Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Brisbane… a never-ending list to be grateful for…

When I started this gratefulness blog, I religiously sat down of a night and easily found five things to document and be grateful for in my day. I still can, I just haven’t been, and for that I am mentally slapping myself. Of course there is plenty to be grateful for, especially during my extended working / break her in Brisbane, and today I just want to share some of my gratefuls of the past few weeks.

The All Stars before the run...

RUNNING BUDDIES: I am grateful to the beautiful women affectionately known as THE ALL STARS (Nadine McDonald-Dowd, Louisa Panuel and Jasmyn Sheppard) who ran with me recently to raise money for the Indigenous Literacy Foundation. We travelled up from Brisbane to the Sunshine Coast Marathon, and gained some strength the day before by lying by the pool of the Novotel Twin Waters. I was also nursing a broken toe – which I won’t bore you with here – so I also need to extend my gratitude to Nurse Nadine to provide an endless supply of tape and sympathy.

The All Stars at the end...

We did our 10km run in the heat of the Sunday morning sun, replenished ourselves with big breakfasts afterwards and came back content knowing we had all achieved in our run and our fundraising.

I am especially grateful to all those who put their dollars where my feet were for the race. Collectively, THE ALL STARS were the top ranking fundraiser! Awesome! 

 Mel Kettle's cooking class - how lucky am I?

COOKING LESSON with MEL KETTLE: I can’t cook, that’s no secret, but I have friends who are deadly chefs, including Mel Kettle who’s blog – The Cook’s Notebook  – has given me some simple and simply delicious recipes that I have been able to manage all on my lonesome. In exchange for a copy of Manhattan Dreaming, Mel invited me into her all-equipped and well-stocked kitchen for a lesson in preparation for a dinner-party I was hosting – see next entry.

I am grateful for the personal tutorial and just being able to watch a ‘real cook’ up close and personal to see how it’s done. Would I dare to cook for Mel one day??? Maybe that will be a challenge for 2014… I do have a recipe or two up my sleeve now, I just need the courage.

 Josie, Anita, Narelle, Sheryl and Angela at the non-dinner party!

THE NON-DINNER PARTY: So, with my cooking lesson and confidence under my belt, and a new set of wine glasses and cutlery to play hostess in my temporary home here in Brisbane, I set about preparing my menu for some of Brisbane’s deadliest writers. These women are award-winning, witty, warm and wonderful. They cross-genres and are multi-skilled BUT also have some issues with their food! I learned that one was vegan, another GF, one a fruitarian, one a carnivore, one lactose intolerant, one sugar-free, one didn’t like capsicum, another anything spicy, one was all of the above, and none really drank. But by the time we’d finished our email exchanges I was on my third glass and in tears. It was my worst hostessing nightmare. I couldn’t even make this up for a novel if I tried!

So what am I grateful for with this little event – the local Thai restaurant I took them to instead, where I said – pick what you can eat!

I don’t recommend you inviting them all for dinner at the same time, but I do recommend you read their books! Check out Josie Montano,  Sheryl Gwyther,  Narelle Oliver  and Angela Sunde!


PICNICS FOR ONE: Perhaps one of my most significant gratefuls for my time in Brisbane has been the ‘me time’ I have gifted myself and spending time sitting under trees along the river and having picnics for one. I find an incredible sense of peace at Orleigh Park and along the stretch from West End to the SLQLD where I spend time every weekend. So I am grateful for the weather and the landscape for providing the perfect setting for me. Oh and a good book (i.e. Cate Kennedy’s Dark Roots), a beer and some Twistie’s also make for a great party for one.

 With the cheeky Adam Hill, aka Blak Douglas

SMALL TOWN MOMENTS: Brisbanite's hate me saying their city is like a country-town, but it is, in a good way. It’s logistically easier to get around and catch up with people, and indeed bumping into people, like I did…. There I was on my way home from my picnic-for-one and I look to the right and see none other than deadly artist Adam Hill. It was a surreal but typically small-town-in-a-big-world-moment. I was grateful for the fleeting moment we shared before I toddled of home and he got back into his book… perfect Sunday arvo along the river. Oh and it pays to look left and right, not just when crossing the road, cos you never know who you might see!


Sheryl Gwyther said...

Hilarious! Loved the time we spent with you, Anita. You're even worth suffering the pain of eating capsicum for! Thanks for being our bright star, gorgeous. :) xx ♥

Unknown said...

That was such a fun night!! Let me know when you want lesson #2 :)

Dr Anita Heiss said...

Hey Sheryl - I was trying to be funny - not sure the others got the joke :) It was a fab night though eh? Loved breaking bread, or boiled rice as it were! XX

Mel - it was a fab night, thank you!

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