Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Canberra Curiosities

This week I have mostly been rehearsing, but I've had a couple of excursions outside the theatre.

Nishi: apparently Australia's most radically sustainable mixed-use building
The Shine Dome aka Martian Embassy
You know you're in Australia when... 
Commonwealth Avenue Bridge

Tuesday, March 18, 2014


At a party at friends', Him Outdoors took round some sparkling Shiraz (because they don't do sparkling Claret) and roped them into celebrating Burnley's first win over Blackburn in 35 years. The poor, unsuspecting folk had no idea what was going on, but joined in anyway. Lovely, lovely people.

And, on a healthier note, a night off from rehearsals means a home-cooked meal of Tasmanian salmon fillets and Asian greens. It's a luxury, indeed!

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Blue Mountains

The Six Foot Track is a 45km trail through the Blue Mountains, starting at Katoomba and finishing at Jenolan Caves. Every second Saturday in March various nutters race along it as an off-road marathon to raise funds for the rural fire service. Him Outdoors is one such nutter. I went along to take pretty pictures at sunset...

The Three Sisters

...and sunrise.

Then I went for a walk to see the Three Sisters from another angle.

The start of the Prince Henry cliff walk
The track heads down to the rocks
Rock detail
I turned up just in time to see Him Outdoors finish the race.

Jenolan Caves
Probably quite unfairly I made Him Outdoors come with me on the Giant Stairway walk the next day. It comprises over 2,000 steps. Ooops. But look, he's still smiling!

Lady Carrington's Dining Hall

Back at the top we had restorative hot chocolate at the Blue Mountains Chocolate Company, which was served in a sort of milk fondue with chocolate buttons you could melt into your own drink.

A new friend found among the trees
Mural in Leura
In the beautiful village of Leura we pottered about the home-ware shops, bookshops, and the business fashion outlets (with their coloured leather Kindle folders). We went to Cafe Bon Ton for a bite to eat and a drink. I had a Mauritian fish wrap with spicy flavours of lime, lemongrass and ginger, and we had a wine flight to accompany it: a French Sauvignon Blanc (hints of crushed fennel seeds); a crisp, flinty, minerally Riesling; and a big-bodied Chablis with a lemon twist. Highly recommended.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Runs and stuff

Trail Races at Lake Crackenback gave us the opportunity to run through some spectacular Snowy Mountain scenery, and relax with a fair dinkum Aussie pale ale.

Lake Crackenback

The Mandalay bus is a bit of an institution in Braddon, serving takeaway food on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights. It was daytime when I was there, however, so I ate at Sweet Bones Bakery Cafe instead. It's part of the Lonsdale Street Traders and although it's organic and vegan, it's not as dry and po-faced as that sounds. The coffee is fair-trade, the cakes, muffins and brownies are moist and tasty, and the atmosphere is pop-up funky chic.

Artwork on the Mandalay bus in Braddon
A working breakfast at Sweet Bones
We recorded the sounds for the dramatic shipwreck sequence for Twelfth Night - while the women provided the shrieks and wails, the men were meant to offer manly nautical terminology and tense commands. It must be noted that some will always perform to the gallery, even while the ship is sinking...

Creating a soundscape for Twefth Night
Mulligans Flat

We had loads of grapes on our vines in the garden - enough to share with the wattlebirds, which was just as well as they would have taken them anyway!