A muted meow and soft scratching sounds rouse me from my slumber. I reach up and grab the parcel on my desk, rip the paper off and grin with happiness. A nature guide to minerals. Karsha knows me oh too well. My attire for the day includes my favourite crystal necklaces, a cosmic printed shirt, a velvet cape and sparkly starfish earrings. I take the bus to what I hope to be my usual cafe, where I indulge in a mug of coffee, a chocolate tart and some magazine browsing. On the bus into the city centre I sit next to a Croatian man, who has been in Australia for 40years but still has a very strong accent. He chats to me about his family, helps me with directions, compliments my eyes, and wishes me good luck. His name was Tobi and he had a beautiful crinkly face. I make the connection to the bus to Semaphore, and the sun bursts through the clouds, burning away their cotton candy and revealing the blues of the heavens.
I arrive to calm seas and a gentle breeze. There are children playing by the shore, jumping off the wharf onto the soft cream sand. I stroll to the end of the jetty and ask some fishermen if they've had any luck. They hadn't. I walk the main street, getting a few bargains in a couple opshops. The girl who makes my sandwich chats happily away and wishes me a happy birthday. I eat it on the beach, surrounded by cheeky seagulls, but two golden Labradors race down the walkway and all the feathers go flying. I walk under the wharf and along the beach watching kids splash happily in the cold shallows. I wish I were still as fearless as them. After I follow the road back to the town square I venture to get an icecream, because it's been that kind of day. Mango gelato is what I ordered, but I was short $2, and when the man behind the counter said "don't worry about it", like he secretly knew it was my birthday, my day brightened a little bit more.