My village really is home

When Clover Moore, Sydney’s time-share Lord Mayor and state MP, started talking about “a city of villages”, I thought she was giving it a tug. (No anatomical pedantry, thanks.) But now it’s the city’s official slogan, and a few relaxed Sundays have persuaded me she’s got it right — at least for the inner and inner-west villages which have some historical reality.

Photograph of Enmore Rd, Enmore

This photo ain’t art. But last night’s view from the front bar of the Warren View Hotel really does say “This is my village”.

From the art nouveau shell of the old post office on the left — apparently used by the mission of Our Lady of the Snows to help the local homeless — and past the over-priced pharmacy to The Sly Fox Hotel, and then on the other side with its medical centre, pharmacy and greengrocer no-one goes to, this is our Victorian village.

Sure, the Golden Barley Hotel is technically in Enmore too, and it’s only just down the hill a bit. They’re nice people and all — but it just feels like it’s in the next village, Marrickville.

But just was is it that creates this sense of “my village”…?

What a Beautiful World

I haven’t seen a single news bulletin or read a newspaper in a week. I’ve only turned on the TV once. I’ve hardly even been out of the house. For all I know, World War VI could have broken out — we’re up to number six, aren’t we? Or an alien virus could have decimated the population.

Or John Howard could have finally dropped the veil, so to speak, and openly started rounding up the Muslims and everyone else who can’t play cricket and shipping them to Nauru.

And you know what? I simply couldn’t care less.

Because in the quiet of this first “work” day after New Year’s Day, while the rest of the city is still sleeping off a long weekend binge, it’s gently raining.

The beautiful sound of raindrops on the garden is punctuated only by the occasional squawk of a lorikeet making a quick dash back to its tree. In the soft, grey light, the freshly rain-washed flowers and leaves of the garden glisten.

It’s a special quiet moment of solitude before the world really starts its new year. And it’s very, very beautiful.

Happy New Year.