Happy New Cheers!

May Riesling 2013 from Dionysus Winery, Murrumbateman, Canberra Region, Australia

Aussie sunshine in a bottle

And a good drop it was too, fruity and sweet, to partner with a platter of ash brie, walnuts, Cheshire cheese and assorted deli meats.

What a way to celebrate!

So here’s cheers to wish you a Happy 2017! May your road be never too long when you’re weary but take you to where you least expect!

CC, the Daytripper Sipper  ¤


 

May Riesling 2013 from Dionysus Winery, Murrumbateman, Canberra region, Australia

http://www.dionysus-winery.com.au

For gourmet meats and cheese platters contact Thyme to Taste deli/cafe, 60 Comur St, Yass NSW, Australia.

https://www.facebook.com/ThymeToTaste/

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‘The Running of the Sheep’ at Boorowa

THIS SUNDAY 2ND OCTOBER 2016 will be the 20th Irish Woolfest in Boorowa.

Sheep on 'Windouran' property, Burley Griffin Way, near Harden, New South Wales, Australia

Carb loading for Sunday…

 

From the website: http://www.irishwoolfest.com.au :

‘Everyone’s heard of the Running of the Bulls in Pamplona but much closer to home in Boorowa, New South Wales you can enjoy the spectacle of the “Running of the Sheep”.

Beautiful woolly Merino sheep are shepherded down the road by Farmer Ashley on his four wheel motorbike and his trusty Kelpies who leap on and off the motorbikes and on and off the sheep’s back.

A magical free country Festival with a myriad of activities including wool and Irish, children’s fun, and a fine Boutique Market displaying Food, Wine and quality crafts.

THE RUNNING OF THE SHEEP COMMENCES AT 12 NOON!!!’

Following this is a Street Parade, Irish bands, and much more. It’s always a great day and I love the feet-stomping, thigh-clapping Irish music!

See irishwoolfest.com.au for more details.  ♦


 

Boorowa is a country town in New South Wales, Australia, 328 kms SW of Sydney and 115 kms NW of Canberra.

From hotel to eternity (Weekly Photo Challenge: Threshold)

The old Commercial Hotel, in Yass New South Wales, Australia

Poor old pub, on its last legs.

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This grand old watering hole sits abandoned in the main street of Yass (New South Wales, Australia). It dominates Comur Street and is one of the oldest and largest buildings in the centre of town.

The last drink was poured around 2005. The poor old Commercial Hotel has sat idle since, a wry smile across its tooth-gapped facade. The chatter and din of merrymakers just a memory echoing faintly across the floor boards.

In its heyday it was one of 27 inns in Yass or nearby. It was the coaching stop for Cobb and Co. coaches connecting Yass to the railway that terminated at Gunning at the time, half an hour away, and to places further bush.

Although the pub sold in 2010 it has remained abandoned, slowly falling apart bit by bit, helped by some wanton vandals. The beautiful wrought iron has been broken panel by panel. Precious stained glass windows and door panels have been kicked in.

Last year, though, some effort to band-aid the decay was made. The downstairs doors and windows facing the street were painted with bright murals to celebrate the ‘Turning Wave Festival‘.

But as I was taking these photos on Sunday a passerby told me that the Commercial was going to be pulled down soon and a three storey building with shops and apartments built instead. History gone.

But a new beginning awaits!

So raise your glass to the poor old pub and ‘be on yer way home now’.  

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Weekly Photo Challenge, ‘Threshold’

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2014/04/04/photo-challenge-threshold/

Photos taken 2 March 2014 with Fuji FinePix S2980

Commercial Hotel, established in the 1840s, cnr Comur and Lead Streets, Yass, New South Wales, Australia

For some photos of the interior of the pub see the real estate pages from May 2010.

 

Sydney Harbour Bridge aka (affectionately) ‘The Giant Coat Hanger’

Australians like to poke fun at things*, especially themselves. So it’s with mostly pride and a fair bit of self-deprecation that we nicknamed our wonderfully unique Harbour Bridge in Sydney, ‘The Giant Coat Hanger’!

Sydney Harbour Bridge, Sydney, Australia

The Giant Coat Hanger

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I don’t know if kids still call it that? But my family did.

And although it was an absolute must for many school excursions and family holidays from ‘the Bush’, and everyone had the obligatory harbour shot with The Bridge front and centre, we still pulled it down a peg* and called it The Coat Hanger.

So I was amused at myself, a couple of weeks ago, when we were on a Sydney Harbour lunch cruise…

Apart from a couple of tables and us the boat was patronised by large groups of older tourists. Cameras on the swaying foredeck was the order of the day.

I resisted.

After all I’d seen The Harbour before, had even lived in Sydney where the harbour was my daily commute, and we had already done a hop-on hop-off harbour cruise a few years before where I wore out my shutter button. And, of course, there was lunch! Well, it wasn’t gourmet but that was part of what we’d come for.

So we were enjoying the harbour, the views and the beautiful day. We ate and drank and reminisced, watched the other boats, a ferry or two, and slipped in and around the coves and bays of blue water gawking at the amazing waterfront real estate.

But when it came to the final promenade up the main basin of Port Jackson, past ‘Pinchgut’ or Fort Denison, and approaching the Opera House and ‘The Giant Coat Hanger’ … I just couldn’t help myself!

Sydney Harbour by lunch cruise, Sydney, Australia

The grand icons of stunning Sydney Harbour

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The cruise would end at Darling Harbour so it meant we would go UNDER The Bridge! I’ve been on, over, around, and at the base of The Bridge for New Year’s Eve, but never UNDER it by water!!

So I scrambled last minute to the top deck, braced myself against the lurching railing, and waited for the money shot!

ZOOOMMMMPP! That was the sound of my camera closing back up again, due to empty batteries!!!

So I laughed at myself for succumbing to the innate tourist urge … and sat and enjoyed the rest of the view!  ♦

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But here are some of my past views of The Giant Coat Hanger.

I like to do things a little differently – being on ‘the road less travelled’ and all that – and as an Aussie I guess I don’t take The Bridge too seriously, so I usually look for oddball angles!

 


Aussie icons series

Photos taken with my old Canon Powershot A550, 2008-2014

* ‘to poke fun at’ – to make fun of in an affectionate, cheeky way.

We often do this with a serious looking face, then a delayed grin or a wink when the person takes you seriously. Some people, like my uncle, always teases with a straight face and I get caught thinking he’s serious just about every time! You think I’d have learnt by now!!

* ‘to pull something/someone down a peg’ – to treat something / someone with a dose of reality so they don’t become too full of vanity at their own greatness.

A weekend of Aussie wonders

Last weekend was a most amazingly diverse kaleidoscope of a few of my very favourite things – from ancient maps and antique ships at two museums…to a light show festival…to the waters of Sydney Harbour…to coffee by a fountain and brunch by a lake!

Ok, they were not all off the beaten track – but sometimes you’ve got to play ‘tourist’ in your own backyard too!

Here is a smattering of the pics I took (although I didn’t take the new camera or tripod, being ‘on the hoof’ and à la backpack).

It was the most wondrous weekend and it looked something like this:

Friday night: Night session at the ‘Mapping Our World’ exhibition at the National Library of Australia in Canberra

Friday night was one of the special event openings of this exhibition. It was great to be able to wander through after hours.

Many of the maps have never been seen in Australia, some have never been out of their home country. They included:

* the maps made by Captain Cook, who charted the east coast of Australia, paving the way for the penal colony of New South Wales * Matthew Flinders’ instruments and charts * Medieval maps of the ‘known world’ and a few guesses at the unknown * Maps from the 9th to 11th centuries, including a reproduction of the work of Ptolemy from the 2nd century AD.

It was so engrossing, two hours flew by. I was awestruck to see artifacts that are so old and to gain insight into how people viewed the world then.

ENLIGHTEN Festival, Canberra

We then wandered outside in the Parliamentary Triangle to see the national buildings illuminated with intricate slides and patterns. There was a food fair, music and performances in the gardens and parks between the monumental buildings of Canberra. Just magical!

Saturday: Lake Burrinjuck picnic via Good Hope Rd, Yass NSW

Cows grazing on Burrinjuck lakebed, Good Hope Road via Yass, NSW, Australia

Just our little old picnic spot down the road!

After the late night we decided on a lazy picnic at one of our favourite spots. Cue meandering cows, a flock of pelicans soaring and landing on the dwindled lake, a sea eagle overhead, (the only faint hum of) wave jumpers and water skiers, all with a backdrop of an ancient rock wall and a purple, swelling storm front.

Sunday: Drive to Sydney via the Southern Highlands detour, to stay at Ultimo

A great Wotif.com discovery of a large double room with balcony, 2 blocks from the Powerhouse Museum and a nice easy walk past terraced houses and converted historic warehouses to Darling Harbour. All for only AUD $130 per night!

Monday: (Canberra long weekend)

Lunch cruise on Sydney Harbour, wander around Darling Harbour

Sydney Harbour on Fusion lunch cruise

Stunning Sydney Harbour

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With some time before our harbour cruise we wandered through the beautiful Chinese Garden of Friendship at Darling Harbour.

Chinese Garden of Friendship, Darling Harbour, Sydney, Australia

Chinese Garden of Friendship, Darling Harbour, Sydney

Then after the cruise we strolled around Darling Harbour some more, having coffee at the Lindt Chocolate Cafe by the brolga fountain, browsed the shops at Harbourside, and pottered around the antique ships moored at the National Maritime Museum.

We’ll be back to Darling Harbour some time as I want to explore inside the Onslow submarine and the replica of the ‘Endeavour’, the ship that Captain Cook sailed to Australia and the Pacific in 1770.

Oh and we bought the obligatory tacky souvenir magnet for the fridge!  ♦

The next few posts will feature these destinations with more photos.

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Photos taken with my old Canon Powershot A550, 8-10 March 2014

Milk or cream? (‘One Shot Wonders’)

Old horse-drawn cream? cart, Rollonin Cafe, Bowning, New South Wales, Australia

Doin’ the can-can

This cart is parked at Rollonin Cafe in Bowning village (New South Wales, Australia).

It brings back memories of the good old days of real milk with cream on top!  ♦

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‘One Shot Wonders’ series

Photo taken 4 August 2013, with my old camera Canon Powershot A550

More information

Bowning is just off the Hume Highway, the main road from Sydney to Melbourne, about a 10 minute drive from Yass. 

288.5km from Sydney – 2 hours 55 mins

591.9km from Melbourne – 5 hours 41 mins [google maps]

Another post on Daytripper Sippers about Bowning:

Paddock Perfect: the pastoral way, not the Highway

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Rollonin Cafe 144 Bowning Road, Bowning, New South Wales, Australia, (02) 6227 6507

Hours
Mon: 08:30 – 16:00
Thu – Sun: 08:30 – 16:00

‘Rollonin Cafe is a traditional slab hut café in the village of Bowning. The Cafe has a country atmosphere and friendly staff. Serving light breakfasts, morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea.’

[https://www.facebook.com/RolloninCafe]

Christmas lights (Unplugged version)

Sunset on Christmas Eve 2013, Yass Valley, New South Wales, Australia

Christmas lights, the unplugged version

We wanted to keep it simple this year.

Hadn’t felt much like Christmas, until the last minute.

On Christmas Eve we decorated the little Christmas tree then sat down to a gourmet, cold spread.

Just the two of us,

before the Christmas Day travelling.

Salmon dip, Brie, turkey, mortadella, sun-dried tomato and feta salad, Greek salad, rocket leaves. Elderflower and lime cider.

Each mouthful an explosion.

*

Then a crimson light washed over the room, through the window,

and coloured our faces as on a hot day.

We rushed out mid-bite to watch the glorious sunset.

The sun melted behind the ‘veggie patch’,

a dormant garden ringed by pine trees.

Our own Christmas light show, the natural way!

Reminded me: the simple things in life are often the best.