Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Cool little capital

It's a good thing when you have to shut one eye to type on the phone, right? Sign of a good evening? Whichever, it has to be an improvement on a day that began in the dentist's chair, having a filling replaced (boy, that was one expensive toffee). The chair of a dentist who, I have to report, apologised for leaving me to quietly drown in my own saliva by saying "I was so fixated on the tooth, I forgot all about you.")

So here I am in Wellington, "coolest little capital in the world" (self-styled: did I need to say that?) Perhaps it's the relief of having survived another landing at its notoriously wind-buffeted airport, but I do always feel pleased to be here, to see the trolley buses and tunnel and thronging locals on the streets on a Wednesday night. And the noisy, flashing police escort for the PNG PM is a salutary reminder that this is indeed the capital, and deserves respect.

But that's been swamped tonight by revisiting the very popular, noisy and excellent Ortega Fish Shack, where mulled wine in a teacup with added brandy started an evening of tender pork belly, prawn tails in a yummy sauce, gruyere soufflé with Roquefort cream, and a warm coconut finger with passion fruit yoghurt and apricot sorbet. All so good that I almost forgot to watch the hanging net-float lights for tell-tale movement signalling earthquake activity in a building labelled 'earthquake prone'. That's a less fun way to end up under the table.

Tomorrow there will be Weta Workshops, Monet, Warhol and hopefully Wishbone chicken laksa if I can walk off tonight's indulgence before lunchtime. Watch this space!

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