Whoever said that money can't buy happiness is probably right. It didn't for example buy me the view of this beautiful tree every morning. Or the cows that moaned their greeting in the early light. Or the goats. Or the grassy wind that swept over the plains beyond.
Nor did it buy the beautiful drive up the mountain. Winding through trees so green they made my heart soar, and rivulets that ran beside the road singing joyfully before crescendoing like a Welsh choir over the causeways.
It didn't technically pay for the way my ears popped as we wound around the steep path up the private mountain, watching the sheer cliffs of the majestic scenic rim peep out from their forested covers. Or for the wallabies that hopped across our path or the fat, lazy cows that meandered across it.
Instead, it paid for a room with a fireplace made from stones handcut in Scotland when Settled Australia was newly born. Hand hewn rock that delighted my fingertips as I pondered it's history. Cedar shutters on floor to ceiling windows that beheld an uninterrupted view of mountains and trees and humming fields of grass and wildflowers. The sweet spicy scent from the cedar tickling my belly and warming my senses. L'occitane bath salts in a spa I could stretch out in and read a full book from beginning to end. 7 course menus with wines I've never tasted before matched perfectly in crystal that made me ache with their simple perfection
Board games and cards as the rain thundered down, a warm grey blanket that we watched roll in from the valleys below to keep us cosy. Laughing games at the pool table with drinks handed to us with so much as a lifted eyebrow. Canapes and cups of tea.
Walking across the sodden trails while the bees hummed so merrily that the air was alive with it. The sweetness of clover and the sharpness of thistle matched by the wildflowers that dappled the green.
Sitting back, looking out over the vastness of the panorama. Drinking in the air and the view and that wild tang of being somewhere remote and isolated. And that delighted, delightful sensation of being on holiday, even if it can be measured in mere hours. Curled up on the window seat, a cashmere rug in tasteful neutrals thrown over my knees, a giant fluffy white bathrobe tied around my waist.