Autumn has breezed by. For the past three weekends the husband unit and I have been hosting friends from home. It’s been bliss.
This weekend we are hosting nobody.
One of my friends says that guests bless you twice: once when they arrive, and again when they leave. We planned some ‘us time’ (vom) to the tune of some early morning cinema and a gander about town. We saw Effie Gray, a fantastic period drama about a feisty, intelligent Perth-born woman (Perth Scotland, not Perth Australia) trapped in a sham marriage. I related strongly to her character. This is a cry for help.
Then we wandered down to the International Market by Union Terrace Gardens for some street food (here for one weekend only, so you gotta catch it while you can). As we approached, there were lots of people dotted about on the street, eating their lunches of bratwurst and paella. In silence. As we moved past these eerily quiet figures and further on in, people jostled about grumpily in the hubbub and we joined some long queues for a delicious bite, where people elbowed one another and harrumphed.
This is the kind of thing that drives me crazy about this place. It’s like they don’t know how to have a good time. In any other city there would be buzz, and music, and people laughing and enjoying themselves, pink-cheeked and jolly. There’s a kind of magic that lingers over winter street markets serving piping hot food in paper trays with plastic forks: here though, it just seemed a bit sad, as we ducked and dived between the smokers and the people with massive bags from Argos.
And that is my way of saying that this place is no better now than a year ago. But I am feeling better, because I am feeling more secure in my friendships here, and that really does make a place home.
We drove home via the beach and have nested up for the afternoon, with plans involving a bowl of home made guacamole and a bottle of Cava. I am feeling grateful today, which is the enemy of my usual companion, discontent.
I’ve thought a little about NaNoWriMo and for the first time truly considered giving it a go. I won’t though – not this year. I think a project like that takes preparation, and I am grossly unprepared. I may however, in the spirit of the thing, blog a little. Perhaps daily. I make no promises though. Watch this space.