Hello welcome to my Blog

Mezze is widely served in the Greek and Middle eastern world. An assortment of little dishes and tasters which accompany a nice ouzo or a glass of wine. So when you read mezze moments you will have tasty snippets of life as I live it, India for four years and now Brisbane Australia, all served up with some Greek fervour and passion.

Search This Blog

Friday, 23 March 2018

Selfie inside out.

Portrait of a woman, Picasso etching from the Vollard Suite. 

Yesterday a charming estate agent came to the door and we discussed property valuations in the area. He mentioned that the area we live in was largely a young area and I replied, yes not many over 60s here, like us. He turned to look at me and he said - "Are you really over 60 ? Get out of here - you look great on it". Well, lets not get too excited, the man is an estate agent and he may want to sell my house one day so flattering the owner is definitely a good first step. However I cannot lie, it was nice to be told that and I felt uplifted, in the metaphorical sense, if not the physical one, and went about the day with a certain esprit de jeunesse.
Today I brushed my hair carefully and put on my kohl and a little bit of blush on my cheeks. I put on a nicely ironed shirt and chose my necklace to match and off I went to get my passport photos for my new Australian passport. I wanted to look good for it as it has been a significant event in my life and it would be lovely to open the page and say, yes, that will do nicely for the next ten years, thank you very much.
I rearranged my hair and straightened my collar and the post office manager snapped two photos. Had I at that point known the results that lay ahead I would have said, "Cut, Cut, where is my make up artist ? I wish to retire with a glass of wine and resume the shoot after my nap when my skin will be more rested" but sadly he did not seem to want to give me those options and promptly produced them.

His assistant asked me to sign the back of the photo which I did with a flourish. This is me, the new Australian me, and here I was on my way to getting my laissez passez through the infamous Aussie borders. Then I looked at the front and my face creased slightly, but not as much as it appeared creased in the photo. I took another look. Surely not I thought. My eyesight for once is clear and tells no lies. It is strangely focused. 

Those saggy horizontal bits around my neck were in strong evidence. My hair looked as if my roots weren't quite done, one eye looked bigger than the other, there were bags under each one and creases, not smiley ones, just permanent ones, sat either side of my lips which (as the regulations exacted) were not allowed one ounce of a Mona Lisa smile. My whole visage looked  most miserable and god awful.  Oh Lord I thought I am stuck with THIS for ten years and the next ten aren't going to produce an improvement. And to add insult to injury or is it the other way round, the photo had cut out my lovely shirt and necklace. This was, dear readers, the crudest and unkindest of mug shots with questionable back and front lighting. 

Yes, what is in your head is not necessarily what appears on the outside. Never has the adage young at heart been more relevant and more loved.Stick with it ! 

Thursday, 15 March 2018

Rain is to Fungi...

...as BP is to cakes - a popping agent and out they come. We have had an unusual amount of rain in Brisbane and in Queensland generally, in February, and it is with some delight that I walk and watch them popping  up but not all are as gaily coloured as these lovely balls which we saw on our walk around Enogerra Dam. And I ask myself there is no food colouring down there so what makes them pop so brightly when they appear almost instantaneously above the ground? 

Friday, 9 March 2018

You have been warned !

And here it is in true Greek colours - my trolley. Bought on the sly yesterday in town from a discount shop. Boys thought I needed a better quality one, but why I asked them ? The cover of this one is just as good for carrots and spuds as any other and if it breaks well again it means I am shopping way beyond my carrying capabilities.
The joy of wandering around town and popping things into my trolley was palpable. I was grinning to myself and felt a sense of liberation and flightiness. Warranted you might ask ? For me 100 %. The girl at the check out counter confirmed what I had known all along - "straight into your trolley then?" "Yes Please" I said delighted that it was also a way of saving the planet.

At the bus stop I had spotted the most amazing hat on a man so abandoning trolley briefly, I tapped him on the shoulder and asked him if I could take a photo. He was happy to oblige and you have already admired its many facets which he described to me in great detail while we were waiting for the bus.Reconnecting to my trolley I wheeled it onto the bus and sat snuggly up against it in my seat.

Home today with the feeling of the hours and the shopping opportunities stretching out before me at my leisure, when all of a sudden the next best thing pops into my email - YES there is now officially a cinema festival for the YOUNG AT HEART aka those who are on a "Golden Age" pass to the cinema. My instant reaction was one of sheer disbelief but the prices are attractive, the choice of films  desirable for this demographic and the thrill of being looked after even in this category admirable from an Aussie point of view.

Now will I be smuggling several bottles of sauv blanc into my shopping trolley to share with my oldies at the cinema - that is the question !  

Thursday, 1 March 2018

O Reilly's Rainforest Retreat

The giveaway is in the word RAINforest !

This is our fourth visit in about five years. A retreat in Lamington National Park, a place with a lot of history, an enviable position at the top of a plateau and a playground of rainforest to make anyone jealous. Our visit this time, booked months in advance, aimed to introduce birding friends from across the seas to the joys of Australian birds. The weather decided to play its own game and we drove up late on the Friday in the driving rain. As the rain eased off it then became a question of dodge the toad. They were massive and passive and dotted all over the tarmac. 

We set off the next morning on a 10 kms walk. The rain had abated for a while but we took our rain jackets, tucked our trousers into our socks, put on our walking boots and headed off. The paths were wet and you might think our ability to see was reduced. Not so- the massive trees that line the paths had trunks whose colours popped out at us. Some of them even held hands. Trumpet fungi and orange balls hid here and there and the leaves glistened clean and bright in the emerging sunlight. 

As we descended further into the gorge we crossed some women on their way up- the river was a torrent and the crossing to our circular walk was no longer possible. We descended nevertheless and the rain poured down on us as if there was a little weather system just waiting to catch us. The women had warned us we would get wet and wet we were. We turned back and started the journey back up. Not too steep and not too tiring and as the rain suddenly strangely disappeared, others made their joyful appearance. There was a reason to tuck my socks over my trousers but I had not counted on the socks weave been thin enough to let these blood seeking leeches in. For them it was a field Day! We arrived back at the resort and they had wormed their way into our shoes and socks and we were picking them off our ankles and half way up our legs. There is a large yuk factor in leeches but they are relatively harmless, if tenacious. We put one down the toilet bowl only to find it a considerable time later making a valiant attempt to escape it. They cause haemorrhaging on a precipitous scale and as I joined friends on the deck for a drink and bite I left big puddles of blood on their floor. The after math was more annoying as when the blood was finally beginning to coagulate, the itchiness sets in maddeningly and furiously. You will be relieved to know that after a few days it does abate and the wounds heal up and of course we will be back. Perhaps this time we will wait for a drier forecast. 

The next day the skies were clearer and we were able to walk along another track near the Moran falls with wonderful views of the valley. The best moment was when I spotted a Paradise Rifle bird (Female) with a little morsel in its bent beak, a relatively rare sight, which we enjoyed for a while. The trade off was watching it and not pulling out the camera. You will be content therefore that I have found one for you to admire on this page. We will return as no trip is ever the same and that is what makes it unique. 

Wednesday, 7 February 2018

Niki - five years on.

Its been five years since my eldest sister Niki died in a car accident in Egypt. A loving older sister, a mentor and intellect, and above all a person of immense kindness and humanity. I returned to Australia from her funeral. Those early days were filled with tears and sadness and even though the tears have now subsided the sadness of her premature loss remains. In those early days when I came across this brass rubbing at my bus stop I knew this was her way of saying, I will ride with you wherever you are going. Enduring memories of enduring relationships. 

Wednesday, 31 January 2018

A dreaded realisation.

Dear Family and Friends,
In anticipation of a horde of boys returning home this weekend I decided to go shopping early. So armed with my big shopping bags I set off for Woolies and the Greek Grocer. My eyes are bigger than my bags so I started the journey home with two overfilled bags. I lost half my weight in sweat which obscured my vision and I nearly had a catastrophic encounter with an old age pensioner on a motorised thingy. 
So I have realised that my old woman bag days are over and I am writing to announce that I am officially now turning to the next dreaded step of old shopping trolley woman, following on in the tradition of millions of women around the world dragging them in front or behind them with no less an example then our inimitable granny who has a gigantic one. 

An image of the dreaded trolley may be put up in the next few days so this is ample warning to avoid this site at all costs.