03 June 2006


Three roos, three foxes, a rabbit, a possum, two lumps of mystery meat and a sack.
I love a road trip. Last weekend involved a jaunt down to Canberra to see my Auntie Robin, who I would like to nominate for the 2006 Hostess With The Mostest Award.

My sister and I set off at sparrow's in my father-in-law's-girlfriend's car (thanks Reni!) for a fairly uneventful and pleasant drive. The highlight was a stop-off for the obligatory road-trip breakfast - a dodgy bacon and egg roll and a mug of coffee from a roadside diner. We both agreed whole-heartedly that it was fairly revolting, but utterly appropriate.

Upon arrival after about four hours on the road, we warmed ourselves with another cuppa and a chat with Robin and friend Judy. We covered a lot of ground, from the Beaconsfield miners to Jessica Rowe's inane giggle; from Andrew Denton's quick wit to Little Britain's sick bits. Then it was off to the National Gallery to see an exhibition of Islamic art.

For a few bucks extra, we were able to get a combined ticket which also included a Constable exhibition. We decided to start with Islamic art, and on our way were transfixed (me especially) by Ron Mueck's Pregnant Woman . I really liked this sculpture for its realism, detail and expression; but it made my back ache just looking at it!

The Crescent Moon exhibition, which we caught a day before closing, was a beautifully presented collection of Asian Islamic carvings, pottery, jewellery, textiles and writing. My favourite bits? The elaborate golden garuda head-dress and the illuminated copies of the Qur'an.
The Constable exhibition was also good - possibly brilliant from the point of view of a Constable fan, which I am definitely not. I'm just not that into British landscapes and really the only clouds I'm interested in seeing hanging out in a room are these ones. I took the opportunity to sit down and poke Fetie's feet back into place while Auntie and Sister wandered around.

Next stop was Manuka for a coffee, followed by a drive around the lake before taking in a movie and then going back to a nice cosy house for a feast of chicken tagine and yummy pear cake.

Sunday involved a trip to the Kingston markets followed by the National Museum to see the extremely interesting Exiles and Emigrants exhibition, which taught me more about the Irish potato famine and its impact on the Australian population than I ever thought I would know.

Back to Robin's for delicious potato, leek & bacon soup before hitting the road home. Apart from a few of the usual P-plated idiots who would no doubt argue that P-platers are victimised just because they drive at 130kmph in the bicycle lane, the traffic was pretty good and the drive was very easy. The crows had obviously done a very good job of cleaning up during the day, because the roadkill count was quite low - three roos, three foxes, a rabbit, a possum, two lumps of mystery meat and a sack. I'm pretty sure the sack was just a baby, which was quite sad, because they don't know any better.

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