Sunday, April 15, 2012

Checking In, 15th April, 2012 @ Margaret River

Good Morning,

What a lovely, sleepy morning it is in town today, very quiet. Looking back at my last week. Often a good thing to do as I find myself hurtling through time like some asteroid through the universe.
I found this behind the little church at the Margaret River Community Centre, how gorgeous is that?
Social Events:
I attended the opening of RedInk Homes Showroom in Margaret River township, a lovely evening, I was pleased to meet Scott Park. I also got to meet some of their clients who were having a happy building experience, always an excellent thing to hear first hand. The showroom is one of it's kind in town, and very well done. Definitely worth a visit. The delicious nibblies were cooked up by Wild Thyme.

I had two catch ups at Settlers Tavern. One with my friend Noofi, we had dinner there one night, sitting outside enjoying the balmy weather, a little disconcerting watching a fire develop on the edge of the forest along the river, apparently a 'prescribed burn'. I had a yummy Lamb Curry, ate the lot (they make their own curry pastes). Noof's choice was the local Groper, Grilled, also very nice apparently. They do have an excellent wine list, I drink red and Noofi drinks white. A good way to go by the glass.

Lunch at Settlers Tavern again this time with with my Fam, they walked past me as 'the hair' is growing and they still expect to find my short cut. We had a couple of the kiddies with us and they loved their chicken or fish with chips, the tavern has a dedicated children's menu.  The crispy squid was apparently a little oily. I had a small chicken satay, with homemade satay sauce, very nice, great for the diet if you omit the sauce. And, the local groper again, just as good as the day before.
Cape Mentelle, the cool room, very cool!
Movies in the Vineyard at Cape Mentelle, it's a great thing to do. I haven't been since last year, and they have upgraded the catering, which looked fabulous. I wasn't expecting to see Duck Breast with Thai Noodles, so I had a bowl of my Lamb Shank and Kale Soup with a huge dollop of Rueben Solomons (blow your head off) Chilli Vinegar before I went (I was quite hungry after all that lawn mowing)! Enjoyed a bottle of their Sangiovese. Movie was good, a good one for the kids also, Hugo.
A selection of Cape Mentelle Wines, looking through to the cool room
Anatol Fritsch & Little Wiener Catering @ Cape Mentelle, Movies In The Vineyard
Galavanting Around The Countryside:
I love these maps, if you click on it, you will see more detail.
A 9 kilometre Stand Up Paddle up the River, from the river mouth, yes, the Margaret River. Well, it was about 9k's up and back, took 2 hours basically non stop. Going down wind was a doddle, paddling back was quite a bit harder, a 10 knot breeze, gusting up to 13 or so knots. A good effort on my behalf. What a great thing to do. You can hire canoes from the river mouth and I would highly recommend it. I am amazed that the dangers are so few. The river mouth is closed off at the moment. The water is briny and at this time of year, there is no water flow. You could expect that the river could be stagnant but it is quite healthy. I cut my foot landing my board on a rock and the foot hasn't fallen off with infection (yet)(just joking!)!

This shot was taken 2 months ago, it has green up alot since then. That is part of the Margaret River I paddled up. 
The river isn't very deep, and apart from no real dangers like sharks, crocodile, I didn't see one snake, not to say they aren't there, the only real danger is falling off the board onto a submerged tree branch and impaling oneself. I didn't fall off once, but had quite a few swims. There was an eagle that swooped above, but it was only interested in it's marsupial prey, dangling from its talons. It's very interesting to see the new regrowth after the fires, very uplifting and strangely picturesque. I wish I could take a camera. Will have to invest in a waterproof camera.

Current Theory:
Don't try this at home. It's about going with out sunscreen! I wear a Chanel moisturiser, on my face with a 15 spf as a daily standard. And, I was wearing that this day on the board. So, a one piece bathing suit, we call them bathers. And a cap and sunglasses. That's it. No sunscreen on the body - at all. My theory is, that you wont burn if you cool your body and skin down when you feel it getting warm or hot. What I am going to show you will shock you... it's my skin. After two hours in direct Australian sun, I did not burn and I don't even have a criss cross where my straps go across my back?????? This photo was taken the day after the paddle. It's not even red. I was worried about my chest, I did start to feel it getting a little warm at one stage and just slipped off the board and spent time just cooling down, that did get a little touch of colour. But I am amazed.
Look Mum, no sun burn?! not even a bathers strap mark?? 2 hours direct sun!
Have been working on this theory for a while. I haven't worn sunscreen on my body all year and I spend at least a couple of days in the week (every week) on the beach for an hour or so, playing and walking with the dogs. Lots of cooling myself down when I feel even a little warm. I first started thinking about this when I visited the research station on Lizard Island. A long time ago, maybe 18 years ago??? There was a chap there working on the question of why the reef and it's critters don't get burned when the tide goes out and leaves them exposed. Mmmm, yes, why is that? Not sure if he has worked it out, and I certainly haven't, but it has lead to this little theory of avoiding sunburn. I still think if you are prone to skin cancer, you have to do everything you can to avoid the sun. So, I say again, don't try this yourself. (It can't help the wrinkle factor either as my Grandmother warned me - toooo late).

What's Going On At 'The Shack':
The shackette is in a shambles, hate that! I have 6 rooms, 3 of those are having the ceiling completely replaced!! Puck! Those rooms are the kitchen, the main bedroom and the bathroom. I am in the process of taking every thing out of those rooms and taping every thing up.... to be continued. That is suppose to happen at the end of this coming week.

Beach & Bush Walking:
I love this time of year. The weather is so changeable. One day hot, the other day cool. When it's warm, I'm in the water, when it's cool, I'm in the bush. Had a walk, from near Main Break, towards Prevally one afternoon, it was really windy and the waves seemed very powerful, that was when there was a tsunami warning for Bali. I did have a quick dip in the ocean, and to my surprise it was really warm. Not so warm in the wind.
Tree Fungi
Tree Fungi
Have had a couple of bush walks (the toe is still reminding me that something has happened to it) found this amazing tree fungus, beautiful. There is hardly any water in the river near the town. Just little puddles in the mud. We have had a really dry summer unfortunately.
Siesta Park Nature Reserve Beach looking West across Geographe Bay and toward Cape Naturaliste
Siesta Park Nature Reserve Beach looking East and toward Busselton, we were just about to be sprinkled on. Note # no one on the beach!?
Took the dogs for a walk along one of my favourite beaches, Siesta Park, up Busselton way. I love the bay, Geographe Bay. The wind is mostly offshore making for little, little waves and shallow, crystal clear water. Only thing up there are the stingers (oh, and the sharks!). Weren't any yesterday (not sure about the sharks, in Australia, there will always be sharks, I have a theory about them as well!).

This week downloaded a couple of magazines on to the ipad:
Wired UK (I love it, my favourite, everything digital) This month a very good article on Creativity.
Gourmet Traveller (very good)
Harpers Bazaar
Women's Weekly
(not really into the WW but wanting to see how they are putting it together as there aren't many mags on line yet)

Loving Triple MMM for Ipad, it's rock, out of Sydney, my kind of music, only disconcerting thing is the time difference, but its good to hear people talking about peak hour traffic and I look out and see the odd car drive past! A good reminder of the benefits of living in a country town and not in 'the big smoke' (cough cough). Triple J and Triple J Unearthed are really good as well.

The ABC, SBS and SMH are also very good digitally. Have packed the televisions for the ceiling reno, and have been watching Gardening Australia on my laptop. (I call it garden porn)

Weather Apps, I have found Accuweather to be better than Weatherzone. WZ don't do Margaret River, they say they do, but they use Busselton, and the temp can be 5 degrees cooler down here, and completely different conditions. Even the temp between town and the beach can be 5 degrees different.
Forest Grove Olive Farms, Bacon & Egg Tart from The Margaret River Farmers Markets
Have been eating my Lamb Shank & Kale Soup, love it. Trying to eat & drink everything in the fridge to get ready to move it. Smoked Salmon and Salad or Organic Rice Cakes. A bit of Pecorino on a cracker. Red wine. Yesterday for breaky I had one of Forest Grove Olive Farms, Bacon & Egg tarts plus a Plum Tart!!! YUM! This morning I had a piece of RAW KY's Raw Carrot Cake! YUM again, I am living in foodie and wino heaven. Oh, and those beautiful local Fuji Apples.
Forest Grove Olive Farms, Plum Frangipani Tartlets
And after all of that, weighing in at 64.5kgs.
RAW KY's Stall at The Margaret River Farmers Markets yesterday 
RAW KYs Raw Carrot Cake, my breakfast this morning!
Raw Carrot Cake

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