Monday, December 12, 2016

Not a bad weekend

Friday was the Practice Christmas Party.  Lindsey and I finished early and ambled back to the flat, ready to head out and party.  Jim and Ian got ready too.

Poor Sam can't go with us!

We were all off to the zoo for an evening of food, wine and much merriment.  There were about 30 in our party.  There were other groups as well.  We started off at the giraffe enclosure, where a zoo keeper gave us lots of information about giraffes and we were treated to wine and canapés:

I would credit the photographer - but I don't remember who it was!

He looks a lot like Sam does when there are none of the expected treats!

Then we all moved off to an indoor area where there was music and dancing, pretty much unlimited red wine, white wine, beer and fizz, more canapés followed by cones of fish and chips and little fried chicken sliders.  It was a great evening.

Beauty and the Beast. The Beast won the prize for the best costume  of the night

We had had the foresight to go by public transport, so no need for a designated driver, apart from the tram drivers. The city was buzzing still when we got into the CBD at around midnight.  I don't think many of the pre-Christmas revellers were ready to go home!

We were, It was half past midnight before we got to bed.  I am usually in bed sometime between 10 and 10:30!!

It therefore came as something of a shock when Sam gently put his cold wet nose on my sleeping cheek at about 6 on Saturday morning and suggested the it would be a fine and lovely time for a walk.  I ignored this suggestion so he went and slept on Lindsey and Ian's bed.  I took him out for a lovely, quiet, solitary walk in the park at about 7:30.  We didn't meet any other people or dogs until we were nearly ready to come back to the flat.

Sam and Ian spent most of Saturday in Carlton:

I don't know who took this picture.
It wasn't Lindsey, Jim or me - we weren't there

Lindsey, Jim and I took ourselves off to Costco.  Not our regular Costco.  The one in Ringwood.  This had us heading vaguely in the direction of the Mornington Peninsula.  So on we went.  As we arrived in Mornington itself we observed signs alerting us to a Farmers' Market that morning.  More signs told us which way to go to get to the market.  We followed the signs until we reached one that announced that we had arrived.  And there it was.  It's a lovely Farmers' Market, held once a month in a small park by the foreshore. We bought lots of lovely things, including a magnificent boned leg of lamb for Ian to play with on Sunday.  Then we thought, given that we were so close, we should probably go and see Tony and Stella (who had escaped from the Rehab Centre that very morning).  They seemed slightly surprised to see us!

We had lunch with them and then headed back to Mount Helen, via the Santa shop and the fruit and veg shop not far from Mount Martha.

On Sunday Lindsey, Jim and I headed to the Ballarat Showgrounds to have a potter around the Sunday Market.  I have been once before, but that was about 15 years ago and my memory is that it was a very quick visit.  We had a more leisurely amble around yesterday. Then we headed to Blackwood, to the Garden of St Erth where we met our friends Chris and John for a very delicious lunch and a wander round the garden.  Jim, Lindsey and I shared a warm salad of roasted vegetables and a plate of sausage, herbed potatoes and broccoli.  I think we could easily have eaten more but there was that magnificent piece of lamb waiting to be consumed for Sunday dinner.  Chris and I have been trying to arrange to meet pretty much since Jim and I arrived last August but events have prevented it.  Finally our plans came to fruition!

Some of the garden at St Erth:

And the house:

It was a fabulous weekend.  We really enjoyed it.  Though poor Lindsey had to do a huge lot of driving.  Just as well she has a lovely new car to do it in :D
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