Well, not quite, but last night I faced one of those frustrating ‘I know it’s staring me in the face’ kind of dilemmas.  I’ve recently created one of the most super organised wardrobes going around (organised I said, not OCD), see exhibit A, especially when it comes to sorting out the pile of ladies nice things!  The other night I thought it was time to drag out the in-case-of-cold-emergency pj’s but after boiling myself all night I changed my mind and put them away again.  Now that it is gotten colder you think I’d be able to find them in this get up I have going on, but no, like Wally they continue to elude me.

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2-08092009658Technically the season is now Spring, but as usual Melbourne is yet to get the memo.  While the northern parts of the country continue to flaunt their sunny weather without a care, down here in Mexico we still have more than our share of cold weather.  And it’s boring!  In an attempt to shake things up I only have 17 layers of clothing on instead of my usual 45.  And I can feel every single one of the 28 missing layers thank you very much!

2-01092009618In my mind I’ve moved on from Winter, well and truly.  I’m just waiting for Melbourne to get the memo that we are indeed now meant to have sunshine, longer daylight and most importantly, 2-01092009620warmth!  The flowers in my not-garden (read, patch of dirt under a tree) seemed to be on board and this little sweetheart popped up right on cue, front and centre on Sept 1.  What a pity my dogs decided to give their new backyard buddy what-for!

IMG_0097It seems to be less windy in Melbourne today.  Well at least for the past hour which is a huge improvement on the past 5 days.  Believe the hype, we’ve almost been blown sideways and on some occasions my little dog actually has!  I did try not to laugh too hard but it was funny seeing all 5kg of her, with ears as windsocks, struggling valiantly not to drift off course.  It seems a little odd that while we endure bitterly cold winds down here in Mexico that NSW and QLD are fighting off sunburn.  That hardly seems fair!

IMG_0708Check this baby out, no more losing my pocket money in the park for me!!  Not long after I got the dogs I soon had that very female realisation that when it came time to go to the park I had nothing to wear!  I don’t mean ‘nothing’ nothing, but I certainly didn’t have the right kind of clothing to keep me 1. warm, and 2. dry in Melbourne’s temperamental weather.  My first thought was to scour the factory outlets near my place for outdoorsie type jackets.  Fail.  They just had pricey and/ or ugly stuff.  I don’t do ugly.  Then I thought I’d search the op shops.  Fail.  They had nothing suitable when I was there (but I did get some great saucepans and towels).  The other day when I was driving us all home up the far end of my street I saw a sign that said ‘Ski gear, massive reductions!’.  Well I executed the swiftest u-turn, the kind that would have made 007 proud, and just knew they’d have warm stuff.  Imagine my delight to find this down-filled jacket at 70% off – I am SO the best bargain hunter in the Melbourverse!  Never mind that it’s been too sunny and warm since the very second I bought it to actually wear it, psychologically I know I’ll be warm.

i heart BaliOr did I?  I had a wonderful time in Bali and was completely seduced by the place, the people and the food.  Coming back hasn’t been as bad as I imagined.  Back to winter, back to work, back to everything – not so bad, not great, mind, but bearable.  While away I did pretty much nothing – on purpose – as I didn’t want to do anything uber touristy.  A few years ago I tutored at university on a subject called ‘Cultural Tourism’ and one thing we looked at in detail was the dilution of special cultural rituals or ceremonies for the purposes of tourists, often outside the calendar of when these would otherwise occur.  It really struck a chord with me and made me ashamed of how I’d perhaps travelled in the past partaking in these with gusto.  So I promised myself I wouldn’t do that again, and I didn’t.  Even my regular (and brilliant) taxi driver Ketut got the point in the end.  He would often say to me in his own english, “I understand you, nooo temples and Bali only”, referring to my preference to support local family businesses.   Consequently he took me to some great local artisans and producers and I was happy to buy their handmade goods over the mass produced Javanese imports.  In my effort to really slow down and not do much I was drinking and eating much more than my normal fill.  But then (in cliched fashion) I ate a dodgy prawn at the mid-point of the holiday and that put an end to pretty much all my exotic eating and drinking adventures.  Just as well, as I was doing it for Australia the first week so any weight I’d put on was lost in the second!  If you’ve ever dreamed of or hesitated to go to Bali, my advice is to just go.  Go away from the tourist traps, but just go.  Do try and remember to come home, tough though it is!

latte at ApteI’m off to Bali this weekend for 11 gloooorious days in an attempt to thaw out my bones.  For the past few days I have been very busy slapping on the fake tan so as not to frighten the other tourists with my luminescent skin.  So far so good, no streaks to speak of (touch plastic).  I was aiming for turning my skin from blue-white to a warm shade caramel but I think the best I can manage in the time I have left will be a double double non-fat no foam weak latte.  Sadly.  Oh well! 

Rest assured I’ll come back with plenty of adventures and photos to share.  And I promise to have a cocktail or 20 for you too!