Home from a lovely mini-trip, where I think we managed to pack a week's worth of activity into three days. Thankfully, there was knitting on plane - all 60mins of the flight, lol! We joked it was almost like a long ride at Luna Park.
We landed just after 9am, grabbed a shuttle bus to the hotel to drop our stuff, and were pleasantly surprised to be told we could get into our room. What a great town Hobart is. I hadn't been there since I was in late-primary school, so I really don't remember much, other than it had a similar vibe to Bendigo or Ballarat, which I think remains the same today.
We didn't bother with a car, and I'm glad. Hobart is beautiful to walk around and explore. Lots of little lanes and old buildings, history interspersed with modern touches coming together to make a city's character. There seems to be a thriving arts scene, although we managed to not be around on the right days to see some of the smaller, independent shows.
We did manage the trip out to MONA though, heading there virtually straight from the airport. We decided to catch the MONA Roma ferry, which is a fun way to travel up to the site from the docks. Research before we left Melbourne had told us the docks were five minutes from our hotel, and the ferry drops you at MONA's door. Well, steps! 99 of them, to be precise. but more about steps later...
MONA is an amazing, eccentric place, to be certain. Three floors down into the ground, mostly in the dark, it can be a bit disconcerting. One of the current exhibitions "The Red Queen", lives up to the gallery's reputation of challenging you. Although you could take photos, I didn't get many. Partly due to the light. Partly because I'm from an era where you weren't permitted to take photos in galleries, and I still feel like one of the guards is going to jump out and scold me! Mostly, though, I just wanted to walk around and absorb it, rather than looking through a lens...for what? I can remember works without photos.
Also, there's no identifiers near the work to tell you the artist or the medium, etc - instead you are given an ipod touch that scans your immediate vicinity and gives you all the details. It also logs your path through the exhibition, and if you choose, you can have it emailed to you as a record of what you've seen.
It's a spectacular site, and certainly attracts a lot of visitors if the day we went was anything to go by. I'd definitely recommend it as something to do when in Hobart.
Speaking of Hobart, I've decided I think I could live there. The climate was cold, definitely, even for a Melbourne girl. But all that opportunity to wear handknits! Even inside.
Spotting this lovely wall on one of our walks, I got my fella to take a project photo of On the Beach, which was comfy and warm...with a few layers underneath!
Having worn it all day, and looking at the shots now, I think I'll add one more navy stripe to the bottom of the body though. Being stocking stitch with no band, it had a tendency to roll up to a bit of an unflattering length, I thought. I seemed to be constantly readjusting it, which tells me something isn't quite right. Luckily it's knit top-down, so it's an easy case of unpicking the cast-off and knitting a few more rows.
As touristy as Salamanca Markets are, we (as tourists!) really had a great time wandering around checking all the stalls out and particularly seeking out the local fare. I have not eaten as well, and with such gusto, in a LONG time. So delicious.
Oh, and I've discovered I like whisky, straight up! Good whisky. In the middle of the day, on a cold market trip.
Here we are post-dram. Don't let the sun in our eyes fool you. We'd only stopped walking around the market because I couldn't feel my feet for cold! This was despite double-layer knitted socks. A wee nip of whisky helped me forget.
We enjoyed it so much in fact, we stopped here on the way home, after finding it quite accidentally. Lark Distillery's cellar door. Conveniently located on the walk back to our hotel. (did I mention I love Hobart?)
We did loads of other things, ate and drank our way through most of them. Next time we go back to Tasmania, we want to take the kids and grab a car so we can do more of the surrounding day trips, like Bruny Island, Port Arthur and further north, so it was good to get a feel of what there is to see so we can plan.
Now, back to the stairs. They were everywhere in Hobart, it seemed! Well, I noticed them more, anyway. Apart from when I was in the cast for my broken ankle, I've never had to worry about things like whether I could access places I wanted to go - I just went.
My knee is still giving me consistent pain, especially with a lot of walking, and going up and down stairs is particularly painful. It was another reminder of how many limitations this injury has imposed on my lifestyle, and I'm getting worried it could potentially never recover fully. It made me a bit sad, to be honest. I'm normally such a physically active person, and adventuring is something I love best, so to have any kind of limitation really frustrates me.
It also worries me for the future - will the restrictions on activities get worse? Will I become, out of necessity, one of those people that has to forgo events and activities because of my stupid, failing body? I'm working really hard at physio exercises and gym, but the progress seems painfully slow. I have to keep reminding myself there has been improvement, small as it may be, and I'm determined to give it my best shot at getting back to full strength.
Boo hoo, hey? People live in far worse pain and with far more restrictions placed on them than I do, I know. I know. Sometimes I feel like a whiny teenager, full of self-indulgence and self-pity. I'm trying hard to keep that in check too, I promise.
Next week: New FO's and 99% less whining. Until then, here; have some pretty knitting to make it up...or distract you xx