Wednesday, April 26, 2017

French Connection in Trentham

My friend in Trentham also has a passion for all things French as Sue and I have. He and his wife have travelled to France and love the lifestyle. His passion in automotive engineering steers towards French cars and bikes. He owns 4 French VeloSolex 49cc bikes, a Citroen 2CV and now 2 Amilcars.

Nice to find like minded people within our Trentham Village.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Autumn in Trentham

We went for breakfast in the village this morning and I could not resist taking a photo on my iPhone of my favourite Porsche. I will never have the opportunity of owning one of these but I can always look. This same philosophy applies in other aspects of life however Sue tells me I must not touch....

Being in the middle of Autumn, Trentham streets are full of leaves - its a magic time of the year when the trees are full of red/orange/yellow and the leaves give the streets a carpet of the autumn colours.

It was also ANZAC day today when we pay respect to our servicemen - in Trentham we had a dawn service with 200 people attending to pay respect for our fallen soldiers. Later in the morning, there was a march of those in the district and a small talk by one of our respected locals to give tribute.
For us it was the first time we experienced this ceremony but just maybe, this is what a small community like ours brings into your life.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Maybe the Grand Poobah

In actual fact its the grand Poo Bar. Up here in the Central Highlands there is a demand for various types of Poo. Now with our short period of being in the district, we still have much to learn.
I didn't know that various degrees of Poo bring various prices. Why is it that horse poo is only 50c per bag? It comes in dollops where $1.00 bags of sheep poo is in little pellets. As for alpaca poo, I have no argument to offer for the extravagance of $2.00 per bag.
In my mine, they all eat the same grass - sure, I understand that it comes out the other end in various shapes but surely its the same thing when you spread it on the garden.
Maybe more experienced readers out there can explain this strange occurrence to me.
And more importantly - is the alpaca really the grand poobah of Charlie and Harry's Poo Bar.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Fernery and Sheds

We are really getting into the gardening thing here with the house. Never been much of a gardener however with retirement, a new home and advice from locals whom have experienced the past climatic conditions, we are grateful for their input. Hopefully over the next few years the garden will grow in to the paradise we have the aspirations for.

I recently erected a shed to store all our gardening implements - it is in an unobtrusive area where we hope also establish a veggie garden very soon. Autumn here is sending our Japanese Maples all shades of the season and bring delight to our glass of wine as we sit on the back alfresco thinking how fortunate we made this rural tree change. Our magpie pets come to join us and take food from our hand while we sip another glass of wine.

These guys will look fantastic over the next few years - we've planted three additional Japanese Maples with leaves that turn red, and orange in Autumn. What a great time of the year.
This small area we will cultivate with a mass of ground cover.
This is my personal project of a Fernery. I love ferns and found this area under overhanging trees which will produce the fernery's own micro-climate. Will let you know how it all works out, this time next year. 
Only over the Easter person we finally erected our tin garden/storage shed. It will help take the items that have been stored on our outdoor al-fresco area. I had a 3x4m concrete slab poured for my 3x3m shed however I know I'll need more space later. The larger slab will allow for that growth with the extension. 

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Du Fermier of Trentham

Trentham for it size "punches well above it's weight" as the say goes. For a village on the last census had a population of 1400 people, we are so fortunate with our facilities. On the social side, we have five excellent cafes, four eating establishments - pubs/restaurants. One of these is Annie Smither's Du Fermier which is a one hat restaurant. It seems to be always full every dat it's open. We've eaten there once and let me tell you, once is not enough.
It is based of French Farmhouse style with an excellent wine list, local district plus a good stock of French wines.

I found this small insight to Annie's philosophy on food, our district's produce and a little on her past history within the industry. If you are ever in Trentham, make sure you book well in advance.

Saturday, April 08, 2017

Looking Out Our Backdoor

Looking out our back door on this sunny Saturday Trentham morning, I see the grass seed we planted three weeks ago has given us a much green carpet in the backyard. We've also bee spending mulch around the trees - the mulch came from a few trees, mainly Gum, that needed to be felled before we could start building. There were a few bald patches where I needed to over sow. Bit like my head of hair really but without the success rate of the lawn seed.

Our actual boundary is to the birdbath but the extended view is Crown land to the creek. As you can see there are a few patches where the seed didn't take so yesterday I raked in some more seed. Hope its not to late in the season.
He may look a little menacing however he will eat from your hand. These guys warble a very tuneful song but then expect a feed after each warble. In the mornings they wait for us to rise for a feed.
We've also gained a few new pets. A local family of magpies have adopted us and the one we call "Baby" lets us hand feed him. Talking of families, a group of two to five Kangaroos visit in the late evening and graze between us and the creek and then there's the ducks who have taken to clipping the grass and then fertilizing it at the same time. We enjoy our native pets.

Our cockatoos are not so friendly and tend to fly off when you get close. Very noisy little chaps they are.
The Roos are also timid but very inquisitive. They can be a bit menacing if they feel intimidated but mostly the are happy to hop off elsewhere rather than being confrontational.
Anyway, I felt that this song was appropriate to some extent for this post - enjoy.

Wednesday, April 05, 2017

33rd Anniversary

Apologies to Michael Leunig - a very clever satirical cartoonist - whether it be political, social issues or what ever pleases him at the time. I thought I might to take a leaf from his book by doing my own piece of art to celebrate 33 years of marriage to a woman that thinks of others before herself, raising two young boys to be very men of our time and made me grow up - almost (I still have some child in me).
She is my cup of tea.

Tuesday, April 04, 2017

Relic of the Past

We still have a few horse troughs in Trentham.
They make good flower beds these days.

There's a story behind these horse troughs that I only just discovered yesterday. I bought a small book on the district which revealed that these troughs came about through the kind donation of the wealthy industrialist, George Bills. 700 of these were erected in Australia and 50 overseas. We have two in Trentham.

They are inscribed;
Donated by Annis and George Bills, Australia.
"For the relief of horses and other dumb animals either in Australia, in the British Islands or in any other part of the world"

Monday, April 03, 2017

BILL POSTERS - Who is he?

Some people have a great sense of humour - don't they?

While strolling along the main street in Trentham I noticed these two pieces of Whimsy.

There's a fair bit of development happening in Trentham over recent years. This is one of very few vacant shops and should soon reopen as it is a prime position in the main street. Around the corner a new complex will be built with some further shops and offices and a community centre (watch this space)
Beside the complex are three new homes being built, one of which will belong friends of ours.
Trendy Trentham is growing.

Saturday, April 01, 2017

A couple of Trentham Days

Had a call from our local guys that own French VeloSolex motorised bicycles. They invited me to a pint of Guinness at the Pig & Whistle in East Trentham not far from home - about a 12 km return ride. Last time we did this ride, a herd of sheep were being shepherd down the road and guess what??? Ground Hog Day.

The difference was that two of us rode our human powered bikes and after a Pint at the PIG, the Guinness was making its presence felt. Plus when I arrived home, Sue had the "Champagne Friday" bottle started.

Moving on from Friday, I awoke Saturday morning, just a little shabby to another year on - I entered up my 67th year. I don't mind getting older as the alternative doesn't offer much future - I just wish time travelled more slowly as I'm having too much fun.

An impromptu visit from local friends Shane and Robyn Bartley with gifts and this great fold out card from Vietnam.
Shane can be quite earthy in his comments and humour but I've known him since we were teenagers. 
So Saturday morning we decided to drive off to the Woodend market. This region enjoys many weekend markets within a distance of no more that 30 to 50 kms drive away. Today's market was at Woodend only 22 kms down the track. Others include the markets at Kyneton, Lancefield, Daylesford, Castlemaine and Maldon. Today's basket contained mushrooms, rhubarb, Harcourt apples, pumpkin, and hot smoked trout and salmon. Burnie was back with his new season local potatoes which reminds me that Trentham's Spudfest is back next month.

Sue loves markets - my job is to carry the purchases - le Mule and le banque. 
We will be building a raise garden bed soon with Veggies and Herbs.
I might just leave this caption alone!!!
She's spending my pension for the month again - never mind, she's a pensioner next month as well.
Now Bernie is a favourite of ours especially when his new season spuds are at the markets.
He's one of those forever been locals with a great smile when you see him.
That's Bernie behind the tressle table - I don't think I've ever seen him in any other clothes.
After the market and lunch, we took off to the local nursery at the little town of Tyldan. Not sure if it qualifies as a town as it has no Pub. Strange as it might seem, the Pig and Whistle is a pub without a town. Hmmm, go figure!!!!

We are planting Lavender along the side fence - do you like our fence, rather rustic isn't it. It came with the block when we bought it and thought we would retain it.
These two maples will be planted near a timber deck I hope to build soon. In autumn we should get some really vibrant colours.
Tomorrow I hope to plant all the plants we purchased - heaps of French Lavender, some alyssum for the front and two leafy Japanese maples for the side area. I'll need to get this done before family arrive to help me enter my 67th year.