Monday, May 24, 2010

What else did we see in Adelaide?

In Adelaide, during summer, let's face it, you get very little rain. So we were surprised when we got a real down pour which reminded me of my time living in Darwin 10 years ago. Yes, it was the beginning of Autumn, when more rain is expected, but we also didn't really expect it to be that strong. This kind of put a dampener on things, all be it briefly.

Something that I love about Adelaide is that even though we are a relavitely poor state, due to our huge size and sparse population (almost all of which is stuck along the coast), we still manage to create and be inspired easily. We produce many great artists whether it be painters, singers, or most other forms of art. We have some really different initiatives and well there are lots of things I would like to do as well to contribute to this, alas being overseas I will content myself in singing the praises of plucky little Adelaide.

Ok, then I am silly I haven't really told you about the great Southern City, a quick run down, no? Adelaide is:
-Surrounded by 1km of parklands
-The only Capital in Australia settled without convicts (aka free settlers)
-The home of many colonial style buildings
-Where you get old and new combining
-The capital of wine in Australia, like D'Arenberg
-Ok, the home of lots of great wines
-Right slap bang on a beautiful coastline
-In a Meditteraenean climate
-The Arts Centre of Australia
-Largely multicultural
-Home of great food and produce
-Diverse in plantlife
-Proud of their sporting abilities past and present
-Quirky, like these things at the Urban Cow Studio
-A little different, but in a nice way
-Some would just say "Heaps Good"
And a bloody long way from anywhere you know!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

More of Adders.

Ok so lets see what else we can tidy up here.

Adelaide really is a veritable mixed bag when it comes to things to see and do. There are plenty of small art galleries around the place if that excites you, there are also a number of decent museums as we have touched on earlier. Let's not forget to mention the wineries around the City, in the suburbs as well as East, South and then the Barossa a little further North East from the City. Due to time constraints, we were only able to go to McLaren Vale and to my favourite winery in the Adelaide Hills, Bird In Hand.

When we ducked into the winery tasting/cellar door area we were lucky enough to meet Clement. The cheerful and happy-go-lucky Frenchman hosted us for the visit and was nice enough to let us taste some back vintage Rieslings, which were all holding up very well. The earlier vintages were getting the traditional kerosene finish to them that only good Riesling's get. He was nice enough to tell us some great stories about his travels, as well and about the wines we were tasting. Of course at the end we were so excited that I had to purchase more wine, which I think brings my total in the cellar (of Bird in Hand wines) up to about 150.

Sometimes there are advantages to living overseas, your cellar ages well and you don't think about them, well not as you might if you were at home. I thoroughly recommend anyone in the Hills region to follow the signs from Woodside and try their wines and olive products , it is a great location and the wines are superb (and award winning).

The tasting room behind a lawn that screens roll on me!
The storage towers and the gallery to the right.
Me wondering what I will do with yet more wine for the cellar! Luckily, reds from Bird in Hand age well.
The superb olive oil which has made it home to Poland safe and sound and already enjoyed itself on some fresh Polish bread.

When in the Adelaide Hills, there really is no chance of going past Hahndorf and not stopping. It is a really great town in the sense that it is really touristy and really cliche/embarrassingly naff. I love it and have ever since I was a child. So of course I took Marty there for a little bit of experience that is Australia doing Germany.
One of the great things about Handorf is that there is a wide variety of food (and advertising boards), from the traditional German sausages and even a German version of Golonka through to the common and now probably traditional Aussie fastfoods of Spuds aka baked potatoes.
Sometimes I just love that simple repetition of normality.
Soft Autumn sun can work nicely sometimes.
Also Handorf is well known for its handicrafts/art works/oddities.
Whether they be mosaic tables or tin rats.
Or why not iron ducks.
Luckily being in the hills, Autumn hits a little early as it is always a touch cooler (temperature wise) up here. Of course being a German town, the plantings here are a lot of the time European in nature giving some fiery colours.
Or some strawberries if you so desire.
Even more out of the blue was that this time I found an Indian store there which has some lovely bells.
And all sorts of different knics and knacs.
Being a great home of produce, not just the delicious wines of the wineries, in the area there are more traditional things such as Beerenberg the home of some of the most lovely jams, sauces, and honeys. Some of which made it back to Poland with us and they are going very well on our pancakes.
There are many different varieties we bought a fantastic Cinnamon and Fig jam.
Also to be found in Handorf is some rather odd and scary animals in cans! I doubt I would eat them but maybe some tourists like them. At nearly $AUD20 (56PLN, 12GBP, 17USD) I hope they taste as funny as they look!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

back to blogging

Ok so I have been rather lazy of late. As we went away to Prague for a weekend and then it was my birthday, so I hadn't really sat down to do some blog work in a long time. I recently got Marty back on track with her blog Coffee Beans Trail. So therefore it is time I did the same for me. Also, let's face, it the English Premier League is over for another year and the World Cup is another 4 weeks away, so I should have plenty of free time on my hands!

Ok, so we will head back to the world that is Australia.... shall we?

The daily question from Marty was "Can we see Koalas today?". So let's do it!

So once upon a time....
In a Park named ClelandThere was a girl called Marty. Marty nearly cried when I said to her that this would be the only Koala she would touch during the day and her stay in Australia.
However, we trekked off into a really love park full of native Australian things, birds, trees, and animals. Full of hope and energy.
Something tells me that there are kangaroos about.....
So we started in the wetlands area. Here we see an Australian waterbird trying to eat a yabby which for you Poles is like a Rak
Then we strolled into the caged area to see the beautiful kingfishers, one of my favourite birds.
Also the Cockatiels
The Finches (I think sounds like a band name) which is nice as we used to live in Linnet St which is a type of Finch! The world comes full circle.
Then we ran into a slightly bigger bird.
They had funny feet.
Which as you can see made Marty a little hesitant. "This isn't furry nor is it in a tree like a Koala" She screamed as it pecked her little hands.
Oh, here's something furry, Marty! We then ran into Marty's new favourite animal. The wombat. This one was nice enough to pose for us, well kind of. He was scratching his bum on the rock.Then the CFS (Country Fire Service) started a back burn operation to reduce the risk of bushfires in the near future. It is something that they do from time to time in Australia and is actually beneficial for many plants as it starts their germination process.
This of course had some effect on the sunlight. It caused the middle of the day to feel like sunset and for Marty, it was an amazing experience as she loved the smell of the Eucalyptus.
It certainly spooked the animals a little.
Well, not all of them. For some it was just too hard! Time for a nap.

Cross the old legs!
Or just stretch them out in readiness for a nap.

Unless you are really hungry and then here comes the Kangaroo equivalent of dialing for a pizza, maybe we could name it Marty Hut, or Martinoes.
Some weren't as forthcoming.
Most would give sniffle to see what food there was.
And we have a bingo!
But eventually Marty won most animals over.
"Now that I am fed how about some modelling shots. I think this is my good side" said the Kangaroo to me.
Big whiskers for a young kangaroo.
"You certainly have pretty eyes, lady Kangaroo"

"But where are the Koalas?!" I would soon hear.
"Here" I said. A grumble of disagreement met this statement "But I want to touch one" said the little blonde girl.
"Fine, meet Hank. He is ten years old and would love someone to touch his bum. Be my guest!"
As we were leaving, the Potteroo waved "Come back soon, Marty only fed the big animals! I feel left out."
And there ended Marty's animal fairy tale.

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