GLASSY EYED

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When I told people we were moving to Adelaide, the response was often similar – a sympathetic expression and something along the lines of “and how do you feel about that?”

I admit I wasn’t sure.

The benefits for my family were clear; more space, closer to the beach, a once in a lifetime job opportunity, yet it wasn’t necessarily my first choice. With hindsight, I can be honest with myself that I was worried I would quickly get bored of the slower pace, that there wouldn’t be enough to do to keep me interested and my mind stimulated.

We’ve been here for a few weeks now and those concerns are melting away, replaced with a growing certainty that we are in the right place. Days like today help.

A huge storm overnight was predicted to bring more rain today but we decided to brave it and caught a train into the city with no real plan. Armed with a blueberry bagel and flat whites from The Beigelry, I consulted Google Maps and lead us towards the star marked ‘JamFactory’. Not knowing what we were in for, I assumed the craft and design studio is a staple on every Adelaide must do list for good reason.

The ‘good reason’ I would include JamFactory in my own city guide is the opportunity to watch skilled artists creating one off pieces from glass. From a viewing platform above the furnaces we had a front row seat while blobs of toffee-like glass was melded into bowls and bottles. The glass was patiently heated, sculpted and returned to the fire until the desired shape had been achieved.

Both the gallery and retail space displayed incredible examples of design using the medium of glass in beautifully inventive ways. I left JamFactory in awe, with a new found respect for my drinking vessels and having added glass blowing to my bucket list.

Taking a gamble that the forecasted rain would hold off a while longer, we found a bench alongside the river to serve as a picnic bench for Hudson’s lunch. The baby fish pie attracted a black swan and local river birds, which provided a far more pressing demand for his attention than his painstakingly home cooked meal and we ran out of time as the rainclouds rolled over Adelaide Oval towards us.

Having rushed to find shelter, we found it in the city laneways and stumbled upon several new additions to my to do list in the process. A sense that I had vastly underestimated Adelaide growing with each star on the map.

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