Monday, October 26, 2015

DREAM WEAVER GET ME THROUGH THE NIGHT UNTIL DAWN’S EARLY LIGHT...



Gympie's Memorial Park
Bullnose Awning
Gympie's Central Primary School...the school I went to...up around the corner from where I grew up

The other day I spoke with a good friend of longstanding. We lived across the street from each other throughout our childhood and teenage years.  I’m sure I’ve mentioned my friend Darry previously in past posts. Although she and I may talk via the phone only two or three times a year, time lapsed between communications makes no difference whatsoever.  Darry and I pick up from where we left off; not a beat missed. We’re never out of tune.  Darry doesn’t own a computer; so emails aren’t in the equation, unfortunately.  Our banter remains the same – the same as it has done through the years; our shared insanity will never alter. We’ve always been close; we always will be.

Darry was six years older than me when we first met; she still is; that hasn’t changed either!   

When we first entered each other’s life, I was four and Darry was 10.  The difference in our ages didn’t matter then; it doesn’t matter now. 

Actually, we first met in April, a few months before I turned four.  Darry came to my fourth birthday party.  She didn’t have to travel far…just across the street. It wasn’t only the thought of my ice cream birthday cake that lured her to cross the street, either.  Until Mum, Nana, my older brother Graham and I moved into Fern Street, Gympie there had been no other children Darry’s age or thereabouts living nearby.  Even though Graham was closer to Darry's age then than I was, somehow, Darry and I just clicked…ice cream cake or no ice cream cake!

The evening before Darry phoned I had a dream; one I have periodically, but with minor variations each nocturnal visit. I can never remember the name of the shop in my nightly visits. When I’m awake I can’t remember its name.  To this day the building, now renovated, remains at the top of the hill at the junction of Mellor Street and the street where we lived in Gympie – Fern Street. 

I asked Darry if she could remember the shop’s name. As far as she can remember she believes it never had a name, as such, but people called “Wilmott” lived on the premises and ran the business. If one insists on being pedantic, perhaps it was called “Willmott’s”.

My lingering memory is the building’s physicality. It’s a two-storey timber construction.  These days the building houses a carpet store, called "Dodt's Floor Coverings".  (I went to school with a Ken Dodt).

Living quarters in the building as I knew it were on the top level when we were kids. A bullnose awning covered the length of the front verandah on the upper area with its protective railings supported by decorative posts at measured distances. The floor of the verandah doubled as an awning over the footpath below. 

The ground floor housed a shop. Actually, it was more a cafĂ© than a shop; a clearer description would be to define it as a tea shop, I guess. The store was a mystery to me then; and obviously the enigma remains if I keep dreaming about it. 

I can count on one finger, maybe three, how many times I entered the dismal, uninviting establishment. With a young child’s active imagination I probably believed it housed an ogre or witch, or both! Or maybe it just didn't have enough interesting goodies on display to rouse my attention and desire to partake in same.

Two full length bay windows on either side of the main doorway shed little light into the shop’s dreary interior.  The protruding windows were canted with flat fronts and angled sides. There was nothing ornamental about them.  I doubt any practical use was made of the protuberances.

Drab curtains draped limply at either side of the fixed-glass panes.  I can’t recall ever seeing the windows open.  A dark-stained timber counter ran along the right side of the shop. A rear door led to I know not where, and I wasn’t eager to find out.

Four or five tables, maybe one or two more, were sporadically placed about the room without rhyme or reason. Again, I don’t remember ever seeing anyone seated at the tables. No doubt customers did frequent the tea shop; but just not when I passed by.  Perhaps they did when I was as school or, later, at work.

Sometimes I wish I could go back in time and enter the shop, as it was in those days of yore, if only to satisfy my curiosity; then I may never dream about that cheerless place again!

And if that did occur, it wouldn’t be a loss because I have an endless supply of dreams as back-ups, all in CinemaScope, surround-sound and technicolour - and a re-wind button!

Rhubarb Dream Bars: Process 2c plain flour, 3/4c icing sugar and 1c butter. Press into 15x10-inch pan; bake at 176C, 15mins; crust will be very light coloured. Beat together 4 large eggs, 2c sugar, 1/2c plain flour and 1/2tsp salt; fold in 4c thinly-sliced rhubarb; spread onto hot crust; bake 40-45mins. Cool; cut into bars.

White Christmas Dream Drops: Preheat oven 120C. Using whisk attachment beat 2 large room temp egg whites and 1/8th tsp cream of tartar in deep bowl until soft peaks form; add 1/2tsp vanilla and 1/8th tsp salt. Grab 3/4c sugar; with mixer on high speed, add 1tbs sugar; beat 10-15secs; repeat until all sugar is added. Scrape inside of bowl; beat another 15secs. Straight peaks should form when beaters are lifted. Using flexible spatula, fold in 1c white choc chips and 1/3c coarsely crushed peppermint candy sticks. Line 2 baking sheets. Drop meringue in rounded 1tbs portions slightly apart onto sheets. Sprinkle with 1-1/2tbs crushed peppermint candies. Bake until meringues feel dry and set when touched, but still pale, 30-35mins; switch pan positions halfway through. Turn off oven; open door; let the drops stand 10mins; cool on pans. Make up to 2 days ahead; store airtight.

Irish Cream Dream: Line 4x237ml ramekins with wrap; leave long flaps to cover ingredients later. In processor pulse 20 ginger-nut biscuits with 3tbs melted butter until small crumbs form; press half crumb mix, divided evenly, firmly into ramekins. Reserve other half for the topping. Whisk 1c heavy cream with 1tbs sugar until soft peaks form. In separate bowl blend 2tbs instant espresso and 1x14oz can condensed milk; blend until coffee dissolves; whisk in 1/2c Baileys; fold in whipped cream. Pour into ramekins; top with remaining crumbs; cover with wrap; press to compact; freeze until set. Release from ramekins to serve. 

Tropical Dream: Fill large glass with 2oz Malibu, 1oz Blue Curacao, 5oz pineapple juice; garnish with Maraschino cherries

https://www.google.com.au/maps/@-26.1874654,152.6671723,3a,75y,271.23h,90t/data=!3m7!1e1!3m5!1s6IF2Zm52j3cBPTUylauJvg!2e0!5s20140601T000000!7i13312!8i6656!6m1!1e1 (Fern Street, Circa 2015)

The two-storey building I refer to (now renovated and a floor covering business) is pictured here - situated on the right of the picture on the corner of Mellor and Fern Streets...at the top of the hill.....https://www.google.com.au/maps/place/Dodts+Floorcoverings/@-26.1873357,152.6681245,3a,75y,271.23h,90t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1szpNzRjEcpOjWkxkoSz4qsg!2e0!7i13312!8i6656!4m2!3m1!1s0x0:0xba1444ae72baa934!6m1!1e1

38 comments:

  1. You have such an amazing memory and eye for detail. And I want to eat those drops now!

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    1. Hiya RK....I'm not a Scorpio for nuttin'! It is said Scorpios have good memories...perhaps I was an elephant in another life!

      Thanks for coming by...I won't forget! :)

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    2. As a Scorpio, I can report that long term memory is great, guided maybe by scents, scenes, and the basic flow of the mind's wanderings.
      Short term memory is problematic: why did I come into this room? Must be a reason. Must make a list.

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    3. Hahahaha! Have your found your way back out again, goatman? :)

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  2. I wonder what a dream interpretor would make of that dream. I am pretty certain that recurring dreams have a special significance.
    Echoing Riot Kitty. Your memory is phenomenal. I wish mine was as good.

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    1. G'day EC...Perhaps it's better I don't have the dream interpreted! Who knows what it all means...the Shop of Horrors, maybe! lol

      My memory has always been good...I hope the status quo remains.

      Thanks for popping in :)

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  3. Whoa, that was certainly a rather intriguing tale. Great title to this piece, by the way, and yes, the song is scheduled to be in my series later one. Care to guess which Aerosmith song it will be matched with? (LOL?)

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    1. Hey there Jerry. I guess "Dream On" could be the Aerosmith song you're going to match it with? :)

      Thanks for coming by. :)

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  4. White Christmas Dream Drops. I wondered what those white lumpy things were.
    The Memorial park looks pretty.
    It's a shame no one can tell you more about the shop and what it was for, what was behind door no.2...

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    1. Hi River...I'm glad the recipe cleared up what those white lumpy thing were! They could've been anything...hand cream squeezed from a tube, or hair mousse, even! :)

      The shop, as I wrote, was a cafe/tea-room of sorts. I imagine once out through the back door was the prep area...a kitchen of sorts...and out the back from that the back yard, which could possibly have had an old outside toilet...maybe. Some places in the 50s still had the old outside ablutions' blocks. Fortunately, our little home...the flat my mother and Nana rented - the home my brother and I grew up in had a septic system, indoor plumbing, but many places didn't.

      Thanks for coming by. :)

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  5. Golly - I wonder what that shop was, in all of its dismalness? I have very close friends here in Atlanta named Wilmot - he is originally from Maine. Not a name I hear that often otherwise.

    Isn't it lovely to have friends like that? My cousin Susan and I are like that - we just pick up where we left off last time.

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    1. Hi Lynn...I guess I didn't explain my story well enough...the shop was a tea room - a cafe of sorts...

      Now that you mention it, Wilmot isn't a very common name. I've not heard of it in years.

      Yes...it is good to have friends like that...and good friends, the best friendships are just like that. Thanks for coming by. :)

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    2. My imagination ran away with me and I thought perhaps that tea shop might have been a front for something else, since it was deserted. :)

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  6. Wonderful to have a friend like Darry.
    Great memories you have..

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    1. HI Margaret...Yes, Darry is great. I love her dearly. We never have to pretend we're anyone else that who we are. We go back such a long way. And I wish we lived closer. One day perhaps...I'll head back Gympie way. :)

      Thanks for popping in. :)

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  7. I can't believe how much you remember from your childhood, only thing I can remember are things from the forests and landscapes, nothing about buildings, maybe a childhood friend or two. As usual I am reading in the morning and am now hungry for your deliciously presented food items, never heard of rhubarb bars and the tropical drink looks all too inviting. Ha.

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    1. Hey Linda...I remember much from my childhood...I've many stories/memories floating around in my head...(they broke loose from my mind)! :)

      I reckon you might have to make a few of those rhubarb bars to take with you when you're selling your wares. :)

      Thanks for coming by. :)

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  8. You have awakened many memories for me of my neighbor across the street when I lived in Nowata, Oklahoma. Thank you

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    1. Hey there Annie...I used to love going across to Darry's place. I loved watching all her family coming and going. She is the youngest by quite a number of years of the rest ofher siblings....her six siblings were all older than she was. Darry was the "late" child. She only has three of her sisters left now. And there was only one boy in her family.

      Thanks for coming by. :)

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  9. Funny how places you have lived or worked in appear, somewhat disjointed, in the dreams.

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    1. G'day Adullamite...so true...and it'd be great to put the finger on, understand the crux of it all.

      Thanks for coming by. :)

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  10. By the magic of Google Streetview I just went along Fern Street in Gympie. I saw Gympie Blinds and the quiet street where you once lived. There's so much space and I could easily be looking at an American town in the mid west. Co-incidentally I suppose you already knew that Gympie was once called Nashville!

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    1. Hi Yorkie...and if you go into Google Streetview again and bring up Mellor Street, you will find "Dodt's Floor Covering" on the corner at the top of a hill with Beaurepaires (a tyres, wheels, car battery business...in bright orange) on the opposite corner. The street between the two is Fern Street...heading down the hill. When I was a kid there was even more room in Fern Street...on the left where a flat-roofed building now sits used to be vacant land and a mullock heap from the gas works. The both no longer exist replaced with council buildings and a park area. Opposite is still the same as when I was a kid. And the house to the left of where a car is seen heading along Fern Street towards the camera is Darry's home...on the corner towards the far top of the shot.

      And that, my dear man, is the end of my tour of Fern and Mellor Streets for today! Thanks for coming by and your interest. :)

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  11. My next-door neighbour, Penny, was my Darry. A workmate of the Great Scot's now lives in her old house; the house I grew up in no longer exists, alas.

    I first thought the white sweets were divinity (http://www.culinaryconcoctionsbypeabody.com/2013/12/19/southern-divinity-candy/ - the only difference between this recipe and the one my aunt used to make is that she also added chopped candied cherries).

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    1. Hi Jacqueline...we all need a "Darry" in our lives, I believe.

      The chopped cherries would be delicious in the meringues, too...there are so many variations that we could do. Candied ginger would be good, too! :)

      Thanks for coming by. :)

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    2. The recipe you've given looks delicious, too! :)

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  12. Dream Weaver : I love that song. Takes me back to St.Helens, Oregon -----1976 I think.
    Thanks for visiting.

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    1. Hey there Goatman...good to see you, too. I keep an eye our for when you post! :)

      Yep! The song reached No. 1 in the charts in 1976. I like the song, too. I'm glad you recognised my not-so-subtle reference!

      Thanks for coming by. Take care. :)

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  13. I make my white Christmas drops green and use mint chocolate chips! Love yours.

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    1. They'd be delicious, too, Sandie...I'll have to try it!

      Thanks for coming by. :)

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  14. My first visit and I did so enjoy it. Love your word pictures; your descriptive memory matched with your memory make for great reading and imagining.

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    1. Hey there, Pauline. Welcome to my blog...please don't be a stranger. I'm glad you enjoyed my ramblings. :)

      Thanks for coming by. :)

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  15. Nice blog. I like your physical description of the property. I can visualize it. If you dream in color, you're lucky. I read somewhere that only a small percentage do. My dreams usually are quite stressful and involve my being unable to finish a particular job at the workplace I'm employed.

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    1. Hey Dave. My dreams are always and have always been in colour. I have vivid dreams and often wish I had a way of recording/filming them. It's like having my own private movie theatre! lol

      Sometimes there are even sequels...and then sequels upon sequels. Dreams are fascinating.

      Thanks for coming by...it's always nice to see you. :)

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  16. I don't remember things, but luckily my sister does. I have recurring dreams too and just get so upset when I wake up before I get to the resolution. I guess that is why we dream them ...

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    1. Hey there Carol...the recurring ones are great...you get to meet the friends you've made in them over and over again.

      I remember saying in one dream...a few years ago now...when I ran into one of my regular dream visitors..."G'day! How are you? I've not seen you for ages!"

      I won't say who the person in my dream was because you'd probably think I'm even crazier than you already think I am - but he used to regularly pop up in my dreams...and he'd not been around for a while! lol

      Thanks for coming by...have a good weekend. :)

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  17. A tale well told.

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  18. Thank you, Gail...and thanks for popping in. :)

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