Monday, January 16, 2012

Mummy's in the country

Now that I have fully settled into this new city called Melbourne (which really deserves an entire post), I now have time to give my attention to this blog again.

I have written about my stays in the country and when mummy’s in the house but what happens when these two events are combined? In this post, I shall share with you the highlight of my mum’s recent Sydney visit—a trip up-state to Ision’s parents country home. They ABSOLUTELY loved her and kept reminding my mum that their doors are always open for her. We all had great fun together.

The trip was off to a light-hearted start when we saw the Jetstar flight menu. With such small portions of lousy food at such exorbitant prices, is it any wonder why people are starving off their hunger?

I was put to work very soon after our arrival—my first-ever attempt at digging up potatoes. The area we had to cover wasn’t huge but I was rather surprised at how many potatoes we dug up! From the ground to the dinner table—that is the country way of living.

My bibi was also as busy as a bear… oops, a bee. He did a great job cleaning the interior and exterior of two cars, as commanded by the taskmaster—his dad!

Months before the trip, I have asked my mum to list down the ingredients for the dishes she would like to prepare for the in-laws and thus she was well-prepared. The two cooks worked together very well despite the frequent communication-breakdown—I guess good food never fails to be the universal language.

A sample of the feasts prepared by mum. I must say the in-laws were pretty pleased (and impressed) at mum’s cooking—it was of no surprise that they kept asking her to come visit again.

As a diabetic, mum was overjoyed when she found a snack she could nibble on that her diet permits—beech cherries. On the last day of our trip, she picked three containers full to take back home and there was still plenty left on the trees. She intends to try growing the fruit in Singapore.

Mum getting acquainted with the Aussie barbeque. The neighbours were invited over one night for the traditional Australian social event. Ision actually broke his no-beef rule that night and ate a hamburger. GASP!

One of the biggest joys of living in the country where there is ample land (and the perfect weather) to cultivate the fruits and vegetables you will ever need is the convenience of stepping out of the kitchen to pluck fresh ingredients and throw them into the pot a minute later.

Of course growing one’s own greens needs much tender loving care. I was given the task of watering the crops one day.

Living in the country means you’d have to live with the country’s other inhabitants as well. Roger had to remove a wasp net from the veranda’s ceiling. Subsequently several wasps flew into the house trying to look for their removed dwelling—fortunately I had my bibi there to chase them all away. My hero!

Not all inhabitants of the country were chased away from the house. Feeding a kookaburra bits of beef is a dangerous game—mum (and her finger) only knew too well.

After dinner one night, a very loud thud was heard and the truth was revealed the next morning—a lorikeet could not see the glass wall and tried to fly through it at full speed. The result? A dead bird, colourful nonetheless. Apparently this is quite commonplace.

Mum brought lots of nice clothes for the trip in preparation for plenty of photo-ops. It was fun being her photographer for a few days.

Roger took us out to the estate around the house for a quick drive. Much to Roger’s amusement, mum started to pick flowers he regards as weed. We also drove to Yamba and spent some time by the beach.

What would a relaxing country holiday be without a facial? With Nu Skin’s Galvanic Spa, the beauty parlour was brought into the house.

How well do you think the DIY spa-treatment worked? The before (left) and after (right) shots say it all.

The unseasonably-cold summer throughout the state was observed in the country as well. Whenever there was sun, I seized the chance to do some tanning. One HUGE advantage of living in the country is the ability to tan in the buff and I did (shots were taken but will not be posted. Hehe).

Wiling the time away on the veranda with afternoon tea, featuring home-made cookies baked by Jenny and gourmet coffee prepared by Roger. This is the life.

I had to play the role of translator for the entire trip for my mum and in-laws but from this picture, I can’t see language as being a barrier at all.

The customary snap of the whole family. It was a really fun trip for all and it was made even nicer knowing how much the in-laws love having my mum there with them. We look forward to coming up again.


This was the last meal mum cooked for me (which I took to work) before she left. Because I will not have the chance to relish her cooking for some time and so I took a parting shot of it. I will miss you mummy.
PS: A few weeks after my mum went back home, she fell and broke her arm and to date she has had two surgeries but is on her way to recovery. It is still too soon to know if she would regain full mobility of the broken arm but I pray that she will. As our parents are getting older, they really need to be given better care, which is unfortunately something I cannot offer when I am an ocean away. My thoughts will be with her during her period of recuperation.


Anonymous said...

I meant to ask after your mums arm.
Where was the break? Need for 2 surgeries is unusual.
Hope she is getting better

Kim said...

Thanks for your concern. I am not too sure in the details. But the first surgery was to put a metal plate in and perhaps the second one was to remove the stitches (ie. not really a surgery per se).

She is feeling better now.