Warwick Statue

The plumber texted to say he’d be at The Farm to fix the toilet in twenty minutes. Those twenty minutes sailed by, followed by another thirty, while I cleaned the bathroom and made the bed and filled the washing machine, with no sign of the plumber.
Outside, The Husband sharpened his chainsaw, then shattered our crystal morning with the screech and crash of falling timber. He fetched his tractor from the shed and shifted three cubic metres of topsoil to fill gaps in our garden, clumsily terraced years ago and difficult to maintain. I put on a hat and joined him.
Only then, as I raked the last of the topsoil into place between freshly pruned grevilleas, did the plumber arrive.
Such is life in the country. Unhurried.
It must have been lunch time because The Ballerina emerged from her room, all sleepy eyes and tussled hair, to suggest we go for a drive.
After a toasted sandwich and ginger beer we consulted the map and picked Warwick, city of roses, on the other side of Cunningham’s Gap.
About an hour south-west and a steep, ear-popping drive up the range, Warwick felt faded and self-contained. Many of the shops in the grand old buildings that line the main street were empty, or tenanted by retailers at odds with the federation architecture and silky oak trim.
But while the economy may have shifted Warwick doesn’t feel like a town in decline. On the way in we passed four new car dealerships brim full of shiny vehicles, hedged in by clipped corporate gardens.
While the main street was quiet, a soul-less shopping mall with two supermarkets and the usual satellite stores hummed.
And the locals clearly have a sense of fun, dressing their immortalised dignitaries for the seasonal chill.
We drank coffee and bought b-grade DVDs and discounted towels for the farm.
The Ballerina giggled at the formal fashions displayed in the windows and I silently gave thanks for my home in the city just a breath away from the state art gallery, cafes and book shops.

Angela Bensted Bw 1x1
Angela Bensted is a Brisbane-based freelance writer who likes to listen first and struggle with syntax later. She pitches stories to magazines and helps businesses produce compelling copy for print and online.
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