When life sucks, add some whimsy


 

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Definition of whimsy on http://www.vocabulary.com

We have a new Prime Minister in Australia. It is truly embarrassing. I was at a class when I received the breaking news on my phone, and announced to everyone that Peter Morrison had landed the top job! I had been under the mistaken belief that Scott Morrison and Peter Dutton were interchangeable. Perhaps, I was mislead in thinking that it was a shared role? With life feeling heavy, grey and frankly, ludicrous, it was time to escalate the whimsy factor.

 

I found some elf ears, much to my delight, and proceeded to wear them on public transport. Now, if you are a Sydney person, and have taken trains the past couple of weekends, you will know what a shambles it has been. Trips that would usually take 40 minutes were suddenly taking four hours, and that is if your train was running at all. Solution, elf ears! When I put these on, everyone started smiling, if not laughing. Conversations were started, and whimsy ruled supreme. There were even people stopped in heavy traffic gawping, as I waited for a bus.

That’s the thing about whimsy, it takes us out of our every day ho-hum lives. It is surprising, startling and without ego. It contains humour and frivolity, with no goal in sight, other than to delight. I was amazed at how a pair of elf ears could pick up the energy in a dreary space with tired and annoyed passengers.

Here are some other recent whimsical episodes of note:

 

We had a rainbow lorikeet feasting on jam left at our table and attended a mad hatter’s high tea at the Westin, Sydney. We fell in love with greenery draped over light fittings and up the walls at a bistro, and we ran through a water feature.

We admired the meticulous costumes of Cos Play characters on their way to some marvellous expo, and congratulated the raucous Kiwi’s on winning the Rugby. We listened to melodic buskers strumming their guitars and danced in the streets of Sydney. We were at the Body Shop, and nearly jumped out of our skin’s when one of the sales people let out a shrill scream. She jovially explained it was, in fact, a hiccup, and that it always alarmed people. She continued screaming, every minute or so, the poor darling.

I bought a solitary violet cream chocolate from Haigh’s, after unknowingly jumping the queue (which  snaked out the door). I was mortified upon turning around and seeing the people patiently waiting, and was greeted with bemused smiles, bless them! I watched my daughter soar through the sky on an outside trapeze. Why did she want to partake of this class? It was to feel the sensation of flying; the sensation of being free of all incumbencies.

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These are the moments we live for. The moments of unexpected beauty, the sublime and the ridiculous. If a pair of elf ears can make a carriage full of irate passengers smile, I may have to add an entire elf outfit to my repertoire. Life isn’t meant to be a series of annoyances and trials. The harder life gets, the more whimsy must be added. Whether that be in the form of a coffee mug or some novelty to make everyone smile. The moments of whimsy make life worth living.

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Gnome Convention


On the 26th January, the Gnome Convention was held at Glenbrook Park. This annual event is put on by the Rotary Club of the lower Blue Mountains and we look forward to it all year!

 

 

It is whimsy at it’s best. We were entertained by the extraordinary bush poet, Greg North. If you haven’t experienced his act, you are missing out! Check him out here! img_0553

Brendan Kerin had us enthralled with not only his music, but stories. Did you know that the Didgeridoo’s actual name is Yidaki? It originated from the top half of Australia and was named the Didgeridoo later on as that is the sound it seemingly makes.

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We bought Gnome Hats, and had a grand time amongst the gnomes and fairies. It is my birthday today, and I bought this delightful Green Man incense burner (the smoke comes out of his head) for $15. We all need whimsy in our lives, and knowing that the money raised goes to charity is extra incentive to get your gnoming game on!

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Teena, Doggie Perfume, Art and Whimsy


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On a blustery and rainy Sunday, we went to the Museum of Contemporary Art at The Rocks. I love this place; it is eclectic, ever-changing and has magnificent views over the harbour from the rooftop café. I met some friends, and we were excited about attending Teena the dog’s farewell from the exhibition space. Teena, the daschund, even has her own perfume! It smells of wet dog, in homage to this precious little being.

Teena’s dad, David Capra, interviewed a lady from mindDog Australia, and she was awe-inspiring! Sydney-based, this organization advocates for people with depression, PTSD and other challenges to be matched with a companion dog. It makes all the difference to the individuals involved.

We also went to Grayson Perry’s My Pretty Little Art Career . I found it mesmerizing. The detail in each of the pieces is extraordinary! What a remarkable and gifted artist Grayson is. There is still time to go see the exhibition, before it closes on the 1st May.

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There has been a bit of outrage about the proposed Australian $5.00 note. This is what we are getting.

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This is what many of us would prefer.

Dame Edna Everage, a pie and beer.
Dame Edna Everage, pies and beer. Which one do you prefer?

Whimsy is an essential component in leading a tolerable life. May your week contain much whimsy!

Australian Gnome Convention


Here I am, gentle reader, on the 26th January. I attended the Australian Gnome Convention in the Blue Mountains. The Rotary Club put on a spectacular festival. There were Gnome books, DVD’s, humans and dogs dressed as Gnomes as well as thousands of real Gnomes on display.

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In a world that is heavy and a life that is hectic, to be surrounded by whimsy was wondrous. I met an extraordinary felt artist, and to my delight, she offered to teach my daughter and I. We listened to poets and a high school band of ukulele players. They played modern songs and even a little Fleetwood Mac! Man, I want to learn how to play my ukulele properly! There is something about this little instrument that urges others to join, which is why we have an upcoming festival in Katoomba, dedicated to the ukulele. We were entranced by young  singers and delighted by Maria Venuti, she of the large personality and um, voice.

I surround myself with performers and artists because without their inclusion, life is beige. There would be blandness, cookie-cutter identities, and no alternate ways of interpreting life. Bah to that! My soul leapt to the beat of my soaring heart when I heard the entertainment. I caught up with my poet friend, Brian Bell. He is an extraordinary talent, whose range knows no bounds. We both had abstract drawings done by his friend, Richard Cutler, an artist of fifty years standing. No matter how much time has passed, Brian and I just pick up where we left off. I met him for the first time when I was in my early twenties and continued encountering him on the poetry circuit. We have some marvellous talks, Brian and I.

After being surrounded by music and performance, clay and Gnomes, felt and wood-turning, I was loathe to return to normality. Who am I kidding! My life has never been normal, and I can’t do normal. My clothes, hair, home, outlook, friends, daughter, birds, and everyday life are quirky and whimsical. I can’t change that and nor would I want to.

I returned with a trail of enchantment following me, like bread crumbs dropped by Hansel and Gretel.

 

 

Seeking Movement and Colour and Life (Part 1)


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I was meant to see Rod Stewart last week but due to circumstances out of my control, I couldn’t go. I put my granny knickers back in the drawer, and purchased two tickets to a charity screening of Cinderella instead. Saffron from Kid About and  Kaity are two local businesswomen who joined forces to raise money for Kids of Macarthur Health Foundation.  They put together a magnificent event, resplendent with face painting, photo props and raffles. My little girl and I  went beforehand to Coco Cubano and  shared a platter. Munchkin had a mango drink and I had a Mojito. We had endured a crazy schedule that day, starting off at drama lessons. Now to get there, we have to catch a train through the suburb where I fell. The building is right near the railway line, and visible in all its glory. Every week, I hold my breath, and shudder with conflicting emotions. Gratitude that I am alive two decades after the event. A feeling of absurdity that I am taking my daughter to her activities past the building which held the ledge which held the villain…A feeling of defiance. ‘Up yours! I am still here!’ A feeling of sorrow. ‘I was so little…’ I took this grainy picture and somehow it seemed fitting. The scratches upon the train window are evident. It is grainy as the building whizzed by, much like my life on that particular evening.

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Anyway, we had been to drama and then guitar lessons. Mummy’s spine was beyond agonizing. I leant over toward the seat in front for some relief on the bus. Mummy needed a Mojito by the time we got to our pre-movie café.

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I met many familiar faces at the movies, including Nicci, our cupcake aficionado.

 

I didn’t know what to expect with this retelling of Cinderella and it was beyond my imaginings. It held all the little girls spellbound, and the ladies gasped at the visual feast on-screen. The settings were  beautiful. The villains were beyond contemptible; vile and  bitter. Fortunately, they didn’t take Cinderella’s light. She didn’t end up a twisted old bat, wounding others as she had been. She became more of who she was inside. May that be the case with us all. I am so glad we went, to support our friends and the wonderful organization who was benefitting, and to see Cinderella come into her own.

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