Dec 15, 2010

Family Confidential. Mr SSG Returns Serenely. Mi Goreng.

Is anyone else watching the Family Confidential series on the ABC?  It's a series of documentaries that explore the personal histories of some influential Australian families.

Last night, I caught up with the episode on the Hemmes family (to me they will always be synonymous with The Ivy and being one consonant away from Hermes).  It was fascinating.

Justin Hemmes is the person I think of as 'the face' of the restaurant and entertaining empire but the groundwork was all his parents.

The story began with John and Merivale Hemmes, Justin's parents.  John was imprisoned in a child internment camp before he migrated to Australia.

This is his ID tag that currently lives in a glass cabinet in the sprawling and opulent (in a wild and zany way) family home.  He described a childhood wasted, his brain rotting away and reaching adulthood without a trade or profession to sustain him.

He did however have an eye for fashion, a mind for business and the fortune to meet his wife Merivale when he moved to Sydney.

Together they launched a fashion house that defied the prevailing conservative attitude to fashion and the business flourished.  They raised 2 children, stayed in love, stayed grounded and built a business that would eventually introduce Sydney to a unique CBD den of glamourous fun, fabulous food and excellent people watching opportunities.

These stories always inspire me.  To start life with such loss but to go on to build so much in a financial sense.  But it is a lot more than the  money and status at the end of the journey.  It's the love, the faith, the optimism and strength of the family unit that is built along the way.  There is no dollar value to these but in the final analysis, I think these are the assets that have true worth.

My preparations for Christmas are progressing, but perhaps not on the scale of a Hemmes family venture.  I'm a little behind on account of working last weekend and a little short of time on account of flying out to Perth Thursday week.

I got my beers in time for bin day tomorrow!!  Not necessarily a deadline for Mr SSG to get through his pilsners by then but it means I have 6 packs to place on top of the bins for the garbos when they come round at the crack of dawn tomorrow.

They're tagged and ready to go.  I'll just pop them in some plastic bags and place them on the bins tomorrow morning.

In case you were wondering how I got the beers to the car from the bottle-o....

Okay, not all 6 packs.  I managed to find a NZ sparkly for me. 
Even the man at the shop was impressed with my efficiency.

I have my thongs ready for my last pedicure before Christmas tomorrow.

Oh yes, and I found Mr SSG last night.  I sort of lost track of him after he set off for Newcastle in the morning and I didn't hear from him for about 14 hours.  Bad traffic, Sydney peak hour(s).  Enough said.

I was having dinner as he got in.  You know how I was talking about mi goreng and left over chicken last night?  You need waste no more of your imagination.  We have pictures.

Mi goreng has magical properties.

It doesn't matter what you put in the pot of boiling water with the noodles but 3 minutes later, drain the pot and the noodles fall miraculously to one side of the bowl and the vegies to the other.  Perhaps the contents of the sauce packets somehow gravitate foods one way or the other.

The table was set for one person having dinner on their own which basically means reading material and remote controls take over the spot where the missing person would have sat for dinner.  You can tell it's me having dinner alone because we have Shop Til You Drop open to the Sofia Coppola article.  That is a lovely bone coloured clutch she's designed for Louis Vuitton.  I think it would work in my world too.

I was talking to Mr SSG about this weekend and the need to power shop for Christmas presents.  I proposed a strategy:
- get to the city for the start of trade on Saturday
- skip breakfast and have a large Max Brenner dark choclate mocha instead (+/- Maccas hash browns)
- get through the list of presents at DJs, QVB and Myer
- have lunch at the burger place in Westfield
- press nose only on the front window of the Louboutin store in same complex without going in
- gaze at George Clooney signage at Nespresso store without going in to get more coffee
- stop at Priceline
- come home and go to yoga.

Mr SSG was remarkably serene about it all.  Too serene.  He wasn't only looking it, he was feeling the serenity.  To paraphrase The Castle.  

I took a long hard look at his profile.

He's kept his ear plugs from the mine site visit. 

Don't worry readers, once Mr SSG removed his ear plugs, I found him to still be as excited about Stressful Shopping Saturday as he was with them in.  I suspect he will be bringing those hot pink sanity savers with him....


  1. Having married into a family business, I find these stories intriguing.

    Glad Mr SSG is home safe and sound.

    Take care.

  2. Isn't that Mi Goreng THE BEST? It's my standby lunch when working from home without other leftovers ...

  3. I LOVE this series and really enjoyed this one about the Hemmes family x

  4. This post made me giggle :) I fully endorse the Shopping Strategy, it has a lot going for it. Mmmm must make mie goreng for dinner now!


  5. And with that, every post should end with a clip from The Castle :P

  6. I missed last night. Completely forgot it was on. Will have to watch it online instead. I remember the old Merivale in Pitt Street with all the lights outside. There is quite a bit of their clothing in the Powerhouse Museum Archives now.

  7. I've never watched Family Confidential but it does sound very interesting. Will have to add it to my holiday watch list. :)

    and your Mi Goreng looks delicious!!


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