We all need a break once in a while.
We had an opportunity to go to the Blue Mountains last weekend for a combined Baptism and second birthday party for two brothers, who are half French. When we set out, we thought we were going to one of the first suburbs at the foot of the mountains. We were mistaken. The address we needed to get to was on the other side of the mountains in Blackheath. An extra hour's drive.
A two hour car trip doesn't seem so long to an adult who enjoys driving or a pre-schooler enjoying the parked roadwork machinery along the way. But to a little toddler who isn't a fan of going inter-Councils, it can feel like an eternity and for me, in the first trimester of pregnancy, windy bends on the road and popping ears don't help nausea!
My husband, my Hero, saved us. How would you like to stay up here for the night? This was met with great relief!
We missed the Baptism sadly, however we were able to join in on the party celebrations. The birthday cake was an escargot, bien sur!*
Back on our way and now in search of accommodation, my Hero secured a room and we were able to relax. I had a much needed rest, while he took the little ones for supplies.
We booked a Chinese dinner in nearby Katoomba. What a treasure. I couldn't help but be distracted by the lady who, singlehandedly, welcomed the arrivals, took the orders, delivered the orders, prepared and served the drinks, answered all the phone orders, prepared the BBQ pork with the biggest meat cleaver I've ever seen, attended to all requests in the restaurant AND managed to make everyone feel her attention was undivided. On top of that, it was a full restaurant with a constant stream of pick up orders! The most beautiful thing about her was that she did all of this cheerfully, genuinely and with a smile. I believe she had springs in her shoes.
A buffet breakfast awaited us in the dining room the next morning. Huge, unobstructed windows surrounded the entire dining room. Outside, all we could see was the heavy early morning fog blanketing us inside, with an intermittent light rain. I adore this kind of setting. Its what I look forward to most when going to the Blue Mountains.
There's something so romantic, serene and peaceful about the mountains that I've always loved. Growing up our family would often picnic at Leura Cascades then meander along the damp bush paths. The waterfalls and the abundance of ferns were, and still are my favourite attraction in the mountains. There's something about nature which is so very comforting and calming.
We left Leura after a few obligatory detours and headed back to Sydney, refreshed.
A surprise holiday can work wonders. For a whole 24 hours I didn't have to think, be reminded or worry about meals or housework. The bonus was there was next to no washing as we had the lightness of no luggage!
For us and the children alike, we had a new setting to enjoy and of course - lungs filled with fresh mountain air!
*escargot - snail
*bien sur - of course