The holidays are over and the heat is just beginning here in Perth. Pretty much every day is 37+ degrees, which would probably be about normal (or even warm) if this was Christmastime in Ohio and I was talking Fahrenheit. However, this is the holidays in Australia and I’m talking Celsius, which means that translates to high 90’s and up in Fahrenheit. Christmas Day must have been at least 100°. Normally I’m all for hot weather over cold, but heat this hot (especially with minimal air conditioning) just about pushes me to my limit! We spent Christmas Day constantly jumping in the pool and I was still nearly delirious with the heat!
Despite the heat, December was a busy enough month. Oscar and I celebrated our official two year anniversary with a nice dinner out at Alaturka restaurant in Subiaco. We got a great deal on one of those coupon websites (like groupon) and were able to get a full three course meal and bottle of wine without feeling too guilty about our spending. It was definitely nice to treat ourselves, as usually a splurge for us in Australia is getting takeout! We also got to experience what you might call a “walk in” movie (vs. drive-in) in Kings Park at the Moonlight Cinema. It was a nice, cozy experience with everyone settled on blankets or bean bags enjoying picnics and drinks and the movie starting just after sunset. It was a bit last minute as Oscar had to come straight from work, but we hope to do it again properly with a big picnic and box of wine.
We’ve also been doing a bit of beach hopping, as Lauren and some of her friends have an annual competition called the “Beach Off” where they try to visit the beach every day from Dec. 1 (a “visit” is defined as going all the way in the water including dunking your head). On the weekends when we’re all more leisurely on time we occasionally grab a ride with her. So far we can check City Beach, Floreat Beach, and Sorrento Beach (in addition to Cottesloe from before) off our list. Of course, Perth seems to have so many beaches you could practically make a career of visiting them all, so it will be interesting to see how many we manage to get to.
On Christmas Eve we held a Swedish Christmas dinner (since the Swedes celebrate it on that day) with a few friends. Oscar got most of the food from IKEA, but everyone was impressed by the food, and I think he should receive royalties for any Swedish meatballs or au gratin bought from there after that day!
Christmas Day we were treated to a real Australian Christmas at Lauren’s parents’ house. We spent the morning at the beach, crawling into the ocean when it got too hot. Then we had a champagne BBQ brunch out on the patio and spent the rest of the day alternating between the pool and the shade. It was a lovely, fun, relaxed day but very, very different from every other Christmas I’ve ever had! Instead of spending the day inside because it’s freezing out, we spent the day in the pool because it was blazing out!
The rest of the week until New Year’s we spent relaxing, since Oscar had off work (which he is doing very well at and really enjoying, I might add). On New Year’s Eve we went to a bar called The Garden for a Mad Hatter-themed celebration. It was pretty much my first time actually going out for New Year’s (and definitely my first time paying for the privilege!) but it was good fun. The weirdest part was probably sleeping in very late the next day and still waking up before it had struck midnight in the US! I’m afraid I didn’t make much of those extra hours I had of 2011 before everyone else at home got to it, but you all probably went and slept in late then too, so I’m sure we’re even.