When we weren’t busy taking in sunsets and feeding birds, our weekend in Maleny was spent in serious pursuit of sloth. I’ve always been rather partial to sloth, even though we get far less of it now than in our unfettered early twenties. I don’t know why it’s more difficult to be lazy now. It could be the result of some deeply buried Protestant work ethic, but on the surface anyway, it seems to have more to do with time becoming more precious. I am certainly not an adrenaline junkie needing to be constantly on the go, but I do like to be meaningfully occupied and frequently exposed to new ideas and people. It wasn’t that long ago that work (and feeling guilty if I wasn’t working) was all-encompassing, when I didn’t have the energy to pursue other interests. Now there is a sense of missed opportunity if I let too many hours go past unaccounted for. I am also well aware that this is indeed a privilege.
Being on holiday is one of those few times when slothfulness becomes the point of existence, at least for a day or two. Our bush cottage in Maleny was exactly what we were looking for. Quiet, sunny and beautifully located on a hill overlooking a dam, it was the perfect place for reading books, lounging about in bathrobes until mid-morning, and turning on the espresso machine for one more coffee.
At night the fireplace and a few candles transformed the cottage into a cosy cocoon, and we dined simply, on salad, bread, and smoked salmon, drinking wine and listening to soul, roots and jazz.
During the day we headed out to Maleny town to wander about. Maleny is a lovely rural town, with great gift shops including one selling stunning wooden furniture and artwork. At a second-hand bookshop I was thrilled to discover a cookbook by David Lebovitz, whose blog I have been reading for ages. This made excellent reading material over a bowl of fresh tomato and lentil soup at a nearby cafe.
One day we drove to nearby Montville, another picturesque village about half an hour away. We enjoyed lunch at The Edge cafe. The food and wine weren’t particularly memorable, but the cafe’s location with spectacular views all the way to Maroochydore were well worth the stop.
After lunch we enjoyed a long wander through the leafy town, exploring the local shops.
I kept a look out for quirky bargains, as I am far more likely to do on holiday. I generally dislike shopping for clothes, and usually only do it when I’m desperately in need of core wardrobe items. Shopping on holiday is the only time that I can manage to browse without a sense of failure if I don’t find what I’m looking for (clearly this is because I’m not looking for anything in particular!). The planets aligned for me in Montville, and I picked up this cat-print dress for $40. Wearing it since has been so much fun, although it has also had the effect of making me miss Genghis, our beautiful big human-like ginger cat.
In the late afternoon we headed back to the cottage to explore the owner’s property. We had been supplied with a map outlining tracks through the bush on their 10 acre section.
The first track took us to a small dam, onto which our cottage looked. While walking we couldn’t help but indulge our typically New Zealand fear of snakes and spiders and other evil beings that want to kill you. Each rustle in the undergrowth made us jump a little, but we ultimately emerged unscathed.
We went further into the bush before coming out by the large dam, then wound our way back past the owner’s property and down the drive again to our cottage. The next day we were sad to leave, but drove back to Brisbane feeling relaxed and refreshed. Clean country air [check], warm fires [check], and permissive laziness [check]. A successful long weekend break, by all accounts.
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