Monday, 29 February 2016

Tassie Day 9

We're here!

We got ourselves organised early this morning, packing up a wet camper, after light rain during the night.

You can register for a Ulysses AGM fairly early on the Monday morning and then find a spot to camp on the site.

The only problem was that we couldn't find any directions to the registration point.  Normally they are really well signposted from the outskirts or the town.  Fortunately, we had been here just over a year ago and had a general idea where to go.  Eventually we found the main event site, and were directed back to the registration site.

Next, to find the camp site, which this time, is located separately to the main site.  

By now it was raining again, so we found a spot and got ouerselves set up.  There are hills behind those  tents, not that you could tell.

Here is our home sweet home for the next five days, complete with washing hanging to dry.

We have just spent the rest of the day getting a bit settled in.  The rain did stop, with just another heavy shower in the late afternoon.

I must say that the first impressions of this event are a little disappointing compared to others we have attended.  There is only one, rather run down, shower block in the back of a semitrailer for each sex, for the entire campground.  It is quite a distance from the camp ground to the main event site.  All food is at the main event site, not even breakfast at the campsite.  The only thing we can get is a coffee for a short time in the morning.  Normally bikes and trailers have a sticker with your entry number on it to prevent someone riding out with someone else's gear.  Not this time.

The positives are that the supermarket is close by and ice is cheaper on site than at the supermarket.  We will also save money on food as we will cook most meals.  Not a positive for the food traders.

However, we've caught up with some friends from Rockhampton that we usually see at these rallies.  Our main friends from there did not come down this time.  We also ran into a mate from near home that we did not know was coming down, which was a nice surprise.  There are a few people we have kept meeting on our travels around Tassie that are now here and it is good to see them again.

The weather is forecast to be cloudy but fine tomorrow, so we will probably head out for a day trip somewhere.  Who knows where we will end up.

Tassie Day 8

Today we were looking forward to a nice lazy Sunday.  After breakfast we went for another wander around Ross.

Our first stop was the bridge, just next to where we are camped.  It was completed in 1836, built with convict labour, and features some wonderful carving.

The iron staples joining the stonework together all have the convict arrow marked on them.

It really is a picturesque spot.

From here we followed a path beside the river.

We came upon these stone buildings nestled into the hill. I'm guessing that this may be where the stone was quarried for the bridge, and the sheer wall taken advantage of.  I may be wrong.

Inside the stable there is a food trough carved into the stone.  Too clever.

At the top of the hill we reached the Uniting Church.

The interior is lovely, complete with the original kerosene lamps, each with a shiny reflector.

The font is also beautiful.

Once ouside again, we visited the Tasmanian Wool Centre and museum, which was very interesting.  I'd have loved to purchase sone of the fine merino garments for sale.

I wonder how Chris the sheep would have fared compared with these samples?

We visited a few antique shops and I was taken aback at this little object.  It is a 1920s inlayed cigarette box.  It has a fine roller top, from which when opened, a little man lifts up your cigarette.  The price was $265.00.  I have the identical item, in perfect condition, that I bought at the White Elephant Stall at my favourite church fete that I always refer to, when I was about 10.  I think I paid 20c for it.  No, I have never smoked.  It just intrigued me.  I think I had better look after it.  I've never seen another one.

After our wander and a famous scallop pie from the bakery (yummo), we backtracked to Oatlands to visit Callington Mill to complete some unfinished business.  

When we visited ten years ago we stumbled upon this mill.  It was in the early stages of being restored.  It was built in 1837 as a flour mill, but all he interior burnt out in the early 1900s, to remain a shell for the next century.

With governments grants it has now had a whole new mill installed, all coming from the UK.  They now mill wheat, spelt and buckwheat and make rolled oats.  We took the guided tour, which was really interesting, but no cameras were allowed.

While we were in the mill they started up the sails.  They let off a brake, and if you look closely, the sails have little canvas shutters along them, which are used to regulate how fast they turn.

From Oatlands ve came back north, this time detouring into Tunbridge.  There are some really cute, tidy homes there.  This one is for sale.

We kept heading north of Ross to the Campbelltown.  It also has a famous bridge, this one is know as The Red Bridge, funnily enough. It was completed on 1838.

There were some interesting carved tree stumps beside the river.

I thought this garden at the book store was rather lovely, with the path lined with thrift.

The streets of Campbelltown are lined with bricks, each one showing the name and age of a convict, the name of the ship they were transported on, their crime, and in some cases what became of them.

I've just sampled a few.  Interesting to see that Adam Taylor ended up near Bathurst.

Both sides of the street were line for several blocks.  What an amazing story they tell.

Back at Ross I visited the site of the Female Factory.  Unlike the one at Hobart, this one is basically a field of uneven ground with some interpretive boards.

The Superintendant's cottage houses lots of interesting stories.  It appears the diet was better her than Hobart, as they had a kitchen garden and access to fresh meat, and in the seven years it was open, only 62 babies died (as shocking as that is), compared with the huge number in Hobart.

And to finish the day we had a delicious meal at the lovely old pub.

Tomorrow, we make our way to Launceston for the start of the Ulysses Rally.

Sunday, 28 February 2016

Tassie Day 7

Fortunately, last night was not as windy as the one before for our Wind In The Willows campsite.

We packed ourselves up and headed off to the popular, historic town of Richmond, where we found a nice little Farmer's Market.

Cakes for morning tea and some nice crisp apples were purchased.  We found a sunny spot to enjoy the cakes and coffee.

The garden was nice and bright.

We had a good look around the place, admiring the old buildings.

I loved the texture of some of the weathered stonework.

Richmond Gaol looked interesting, but we gave it a miss this time.

Richmond is most famous for its sandstone bridge, the oldest in Australia, dating back to 1823.

It was a glorious sunny day and many people were taking advantage of the weather to enjoy time in the parks.

We have been seeing quite a few of these fowls over the last few days.  I've finally had a chance to take a photo so that I can identify them when I get home.

We've also seen loads of black ducks.  There are more on the Derwant River than I've ever seen before, just no oppurtunity to take a photo.

After Richmond, we headed north along the Midlands Highway.  There are some wonderful old buildings along the way.

We started to see some cut outs of historical scenes, which were rather eye catching.

We also noticed that the landscape is very similar to that of the Central Tablelands.

We deviated off the highway to visit lots of little villages and localities.

We feel we have travelled around the world today, visiting the Middle East with Bagdad, Jericho and crossing the Jordon River, passing Tumbridge in the UK, and we saw the sign to Interlaken in Switzerland.

It was all rather picturesque.

Our next stop was the small town of Oatlands, which has some of the best well preserved sandstone buildings.

Don't you love the stork nesting on the chimney.

The reason we stopped in Oatlands was to visit the windmill.  Unfortunately, we had missed the last tour for the day.  Not to worry, we will backtrack tomorrow and have a look.

We had afternoon tea in their cafe and noticed a quilt depicting all the silhouettes we had seen as we came along.

How good is that.

In the meantime we had a poke around the antique shops.  We've commented that you won't find a bargain down here, but it is still fun looking for something unusual, not that we can fit much on the bike.

We went into one antique shop.  Ther was so much stuff in it you could hardly move and things were piled up.

I snapped a couple of photos as I was just amazed at the state of the place.  We were about to leave when Mick wandered back to this section.  See the spindle backed chair at the front.  See another chair sort of behind it.  See something sitting on the seat of that chair.  I had previously missed it, being overwhelmed by so much stuff.

How lovely is that!  I have quite a few old Peri-Lusta threads at home.  Yes, all very nice, but we are on the bike.  Yes, but I have squeezed in a Royal Doulton Tea Set once before.  Let's see how it goes.

Beautiful.  It actually works really well.  All the loose bits and bobs that were in the top box are now nicely packed in the tin.

We have brought a rather large piece of green depression glass home on the bike from Western Australia once.  We just couldn't carry any cold food from then on, as it took up most of the esky.  We also brought an antique bed home once on top of our caravan.  Where there is a will there is a way.  I just had better not find anything else on this trip.

We are now camped in a rather nice caravan park at Ross, on the banks of the Macquarie River.  This is the other Macquarie River, just to make us feel at home.  We've even have a picnic table.  Luxury.

Ross is a delightful place.  We went for a bit of a stroll this afternoon, but will have a better look tomorrow.

I even found some patchwork inspiration in some verandah floor tiles.

We are going to stay here tomorrow night as well and just have a lazy day poking around the area.  It should be good.