brightlywoven: Pickwick the dodo, one of a kind, hand made by my stepmum (dodo)
A terrible thing has happened to me.

My favourite grown up book store in Melbourne is called Readings. On my last visit there I bought a beautiful illustrated ABC for a child, a Leonard Cohen DVD for exactlyhalf (DVD of the concert we went to!), CD of the same for my dad, and the final installment of an Australian fantasy for myself (excellent series by Alison Croggan, a Melbourne poet. Plot is a trifle derivative, but the prose and characters are lovely, she has the opposite of race fail (and it's taken me this long to appreciate how great that is) and features some quite beautiful poetry/song) 
While I was there on a Tuesday evening it was full of all these urban looking people were drinking red wine from tumblers to celebrate the launch of a picture storybook. One such lovely person was one of exactlyhalf's oldest family friends, and being there was like a glimpse of heaven - books, music, red wine and lovely company.

Anyway, I've loved this store for a decade. And given the context of its being a bookstore, it's pretty obvious how the name should be pronounced, only...

I CAN'T STOP CALLING IT RED-DING. LIKE THE EFFING CITY.

DAMN

The truly embarrassing bit? I teased exactlyhalf mercilessly the first time he did that on a visit home. I've done it EVERY SINGLE TIME I've referred to it. Oh the shame *exaggerated woeface*
brightlywoven: (harriet)
A wonderful trip to our favourite (large) city on the weekend. Despite a bit of rain, the weather was OK, and warm enough that the rain wasn't dampening. We arrived at 10pm on Friday, and found our hotel to be of an acceptable level of scunge for 60euro a night. exactlyhalf had cunningly studied the map to find we were extremely close to montmatre, so we headed out for a night-time stroll to the butte. This included climbing all the steps (the funiculaire is for the weak!) and avoiding the large very drunk crowd in front of Sacre Coeur. The winding streets are wonderful, and we found glaces and crepes to fortify us.

Saturday we walked extensively, I napped in the herb garden of the Cluny, we re-visited said wonderful Cluny (oh, the tapestries and stained glass and sad middle-ages people), I had 3 coffees (because we accidentally ordered two in one cafe, so I drank them both) and had dinner at Chartier. By the end of the day we were footsore but happy. And yes, we watched a little Eurovision.

Sunday we visited the D'Orsay and the musee d'art moderne, then headed to the Luxembourg gardens. Here we found the petanque players, including one I photographed in the same spot 4 years ago! We had enormous fun trying to deduce the rules, studying tactics, and barracking for our favourites (les cheveux grises, and his friend in white), who eventually lost to a devastating pair with killer accuracy in driving. We had eaten rather too much cake, flan, baguette and brie to feel like much dinner on the left bank (even after cooling our heels in a jazz bar for a while), so we snacked on crepes and 'sandwich grec' in a startlingly crazy area near Boul' Mich'.

Monday we saw the flemish and dutch paintings in the louvre (words fail, though they were a little tainted by the truly awful 'modern' exhibition which was mainly skulls decorated with beetles, and other things that looked like bad Buffy set pieces) baulked at the line to Ste Chapelle (must go earlier next time), bought some lovely green glass pieces for our home (we always wanted to fit out our home from La Samaritaine, which is tragically closed), and tried to get to the Pompidou but found our time running out.

I think we rather enjoyed it ;)

Melbourne

Mar. 28th, 2008 09:48 pm
brightlywoven: Pickwick the dodo, one of a kind, hand made by my stepmum (fire)
- fulfills all my coffee fantasties
- is full of wonderful people
- rains a surprising amount for a city in drought

Now we are watching the Twin Peaks pilot in my sister in law's apartment, newly adorned with ikea shelving (assembled by yours truly, as my muscles attest)
brightlywoven: (harriet)
Sitting in the beach house, catching up on Kermit (a somewhat aged key lime iBook). We had a packed Easter weekend, seeing somewhere between 30-40 relatives in 3 cities over 3 days. It was great fun, especially meeting the new baby cousins, seeing Dad's new house (and new puppy, Dobby!), and hearing the Big Family News.

Now we are relaxing with chocolate, wine, walks and games at the beach house. 10 minutes ago a stunning rainbow came out to frame the sea and the lighthouse that stands on pumpkin-scone coloured cliffs. Back to the city in a few hours - let the brunch-coffee madness begin!

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