Cowra Weekend, 50th Birthday Gig, NRL Grand Final

Heya Crew, BIG weekend. Huge. Did some stuff, wore some perfume, had a ball.

Cowra Weekend, 50th Birthday Gig, NRL Grand Final

Jin and I went on a mini adventure about 4 hours west of Sydney. We drove out on Friday in a leisurely way. Left at 9.30am, stopped for lunch at a lovely cafe where they home made their pies and a couple of other places, then got out to Cowra at about 3pm. Checked into the motel the guys had booked for us and waited for them to get back from picking arrivals up from the airport. Some of the guests were arriving by their private planes, including an ex fighter jet, and they were giving joy flights. Heaven. Yes, it was that kind of party. Heads of industry, politicians, LGBTQI+, family and locals all meshed together for a weekend of celebrating my warm acquaintance’s 50th birthday. I was the MC and entertainment, with the publican’s children (OMG! They were amazing and sang Journey We Built This City like angels). If you put everyone in country casual, add copious amounts of Moet and an open bar, a buffet dinner and one of Sydney’s most sought after DJs (Victoria Anthony), you start to get a picture of the happy bedlam.

Here I am in full flight, miming like crazy. No idea who took the photo.

Having slept soundly and with Saturday to ourselves before the party we decided to explore. Cowra was unexpectedly lovely and full of history. They had a POW camp in WWII. Italians and Japanese were the bulk of the internees. While the Italians were very happy in the compound it was overcrowded. The Japanese staged a huge breakout and many were killed. It’s an eerie set of ruins now but in the most gorgeous scenery of softly rolling hills and agriculture. Cowra has planted a Japanese Garden in the dead POW soldiers honour and every one of them has a blossom tree with plaque. Luckily we were there just as the blossoms were still hanging on, a week later and they’d be done.

There is also a perfectly maintained non working train station and some very famous old houses.

Again I’ve dropped the ball on photos (SORRY Undina) but here are a few.

Weirdest thing. The ducklings were obsessed with Jin and came up to him everywhere. They even followed him across the pond. I saw no one else have this unbelievable connection with them. I get it, he’s freaking adorable but it was spooky.

What perfumes did I take?

Divine EdP because it’s so rich and glamorous. The end game of aldehydic florals. CHANEL No 5 started the ball rolling and I think this is the best of breed. It’s also an excellent power perfume that works as armour and centre. If you haven’t tried it and aldehydic florals are your jam go do.

Cacharel Amor Amor is a lovely sweet fruity floral that has a soft amber base. The original that spawned a slew of flankers. The top notes list reads nothing like what I smell which is berry lollies. Add some light white flowers and a laundry musk vanilla. It’s simple but so jaunty and wearable. Perfect spring fare that works all year. My original bottle was a gift from one of our besties Anna Maria. Every time I wear it it’s as if she were with me.

Jin brought his vintage CHANEL Antaeus and smelled divine.

Sunday morning after the party we jumped in the car about midnight. Jin had to be back in Sydney by 9.30am to meet his BFF Matt. They’d won the NRL (Nat. Rugby League) Grand Final Experience. This included walking the ground, the dressing rooms and bleachers. They were able to meet and talk to two ex players who’d played in Championship Winning Teams! Back home for a couple of hours sleep and then off to the Grand Final in Row 9 tickets. It was their dreams come true and when they got the news they’d won there were a few happy tears shed.

Sadly both the women and men teams they barrack for were defeated but they had been there.

It was a BIG weekend. We took all of our public holiday Monday off to recuperate.

Did you do anything, wear anything, spritz anything you’d like to share? Please chat with me in the comments (and each other). It’s the connection I crave with you all. That’s what makes blogging so special.
Portia xx




20 thoughts on “Cowra Weekend, 50th Birthday Gig, NRL Grand Final

  1. Hi Portia. Great photos, and Jin is the ducks’ daddy! Or maybe they liked Antaeus? You look spectacular, and the party sounds like something from a movie. I didn’t know that about the PoW camp – it’s so tragic. Please keep posting and telling us about your life in Oz. xxxxxx


    • YAY! PL67! I haven’t seen you for ages. Hope everything good in your hood?
      We really did have an excellent time. He’s good company.
      I forgot to tell you all. Jin doesn’t like crowds of new people. So he hid in the hotel room while I entertained the crew. They were really bummed because so many there that I knew had still not met Jin. He was the weekends most elusive enigma.
      Portia xx


  2. How cute is that with Jin and the ducks? So sweet. Sounds like a fabulous weekend. Nothing out of the ordinary here, although I did wear my new LPRN extrait for the first time which was lovely. I’m also enjoying the intense version.


    • Hey TaraC,
      LPRN Extrait is so good! It adds so much depth and burnish to the other strengths. Many years ago I found an accidentally opened one in the Sydney wholesaler sale store and they had no price on it. I asked and the person on the counter was so shamefaced that they’d done this that they just wanted it out of the store. It was the only one they had so didn’t need it for a tester. $20!! I know. I was so stupid, gave it to a girlfriend. It was really good though.
      Portia x


  3. Oh yes, Divine perfume is…er…divine! Glad you had such a high octane work/fun trip…the photos of Cowra are so enviously springlike. ;)


  4. Just make sure Jin doesn’t end up adopting a duckling or two: their life span is a recipe for a heartache ;)

    I’m glad you both had a great time (and smelled good). Thank you for pictures: I know how hard it is to enjoy the party or treat and document it with photos.


  5. I love it when you travel and share your experiences! Here’s what I loathe about your spring: it means it’s fall here, followed by 99 months of winter lol. I love the idea of the flowering trees to remember the POW’s. Did you ever read The Narrow Road to the Deep North, by Australian author Richard Flanagan? It’s a tough read, because it describes the Australian POW’s but it’s well worth it. It stayed with me years after I read it, and I only read it once.

    I’m off topic-I loved the perfumes you took with you, and loved the picture of you MC’ing the event :) I think today I’ll wear an Histoires des Parfums scent – it’s got patchouli and anise in it-supposed to be based on the Empress Josephine. 1826. I’m no history buff so I have to look at their website every single time. Funny thing: all this week I wore scents with amber-I wonder why? Coromandel EDT, Prada Cuir Ambre, Mitzah, and this one. Funny.


    • Hey Carole,
      My Dad was a POW in a Japanese camp so it was eerie and unsettling to see the opposite side of it. I think the book might hit a bit close to the bone for me TBH.
      OOOH! Amber is one of my all time fave notes. I never heard of Cuir Ambre? Is it part of the Prada Prive range?
      Portia xx


      • Oh, Portia- I’m sorry for that recommendation, for sure. My mom’s father enlisted when he was 14, to join the merchant navy. He was in submarines. I’ve seen his pictures from the time-he looks like a child. Awful. Sorry for what your family must have gone through.

        The Prada was indeed part of that uber exclusive group and it was the shock of my life to find them at a discount store in this country. My brother lives in toronto and every so often he’d call when he was in Winners (like TJ/TX Maxx). And he’d keep me on the phone while he was flipping through stuff for me. And then he told me what he’d found, and I thought I’d try it. Was maybe $50 CDN, or perhaps less. When I got it I was blown away by the quality of it. I love the small bottle it come is, and its bakelight cap. The scent is fantastic-a super complex deep leather the kind that’s so packed with ingredients you wonder how they managed to achieve it. I like Caron’s Tabac Blond more but this is like a beautiful cousin, if you know what I mean. I like Cuir Ambre more then the Lutens leather scent. It’s a rich deep leather with surprising facets: a bit of coriander, a bit of neroli, a mallow note, and a deep amber base. I can see it bing unisex for sure. A very Marlene Dietrich scent. And it’s full of oak moss-it’s listed on the box, and you can really tell. Has the half life of plutonium. The scents are so beautiful I think it was a case of distribution that was too tight-none could buy it. Then it got dumped at discounters probably because of the oakmoss. I really love it. I’m trying not to hoard it but it’s painful that once it’s gone it’s gone lol.


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