Joined August 2019 Message
  • Day23

    Homeward Bound, Day 2.

    March 13 in Australia ⋅ 🌙 19 °C

    So begins the last day of our familymoon.
    We were up in time for the wake up call packed and went and sat in the lounges on deck 7. As we were parked on deck 1, we were likely to be one of the last decks to disembark, and that we were. Thanks to people who had not returned to their cars on decks 5, 3 and 2, it was about 8.45 by the time our call came through. It was slow going as only 1 lift serviced deck 1, so I used the stairs to go on ahead and pack the car ready to go.
    Once there, it was pretty quick going before we were up the ramp and off the boat, heading to breakfast with Ems and Clair at Keilor. The streets seemed fairly quiet for Melbourne, but it was Sunday morning.
    After breakfast, at about 11am we started the long trip up the Hume Highway home.
    Stop at a tea house at Glenrowan for lunch, and petrol just after that, encountered a squad of Harley Davidsons all over the highway at Table Top, which slowed everyone down, toilet stop and stretch at Holbrook and dinner at McDonald's Yass were our other stops along the way. It felt like a fairly slow trip, but we eventually made it home by 7.30pm. Millie was straight to bed, and we unpacked and sorted out ourselves to get back into the rhythm of normal life.
    And so ends our 3 week Tasmanian Familymoon.
    Not including the Spirit of Tasmania distance, a total driving distance of 2909km was logged on the car odometer.
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  • Day22

    Homeward bound, Day 1

    March 12 in Australia ⋅ ⛅ 14 °C

    So ends the last night on our familymoon. We packed up early and checked out of our accommodation and headed into Hobart for a visit to Salamanca Market. Parking was an absolute nightmare, as was the number of people at the markets. The market was just like a traditional street market. Store holders selling their wares, pop up stands for everything from crafwares and woodwork, to spirits, wines and foods of different cultures.
    After the markets, we made our way out of town and the drive to Devonport.
    We did stop for lunch at Ross, which is a cute town with a very colonial feel. It has a lot of old buildings and still had a very strong early colonial feel about it. Here, it didn't take much to imagine what it would have looked like in colonial days and, if you were to removed the bitumen road, it would still fit in quite well with its colonial origins.
    After lunch we continued on the road and made good time to Devonport, where we took Millie to the beach and she go to choose some nice rocks for her class. Then we went for dinner and a few drinks at a pub before joining the queue and boarding the Spirit of Tasmania home, but not before we went for a hairy monster attack to get all the dirt and any contaminants off the car (ie. carwash) before returning to the mainland.
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  • Day21

    Gerry & Chat's Wedding, Photos/Reception

    March 11 in Australia ⋅ ⛅ 14 °C

    Gerry and Chat got married, with her walking in to "Grow old with you" from the Wedding Singer. It was an awesome service, very appropriate and amazing of just how much both of them had been in each others' sphere of existence without actually ever getting together until much later in life. It was interesting to get a bit more of their story.
    Once they were married we were lead out to the lawns above the Pharos restaurant where the reception was to be held. There we had the group photos against the background of Hobart suburbs and Mount Wellington. We were then lead for drinks and canapes and finally through a number of exhibits into the Pharos restaurant where the reception was.
    The food was incredible, sharing plates of a variety of seafood and other meats, fish, vegetables, cold meats, etc. It was a varied collection of flavours and food styles, unique to much of the family and many were forced to step out of their comfort zone and try something a bit more exotic than meat and 3 veg.
    After the dinner, Dillapa and Dad gave excellent speech, as is custom, and Millie got up with Pa to sing "the Unicorn Song".
    It was a wild night and by 10.30pm, Millie was well and truly finished. We headed back for our last night at Riversdale Estate.
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  • Day21

    Gerry & Chat's Wedding, Ferry & Ceremony

    March 11 in Australia ⋅ ⛅ 20 °C

    We arrived very early for the Ferry to MONA (like about 1.5 hours early), parked and went for a walk along the docks. We found a Van Diemens Land Icecreamery and had an icecream, then walked back to the Brook St Pier.
    They were setting up for the night markets, and we were able to have a look at a few of the stalls set up and at the markets set up inside the pier terminal. Then as more of the guests for the wedding and family started to show up, I left Millie and Lindsay to get the ferry, while I drove to the MONA. We had decided that I would drive so we were not restricted by when we had to leave, in case Millie was not able to cope with the late night.
    It took a while to get there, but the drive to MONA was easy enough.
    Once there I met up with Mum and Dad and we had a drink while waiting for the Ferry to arrive.
    Millie again had a ball on the Ferry that not only had drinks for all the guests of the wedding but she was also amused by the presence of sheep including a ceiling sheep. She was also wrapped to see her aunties and uncles, as well as great aunties and uncles who had made the trip for the wedding. She was especially excited to see Uncle Bill cause "he looks like pa!"
    When everyone had arrived, we were shown to the display Memorial to the Sacred Wind or The Tomb of a Kamikaze where Gerry and Chat were married.
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  • Day21

    Peter Rabbit's Garden, Riversdale Estate

    March 11 in Australia ⋅ ⛅ 19 °C

    We had made contact with the owner of the Riversdale Estate Winery who agreed to arrange an opening of Peter Rabbit's Garden outside of hours as we would not be able to visit it as would have already checked out and left by the time on Saturday morning it was due to open. Millie was really excited and looked forward to seeing it.
    She loved every moment of the gardens, where they had a mix of animatronic characters, statues and painted drawings of the characters from the story Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter.
    After the visit to the gardens, we went into the French Bistro at Riversdale Estate where we had some lunch in preparation and advance of Gerry and Chats wedding.
    A wine tasting, cheese platter and pizza later and we were ready to get ready for the wedding. We also went away with accounts lighter and managed to find 2 bottles of wine, suitable for cellaring until Millie is 21. And how suitable to get them from the main place we were staying on our familymoon.
    Then, we went to get ready for Gerry and Chat's wedding.
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  • Day20

    Chilled shopping and park day

    March 10 in Australia ⋅ ⛅ 13 °C

    Today was a fairly chilled day.
    We left the cottage by 10:30 a.m. and made our way to Eastlands Shopping Centre Rosny Park where we did a spot of shopping and had some lunch.
    We decided earlier in the day that as much of the trip had been about going to historic sites, visiting wineries and distilleries, and was undoubtedly quite boring for Millie that today we would find a large park where she could have a play for a few hours. We found a park called the train park, and here there were some large slides and some train based play equipment. As usual she spent several hours running around, burning off some energy and making a new friend called Ava. She had a really good time and as usual when came time to leave she didn't want to. But her friend had to go as well so we said goodbye and headed into the Cat and Fiddle Arcade. We had just missed the 3 p.m. showing of Hey Diddle Diddle so we hung around, had a coffee and doughnut and waited for the 4 p.m. show which Millie really enjoyed.
    After that we did a spot more shopping in Hobart and then made our way down to the docks and ferry terminal, and the Historic walk to spend a bit of time before the pre wedding dinner with the family at the Drunken Admiral. Good food and huge serves, it was a great meal.
    After that it was late and we headed back to our accommodation for bed. Tomorrow is going to be a big day with Gerry and Chat's wedding.
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  • Day19

    Pooseum, Old Hobart Town, Puddle Duck

    March 9 in Australia ⋅ ☀️ 15 °C

    We got up to yet another busy day today. To begin the day we drove to Richmond which was about 15 minutes up the road from where we are staying and arrive just in time for opening of the Pooseum. Who ever knew there was so much to know about crap and I mean that in the literal sense. From what different animals do, to the different uses for effluent, from making eating and drinking implements, to paper and sculpting and even in the creation of alcoholic beverages, including a malt whisky which is made near by. It could also be put to good used to solve our carbon emissions issues, if only our politicians weren't so full of it. And I even learnt there is an artist who sculpts and gilds effluent... so you really can therefore polish a turd! It was a really crappy experience! And I mean that in a good way, but enough of the bad poo puns.
    After Pooseum we wandered up the main street of Richmond, had early lunch before going to Old Hobart Town, a miniature replica of what Hobart was like in 1820, based on a similar idea of Cockington Green back home. It is a fascinating replica of Hobart, and there are 4 little challenges to keep kids entertained. Millie found all 4, which included a boy falling out of a tree, a lady swinging a stick at a snake, a Tasmanian tiger (and her cub) and a man "rescuing" a kangaroo from the river. There were plenty of other amusing little jokes in it, but these were the challenge for the children. I also got to check out the old Richmond historic bridge before we left Richmond.
    Then we moved on to Puddle Duck Winery where we did more wine tasting, had afternoon tea and Millie got to feed the friendly ducks and play on the play centre there. She had a lot of fun and got a peacock rubber ducky for the bath.
    We finished off there and got back to our accommodation in time for me to vacuum the car before mum and dad arrived to look after Millie while Lindz and I went for dinner at the Cascade Brewery Bar.
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  • Day18

    Zoodoo Zoo and Wicked Cheese Co.

    March 8 in Australia ⋅ ⛅ 15 °C

    So I chased aurora's until about 12.30am, and hopefully got something on camera.
    Slept till about 8am and then we got up and got ready for Zoodoo zoo, getting to the zoo by 10am.
    Being a Tuesday, zoodoo zoo was very quiet to begin the day, but got busier as the day went on. We checked out the devils (surprise surprise), wombats and birds, where we got into a conversation with a macaw who wanted his head scratched and a beautiful blue cheaky parrot who kept asking what we were doing. We headed for the marmosets and capuchins where we were mistaken about where the 10.30 talk was, so we then moved on to the lions, reptiles, possums, sugar gliders, emus, zebras and managed to see a camel in the distance, getting back to the lions in time for the 11am talk.
    Millie and Lindsay booked in for a feed the Meerkat experience, so they got ready and when to that after Millie got to have a play on the play center they had there.
    They got their feed a meerkat experience where they met 3 little cheaky boys Scooter, Cookies and Cream and got to feed them meal grubs. Millie was a little concerned and restless around them as their claws were a little poker.
    After their experience, we went to the barnyard experience feeding alpacas, a shetland pony, a donkey, sheep and (butting) goats (their skulls really go crack when they collide). Then we got to feed deer and kangaroos and wallabies and got to meet an albino white kangaroo.
    We can't take Lindsay anywhere thought. She got bitten by one of the meetkats today when a meal worm fell on her finger. Then while she was feeding the kangaroos she got bitten on the bum by the white deer... and I got it all on video... enjoy!
    By this stage we had seen about all we could bit as we were leaving we got to listen to the Tasmanian Devil talk. Customary visit to the gift shop, and the walk in aviary on the way out as well.
    We left Zoodoo and went into Richmond for some supermarket basics, then to Wicked Cheese Co to have some afternoon tea, trying cheeses, chocolates and distilled spirits and Millie got to try milking a cow, and by cow I mean a fibreglass statue of a cow.
    We spent the afternoon relaxing and scrapbooking the images for today's entry.
    I may also go stargazing tonight as well, depends on the clarity of the sky.
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  • Day17

    ...to Hobart (finally) our final stop

    March 7 in Australia ⋅ ⛅ 13 °C

    We left Port Arthur accommodation about 10 am and headed for Hobart and the last place we would be staying on our trip. On our way back to the Tasman Highway, we stopped into Tasman Honey, a company that has been in the area for over 40 years, producing raw honey in the region. It was good to actually talk to an experienced bee keeper and get some advice and ask some questions about bee keeping in Tasmania. It also answered my curiosity about the Bumble Bees; The only good Bumble bee is a dead one. They get in and starve colonies, and the wasps are worse for bee colonies. We also got a sign for our yard for our bee keeping.
    After we finished there we continued on to Sorell where we had lunch... if I had realised just how close we were to our final stop we could have just waited but we left Sorell about 1pm and arrived at our accommodation at Riversdale Estate Winery about an hour later after spending about 45 mins at Frogmore Creek Winery, which is on the same road; we are staying in wine country.
    We got settled, then checked out Coal River Farm, Cheese and Chocolate. Here we met the resident goat, Chillis and Millie got to feed him and give him a scratch... well the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence. We also got to watch the chocolatiers making Easter Ducks and Bunnies. We had some cheese tasting and as we were leaving one of the chocolatiers asked Millie if she liked duck chocolate (though I think he said dark) because he had a reject he gave Millie of a duck that only had 1 eye for free. She thought it was so cute and was absolutely wrapped in it.
    After that we came back to our accommodation and I had a nap before we went to dinner in Richmond at the Richmond Arms Pub and after dinner I went aurora chasing.
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  • Day16

    Visit from feathered and fury friends

    March 6 in Australia ⋅ ⛅ 13 °C

    We got back to our accommodation and had a rest for the rest of the afternoon, after all the walking we had done for the day had left us a little tired, especially Millie.
    While we were resting, our fethered and fury friends came round for a visit while dinner was being prepared.
    After we had dinner, we started to pack our bits and pieces and get ready to move on to our last stop on our trip; Hobart.
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