Tag Archives: Swansea

Circus Antics

Ickle spotted them first, the giant inflatable clowns positioned at various strategic locations around Swansea. A dulll are-we-there-yet car journey suddenly became exciting, because there was something different to look at, something fun! Yes, folks, the circus is in town. And we wanted to see what it was all about. So last weekend, we headed to the Big Top in Quinn Park.

We had opted for ringside seats. Although at the more expensive end of the range,* it was so worth it. Sitting just two rows back from the ring, we had an unobstructed view of the action (give or take a few stray heads).

Webers Circus are currently on tour in NSW with their “Wild West” show. In keeping with the theme, we were treated to whip cracks, Cowboy and Indian costumes and line dancing. The real attractions, however, were the main acts – but which was the showstopper?

Perhaps it was the talented juggler.Or the queen of hula hoops.Or the Lyra, where the circus artists performed aerial acrobatics, and succeeded in folding their bodies in ways I didn’t think were humanly possible.Perhaps it was the Wheel of Death, where the star performer kept impeccable balance, and a huge grin on his face, as he ran inside a huge metal hoop. And then outside it. And then did it blindfolded. High above the circus ring.

Or the grand finale, the Russian Swing, which catapulted acrobats high into the air onto a crash mat. And, more daringly, onto a chair held aloft by another performer. And even into the arms of a catcher, hanging upside-down by his feet.

There was barely time to pause for breath during the two-hour show. Even during the interval the action continued, with a jumping castle, teacup ride and refreshments outside the Big Top.

We loved it, although the girls were more than apprehensive at the start of the performance. Ickle was terrified the performers were going to fall, and Mivvy announced after the first act that she wanted to go home. By the time we got to the second half, however, the circus had worked its magic on both of them. They want to go again, right now, but we might leave it until next year.

*$32 per adult, $22 per child over 3 (ringside seats)

Macca’s

Those who know me well may be a tad surprised by this post in praise of…Macca’s*. After all, aren’t the golden arches best known for – gulp – cheap junk food? And, while we’re on the subject, are a Big Mac and fries really food at all?20151016_115154I am a recent convert to the delights of Macca’s. Apart from a few random stops on the motorway, I really haven’t frequented the chain at all. But a few mummy friends assured me that it was a great place for kids. And – you know what – they were right. Our local Macca’s is a mere 20-minute drive away in Swansea. Air con keeps it blissfully cool at this time of year (a real plus in the Aussie climate), and it also incorporates a McCafé, catering to the national obsession with all things caffeine and cake. No need to head to Macca’s for a burger and fries, then, when you can get your coffee and sugar fix there instead.

On Friday, the girls and I unexpectedly had a day to ourselves. The mercury was set to soar, so I hit on the idea of Macca’s followed by a visit to the library next door. Ickle knew exactly where we were heading; the golden arches soar above the roundabout into Swansea, and the soft play area adjoining the outlet is also easily visible. Someone at Macca’s clearly knows how to attract the ickle generation.

First stop, McCafé where Ickle selected a strawberries & cream macaron, while I opted quelle surprise for a flat white, along with a scone to share. OK, so the macarons are not a patch on the Ladurée delicacies I dream of from my Paris days (sigh), the scone wouldn’t get a look in at a Devonshire cream tea (um, squirty cream for one), and the much-publicised barista-made coffee is passable at best.

But – hang on – let’s not be snobby here. This is Macca’s and I’ve spent less than $7, in return for which I get to sit in a beautifully cool space with my girls and watch the world go by. And then, they get to use some excellent play equipment outside, on soft fall (love that surface – way less dirt for Mivvy to munch on). Like I said, the mummies were right: Macca’s is great for kids, and it’s a pretty good spot for their mummies too.Macca's1*Australians love their diminutives, hence McDonald’s becomes Macca’s.