In summer, Australia has truly delightful weather. The winter, however, is particularly dire. The temperature doesn’t get too low but the wind nips, the chill bites and the toes get cold. Before you know it the 40 degree heat is replaced by overcast, cool days. In the UK, 12 degrees is a joyful, positive reminder that summer is around the corner. The same temperature in Australia makes one settle in for the night with a mug of tea and the heater blasting.
It was one such blustery afternoon that I found myself freed of work to go and eat donuts. Having not been to the beach for the past few months, and knowing that there was a bakery to the west I wanted to try, I headed towards West Beach and the Bakers Edge Bakehouse. Set less than a block from the beach with a foreground of tall palm trees, its exterior has the weathered look that buildings get with a proximity to salty wind. In store was a fresh and inviting display, friendly servers and a warm environment to escape the brisk, winter air.
The donut display was small, occupying only the right-hand corner of a top shelf but varied in size and toppings. The friendly man serving acknowledged that the donuts were made fresh in store and handed me my donut to go. Brisk and cool as it was there was no rain and I wanted to go enjoy my dough by the sea.
Paper bag in hand I wandered to the beach, watching as the foamy waves crashed on the rocks and shore. I wasn’t the only one admiring the view, as a handful of tourists gazed wistfully at the beach below. No doubt they were under the common, yet mistaken, impression that Australia was warm and sunny all year round. How wrong us foreigners are. Needing to take a picture of the donut for the blog, and for social media reasons, I got out the donut, awkwardly posing with it outstretched over the sea. Believe it or not, I’m not really one for social media, and I’m not trained in the art of Insta-photos, so the entire experience slightly embarrasses me – but I figured I would never see the tourists again.
Unsatisfied with the photos I had taken I placed the donut artfully on a rock and began snapping again. It was at this point I noticed it wasn’t just the tourists looking at me, but a handful of ravenous looking seagulls. Boldly one hopped forward and tried to snatch my donut! Outraged I flung my arms out, just missing his greedy beak. Grabbing my donut I scattered the flapping, squawking creatures and settled down once more to enjoy the view and snack.
No doubt some tourists now have great photos of a crazy woman posing with donuts and yelling at seagulls; what sacrifices I make for this blog.