Day 13, Thursday March 28th 2013 Tocumwal to Tarnagulla
We pack up in the rain, this has been a wet holiday. We pick up the Easter meat from our old mate Mick Haynes’ Tocumwal Butchery and head off. At Koonoomoo we see the devastation from last weeks’ tornado. The once shady gums lining the road have been shredded of their leaves. Houses and the general store have lost their roofs. At Shepparton we stock up with everything that we’ll need for Easter at the farm, and I visit a music shop to be reassured that my ukulele will be replaced under warranty once we get home, thank goodness! Woody will have to enjoy what peace he has left.
We arrive at Tarnagulla, 50kms west of Bendigo on the Wimmera Highway, in mid-afternoon and settle the van in the yard.
Our host R’s forebears bought the property in the 19th century after finding a decent nugget of gold. The house was built from handmade mud bricks and is indeed a true Aussie farmhouse.
We sit on the veranda and relax while D slaves over a hot stove stirring a huge pot of chicken and mushroom risotto. We eat in the cosy old farmhouse kitchen then wander back outside afterward, it is a very cold clear evening and we’re glad to have a few warm clothes on board the van.
Towing Kms: 240Kms
2022 Note: Ater reminiscing on the verandah with R about this area and what it would have been like in the old days, I mentioned that my ancestors probably passed through here when they were moving from St. Arnaud to the Mornington Peninsula. This conversation and a few other prompts spurred me on to research their lives a little more. Sure enough, my great grandparents had been in Tarnagulla, they would have met there as my great grandfather was gold mining in Sandy Creek as it was then known and my great grandmother’s father was also mining there. Their marriage took place in nearby Dunolly in 1861 as Sandy Creek would have been little more than a canvas town of miner’s tents.