I've known Dianne for years - she's an incredibly creative and kind self-made woman who is generous with her time and her talents. And what a life she is leading! I especially loved reading about her driving holiday...oh my goodness. Enjoy!
How long have you been living in Fig Tree Pocket, and how did you come to move here?
I’ve lived in Fig Tree Pocket for close to 20 years now in 5 different homes. Moved here originally to build a home in the newly opened Sanctuary Place estate and haven’t left since, except for when our Donatello St home was rebuilt after the 2011 floods. There’s honestly no other place I’d rather live. Fig Tree Pocket feels like home to me.
What do you enjoy most about it?
So many things to love. The sense of community, living close to family, great neighbours, great people, the picturesque river walks and all the open spaces. I feel safe here. The fact that there are no big ugly unit blocks is a big plus for me too.
Who lives with you here?
Now it’s just my husband David and I. Kids grown up. Our little white fluffy dog Buffy sadly passed away a few months ago after having 11 wonderful years with her. She was such a little character. Vain as hell and so much attitude! We miss her dearly. We even miss the annoying barking funnily enough. Sure the neighbours don’t though. Our lovely postman had a real soft spot for her too and used to feed her schmackos when he zoomed by. One day he forgot and she gave him a good dressing down the next time she saw him, which was pretty embarrassing.
How do you spend your time?
Until a couple of years ago I owned a home wares / antiques business called 'Botticelli House' with a store at the Paddington Antique Centre and a warehouse at Hemmant, which used to keep me very busy. This photo is from then. Since closing it, I’ve had loads of time on my hands for the first time in my life, which has been a strange but nice feeling. I’ve always been completely house-obsessed, so when I’m not decorating our home (or trying to decorate someone else’s LOL!), I fill my time with sewing, reading and gardening. I’ve recently discovered the wonders of YouTube videos for learning new skills and cooking. A fave cooking site is RecipieTin Eats. Great Asian dishes! Her website is great too. She could make anyone a decent cook. She did me.
What's your most favourite way to spend your weekends and why?
Catching up with family and friends. Going on country drives in our Austin-Healey with friends. Living life.
Once this COVID-19 business is over, what's the first thing you will do?
Definitely an overseas holiday. Can’t wait.
What's a favourite pastime of yours?
Gardening! I love working in the garden and growing roses.
What's the best event you've ever been to?
I’ve been fortunate enough to have had the opportunity to do a lot of wonderful things over the years. I’m not sure if it’s classed as an event, although one standout is a 3-month driving holiday we took a few years ago through the UK and Europe with a group of friends. We shipped 6 Austin-Healeys in a 40-foot container to England and then started driving with a carefully planned itinerary. We had an amazing holiday and as expected, our fair share of disasters. Eg. Definitely wouldn’t recommend running out of petrol on the French Motorway with nothing to see in sight and not being able to speak French. Or come to think of it, breaking down in Portree on the Isle of Skye with no mechanic to fix it and no public transport or hire cars available. After 5 days of sorting with our breakdown insurance company, we ended up having the Healey towed over 1000km to our shipping agent in Kent ready to be shipped back to Australia and us loaning a car from a local car yard to drive to Inverness to collect a hire car.
The big one - what is the meaning of life?
Interesting question. In late 2018 I had a brush with death after contracting Bacterial Meningococcal Meningitis. It was a humbling experience to say the least. My take away was to enjoy every moment of life as you never know when it will end, live well, love well, be kind. Pay it forward. Don’t overthink problems. At the end of the day it doesn’t really matter.
Thanks so much Disy - love this! x