Monday, April 18, 2011

Musk 2/2

natural companion to al fresco dining
Our arrival here at Musk was one I had looked forward to. I'd noted the corrugated iron shed on our last visit here. Rusted, weathered, a little neglected, before us now was the same weathered shed defined and led to by a gate woven with found sticks and twigs. The shed now stood at one with its surrounds, quaint, quirky, and showed a love for the place it sat on, a home away from home, the freedom to shrug off the weight of the city after a week at work.

I could see my neighbours heart and soul here, I knew she had sold and gotten rid of a lot of her belongings to be at this point now. I admire her for that.

I could see why she escaped to this place so often and why she would do so on her own. I fell in love this space every window pane and ledge, I loved the sturdy confident sound of the french doors closing on the walls of the rough iron shed. The interior light and relaxing calm, a sienna painted wall. Art deco mirrors on the walls matched beautifully with a pale green three piece 1920's twin settee and armchairs, that had belonged to her grandmother.

We settled in after the long drive and watched as the rain ended any effort to unpack the car. "Shall we have tea", someone said.

My neighbour whisks out her delightful flourless orange cake laden with vanilla bean orange syrup, ohhhh I know how good this cake is. I don't ever make it cause she makes it so well. This time it is so fragrant and even more yummy, I didn't think that cake could get any better.
too good
Dinner was a simple mix of meats cooked on the bbq and some salads my neighbour had earlier prepared. She'd invited some mutual friends we hadn't caught up with them in 3 years. Eight children now played indoors and ate dinner half retreated to the caravan to play trouble. Us adults ate and drank wine and had our second cake for the day. Two cakes in one day how good is that.

Our visitors gone, getting quite dark, and a car still to unpack. That is never fun and this time made worse by the incessant rain. As sleeping arrangements were made the floor soon lined with sleeping bags mattresses and donnas one big slumber party, not really there were some tears, too tired a little constipated maybe from fear of composting toilet and crayfish caravan. We had made jokes about he ghost of the crayfish caravan earlier and well it sits beside the toilet, mmm not a good idea.

I retreated to the caravan with circe in arms, The rain pelted down and sounded even louder in the caravan, Circe loves the rain. She feed and was soothed off to sleep, she didn't mind the caravan the porta-cot or anything. I plugged in the monitor none the less, went back to help out to return here in a short while to sleep.

Morning saw our breath visible in the cold crisp air. The drizzle leaving glistening beads in our hair which sparkled in the warm sun. The distant sloping hill hazy, a mist filtering the morning sunlight, beads of raindrops suspended on barbed wire, rusty iron against soft gum trees, gallahs and kookaburras making a ruckous. I like a good national anthem as much as the next person but this is where I get all clucky about this beautiful country.

I cannot write this without talking of the beauty of cooking on a fire outdoors. I love it everything tastes better, even if the plates or cups are speckled with dirt. Our neighbour normally does a toast breakfast well we influenced her to treat us to a yummy breakfast of pancakes. We all helped of course, even Beatrix getting to cook her own for the first time ever. When you camp pancakes are a treat and ones with sliced banana and honey made from their bees right there are just the ticket.
We even fried up some eggs, tore off some dill and served it up with crispy bacon.
I drizzled mine in lemon juice and a sprinkling of salt, WOW never knew how good that combination was till now. Hot tea is another down right necessity and doesn't it taste so good had sitting damp and cold licking sticky honeyed fingers.
There were dishes to be done in the outdoor sink, I like the rituals of this kind of living, they are basic and enjoyable out here they don't seem so mundane.
it's a double burner
perfrection in three
We all took a drive out to the surrounding areas Newstead, Creswick, Maldon, and Castlelmaine, This was a pleasant drive the terrain here is hilly, beautifully lush and green where the rivers run through. Castlemaine is a lovely old gold-mining town. Some buildings untouched, it's a real step back in time coming to places like this.

The drive was long and tiring I'd woken at six am, luckily the driving was able to be shared, that helped.

We returned tired and ready for a hot tea more cake, the kids were well and truly ready for their smores. for those who don't know smores are toasted marshmallows sandwiched hot between chocolate and Grahm crackers in our case Granita biscuits.
We even let them have them before their sausages in bread.

We packed and were ready to take to the road again homeward bound. The rain beginning again. I was so thankful my neighbour offered to drive. The children snoozed most of the drive and on arrival back home only required a tucking into their beds with a hot water bottle, Lucky little sods.


  1. Sounds like a lovely weekend (bad weather is alwyas helped by food)! I have great memories of doing things like that as a kid...
    Beautiful part of the country too!

  2. Oh I feel really relaxed and ready for bed after reading this at 9.33pm. Loved it, could almost smell the pancakes and feel the fresh cold air, thanks Ines. (sis)

  3. I did not make the distinction between the Crayfish caravan and the other nicer comfortable caravan in which I slept. just case some of you wondered.