I’ve recently joined an Adelaide-based writing group whose moderator has suggested we write about the city we live in as a source of inspiration for our creative work. So here goes.
Adelaide is my adopted home. I grew up in a small town outside of Philadelphia in a multicultural environment with Italian, English, Irish and German heritage. I never had a sense of being American and began travelling as soon as I could. To Mexico and Canada first. Then across the Atlantic to the UK and Europe to meet my parent’s and grandparent’s families. During this period of backpacking in the late 70s I met many Australians and they gave me the courage to come visit the other side of the world.
After some years travelling and working round Australia and living and working in Sydney my fella and I came on holidays to see a friend in Adelaide. I’d visited before in 1981 and liked it. We spent a magical 10 days in South Australia delighting in how easy it was to get around in the city. This was 1988. The pace of Sydney and the cost of living were getting to me.
I had a new 12 month contract to start back in Sydney after the Christmas break. My fella (now husband) and I decided on the long drive back east to serve out our year (we’d also just signed a new lease), and then pack up and move to Adelaide.
It ended up being March of 1990 by the time we got here. We didn’t really know anyone as our friend we’d visited in ’88 had just been here to study winemaking and had moved on to New Zealand.
Soon after we got here we were looking for a small wedding venue where we could have dinner with just our families. So we went out weekly to different restaurants and wineries. This gave us the chance to see different parts of the city and suburbs and go further afield to the wine regions. We were being tourists in our own region. What most impressed us was the availability of great food and wine at reasonable prices. Think of places like Mistress Augustine’s, Mona Lisa, Meze, Ruby’s, Jarmer’s, Jemima’s and Bridgewater Mill back in the early 90s.
We found, after the high prices in Sydney, that we could affort to buy a house and garden in Adelaide. The lack of huge mortgage has given us the chance to continue to enjoy what Adelaide has to offer in the way of the arts and entertainment as well.
And of course, Adelaide’s Central Market has always been the heart of Adelaide for us. We love spending time there then in the kitchen to create new dishes on weekends when we have time to experiment. I often write or post on social media about our kitchen successes! The Central Market has everything we need and is now complemented by the Wayville Farmer’s Market. All within cycling distance of where we live.
There are many places in the world where I could live, but I choose to live in Adelaide. I love to travel, but I also love coming home to Adelaide.
Inspiration? Well, living in a place with a reasonable climate, some variation in seasons and plenty of affordable creative and culinary opportunities had given me much to write about. My earliest blog posts on this site were about food, seasons, concerts, walks in the Adelaide Botanic Gardens, things growing in our garden or seen on walks or festival events.
Jennifer’s post (linked below) has lots of ideas on how to nurture creativity in your daily life. And have a look at the other writers from the group, Writers of Adelaide, who have also taken part in the chain: