on my parents’ first trip down under, my sister and i wanted to hit two birds with one stone so we decided to take them to a vineyard — my dad likes wine and my mom has this low-key obsession with grapes. you should see the wrought iron divider between our kitchen and the living room that she herself designed and had had made as a feature of our house. it’s sort of like a grapevine trellis, complete with grapes, leaves, and even curls — all in its metallic, welded glory. she gets complimented on it a lot. like, if you ever wanna get on my mom’s good side, that decorative piece would probably be a good place to start.
or you can also sing praises about her garden. i heard she actually won a village award for it. i was already living here in australia when i found out and to be honest, i wasn’t exactly surprised. we do have a nice backyard at home. my mom has a green thumb. she has this superpower of ordering plants to grow nice and healthy just as easily as she could order me to get off my ass and water her entire garden every 5:00 in the afternoon, whether i wanted to or not.
she’s definitely not the type you’d wanna mess with. heaven knows how much i would pray for rain on those appointed days.
so anyway, view on halcyon, with their wonderful spread of tapas, fit the bill. i can’t remember anymore what i ordered but i’m pretty sure i was happy with it. any food makes me happy. i mean, i’m happy with a $10 meal off some obscure vietnamese restaurant in the middle of a busy shopping centre in springvale. how much more a proper sit-down meal at a lovely estate at idyllic chirnside park offering panoramic views of blue skies and rolling hills?
it was definitely fancy as.
the place is actually popular for weddings. they even have a little chapel for couples to get married in, too, so it’s pretty much a one-stop shop. having just had our backyard wedding then which was more like a barbecue party than an actual wedding, it was quite tempting to fantasize about having our ceremony and reception there instead. but, you know… $$$.
then again, if we suddenly win the lottery and have all the money in the world, i wouldn’t hold our wedding there because i don’t wanna go through the stress of another wedding celebration, period.
once is enough. twice is just asking for a heart attack.
out of all of us, i think my mom was secretly the most excited to be there. but knowing her, she likes to keep her emotions to herself. you know, play it cool. something i do a lot too, to a point where jeff reckons i’m made of stone which is totally not fair coming from a marshmallow.
“jeff, can you take a picture of me with this background?” my mom asked.
i almost did a backflip. for a while there i thought my mom was possessed by the spirit of somebody who actually likes to have their photos taken.
like every other newly married man, jeff was happy to oblige. it was too early in the game to incur the wrath of his mother-in-law. particularly this one.
my dad, on the other hand, wanted to model the bottle of wine he bought from there.
i reckon there’s a lot of great victorian wines i don’t know about. too bad i’m not really into it. throughout the years, i realize i’m more a cider kinda girl. or maybe champagne on occasions when i’m feeling more than my actual net worth and it’s being offered for free. otherwise, it’s pure blonde crisp apple cider for me all the way. but only if they’re on special for $10.
there’s nothing more euphoric than being blissfully tipsy for half the price.
the rest of our trip we spent strolling around the place and marveling at the scenery when we weren’t busy having our photos taken for posterity. also, at this point, i was having a what-the-heck-was-i-thinking-wearing-all-these-layers crisis when the weather suddenly warmed up and the outfit that served me well in the chilly morning was suddenly burning me alive by mid-afternoon.
in my defense, i was relatively new and unaccustomed to melbourne’s indecisive weather. fast forward to four years later and i’m still that girl whining about the cold even with several layers on.
the tropical girl in me simply refuses to adapt.
winter’s almost here and me and my bones are already dreading it.