13 July, 2005

fire & ice


The working-week finally drew to a close, and the mad, stressful dash to reach a place of peace and quiet began! (Sound ironic? Then grow a brain, Alanis, and look it up! Sheesh!) Yes, dearest readers, another weekend away at the sacred sanctum of Jamieson was underway.

So I picked up Mr Ryan Mac, waited while he packed (!), went to my place, picked up my stuff, went to the servo for fuel and firewood, went to Rebel Sports to hire Rye's snowboard, went back to Rye's to grab his camera which he'd forgotten, then FINALLY made our way to Vic Gardens to meet up with Dame Snazzlepops, Madame Mu and Lady Lili. After a quick circuit of the supermarket and liquorstore, we were on our way!

We stopped in Yarra Glen for dinner, and Mansfield to hire tyre-chains, before arriving at my little house well into the evening. Alas, when we arrived, I foolishly had left the gas tank running when we left last time, and it had all seeped away *forgetful-jones munkey*. Thus there were no lights, no stove and no hot water for the first night. But we were able to light a fire, and had brought plenty of candles, so all was well.

Ryan and I trundled off to visit Scary Servo Scott - who was in a remarkably good mood - bright and early (in fact, we were there before him and had to wait for opening time), and got our gas cylinder swapped for a full one, hooked it up with the trusty ADJUSTABLE WRENCH *in-joke munkey* and it was all systems go. We had a quick breakfast, rugged up in our warmest, and headed off to THE SNOW!!! It had rained all night in Jamieson, and had been very cold, which were all good tidings for a snowy Mount Buller. And, pip-pip-huzzah, snow there was... in abundance! The drive up the mountain was truly beautiful with the meandering boughs of the eucalypts highlighted by bright stripes of fresh white, and the entire forest floor coated in fluffy snow. True to the TAC's instructions that Learner drivers need experience in ALL conditions, Ryan carefully braved the slippery slope behind Oli's wheel - the L-plates prompting an amused outburst from the parking attendant. I suppose it's not every day one sees a Learner negotioating a blizzard.

The top of the mountain was turning on it's most spectacular wintery weather: huge powdery flakes of snow falling in torrents and blown horizontal by the howling wind. Mr Ryan headed off into the elements with his snowboard, visiting the summit and getting his arms and face encrusted with ice. Meanwhile the ladies and I got out of the weather, enjoying lunch and booze at a couple of the mountain's bars *holdays-are-NOT-for-physical-exertion munkeys*.

When the weather settled a little, we donned our cosy clothes again and ventured outside to create a snow-creature... unsure of whether it would be man, woman, beast or muppet. Our creation turned out to be "Tatiana": a saucy Russian ice-queen with sturdy arms, herbacious hair and perfect perky breasts. After several hours of fun and freezingness at high altitude, we piled into Oli again at last, and trundled home. Back at the ranch, we thawed our bones and clothes by the fire, had a hearty-meal courtesy of Mr Ryan, drank gallons of alkyhol as usual and played Trivial Pursuit long into the night before collapsing into bed.

The following day, we lazed about inside (perusing guides for the upcoming MIFF - hurrah!) and went for a walk down to the River (now flowing high, fast and very very cold) before the gals had to head off home. Rye and myself were able to stay an extra day *RDO munkey*, so we went into Mansfield, explored the town a bit and had dinner there, then headed back to the house for an evening by a roaring camp-fire. More alcohol was consumed, the fire poker was subjected to further impromptu blacksmith work, and Ryan demonstrated his talents at fire-twirling. Even munkey, with some trepidation, had a go with the fire-stick. Fun fun fun!

On Monday morning, we reluctantly packed up and headed home (this time making SURE all the gas was closed-off tightly before leaving!), bringing with us another weekend of lovely shared memories in the high country. Alas and alack, dear friends, that we cannot spend every waking hour enjoying hilarity and hijinx amidst the beauty and peace of the country-side. Here's cheers to wonderful company in fine surroundings! I luv yous all!




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