It's 33 degrees C outside and blowing a gale. The sky is hazy grey-brown-blue. It feels like summer, the kind of day when nothing gets done except to laze around and watch cricket on the TV. Only problem is that it's spring and the cricket is strictly internet only, unless you have Pay TV.
Right now I would like to be at the Novotel Brighton Beach staying in one of their rooms overlooking Botany Bay, the city and the airport. It may not be the most prestigious of Sydney hotels, but it was where we stayed on our wedding night and holds a special place in my heart. The Novotel has the feel of a resort by the beach, an escape within Sydney. That's what I feel like at the moment, a place to feel the hot wind, to watch the world go past, cool drink in my hand.
I would be on the balcony, watching the aircraft drifting in to land across white-capped water. Or perhaps I would be acting like a child, entering the swimming pool via the waterslide. When I have had enough I would sit in the bar, gazing at the Balinese flute player statue in the waterfall pool, sipping on a non-alcoholic cocktail. Later in the day I would walk along the beach with B, eating a gelato cone from the shop below the hotel. Perhaps I would do a little programming, writing or maths, inspired by the view.
Dinner would be a fresh fruit and seafood buffet in the hotel restaurant watching the daylight retreat across the bay. Afterwards, we would retreat to our room, B laying on the big bed watching TV, me sitting out on the balcony, feeling the cool change arrive and while aircraft take-off for distant places. I would dream of being on those planes, would wonder what adventures the passengers will experience during their travels. At 11pm the airport lights extinguish, the curfew is in place. Time to sleep.
The next morning we would have the rare luxury of sleeping in, though perhaps it would be worth it to wake early and watch the sunrise over the bay. Then downstairs for a hot buffet breakfast overlooking the flat morning waters of Botany Bay. Perhaps there is time for a quick swim in the pool, cool waters bracing, washing away the last of the sleep from my eyes.
We would have arrived at the hotel by bus, leaving the car at home. In our bags would be a single change of clothes, my laptop and usual collection of gadgets. And our passports. For I would have secretly booked us a flight to Europe the following day.