Sunday, September 30, 2012


 Hello & Welcome to A Short Travelogue.
I know I know. It sounds boring.
Like having to go to a Slide Nite.
Remember those? I wonder if anyone has them anymore? Or if  slides are still made?
Anyway, I'm not at home at the moment Doing the Usual. I'm holidaying in Canberra visiting my daughter Maeflower & her fiance, Perry.

This morning we piled into their Lime Green Car &  drove through the endless Canberra roundabouts until we came upon the Annual Festival of Bulbs, otherwise known as Floriade.
As we drove into the  Carpark, Maeflower said that she thought that the type of people who frequent this event are dedicated watchers of lifestyle shows like 'Better Homes & Gardens'. Although I do watch 'Lifestyle' programmes, they tend to be only Snobby Shows about British Country Houses  like 'Country House Rescue' (or is it, 'Country House to the Rescue'), or my personal favourite, 'Country Houses You'll Never Be Grand Enough to Be Invited To Except If You Paid'. I love those shows because I always secretly wanted to marry into the British Aristocracy or even the Royal Family, although I never fancied Prince Charles, his ears were far too Dumboesque & I never warmed to his Upper Class Habit of referring to himself as 'One'.

Anyway, back to Floriade.

Over 1 million bulbs are planted in the autumn in order for them to flower in the Spring.
The bulbs that looked mostly like Tulips to me all had interesting names like 'Pussycat Fruit Salad' or 'Vampires Lunch'. Perhaps it was 'Vampires Late Supper' as I think they sleep or maybe just brood during daylight.
BTW, the weather was nothing like my idea of Spring. It was more like Mid-winter with an icy wind that clearly had just blown in from The Antarctic.
Maeflower was wrong about the visitors. The place was awash with large family groups with mountains of young children in prams etc. I suppose Bulbs en Masse  are interesting to children although I wouldn't have thought so. Perhaps it was the idea of being outside.
BTW, totally everyone was taking photos on their Smartphones including me.

Above are Perry & Maeflower with Bulbs.  Note how Maeflower is Perfectly Colour Co-Ordinated with the Tulips. Under her Italian Tailored Jacket she is wearing a long patio dress that, along with a whole other load of dresses, both long & short she bought the previous day at 'Target' in preparation for 'Frocktober', a month long fundraising event in aid of Cervical Cancer.

Note how M.flower towers over me like I'm some little Garden Knome peaking out among the Tulips. At least I'm not Tiptoeing Through them. But, to be honest she is wearing v. high lace up suede wedges that she also freshly purchased at Target whereas I'm in comfortable slip ons.

Of course there were loads of food stands at Floriade. Maeflower couldn't resist a large Churro which came with a generous tub of chocolate dipping sauce. I felt a little out of my depth as I didn't recognise this Spanish doughnut although I'm sure I must have munched on one at a Tapas Bar sometime.
Note her magnificent engagement ring designed by Perry featuring a sapphire surrounded by diamonds. I've just realised that I made it sound like The Duchess of Cambridge's ring. It's nothing like it.

Earlier in the day we stopped by Maeflower's office to view a Giant Drop of Water Sculpture that had just been unveiled outside her building that we all initially mistook for a Pear, until  of course we realised that it didn't have the stalk at the top.
 I think that the water is supposed to link in to the name of her building which is called 'Sirius', not after Sirius Black, a character in 'Harry Potter, but after one of the ships of the First Fleet that came to Australia in 1788.
You know, like we first came here via water.  And maybe to remind us all that we all just little drops of water that make up a Giant Ocean.
 Perhaps I've gone a little too far.
It appears that from a distance I'm channelling Toy Middleaged English Aristocracy Chic.
You know, navy with gold buttons & gold clip on earrings.
 Also wearing gorgeous blue pashmina M.flower brought back from Nepal for me last year when she was building a house not for her & Perry to live in , but for a Nepalese lady .

Meanwhile, back at their Bijou Flat, I'm still channelling Toy English Aristocracy Chic again with my navy cardie with a many-stranded string of Toy Pearls. I'm holding a magnificent dish of blanched asparagus served with toasted flaked almonds & a drizzle of oil & a squeeze of lemon juice made by MaeF.
Broccolini with Bacon Rubble is another one of her faves - steamed broccolini  served with a concoction of  toasted breadcrumbs, pancetta, lemon zest, flat parsley, oil &  maybe some Mincing Garlic.
We always go to the National Gallery Cafe for lunch.
Maeflower had pasta.
I had a toasted ham & cheese  & tomato sandwich, which is always my Default Toasted Sandwich Choice.
Note my Le Tour Eiffel ring & Gold Lookalike necklace featuring charms from 'Anthropologie'.

We had a quick look at the Permanant Collection which I was sure I could recite Chapter & Verse. But  I was a trifle surprised when I came upon this little Picasso Assemblage that he casually made from items that were hanging around his studio. Even though its just a cardboard box, it still kind of looks like a Picasso, don't you think?

Next stop was the National Portrait Gallery which is nothing like its Namesake in London. It's full of huge paintings of boring ex-Prime Ministers & ex-Australians like Princess  Mary who used to be a Real Estate agent in Sydney but who's now a member of the Danish Royal Family. MaeF. said she looked like a Hologram. I agreed.
Here we are on their TV monitor.

We arrived just in time to view a recently unveiled Jubilee Portrait made by an Australian artist who had unprecedented access to The Queen for a whole hour. It shows.
Apparently, it was the only officially sanctioned Jubilee portrait of Her Majesty.
What a shame Lucien Freud is no longer with us.
We were both gobsmacked by it, but before we made up our minds, we stopped to check what the international reaction to it had been. Someone, perhaps the artist himself whose name escapes me said he thought that the Queen looked incredibly 'vulnerable' in the painting. I personally read her expression as 'boredom'.
MaeFlower thought that the painting would make an excellent 10,000 piece jigsaw puzzle.
I must now go & Cook a Chook.


see you there! said...

Hope you are enjoying your holiday. Rather a pensive painting of Her Magisty but agree with MF, it would make a great puzzle.


Della Street Dreaming said...

thank you Darla! Hope you are well