I miss the tart navel oranges you used to get in winter. Has anyone managed to find themselves a good supply of juicy winter oranges?  We ha...

I miss the tart navel oranges you used to get in winter. Has anyone managed to find themselves a good supply of juicy winter oranges? 

oranges on the tree hang over a fence in the rural community of Dungog in the Upper Hunter region of New South Wales
We had a tree of navels and a tree of mandarins where I grew up and I was reminded of them when I walked the streets of Dungog this month. Every back yard, and even plenty of front yards, had orange or lemon trees - most of them laden. I bought a few from the local grower's market, but they're not what I remember. Do you still have an old orange tree in the back yard?

I WENT TO... Dungog. I really appreciate where I live, but like most of us, I've been pretty house-bound and playing it Covid-safe. How different travel is now. We checked in to every place we ate, even for a coffee. We carried and used hand santiser. We chose outside adventures, like a walk over the Dungog Common and the weekly outdoor grower's markets where, even there, we patiently took part in the ticketing system. 

I ATE... We did venture out closer to home earlier in the month for our first meal in a restaurant since March, maybe even February. The same local that sustained us with take-outs through the months of lock-down was our choice and it's fast becoming my favourite restaurant on the Central Coast. 

I OP SHOPPED... Enough balls of Patons Totem to knit a jumper, a black leather jacket and a [air of true 1980s, made-in-Australia denim jeans. I also scored a few work-from-home knit tops and a 1963 copy of Australian House and Garden.Thank goodness the op shops are open again. 

I READ... Elizabeth Gilbert's Stern Men and have been listening to Midnight in Chernobyl on BorrowBox. It's due back tomorrow and I'm not yet done. I'll have to wait until it comes back onto the reservations list.

I MADE... Turmeric everything. I pulled the annual harvest and have made up turmeric tonics and paste. If you're a fan of the warm, woody flavours of turmeric, I can also recommend my chai recipe.

I WATCHED... the HBO series Chernobyl. Disasters, and the failings of bureaucracy - Communist or otherwise - to mitigate or manage them fascinate me. Essentially, the failings are always much the same. No one thought it could happen, so no one planned for it to happen. A decent learning for the time we live in.

On that cheery note, I'll choof off. Can you believe it's winter? There's a 23C day forecast this week for Sydney. I've not yet dragged out my favourite winter woollies. You?

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