Monday, March 25, 2013

day 10 of my australia trip

Well, it was another perfect day, so I guess we better move to Tasmania, Deloraine to be specific. This morning we went to church. Our house is only a block or two from the church building, and it was a nice morning, so we walked.
As soon as we sat down we were greeted by the girl who seated us at the restaurant where we got the gelato last night. She introduced us to her mother and sister, and Jane, the mother, invited us over for lunch after church. Sacrament was nice, with some good talks, and we had good lessons in the other classes as well. We were trying to find a man for Elaine to marry so we could come to Tassie to visit, but so far no luck. We'll have to keep looking.

When we got home there was an enormous spider on the ceiling in the kitchen, and you should know that we totally lost our stuff and panicked like it was going out of style.  Elaine was the bravest, which worked out nicely because she is also the tallest, and she stood on a chair and smashed the spider with her shoe.  It exploded and sent bits of itself all over the kitchen.  Disgusting.  There was a fair amount of shrieking.  
Tayla, the girl from church who had seated us at the restaurant, came and picked us up and brought us to their house. We had French toast with cream and ice cream and berries, then Drumsticks, then fun-size candy bars, so basically a three-course dessert meal. Delicious, but that is a lot of sugar. We had a lovely conversation with them--they have a son on a mission in the Philippines who loves fly fishing, and he'll be home in May, so they offered to have him take Nate out if Claire comes back with her family, which of course she wants to do--we all do. I seriously want to move here. Can you see that I am serious? We also made arrangements to meet up again later in the evening so Tayla could show us the way out to her aunt and uncle's house in the country so we could perhaps see a platypus--they are also members of the Deloraine ward and Deidre had also invited us over for lunch (and had said we would get a better meal if we came to her house--meow!).

After lunch we drove over near Launceston to see Cataract Gorge, which is a beautiful canyon that reminded me a bit of Box Elder Canyon, only of course much bigger. We rode a chair lift that takes you all the way across so you can look down at the beautiful scenery. There are a lot of clipped lawns and a playground and a pool, so it would be a great place to go for a family reunion, if you're interested. We also crossed a suspension bridge. I have been so brave about conquering my fears on this trip. I grabbed some leaves from an arborvitae-looking thing for Grandma BB. We saw a wallaby on the lawn as we were leaving, and talked with some women about the pros and cons of eating roos, and one of them said it was good meat and worth trying, but the other one said she refused to eat anything from the coat of arms--no roos, and no emus. So Britons shouldn't eat lions or unicorns, I guess.

After the gorge we drove back to Deloraine and met Tayla and followed her out to the aunt and uncle's nice little farmhouse in the most beautiful setting, with a breathtaking view. They used to be dairy farmers, but now they just have a handful of sheep and Angus steers that they raise for meat. They are the cleanest dairy farmers I've ever met, I'll tell you that right now. We walked up the hill and looked at the place where they want to build a guest house and met their cows and their bull, who walked up right at the end and we decided we would leave. 
Then when Kim got home Tayla and her friend left and Claire and Elaine and I got into the 4-wheel drive with Kim and Deidre and they took us on a tour of the bush area near their house. We looked for a long time at the river, trying to see a platypus, but were not successful.  

When we got back from the drive Kim and Deidre cooked us some pinkeye potatoes, which are a Tasmanian potato with pale yellow flesh and thin white skin with pinkish-purple swirls on it. When they heard what we had eaten for lunch they felt sorry for us and got out all their dinner leftovers so we could have some meat and vegetables. Deidre made a lemon custard in her fancy, incredibly expensive German cooking blender thingie called a Thermomix.  It's basically a spaceship. We had a great conversation with them as well, about farming and nutrition and all the things I love to talk about, so I was like a pig in slop. They have a very interesting life story. They're coming to the U.S. in July, and I really hope they contact us. Oh! I almost forgot--when I told them that John could take them on a tour of temple square because he works for the church, Elaine mentioned that he also sings in an a cappella group. Deidre asked, "Did they make a CD? Called Hims?" We said yes, and she said she'd just been listening to it that afternoon, and it had made her cry. In the words of the Mad Hatter, what a small world this is.


Claire said...

good times. good times.

All8 said...

Small world indeed. The church makes it even closer sometimes. I'm so glad that you got to go on this vacation. Looks like you had the time of your life.

DH has a friend from Auckland, NZ. It sounds beautiful too. Hope to get to visit some time.