A few weeks back I decided to try my luck at booking a beach house over one of the busiest weekends in summer, the Australia Day weekend. And look at where we arrived in Torquay last weekend. The gods were smiling upon us! This was a perfect place to arrive home from the beach, kick off our thongs and eat dinner outdoors.
Not only was it a darling verandah but this was the view. Torquay is quite close to Geelong where my parents live so it is not unfamiliar to us. However the house was by Spring Creek in an area I don't know. The garden of stone fruit trees, squash vines and tomato plants was lovely. The tall gum trees attracted screeching cockatoos and cats wandered in the garden.
You might notice the garden is quite damp. On the day we arrived, it was a miserable wet day. It took us almost twice as long as usual to get to Geelong. The weekend was fairly cool but warm enough in the afternoons.
The kitchen in the living area was compact but had everything we needed.
I took quite a few simple meals and snacks. Bread, swiss cheese, milk and coco pops for breakfast. (Sylvia loved the little holiday cereal packs.) Baked beans, hummus, crackers and vegies for dinners or lunches. Chips, soy snacks, teddy bear biscuits, wagon wheels, roasted broad beans and dried apricots for snacks. And soda water and tea bags for drinks. It all worked well for us.
Sylvia frowned upon not seeing a telly. Then she was amused to find it was in the cupboard. And once we found it too difficult to work the tv I was quite relieved. It made for peaceful evenings.
Sylvia was even happier at the day bed in the corner. She is very fond of creating houses and before long had made it her space with her minion tucked under his blanket, a mirror on the windowsill and books on a side table..
E loved having the cats visit us.
We managed to go to the beach most days after the first wet arrival. It was quite cool for swimming in the mornings but lovely to walk along the tide.
We went to Zeally Bay Park along the foreshore. It is a great kids playground with lots of space and play equipment.
We parked by the corner of Zeally Bay Road and Cliff Street for brunch each morning and were very fond of the healthy food at Kindness Co cafe
. It was so good that I have written a separate post about it.
Meanwhile nearby on Cliff St was one of our other favourites: the taco truck run by The Daily Food Co
. It didn't quite cater to Sylvia who only likes cheese in her tacos. They did not serve cheese. They did serve amazing tacos.
Here is my vegetarian taco (beside some sliced tomato that Sylvia rejected). It was full of black beans with charred corn, capsicum, red onion and zucchini with red slaw, tomatillo salsa and kewpie mayonnaise. It was really delicious. (I checked and was told without the mayo it was vegan and they will be there at least until Easter.) The taco wasn't really filling but at 3 for $13 you can't complain.
We were quite happy to eat a small lunch as it was followed by raw cake at the Kindness Co and frozen yoghurt at Orange Leaf (2C Gilbert Street). We met my brother and his family who had cycled from their home to Orange Leaf. It is the sort of place where you fill a tub with frozen yoghurt and all sorts of toppings (fruit, nuts, lollies etc) and pay by weight. I just ate some of E's because I wasn't so hungry.
Then my mum came to visit. It was merciful to sit on the verandah of our beach house with a cuppa and a teddy bear biscuit.
Then back to the beach for a swim. Sylvia got into using the boogie board earlier in summer but the beach at Cosy Corner didn't have many waves for her boogie board. She was happy to play in the shallows.
For dinner we went to Flippin Fresh fish and chip shop (33 Surfcoast Hwy, Torquay). We had a bit of a wait but loved the chips and potato cakes. Unfortunately there were no corn jacks but the pumpkin cakes were really nicely fried and I also tried a vegetarian spring roll which was lovely and crisp but nothing fancy inside. E also liked his flake and chips.
We were back at the Kindness Co the next day but Sylvia wasn't so keen on the offerings so I bought some cheeseymite scrolls for her at Bakers Delight.
We spent some time browsing the shop. Yet that is a green giraffe and no I didn't buy it. I was more excited to find a copy of Vegan Life
magazine from the UK. I have been resisting buying food magazines lately. This one was great for reading on the verandah back at the beach house. I also read Tom's Midnight Garden
which many of us would remember from childhood.
E on the other hand was quite keen on browing books. He spent quite a bit of time at Torquay Books. It is a really lovely bookshop. Then he had a few hours at the Book Fair.
Sylvia had her book the Railway Children
with her but when it came to purchases, her heart's desire is ice creams. We had to try these Glamington Drumsticks. Chocolate, vanilla, raspberry jam ripple and some coconut on top. Fun for a change but more novelty than amazing.
We ate our ice creams just before having a swim. Which means all the stickiness washes off in the sea rather than finding its way through Sylvia's clothes and hair.
I was ready for a lighter dinner. We had hummus with crackers and vegies. Sylvia had baked beans.
On our last morning we went to E's sort of cafe (Tapas?) next to Torquay Books. He had an egg and bacon sandwich. It was the sort of place where your options are limited if you don't want egg or meat. So Sylvia and I both had toasted bagel with nutella. It was ok but not really a proper bagel. Sylvia had a well toasted bagel which was rather difficult to eat with a very wobbly tooth.
It is not a place we are keen to return to. Later I thought maybe we should have gone to Torquay Larder or Growlers or Mobys with its outdoor play area. Another time when we are down that way!
Then we headed to the beach and had a paddle in the tide before heading back homewards. It was a relaxing short break before back to school and work this week.