter relationship. Problem with entering a shopping centre is a dress that I really liked by a brand I bought in London, popped out at me and it was heavily reduced. OK, I searched through the racks to find one I liked in a style that suited at a discounted price. 

After that I took them to the supermarket. There’s a joy in trying foods, especially snack foods from other countries. And there’s a joy in sharing childhood favourites with others. Like Wagon Wheels, Golden Gaytimes, Honey Jumbles. 

  • Local theatre play. 

I’ve been to this local, non-professional theatre before. This time I saw Steel Magnolias with some book club ladies. Attended the matinee which we felt started rather late at 4pm. We clubbers are wild, you know! Great acting, especially considering the actors all hold down day jobs. Even though I’ve seen the movie several times, I still teared up. 

  • A night of variety entertainment 

My workplace’s annual showcase night. It was long and some performances raw in the way angsty teenagers can be. But some was cute, some amazing, and one song produced goose bumps. 

  • The ballet

First time ever. Not quite “The Ballet” with capital letters. It was the recently graduated students of the Australian ballet, performing a mixture of pieces; pieces we expected to know. Ballet for the plebs. But we must be more plebeian than we realised as the music for most of the evening was unknown to us. Still, I was impressed and may work up one day to The Ballet. 

  • High tea

Just a lovely thing to do. Sit and eat nibbly little things. Over sparkling wine and tea. 

Opps! Took the photo after I had eaten a few!

  • Stand-up comedy

I love Dylan Moran. Saw him live a few years ago. Stand-up comedy is one of the things my eldest son and I do together.  It’s our thing. 

  

  • Book club

Reviewed the book already. Go Set A Watchman.  

  • The Theatre

  
Saw one of my favourite Australian actors, Richard Roxbourgh in a Chekov play. Hate Chekov but really wanted to see Rake, I mean Mr Roxbourgh. And The Present was brilliant, entertaining, funny. But long. It wasn’t a tragedy, but turned into a farce. 

  
Roxbough was fantastic.  Cate Blanchett was wickedly sexy. Both of them sustained their energy. They ran on about six or seven times for applause. I laughed! What a cruel trick to play on the actors. Cate did look exhausted with all that running on. 

  

  • Took youngest son to airport

OK, not an outing but his plane to the States left so early, it wiped me out for the day. 

  • School reunion

Caught up with some people from back in the day, the school day. Was a chat fest and too much bubbly. 

  • Lunch at the Rocks

For non-Sydneysiders, The Rocks is the “old town” of Sydney. Was cut out of rock and now has pubs, restaurants, tourist shops. As happens with a booked out diary, I was on The Rocks on the Saturday for the play and had lunch at an Italian place and backed up my visit with a return on Sunday. Mr S and I caught up with a friend for a loooong lunch. Actually mainly a liquid lunch, though I had a steak sandwich. 

The Rocks deserves a post of its own. And damn it, it will get one. 

As a taster: Just below the Rocks is the old wharf area. Also turned into restaurants and theatres – it’s where I saw The Present. There’s a steep cliff down to the wharf road and at the base is this sculpture. Taking the rocks literally. 

   

 

    Five live events in one month!!! Five! I’m exhausted remembering it all. And all those other social events. 

    I need a good lie down.