A day away

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There’s a certain smug satisfaction when everyone you know is at work and you’re indulging yourself with delightful pleasures of art and food. A day off can be productive, fun and enjoyable but to raise it to great heights it has to have elements of self-indulgence. A day of pure escapism to tantalise all the senses – not all at once but stretched out for the whole day.

In need of some ‘me’ time I decided to create my own long weekend and took Friday off. I hadn’t planned anything except for one minor appointment in the morning, once that was done I had the whole day before me.

It’s not often I get a day to focus totally on myself – usually there’s housework or shopping or a social commitment to work around. Not that there isn’t an element of satisfaction in housework or fun in catching up with friends; but it’s the working around them that pushes selfish desires to the bottom of the ‘to do’ list that frustrates me. A two day weekend really doesn’t go far enough!

So after weeks of long work days, a bit of stress and some truly ghastly weather I was feeling suitably bummed out by the routine treadmill and decided to do something different for a day.

After a quick spot of shopping I needed a visual feast and spent an hour wandering through the Australian National Gallery. It was so quiet; weekdays are perfect for just getting lost in amongst the art. I’ll admit I’m not a huge fan of modern art or anything interpretative so I spent most of my time amongst the impressionist and the European master before I discovered an amazing exhibition of Indian miniatures from the 17-19th century – The Story of Rama – Indian Miniatures from the National Museum New Delhi. They were so gorgeous with beautiful colours and romanticised tales of Indian folklore.

The coronation procession c 1800

Feeling quite artistically inspired I headed to my favourite garden centre to indulge the senses of touch and smell. There’s nothing more delightful that gently crushing the leaves to bring out the tantalizing aromas of thyme, lemon, chamomile and rosemary. Whilst I now have more ideas for my garden the dogs were the winners today with two pots of ‘cat grass’ for them to munch on. I think Cassie in particular is missing the lawn – on every walk she goes searching for the most savoury stalk of grass.

Leaving the garden centre I realised it was a perfect time to satisfy my taste buds. I knew exactly what I wanted but wasn’t sure where to find it – somewhere outside as it was a beautifully warm day, a seat in the sunshine with some great ambience and a view. Ideally somewhere near water. As luck would have it my brain hadn’t totally slowed down and I headed to the Kingston Foreshore to C Dine. I found a seat in the sun, ordered a delicious Italian Pinot Gris to accompany my salmon raviolo. Technically raviolo is the singular of ravioli however there was more than one on the plate so not sure of their menu description there. Regardless of technicalities, the dish was delicious.

aromatic herbs

So now I’ve indulged four of my five senses, I’m extremely relaxed and wouldn’t say no to a nana nap but have to head into reality for just one final moment – groceries. In hindsight, a glass of wine and groceries don’t lead to sensible purchases but I was so happy with my day I didn’t care. Besides I needed to eat that night.

You might be wondering about my fifth sense – hearing. Well, there’s a special silence in the world when you aren’t worried about work and people aren’t harassing you on the phone. There’s still noise but it’s soothing – birds chattering, quiet hum of diners, swishing of plants in their pots or the gentle lapping of water against a pier.

So my soul has been soothed and I’m ready for the week ahead.

Lake Burley Griffin

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