A day in the life…

Urangan Pier

Okay, let me preface this by saying that I’m currently out of my usual routine. Rather than my wake – walk – breakfast – work – walk – lunch – work – walk – dinner – write – read – bed routine, I’m in Hervey Bay staying with my daughter for the week. It’s similar, but at the same time different – and with a fabulous view. It’s like being on holidays even though I’m still working. You know what they say about changes and how they can be as good as a holiday.

Anyways, welcome to my Tuesday!

out the back door at 5.15am


I’m awake before my alarm. Not unusual as at home it goes off at 4.30am. Plus, I sleep even more poorly here than I usually do as it’s quite warm at nights and Sarah doesn’t have air conditioning in the bedroom (I’m such a princess). Instead, there are these overhead fans that clunk SO LOUDLY.  Okay, it’s probably not that loud, but then my husband says I could hear a frog fart in a car 5 kms away and it would keep me awake. #hesnotwrong Anyways, I have the window open, but it rained during the night and it came in a bit – which, on the bright side, cooled me down a bit. Hey ho.

I spend the next half hour catching up on the news and what’s been happening in my social media world.

5.30 – 7.00am Walk.

Normally I only walk for an hour in the mornings, but it was so beautiful out today that I kept walking – yesterday it was blowing a gale and tipping it down and I got soaked. Sure I could have worn a rain jacket, but where would the fun have been in that? Besides, I’d prefer to be rain-wet than hot and sticky. And I got to take this photo of the pier with no one on it.

Anyways, that was yesterday.

Hilariously I met a man on the track this morning who I also spoke to yesterday morning. We’d laughed about how we’d come out without umbrellas and what good would they have been in that wind anyway. He was one of only a few brave souls that were out in the weather. This morning he said, ‘you’re the madwoman who walked in the rain.’ To which I replied, ‘and so did you.’ 9500 steps done before breakfast #winning

aaah the serenity

7.00 – 7.30am Shower and breakfast

Normally at home, I alternate between a boiled egg and a slice of rye sourdough toast, or a bowl of porridge, but Sarah doesn’t have bread in the freezer (no bad thing) so it’s mashed up boiled eggs on cruskits (crispbread) – and my usual cup of black tea.

It’s a far better view than I usually enjoy for breakfast though, and a magpie popped down to sing to me. Is there anything better than the warble of a friendly maggie in the morning? Plus there were dolphins. It’s 7.30am and my day is complete.

While I eat breakfast and talk to the magpie I catch up on personal emails.

7.30am Log into the day job.

The usual. We don’t need to go into specifics, but lets say spreadsheets, phone calls, a few meetings, and cups of tea were included.

I get up every hour or so and walk outside to stretch and gaze at the water – and wonder what wonders I’ve been missing while I’ve been working. The view might be fabulous outside but I’m inside on my laptop. Because some of my colleagues are currently in lockdown when I’m doing meetings I move my laptop so the backdrop isn’t the ocean. They don’t need to know that what I’m really looking at is in the pic below.

12 – 1pm A Zoom call with my women’s group

Usually the highlight of my week, today’s call was no different.


I had a work meeting scheduled in for straight after our zoom call so ate my lunch at my desk. Today it’s leftovers from last night – the pasta that’s doing the rounds on TikTok at the moment. You take some cherry tomatoes, olive oil and garlic and pop it all into a baking dish. Add a slab of feta cheese and whack it in a hot oven for 40 minutes. You squash the tomatoes and feta with a fork until you have a sauce and stir through cooked pasta. I pimped it up with some basil, some spinach and a few olives I found in the fridge. Too easy and, actually, surprisingly tasty. Next time I think I’ll toss some chorizo in. The photo below doesn’t do it justice.

4pm Log out of the day job

Normally I’d go for another walk after work – it gets my head out of day job stuff. Today though, I’m catching up with Deb for a quick drink down at the marina. It’s one of the pluses of Sares moving up here – I get to catch up with her a tad more often and talk all things books and writing.

5.30 – 6.30pm Writing and other catch-ups

Back at the unit, I get some writing done. Yes, that is a glass of wine you can see and I don’t normally drink during the week – well, I’ve been trying not to, but today I have. So there. #nojudgementplease

Sarah’s home so we talk through her day. The tide is at its lowest and we watch a couple of local guys take some crab pots out. They walk out quite a way, the water still only lapping at their knees. The tides are extreme here. We can see the little white balls that bob along on the surface to show where they are.

As the sun sets a cloud of bats flies over. There must be thousands in it. Sarah said they go across to Fraser Island each night but I’m not sure if that’s true or not.

6.30 – 7.30pm Dinner

Tonight, we’re having oven-roasted salmon fillets with Thai chilli sauce and salad. It’s super quick to make – the salmon takes as long to cook as the rice does – and is tasty as. The salmon is cooked in a sauce made from sweet chilli sauce, chilli jam, soy sauce, ginger and garlic. We have it with some boiled rice and Asian greens which I stir-fried in a little sesame oil and some more fresh ginger and just a touch of oyster sauce. It’s one of Sarah’s favourites. And yes, that is mineral water in my wine glass.

7.30 – 8.30pm Watching

After calling Grant to check in on his day we both complain that the tennis is on AGAIN. As an aside I happen to be one of those people who never watch the Australian Open – I have a thing about games without a set start and finish time. This year I’m actively not watching it because I don’t believe we should have been compromising the work that all Australians have done – and in particular Victorians – with lockdowns so we can lead a relatively normal life. As I write this Victoria is still in a snap lockdown as a result of a community transmission from a quarantine hotel. That’s me off my soapbox now. Instead, we watch a couple of episodes of Schitt’s Creek before going to bed.

8.30 -10pm Reading

Normally I’d write for an hour when I go to bed but I can’t really prop myself up in this bed – don’t ask – so I read instead. I’m currently reading Hamnet by Maggie O’Farrell. It’s a tad out of my reading comfort zone but I’m loving it more than I can say – I’m wound so much into the world that I’m dreaming it.

The last thing I do before I turn my light out is to reset my alarm for 5am even though I know I’ll be awake at 4.30 as usual.

Author: Jo

Author, baker, sunrise chaser

16 thoughts

  1. What amazing views!! You have beautiful photos. I give you credit for walking in the gale; I am definitely a fair weather hiker.

    1. I really love weather & find the wind blows the cobwebs out. At this time of the year it’s way to hot to be walking during the day so if I didn’t get out in all weather in the morning I wouldn’t make it out.

  2. I love the various angles of the Urangan Pier, Jo. I appreciated your story behind the Pier. The get up every hour to walk and stretch is an excellent idea. “I pimped it up.” I will have to toss this phrase in conversation when I discuss food. 🙂 Great photos! A fun post!

  3. That’s a heck of a full day! I definitely appreciate those morning walks when I can get them – though with the sun right now, my area just starts lighting up a bit before I go to work, and starts getting dark around the time I get home. It’s all nighttime walks (with owls) for now.
    Have you made friends with any of the plants on your routes?

    1. I certainly have made friends with some plants.. When I first began visiting here I did a cultural walk with a First Nations guide who pointed out lots of bush tucker and medicinal plants.

  4. There’s so much in this post that I love that I don’t know where to start. So, I’ll start with the TicTok Pasta. That’s right up my alley – I’ll definitely be making that!
    Oh, and about Hamnet, which part was out of your comfort zone? Just wondering! 😀

    1. I tend not to read literary works or books that have won any of those big awards… it’s an inverse snobbery thing.

  5. What a great insight into your day Jo, thanks for sharing with us. Your photos are stunning! I’ve just finished Hamnet and loved it too! That pasta dish looks easy, maybe even I can try that one 🙂

  6. So glad to accompany you for such a pleasant day. That water just shimmers with the sunlight. And so does that wine in your glass. No judgement here!! Kind of fun that you met the same fellow on your walks. Can’t believe how light it is at 5:00 am. No time in the year would we have sunlight that early.

    1. You should be here in December – first light is about 4.20 and the sun is high in the sky by not much after 5!

  7. Love reading your day in the life post. I write an internal newsletter at work where I interview a business unit and I compile “a day in the life of [business unit name]” and it’s a fan favourite. I’m going to do one of these one day soon. I used to do it a lot “back in the day”. Thanks for sharing your day and inspiring me to write my own one day soon.

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