Can a pair of shoes change your life?

This is the question I asked myself tonight after taking off my first pair of Brooks running shoes.

I bought them after my second running session almost three weeks ago, learning the reasons my Nikes were hurting my toes was possibly because one foot is a full half size bigger than the other.

I am not a runner. I am not in the least bit sporty. I swim in the backyard pool daily over summer and I was a regular walker until I got a godawful cough earlier in the year knocked the motivation right out of me.

The last time I “ran” was probably in Little Athletics when I was 12. That’s not counting being dragged along by my dogs when they decide they’d rather run than walk.

Three weeks ago I joined a learn to run group with a friend from work. The course is aimed at “women of a certain age” who have never run and want to learn how without dying in the process (that last bit is not actually in the promo blurb).

We’re doing a lot of intervals and clocking up 4-6km a session at varying paces depending on our own stamina and fitness (some of the participants have obviously done this before and would thereby be clocking up more).

Some have questioned why anyone would start running in their late 40s.

Am I planning to do the City to Surf?

After nine sessions straight tonight I felt a step closer to my endgame – being able to go for a run for enjoyment. Not because it’s exercise or some sort of punishment.

I’ll never turn into one of those people who runs daily, faces grimacing, covered in sweat. That does not look like fun.

If I can find some good podcasts, or company, I think the motivation will follow. Assuming my knees don’t pack it in.

After all it costs nothing to go for a run.

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Snap happy

I recently purchased a Canon EOS M twin lens kit mirrorless camera, having initially set out to buy a Nikon J2 or V1 or V2.

I’d had my eye on the Nikon 1 range since they were featured in MasterChef last year but they were very expensive on launch and it has been near on impossible to get details of the updated models J2, J3, V2, and S1. Nikon’s website suggested interacting with Twitter but I got no reply via email or Twitter.

With most camera suppliers low on information about if and when the new Nikon models would arrive, and prices varying wildly between the single and dual lens kit, I did quite a bit more research, and ended up with the EOS – in red.

Having used a smart phone, iPhone or point and shoot for the better part of the six years, this has been a steep learning curve and I have a long, long way to go.

My first photographic subjects were assorted family dogs (you can see in the flickr feed, right).

Then I set off to Fremantle to the Street Arts Festival. Snaps below.

Words are my livelihood, not images, but I am snap happy at the best of times. The big question is – what to do with all the photos? There’s only so many you can stick on Twitter and Instagram.

A recent backup of my camera cards and folders revealed hundreds and hundreds of holiday photos I had forgotten about.

Perhaps it’s time to go crazy printing the next time there’s an 8c photo offer.

 

 

Where is 125 St Georges Tce, Perth?

Where is 125 St Georges Tce?To the casual observer this looks like a pretty boring photo. Part of a building facade with the number 129.

However if you have read this blog lately, you may have noticed a slight obsession with the redevelopment of my old workplace, Newspaper House, formerly of 125 St Georges Tce.

Well, if you take a stroll past the revitalised buildings (Newspaper House, WA Trustees, Royal Insurance) that house restaurants The Trustee and The Heritage, plus assorted pop up shops – you will find there is no longer a 125.

So I did what any good journalist would do, and Googled for the answer.

It would appear that 125 is now the address of the Brookfield Place redevelopment featuring the City Square tower, home of BHP Billiton.

It will also soon be home to The Print Hall restaurant and bar complex which I simply cannot wait to visit, partly for the food and partly for the view of the Swan River which we never truly appreciated from our old canteen.

Somehow I doubt I’ll hear anyone calling out “salmon sammich ready” or that any restaurant will be serving chips and gravy.

St Georges definitely looks like it will be the place to be this spring and summer.

Sky high

Reaching for the sky…towers on the Terrace…Perth is growing up every day!

Historically speaking…

My last few posts have mostly been about places I have visited on my travels.

Today, I decided it was time for a trip into Perth, not having been into the heart of the city for a few months.

I was surprised a few weeks ago when my hair dresser told me she hadn’t been to town for about three years.

Three years! So much can change in three months!

Perth’s track record of failing to preserve its heritage buildings has long been of disappointment, so the new Brookfield Place development in and around the original Newspaper House building at 125 St Georges Tce has long had my interest.

Although it appears only the facade  and perhaps a small segment of the building (and the adjoining Royal Insurance and WA Trustees) remains, it is a far more attractive proposition than the gaping hole in the ground that ran from the Terrace to Mounts Bay Road for many years.

Having started my journalistic career at 125 St Georges Tce I can’t wait to take a look inside restaurants The Trustee and Heritage (thought they opened seven days for breakfast – oops – closed today!) and to dine at The Print Hall when it opens later this year.

The dining and coffee options are so much more sophisticated than 1987, when the Newspaper House arcade had from memory, perhaps a tea room/shop and we had our much maligned cafeteria. “Salmon sammich ready!” If only we’d taken more time to appreciate the views.

So, here are a few snaps of the changing face of the Terrace. If only I had some old snaps from my days at 125…possibly in a box in the shed!?

Literary legends

Last week was a great week. How often do you get to meet your literary and culinary heroes in the space of seven days?

On Sunday March 6 I finally met author Armistead Maupin, creator of the Tales of the City series. I own all of his books and have been lucky enough to interview him twice. Unfortunately I didn’t get to meet Armistead when he visited Perth in 2007 due to being overseas, so the chance to hear him speak at the Perth Writers Festival about his latest book Mary Ann in Autumn was not to be missed.

Nor was the chance to have a book (or two) signed – and a photo.

 

Meeting Armistead Maupin

 

I’m re-reading the original Tales of the City book for book club this month. It has been a long time  – close to 20 years, since I first became acquainted with Mary Ann Singleton, Michael Tolliver and the residents of 28 Barbary Lane, so I look forward to renewing their acquaintance.

In my dream world, I’d get to see the musical of version of Tales that opens in San Francisco in May.

On Saturday March 12, I got to meet Nigella Lawson, whose cooking I adore. While some may focus on the fluttering eyelashes, sultry looks and flicking of the hair, all I really care about is Nigella Lawson’s food.

How to be a Domestic Goddess is probably my most used cook book. Nigella’s blueberry muffins, jam doughnut muffins, Victoria sponge, dense chocolate loaf are all favourites that never fail to appeal and to impress friends, family, kids and colleagues. Simply delicious.

Although I may have been able to organise an interview with Nigella through her pay-TV connections, the weekend trip to see her Masterclass with the supremely funny muso turned celebrity chef Anna Gare was pure pleasure. A chance to head to Melbourne for the Melbourne Food and Wine Festival and for a short while forget about TV.

 

Meeting the domestic goddess, Nigella Lawson

Meeting the domestic goddess, Nigella Lawson

 

My husband wasn’t entirely thrilled to be attending the Masterclass (tickets were hard to come by so when I managed to get through back in October I snapped up two) but he quite enjoyed himself.

He reckons he may even cook Anna’s Persian fillet of beef. I said I’d do the scallop ceviche, upside down potato salad and trip of tarts to go with it.

It has been a great month for foodies, with March featuring both #eatdrinkperth and #mfwf (I’m so used to those hashtags) and plenty of opportunities to eat.

I’ll soon, hopefully, get round to posting a few pix from the places we ate in Melbourne including Movida Next Door, Cumulus Inc, Bistro Vue and Circa The Prince. I may not have made it to many official #mfwf events but I did my best to eat in as many Age hatted restaurants as I could.  And we walked just about everywhere so that helped keep the extra kilos at bay!