Helloooo! We are back from our Tasmania/Melbourne holiday and it was wonderful. We had fantastic weather, it only rained on one day out of the 18 we were away. Just to warn you, this is one of those boring holiday snaps Blog Posts! :-)
First stop was Melbourne, St Kilda to be precise. I liked this building, the old Palais theatre, and in the background is Luna Park. I felt lucky to be alive actually, after surviving the drive of a maniac taxi driver who drove at 110km an hour up the arse of any car in front, with one or sometimes NO hands on the wheel (he liked to slick his hair back whilst changing lanes), while we had to listen to his extremely loud Italian opera music. But hey, you can't say you've had a good holiday without at least one taxi story. :-)
First night in the hotel the phone rang at 2.30 in the morning, and I leapt up thinking one of the kids had burned the house down or something, but no...
"Hello, this is Andrew in Reception. I apologise for the late hour, but I need to know if a black overnight bag has been delivered to your room in error"
Me, half asleep and somewhat incoherent - wondering if this was a joke!
"Um, no Andrew, no strange bags here. The only thing that doesn't belong in our room is the pair of white undies that I found on the floor behind the chair".
Andrew in Reception - "Oh"
We were very excited to find out that the Dockers (one of the WA AFL teams) were playing the Kangaroos at the Telstra Dome while we were there. I loved the atmosphere of the Telstra Dome, the way it's all enclosed - like we were all part of some secret event that the outside world was excluded from.
After a quick one hour flight over the Bass Strait, we arrived in Launceston, Tasmania. Lots of lovely old buildings including this church that I was quite taken with. I keep calling it the 'fat' church - don't you think it looks fat? Churches are usually skinny. Regardless, it's very attractive.
One of the highlights of Launceston was a visit to Cataract Gorge, and at the end of the Gorge path was this chairlift that took us over and back again. I took this photo for Meshell as we laughed, imagining her having a coronary if she was up there with us. We were up very high!
After a very nice evening with my Tasmanian quilty friend Fran and her husband Graeme, we set off the next morning for Deloraine, which is in the central north. If you ever visit this area you must drive the Deloraine/Mole Creek road, it is absolutely beautiful countryside.
We were thrilled to spot a platypus in Deloraine's Meander River and another highlight was to see "Yarns" at the Visitors Centre. "Yarns" is a huge embroidery and surface design project which involved over 300 local people. Basically it's 4 huge panels, about 3 metres square comprised mostly of silk, but also wool, cotton and tulle. They depict the local area, each panel concentrating on a different season. It was amazing, this photo shows a minute little piece, the detail was unbelievable.
Onwards to Cradle Mountain. Magic! The drive there was stunning, mountainous and tree filled. This was our one day of rain and wind, and unfortunately that meant that the helicopter flight we had booked was cancelled. Never mind, instead we did the big trek around Dove Lake. You can hop on a shuttle bus which takes you down the mountain to Dove Lake at the bottom. The walk took about 2 1/2 hours and the first half was mostly boardwalks through the most amazing forest...all covered in moss, even the tree trunks.
After more open ground the second half was in store - lots and lots of uneven stone steps. We were knackered by the end! Never before have we been so pleased to see a shuttle bus, we collapsed on the seats and were very grateful for the ride back up the mountain! However, these big walks were good to counteract the extreme number of calories we were consuming in the way of yummy Tasmanian wine and cheese! The next morning we went on the Enchanted Walk at the Cradle Mountain Lodge. I couldn't get enough of the magnificent moss covered forests, they just took our breath away.
I think I'll continue in Holiday Snaps Blog Post Number 2, this is getting a bit long!