There are joyous periods when we effortlessly waltz through life, but life is not always as smooth as a genteel minuet. Often existence is a bump and grind as we hustle around the best we can. When we get in a twist, it’s time to be a bit foxy, and do our utmost to trot along breezily while casting our woes to the wind. Frequently, we take two steps forward, only to defeat the purpose by taking three in reverse. There are instances, when feeling poles apart in our way of thinking our desire is to quickstep away in the hope of finding peace and quiet. We are told it takes two to tango, but there are moments when it’s more fun to conga. Even though, when doing the conga, we’re following the herd, we’re not being sheep. One never knows to where the line may lead. There’s no rule saying we can’t be a goat, and kick up our heels. We’re free to break away if the feeling to go solo takes hold - to run our own race; to tap dance in one spot awhile.
Amidst the fusion of life’s complexities are happy, sad, good and bad memories. Many episodes are cherished; many chapters we do our utmost to suppress, or forget.
Dare I presume to speak on behalf of others? Oops! There...I did dare! I could retract my presumption before I post my ramblings, but I doubt that will occur. It’s called - “living on the edge”. In life, one has to take risks every now and then.
Of course, I’ve taken risks, but when taking them I’ve done my level, and un-level best, to be aware, not only of my own safety, but that of others, too. Being stuck on an island in the middle of a cyclone, the welfare of my guests was my top priority. I didn’t create the risk. Mother Nature was to blame. Like all females, Ms Nature, having a mind of her own, can change her mind on a whim. It is the risk we take every day and night with her around!
In 1987, our Kiwi neighbour, AJ Hackett, became an instant, living legend when he took a giant risk by illegally jumping from the Eiffel Tower. By that perilous feat, AJ introduced the world to a previously unknown, hair-raising activity...“Bungy Jumping”.
A couple of years later, still on a high, in 1989, adrenaline junkie, AJ Hackett and his mate, Henry van Asch, who had a similar addiction, began eyeing off land between Smithfield, north of Cairns and its hinterland – in Tropical North Queensland.
Seeking rental accommodation before construction commenced on the Cairns Bungy site, AJ’s crew entered the Smithfield real estate office (Inner Circle Realty) in which I was then employed as Property Manager/Receptionist/Secretary.
Sweet-talkers with the best of intentions, virtually on bent knees before me, they pleaded their case, declaring they were characters of the most responsible kind.
Instead of an apple, they attempted to tempt me to accept them as tenants by offering free bungy jumps once the site was up (down) and running (jumping).
Politely, I declined to leap at their offer to take the risk of taking the decline.
I did rise to the occasion, though, by leasing them accommodation suitable to their needs.
Taking a safer route, not a risk, once they were settled, I accepted their offer to dine, and view videos of Hackett’s first commercial bungy site at Kawarau Gorge, near Queenstown in New Zealand’s South Island,
They were a genuine, lovely group of young folk.
In August, 1990, the Cairns’ site opened. It was the first purpose-built bungy tower in the world. To this day it remains a popular activity enjoyed by adventurous risk-takers, of which I am not one.
Managing a loaded shopping trolley that wants to go one way, and I, the other, in the supermarket car park, is risk enough for me...thank you very much!
Kiwi Cucumber Walnut Salad: Wash, dry and tear one head butter lettuce leaves, or other lettuce of choice; arrange in serving dish. Slice one cucumber very thinly; pat dry to remove excess moisture; add to salad. Peel and slice 2 kiwi fruit; add to salad. Halve decoratively another 4 kiwi fruit; add to salad. Top with 1/3c walnut pieces and fresh mint leaves. Drizzle with Lime Vinaigrette, and toss just before serving: – 1/4c x-virgin olive oil, 1tbs lime juice, 1tsp zest, 1/4c rice vinegar, 2tsp honey; season to taste.
Kiwi-Ginger Cheesecake: Combine 100g crumbed gingernuts and 50g melted butter; press into greased, lined loose-bottom, 20cm/8" in diameter cake tin; bake 10mins at 180C. Remove from oven; set aside. Beat 450g cream cheese, 10g caster sugar, 3 large eggs, beaten, and 2tsp vanilla paste together until light and fluffy. Pour mixture into cake tin; level mixture with the back of a spoon. Bake 1hr, or until well risen, and centre of cheesecake is firm to touch. Remove from oven; cool in the tin. Carefully remove cake from tin; place on serving platter. Peel and thinly slice 6-8 kiwi fruit; arrange slices around top of cheesecake; then slide slices of stem ginger/ginger in syrup, in and amongst the kiwi slices. Drizzle some ginger syrup over the fruit and ginger; chill until ready to serve. Serve in slices with crème fraîche or cream, as preferred.
Kiwi-Chia Pudding: Combine 3tbs chia seeds and 1c almond “milk”, or real milk. Stir very well to avoid any chunks. Add 1tbs maple syrup or honey and 1tsp vanilla. Mix very well. Cover and chill 4-5 hours. Puree 1c kiwi fruit; mix into pudding. Pour into individual bowls; top with coconut flakes and fresh berries of choice.