Monday, September 18, 2006

Mudgee Magic

Just come back from a lovely long weekend in Mudgee, NSW wine country. Thommo, MarkyBoy the Merry Widow and I jumped in the Callias for a trip west and joined TheExpert and TL for three days at the wine festival. Stayed in a fab cottage with river views, an Alpaca, and Ostrich named Miss Olivia, two sheep a lonely goat and a plucker of chooks and ducks and an albino Turkey who wasn't fussy who he cracked on to. Very pretty.

We drank in the afternoon we arrived and then went to Eltons for dinner yum . . I'd forgotten how nice Veal Marsala really is. We stumbled home then played a game of Stink (I dunno we couldn't work it out either) and were beaten by TheExpert who was more pissed than all of us. Fluke or what?

The only problem living in the country is the bloody birds get up so early. Tweeting and shrieking, quacking and gobbling . . . I swear they're worse in spring so I was up spritely at 6.00am as usual, creeping around on my own waiting for the day to start.

Saturday we went to the Growers Market at the Catholic Church and bought honey and olive tapanade. Then just to show that we are egalitarian atheists, covered the craft market (I use the term loosely) at the Anglican Church across the road. You'll be pleased to know that there is still a market for tea towels with crochet edges and do it yourself cushion making . . indeed you can buy a template with a lovely rottweiler head on it or even your fave Massey Ferguson Tractor in glorious red. Bought ClareBear a little metal dragonfly made out of recycled car parts that was cute - and fitting - seeing as her major project is making Sustainability sexy!

Sight of the weekend: The country ute with the largest arials you've ever seen, Jim Beam Stickers "I'm a shooter and I vote" sticker, bull bars, roll bars, a heavily reinforced cage with the ugliest hunting dogs you've ever seen tucked safely inside and a poor wild pig, gnarled to bits on the back of the tray. Very country and reminded me to count the fingers of everyone who poured a tasting wine (make sure there were five on each hand) and to check name tags . . . I'm not going near anyone called Mable or Clitus.

Then we did the wineries, Frog Rock, Blue Wren little cellarmaster with strawberry blonde hair who gave us a free bottle of the competition's rose), De la something or other with a nice golden retriever and yummy Sicillian olives and marinated mushrooms, I think the wine was OK too - I only bought the ones with the pretty labels (who say's I'm shallow). Then onward and upward to a number of others - many whose names I cannot remember but tasted everything. Lunch at the Cheese Factory and the best macadamia and olive pesto I've ever tasted.

The late afternoon was a bit boring until Thommo hurled her bocce ball into a water feature and TL and MarkyBoy had to get their feet wet and rummage in the mud with a rake to retrieve it. Ah well . . . if anyone was going to plop it in the water it would be her. I refrained from playing . . . they were hurling the bocce like shot puts . . more arse than clarse so MarkyBoy and I, the true 'good life' Pitt Street farmers checked out their irrigation system.

Saturday night we cooked at home but it was restaurant quality, bbq seafood and a chunk of fillet that went down well but in Thommo's case came right back up again . . .at least we think it was the steak . . .couldn't possibly have been the merlot.

Sunday we had a slow start, a big brekky and hit Burnbrae where I bought a nice sticky and then on to Andrew Harris and Logan for coffee and cake with a view and a dalmation with painted claws, before heading home. All in all a very noice weekend.

My house was even tidy when I got back, DrummerBoy had been out biking all weekend and came home covered in dust with the usual horror stories, leaping of 60 foot ramps into a cliff face. He's been attempting supermans, seatgrabs, off-axis leaps and whips. I don't even want to know what sort of danger he's in when he does this. Why couldn't he take up lawn bowling or cricket and ClareBear had hardly been home with Biology excursions, Saturday at the races and wakeboarding on Sunday.
Only ThePrincess was home all weekend and very pleased to see me. This is Lily for those who haven't met my third child. Nicknamed ThePrincess by Babybro because she is overly indulged.

Ah well, that was my little excursion for the month. Back to blowing leaves, washing and cleaning for the next couple of weekends. the only thing that went wrong was within five minutes of arriving home, I blew up my oven . . .bugger . . . there went the Sunday roast.

Resolution for today: try to understand why Burnbrae Chardonnay has a 'nose' like burnt toast.

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