Last night we went out to the Darwin Festival park with Jason's friends the Notorious D.o.D. (Dads of Darwin)
Nora and her little buddies danced and we drank beer and ate curry in the lovely cool evening. Travis and Elise took their little one into the the Lighthouse for a gig. After a while I decided that we should join them, and because Darwin, of course there were tickets left. I'm so pleased we went. Felix Riebl was playing and it was just a beautiful happy gig. Nora listened quietly, she seemed tired but happy. Here's us earlier in the night:
This morning after breakfast Nora grabbed her helmet and dragged it through the house saying 'Bike! bike!!' We took her subtle hint and went for a ride to Lee Point. It's a beautiful bush trail, shady and cool. I am terrible at mountain biking and the fact that I was on a flat-bar road bike with quite hard tyres wasn't helping. But it was fun, I half skidded down the hills …
In April I reached Peak Maternity Leave. Nora slept at times and on Wednesday evenings I rode up the Johnston street hill to Fitzroy to do painting classes.
I have no natural aptitude for visual arts. In high school I disliked it so much I once volunteered to clean the studio sinks instead of painting. I have since learnt to enjoy doing things I am bad at.
The painting classes were terribly fun. There was cheese, cake and apple cordial. Actually there was wine too but I'm not much of a drinker these days. The teacher was fabulous, he took us step by step through painting tonally (light and dark!) using colours (warm and cool!) and glazing (painting one colour over another colour!). This all culminated in my fairly rudimentary painting of an apple:
My favourite part of the painting class was learning the artists' idiom 'to pull it out of the fire': to rescue a painting from a seemingly catastrophic error.
I love learning new idioms. There are lots of great medic…