After all that complaining about that unseasonably pleasant weather in June, Sydney-siders have gotten what they wished for – two-digit temperatures that start with a 1. So, whether or not you’ve been saving for a rainy day, we’ve got your winter activities covered for your prince or pauper budgets.
1. Wear cashmere $$$
It’s called ca$h-mere for a reason. This is some serious dollar to pay for the privilege of wearing this exclusive wool. Cashmere is the saffron of the wool industry - sourcing it is a labour-intensive process, involving breeding and shearing cashmere goats from the harsh climates of China and Mongolia. But it’s the price you pay for wearing the most incredibly soft, light, and warm threads to see you through the winter. Avoid the nanna-cardi look – you can find some non-frumpy cashmere pieces here and here. Then you’ll know what George Castanza’s girlfriend was on about.
2. Make soup $
As the saying goes, winter is the season for eating without chewing. Why bother cutting into a tough steak, or munching on some sprouts, when you can tuck into a hot, steamy bowl of soup? No matter if you’re short on dosh from all your cashmere-buying. $10 easily buys you pumpkin, garlic, chicken stock, and a bread roll. If soup’s not your thing, take a handy hint from actor Carl Weathers, and get a stew goin’.
3. Play Cards Against Humanity $$
If Hungry Hungry Hippos has lost its edge lately, perhaps it’s time to settle for the card-game-of-the-moment, Cards Against Humanity. Marketed as ‘a party game for horrible people’, this is basically a rude and crude version of Balderdash. One player asks a question from a blank card, and points are accrued by selecting your most aptly inappropriate answer-card. Yes, it’s juvenile. Yes, it’s undergraduate. But when it’s cold and rainy outside, sometimes the only option is to stay indoors and wallow in some political incorrectness.
4. Drink whisky $$ - $$$
Back in my student days, I was seduced by a Nigella Lawson Christmas episode, in which she wore Country Road knitwear and demonstrated how to make a hot toddy. Inspired by this cosy English winter idealism, I went straight to the liquor store and bought the second-cheapest brown liqueur I could find. It was like drinking a sock. Since then, I’ve learnt it’s worth forking out for three essential winter items – flannel sheets, aloe vera tissues (you do feel the softness) and a good whisky. If you’re still too skimpy to invest in a whole bottle, do yourself a favour and head to a whisky bar in Sydney’s burgeoning small-bar scene.
5. See some dinosaurs $-$$
Yeh, bet you won’t find this on any facsimile-hipster blog. The Australian Museum’s Tyrannosaurs: Meet the Family exhibition is an incredible showcase of dinosaur fossils and skeletons, accompanied by sophisticated interactive and multimedia educational resources. Ok, so I pretended I was Sam Neill in Jurassic Park for most of my visit, but the highlights were seeing the 10 life-sized dinosaur specimens on display, and laughing at the kids who were scared of them. Get in quick, the exhibition closes on July 27.
- Yvonne L.