Saturday, 1 July 2017

The best of days

Not only do I have my son and his family to visit in Melbourne, but friends and other relations, including one of my most longstanding and dearest of friends/cousin, who lives further north, in Coffs Harbour.  She has a daughter who lives just outside Melbourne, and she has flown down to see me and spend time with her grandchildren here too.  Yesterday we met up and had a really lovely day, catching up, wandering through the botanical gardens in the sunshine, and enjoying each other's company.  We go back a very long way, so it is always good to be together again.

We started off with a quick visit to the art gallery in Federation Square.  There are paintings there my cousin loves to see every time she comes to Melbourne.  There was also a very small exhibition featuring corrugated iron, which went down very well with me.  I can't explain my love of the stuff, but I just do like it a lot!  (See my previous post
We walked along to the National Gallery with the intention of visiting the van Gogh exhibition.  The queue was a mile long, and the sun was shining outside, so we decided a better way to spend our day would be to walk through the botanical gardens instead.  Good decision!  
The handsome bird below is a spinebill, a honeyeater.
Tucked away in a corner of the botanical gardens is the plant craft cottage.  It is actually one of the oldest properties in Melbourne, built as a gardener's home in 1850-51, and was used by Baron Ferdinand von Mueller, one of the gardens' founders, between 1853 and 1857, when he was the State of Victoria’s first Government botanist.  It's a delightful place to visit now, and is surrounded by a lovely cottage garden.
We walked round the lake to the cafe in the middle of the gardens, passing some cheerful yellow wattle on the way, and then sat outside, in the sunshine, listening to a man playing the harp.  We drank our tea, scoffed an enormous white chocolate and raspberry muffin each, and chatted some more.  A pretty good way to spend the afternoon!  
A swamphen, a water bird with very large feet, was doing a spot of clearing up on a neighbouring table, watched by an Indian myna bird!

1 comment:

  1. Beautiful photos of a very well maintained space in the middle of Melbourne!
    We visited there yesterday and like you marvelled at the Gardeners Cottage! I could live in it now!
    Winter time in the city and seeing old friends is brilliant! Xx