Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Winter in the Alps

Just got back from a fabulous week at Mt Buller. We got there as the mountain was engulfed in a blizzard of biblical proportions. Gale force winds kept all but about four lifts from running, so we enjoyed a snug day in the lodge on the first day there. There was a bit of snow play outside, which kept the little ones happy, and the white stuff was awesome. With more than a metre on the ground, a steady supply coming out of the sky, and below freezing temperatures, it stayed powdery all week.

Being strictly a fair-weather skier, I waited until the sky had cleared a bit before venturing out, and when it did, I had four good days on the slopes. It's so magic up there on top of the world, and I get as much of a buzz out of the beautiful scenery all around as I do skiing.

The kids went to ski-school some of the time and are now good enough to keep up with us older skiers (okay, actually skiing past me now!). Some friends joined us on the weekend, and they were kind enough to cook a Thai feast on Saturday night, followed by gorgeous blueberry mini-cheesecakes. If that wasn't enough indulgence, on Sunday morning, they cooked pancakes with berries!

What a great holiday... Just what I needed before getting back to work next week.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

The Spirit of Romance

Grace Kelly (the screen icon, not the real woman) has always embodied the essence of romance, for me. She was sublimely beautiful, looked spectacular in anything she wore and she was the epitome of style, refinement and... perfection. Of course, her seemingly perfect private life was anything but. I still find many of her movies a delight to watch. 'To Catch a Thief', 'Rear Window' and 'High Society' are among my favourite classics. In these, she plays heroines who are courageous, independent and strong-willed. What's not to love?

Mika's song - 'Grace Kelly' - is cool and boppy, it's loaded with the real goods. A rock solid melody that won't be forgotten overnight. Don't know if I agree with him that '...her looks were too sad', though. Dear, lovely, Grace Kelly. The silver screen misses you.

Check out the groovy video clip below...

And by the way...

I'm bald!!!

A career change, shifting commitments and a new sense of adventure deserve a crazy new look! Today I took the plunge and cut (nearly all) my hair off. I didn't do it myself, of course. I let a professional do it, and did it feel good. Man oh man.

When the hairdresser was finished, she spiked me up until I hardly recognised myself. Next step will be to experiment with some wild colours. But I think I'll wait a couple of months to do that. Best to let the shock of the new subside, first.

Winter by the beach

Just got back from a wonderful week away at Rosebud.

Rosebud, what a beautifully evocative name for this special place on the bay side of the Mornington Peninsula. It's named after a ship that was shipwrecked off the coast there, many, many years ago.

I'd say the defining feature of our time away at Rosebud is always sleeping in and lazy mornings in pyjamas until noon, when we finally emerge from the house and go looking for things to do. In Summer, it's almost always the beach, whereas in Winter, we have to get a bit more inventive.

It was a rainy week, this time, and we had one outing to the Ashcombe Maze, but it turned rather dark, rainy and cold while we were there. We explored the place, found all the fairies and almost all the gnomes, but it wasn't as pleasant as it could have been on a fine day. The man-made landscapes there are quite breathtaking.

I always, always take my laptop and write late into the night, or catch up on reading that I have less time for at home. Sometimes I take a notebook to the beach so I can write down ideas that come to me. Supervising children playing on sand, or swimming (in the warmer months) does lead to a lot of pondering, and from that can spring some gems of ideas, which have to be captured before they vaporise.