Have you ever made homemade tortillas, cooked shrimp in garlic oil, and listened to an album all the way through while drinking cider? What about on a boat? In Brisbane, Australia? If you haven't, this should be on your bucket list. Seriously.
The sad news is that we never got to sail out to Moreton Island. That would really have been the icing on the best cake ever. Looks like I'll just have to find a sailing buddy when I get home.
As a consolation prize, I've gotten to spend this week exploring the nooks and crannies of Brisbane, visiting with my friends mostly on dry land, except when we're on their boat in the river, drinking, eating, and conversing. I'm lucky, my friend Victoria is an excellent cook. And Tucker and Victoria's boat is charming as hell. So are their kids. The title of this post is courtesy of their son, Miles. We we talking about speaking Spanish, and this was his version of Spanish. It starts well. And ends better. A perfect metaphor for my travels here in Oz.
Today it's raining. As it does on many occasions here in the Northern part of the East Coast. We're at the tail end of the rainy season, or what they would call the shoulder. I don't really mind the rain, in fact I rather enjoy it. I have but one rainy day wish and that is for my hair not to frizz up so completely and unappealingly in the rain, but that is definitely what they call a first world problem, and therefore not a real concern. Also, it will never happen, so it's best to save my wishes for things that truly matter.
Before the drizzle commenced, I walked across the Victoria Bridge to the West End to have breakfast at Gunshop. Another of those "eat by font" places. It has a bold star by it in my guidebook, and was given another enthusiastic star by Tucker and Vick, so I knew it would be good. When I got there, there was a queue. Always a good sign.
I was given a table in the corner, away from everything and everyone, but I didn't mind. The quiet was nice for reading, and people who are there with other people may have needed the hustle and bustle more than I did. I'm neck deep in The Book Thief, and I'm enjoying it immensely. Marcus Zusak is a masterful manipulator of words. I adore his writing. A novel narrated by Death himself is compelling just on the surface. Once you dive in, it's even better. It would be nice if Kindle noted page numbers instead of percentage of completion, but again, that's not a problem worth wishing away.
I decided to order food that was out of type from what I normally order, but still from the Gunshop favorites menu. I chose Toulouse sausage with a sweet potato hash cake, tomato jam, a poached egg, and rocket (arugula). It was magnificent. I can see the reason for all the stars and the queue. I ate the whole thing, not wanting to waste a bite. Also because I've taken to eating two meals instead of three, and it's worked out well. I tried a new type of banana I'd acquired from the farmer's market yesterday as I walked across the bridge. It was good, but it tasted like a banana for the most part. No revelations there.
I didn't have the heart to linger at my table after I was finished eating because I could see the queue ebb and flow outside the window, filled with hungry people eyeing my progress, keen for me to move on. So I walked out into the rain. It wasn't pouring as it has before, it was collectively dripping. I walked a circuitous path from tree to overhang and back as I skipped and danced my way amongst the drops down the sidewalk like The Rabbi and the Twenty-Nine Witches. I managed to find my way to the convention center on my way to meet my friends for a movie. It was nice and dry inside, and I'm now sitting on twinkling green couches enjoying a little unexpected free wifi while I quickly type this up before the movie.
I don't want this all to end. I know I have another adventure coming up, but this part has been so wonderful I want it to keep going indefinitely. I just have to figure out how I can do this going forward, on some kind of more permanent basis. Or is there a way to create this feeling at home? Two very worthy prospects, both worth exploring.