I LOVE Tasmania. We’d choose to live there if we could, but……who knows what our ‘new normal’ will allow. In the meantime we once again availed ourselves of the wonderful hospitality of Pip and Alan and traveled there just short of 2 weeks ago.
I have to thank the hubby for many of the following photos – he’s much more likely to have a camera on hand than me.
We have always traveled to Tassie by air, but taking the ferry across from the mainland was on the bucket list and this seemed like a good time to cross one more thing off. So we booked ourselves and the car onto the Spirit of Tasmania and opted to sleep the night away in a private cabin rather than a reclining seat on one of the upper decks.
We arrived in Melbourne just as the late afternoon peak traffic was mounting, so it was a bit of a hair raising experience getting to the ferry on time. I quite enjoyed the trip although it was a bit choppy once we got out into Bass Straight. I still can’t work out how all the cars stay in place in the lower decks with the constant rolling of the ship against the waves, although I’m told that a truck did once tip over.
We took our time driving down to Hobart from Devonport the next morning – popping into whatever antique shop was open, each of us searching for our own personal holy grail (me, vintage linens; Hubby, metal ‘things’) and making sure that we timed our passing through Ross to coincide with morning tea so that we could sample the wonderful vanilla slices there.
And I just HAD to stop in at Wafu Works in Kingston Beach to add to my Kokeshi doll collection.
It’s always nice to see Pip and Alan – over the years we have discovered lots of shared experiences and interests. I remember the night we sat on their balcony in Huonville discussing how/where we met our partners. Would you believe both couples met each other in Woomera. It almost defies probability! So we arrived with a lots of wine and chocolate, knowing that we were in for some wonderfully fun and entertaining opportunities to share both. Alan is a hugely gifted raconteur, with the most amazing ability to remember every joke he’s ever been told, and every weird and funny scene/character in just about every movie made.
The guys set off early the next morning to sail up the Channel from Kettering into Constitution Dock in Hobart. The main reason we chose this particular week to visit was because Hobart was hosting the biennial Wooden Boat Festival and Alan just happens to have one.
The Luenna is a beautifully maintained 23 foot boat built in 1960. Alan likes to add all of her party finery for these occasions, as do the majority of the 500 wooden boats that gather in Hobart for the festival.
On their way, the guys met up with some majestic old sailing ships, some of whom enjoyed some friendly ‘firing’ upon each other.
These old girls are breathtakingly beautiful.
The next few days were a whirl of driving back and forth between Woodbridge and Hobart, visiting all the displays and docks along the Hobart waterfront, sampling the foods that were on sale or just sitting on Alan’s boat soaking up the sun.
Walking around the waterfront was total eye candy.
Mother Nature provided the evening eye candy with this glorious sunset behind a ginormous cruise liner which had docked for 2 days, in stark contrast to the surrounding character-filled wooden boats.
Alan was actually moored to a very old ship which permanently lives in Constitution Dock as a museum ship – the May Queen – which welcomed visitors all weekend, allowing them to explore the hold, check out its character filled deck and to make rope the old fashioned way. Needless to say, I came home with a length of rope that I helped to make.
I took dozens of macro shots of ship related items along the deck, but I won’t bore you with them all. Just a few…..
The weather had been glorious for most of the weekend, but on Monday a cold front came through, bringing strong winds. Alan had asked if I’d wanted to join the guys for the trip home, but ultimately he chose to leave the Lueena in Hobart for an extra 24 hours while the weather front moved on. Most boats were able to leave and we watched their departures with mixed feelings.
We didn’t have an extra 24 hours so missed out on another wonderful Tassie experience. Next time. Maybe.
The next day we packed up the car and headed north for Devonport. We’d overindulged so much during our visit that we even skipped the vanilla slices in Ross!
A quiet walk around Devonport filled in some time then it was back on board the Spirit of Tasmania and home to the house sitter (who’d kept things going during a horrid heat wave back in South Australia) and the two white fluff balls.
So long Tassie, and a huge thank you to Pip and Alan for their wonderful hospitality.
Til next time……….