Day 14 – 18, Easter 2013 Tarnagulla, Vic
I wake several times during the night with a very cold nose. The morning is cool and we all front up for bacon and eggs in the kitchen. There are a few chores to be done around the property which is no longer a working farm, an old cattle ramp to be removed and a large ornate mirror to be hung in the living room.
We ride our bikes along the old mining tracks, the forest, like so many in the Bendigo region, is a maze of tracks as the area is pock-marked with abandoned gold mines. We walk to the ruins of the old ‘penny school’ just down the road. This, like the house where we are staying, was built of handmade mud-brick construction, but sadly it hasn’t been used in over a hundred years and is slowly returning to the earth. Stories, long forgotten of the children who once walked the dusty road to pay a penny for their schooling.
An early daybreak walk around town frightens the grazing kangaroos and reveals the burnt-out ruins of the Wesleyan Methodist Church. A handsome structure, it was built in 1865 and destroyed by fire in 2000.
We give the kids a run in the tinnie on Laanecoorie Reservoir and explore the larger local towns around here, Dunolly and Maryborough.
The littlies hunt for Easter eggs under the sprawling gnarled and lichen covered Mulberry tree.
What is left of the cattle ramp becomes a bonfire as the boys light up the BBQ and we cook over the hot coals and eat outside in the garden before taking the kids spotlighting on the back of the ute. Not spotlighting with guns, that’s not our thing, but to show the kids who are here from London for Easter the nocturnal wildlife. The possums, the owls, and spiders whose sparkling eyes reflect for hundreds of metres.
2022 Note: How lucky we were, when families could, without a care, catch up for Easter on the other side of the world.
Tinnie: an aluminium boat.
Ute: Small tray truck, a utility truck.