I have been flirting with thoughts of other jobs, other countries. The big wide world, new faces, a different smell in the air. Maybe that travel bug rearing its head again.
These thoughts – idle fancies, what you will – are unsettling yet exciting. Unexpectedly they have also prompted me to look at my street, city, country with fresh eyes.
Like the layers of light on a humid summer’s beach. So bright, impossibly bright, up close. Shimmering-pale-lilac-blue in the distance, the colours muted as though coming through a fog.
Cliched as it might be, this made me think of Dorothy Mackellar’s iconic poem as she describes –
An opal-hearted country,
A wilful, lavish land –
Wilful, with our legends of outlaws, and 146km of dead straight road across the Nullabor. Lavish, with super-abundant light, and summer’s fresh produce that seem to be ripening by the minute: berries, peaches, watermelons, figs, mangos, papayas, zucchinis, beetroot, okra.
During these hot, humid, languid days, summer fruit and veges can make the simplest snacks or meals. Like mangoes with a squeeze of lime and a splash of hot sauce; cucumbers with salt-smashed garlic, experiments with watermelon curry, Vietnamese pickled daikons.
Like this fig and zucchini salad.