The night we arrived in Sydney, my dad and I went to dinner (a barbie!) at a colleague’s house in North Sydney. It was to be an informal affair, with the possibility of swimming should the weather be nice. It wasn’t nice weather at all, in fact, it was quite nasty out really, so no swimming.
We drove up to the house — and it was one of those houses, you know, the ones constantly being featured in Western Living or Architectural Digest magazines. It was beayutiful. The layout was essentially a modified loft space, with open steel beams, lots of open space, a poured-concrete floor. Inside, the design was minimal and modern, with one of those Bose multi-CD changers hanging on the wall, the actual speakers built right in and invisible. To boot, the house had been built with sustainability in mind : many of the materials were recycled and/or recyclable; they had a massive container for catching & reusing rainwater (given average Sydney rainfall, their house’s water was self-contained. With the drought, they’ve had to use the city’s water, although much less, as they had a ‘dirty’ water recycler too. They were going to get off the grid and go solar, but the cost had stopped them (Something like AUS$25K per panel), but even still, used vastly less electricity with all sorts of ‘green power’ appliances, and a design that meant they never had to use heating or air conditioning. It was really an amazing house.
And the dinner was pretty good too!