Both the first and second play dates that Ms Carpet and I went on have been in my neighbourhood so we thought that it was time she showed me hers by the beach - Bondi.
First stop yesterday (an aptly-beautiful sunny day) was at the Remo General Store HQ down the road from hers. Lucky girl!
When I think of holidays to Sydney, the old Remo store on Oxford Street (now housing American Apparel) always comes to mind. Before it closed in the 90s, a visit to Sydney was never complete without a visit to the store for silly things for myself and to take home to friends.
Their HQ in Bondi is a tiny fraction of what the store used to be but it sure felt good to be able to see the goods up-close before making a purchasing decision.
I left with a Navy & White Stripey Thing (the lovely lady behind the counter threw the cute tote in for free) and Ms Carpet left with two of these, one for herself and another for her mom (who needs to replace her antique one).
We picked to do our little Bondi tour on a Sunday because it's Bondi Markets day. A short walk down Bondi Road to Campbell Parade by the beach and we were there.
Again, the markets were a must-visit on my holidays but since I moved here, I think I've only been once in the last five years.
It was quite refreshing, really, after such a long time. Like going to a whole new market that I've never been to. I remember some of the old stalls but there were some with goods that I've not seen before.
However, all my purchases were of the "old" variety.
A happy floral-print 1970s housecoat by Frason Lingerie - it's been a long time since I bought an old polyester-something but the flowers were too colourful and pretty to resist.
And a slip by Norman Hartnell, "the Royal Couturier" - save me hacking off the lacy hem of one of my other vintage slips to wear under my short Norman Hartwell dress.
Both from a really nice man who's selling off his stockpile of really choice vintage that he's left with after closing his shop in Newtown some time back.
You have to check in on Ms Carpet's blog to see what she bought from Mr Nice. A really gorgeous vintage pleated skirt by Prue Acton. I would have snatched it off her if it was in my size!
At the lovely May's stall next door, I found a new friend for my clip-clop frame bags! A vintage made-in-England one by good old St Michael (or Marks & Spencer).
And a new old ashtray for the tiny apartment. Funny how Ms Carpet was asking me what I hope to find at the markets at the start of the day and I said, "Oh, the boyfriend and I have been looking out for old coloured glass ashtrays for the longest time but those that we have come across have all been too expensive or in the wrong colours." Pay dirt! The boyfriend loves it too.
And May, the super-gregarious stall owner, let me bargained the price for both down to a really really good and happy one. Oh, the joy of shopping at markets! I think I will bake a batch of biscuits to surprise her with at the next Surry Hills Markets where she sells her wares too.
A quick stop for a frosty beer (a Tiger) at Bunga Bar - another for old-times'-sake spot - and then to the St Vinnies where this little cross-eyed Britt bear rattle (he was new, sealed in a box) called out for me to take him home.
When Ms Carpet promised me the "best falafels ever" for lunch, I thought she was taking me to Savion, a place my aunt used to take me to after yoga classes. But I was wrong.
And gladly so because Sabbaba was way cuter and the food was just as delicious. Plus Ms Carpet said that Keanu, another of my future ex-husbands, ate there loads when he was shooting The Matrix in Sydney (they have newspaper cuttings on the walls to prove it) - made me feel so much closer to him, eating where he's eaten.
Of course it's tradition that our play date has to end with at least one or two alcoholic beverages for the road. We had some at yet another trip-down-memory-lane place - the Beach Road Hotel. It's still the same - a little bit of a meat-market filled with locals and the backpackers that are slowly invading Australia at this time of year.
Thank you for the tour, Ms Carpet! It was good to have a local show me around.