The month of May in the Gong has seen many variations of weather. The best, to me, is the cosy feel of wet and sound of windy whoosh, on a weekday morning, when I am resigned to be indoors any way for most of the day. The drip drap of persistent water drops sliding on leaves outside the bedroom window may not be the best way to greet the new day, but it is definitely refreshing -and once I get going, out of the bedroom and the house, and into the car, I relish the prospect of the possibilities of a a new day. Rain or not.
On a weekend, the sun and blue skies, typical of the Aussie landscape, are preferred. The promise of a packed weekend is only restrained by the distance travelled and the company I keep. The conscious sense of time diffuses better into a sheer memory of timelessness the better the company. It does not matter what we do as long as we enjoy each other's presence - whether we are cleaning the windscreen of a car, partaking food sitting around a table or driving along unknown roads far away from home.
At hallmark moments, the unplanned and unexpected provide quality delights - whether it is coming across an intensely beautiful sunset when one comes over the hump driving over the Gladesville Bridge, or discovering Thai food overlooking Shellharbour Beach on a placid sea-calm afternoon. At other times, mates and I do not have to go anywhere - we are content to just be able to sit and chat, with a gas heater humming away in the lounge. The conversation can be in looking back or relishing the future forward, but the enjoyment is anchored in savouring the moment of now.
Human beings love to congregate, whether to while away queuing on the steps leading to a Taiwanese inspired dessert cafe at the corner of Dixon Street Mall and Goulburn Street in Sydney's Chinatown, or hang for fish and chips in leathered gear after riding motorbikes on a punt at Berowra Waters in greater Sydney's north. I can think of more - women patiently waiting to reach the payment counter at the Zara store on the ground level frontage of Sydney's Pitt Street Mall Westfield, or the buzz and chatter when having yumcha and surrounded by purposeful acting individuals at the Palace Jade yumcha restaurant, located strategically in downtown Sydney's Piccadilly Centre, behind the Hilton and beside the Wesley Mission.
After all the running around, enjoyable it may be, one also looks forward to winding down long after the night sets in. That is when I value comfort food and practices. It may be the opportunity to have a meal of wok-energised lard na (the Thai equivalent of stir fried rice noodles bathed in a tapioca-based gravy and accompanied by garnishings and seafood or meats of choice) in St Ives or dabbling in Kalamata olives with biscuits and cheese slices in Hornsby. One Sunday night in Carlingford, it was a spread of a feast, including the Straits Chinese signature dishes of bubur chacha dessert, tamarind fish curry and nasi kunyit chicken curry.
In this cool season, the outdoor air gets nippy as I sink into dreamland. As I ponder on what I had done for the past day - even apparent "nothings" can at times turn out to be nurturing essential, whilst what were obvious "somethings" were only relevant for fleeting moments - my subconscious collates, analyses and summarises. The involuntary smile on my face synchronises with the rhythym of brightening stars shining above the Illawarra coast -and then I hear the sounds of rushing, incoming rain drops.