Adelaide Pg 3

Thu 12th
Breakfast?  You guessed it – the menu was exactly the same except we were too slow for the chocolate muffinettes today so got even drier pastry/sultana ‘snails’ instead.  Ah well, we’d mastered the toaster by now and I was just sticking to scrambled eggs on toast which I enjoyed other than it being so repetitive.  And by now we’d given up that the menu would ever change, which is just as well because it didn’t.  Just take breakfast as read from now on.  I’ll spare you.  Oh, and their ‘tomato sauce’ was runny watery stuff made by Beerenburg (see further on in the story).  I like tomato sauce on my eggs but decided I was better off without it!

We walked to Grenfell Street and found the correct stop for our bus to Hahndorf, which was our chosen activity for the day.  As we walked along we happened to glance up at an approaching bus and, lo and behold, it was our friendly ‘almost related’ driver from Tuesday so we all three waved like mad.

Our bus arrived soon enough and David asked if the driver would please let us know when we got to Hahndorf because, of course, we didn’t know what we were looking for.  Along the way we got held up at road works so David went forward and chatted to this driver as well and they exchanged details on what it was like to drive for each of their companies, which are actually owned by the same umbrella company.

The journey was very pleasant and rural, meandering down tree-lined lanes through quaint small towns and we could see for ourselves when we arrived at Hahndorf as everything was advertising the fact.  It was hot again, another 39° day, and felt it up there in the hills.  I have to say that only one in four of the shops were open.  Perhaps they open on weekends or perhaps they’d decided not to open on such a warm day, we don’t know.  Probably saved us a fortune anyway.  The disappointment was that despite everyone telling us that German was the main language in Hahndorf, we did not hear anyone speaking it at all.  In the end I felt like asking everyone if they did speak it, but refrained.  And of course if you’re fluent in two languages you don’t have a tell-tale accent so we couldn’t tell.

We bought a small block of fudge from one cute little lolly shop and had to eat it before it melted.

Bird Books from Hahndorf

Bird Books from Hahndorf

Then we found a museum which was really interesting to look around.  They had a shop in here and we found some dear little stuffed fabric birds which had little books in the shape of wings on their backs which had nursery rhymes printed in them.  We couldn’t resist buying one each for Georgia and Emma they were so cute and unusual.

After this we just walked along looking at what there was to see.  Oh, the lady in the fudge shop had told us to keep walking beyond the shopping strip, up the hill to Beerenburg Strawberry Farm as it was really worth seeing.  So we did; in 39° heat; up the hill for about 1.5 kms that we didn’t need to walk.  There was a gravel parking lot and that was about as interesting as the inside.  They sold jams, sauces and dressings, tea towels and a few touristy things all at very high prices.  They even sold fresh strawberries for $14 per kilo – we were totally stunned!  They also had large strawberries, chocolate dipped, which were $1 each.  We high-tailed it out of there and found a dog in the parking lot who appeared friendly so we stroked him.  He obviously appreciated the attention as he followed us out to the road.  We kept telling him to stay but he came with us, proceeding to cross the highway twice, and remained with us all the way back to town.  I just couldn’t look as cars and trucks came by but he really did seem to be road savvy and thankfully remained safe.

Soon we found a place labelled Otto’s Bakery and it was lunch time so we went in, having been told there was a beautiful bakery in Hahndorf and we hadn’t seen another.  There were lots of cakes but not much in the savoury line so we chose a tuna and potato pie each and took them to sit in the air conditioning.  They were nice enough but not prize winning.  David went to get himself a cup of tea afterwards and I asked for a fruit mince pie which was a lot nicer than the pie had been.  We crept out, hoping to avoid the dog following us again, and succeeded.

The rest of the town was just shops and we only went in to two of them.  Towards the end of town we found a second bakery; no doubt the lovely one.  Oh well.  And we also found the dog.  One of the shop owners was tying him up and had given him some water.  She told us she’d rung the owner and told him what she thought of someone who would let their dog roam in heat like this; I’d say that was in no uncertain terms!  So at least he was safe now.

And once again we’d finished what we’d planned, yet the day was still young, so we decided to get back on the bus and continue to Mt Barker, the bus trip’s final destination.  Well, we have a Mt Barker in WA so we wanted to know what the SA one had to offer.

It had a shopping centre, which was a lot smaller on the inside than the outside, and we were thirsty and could only find one café which, for some reason, did not appeal to David.  I didn’t care where we drank as long as I got some water, and soon, but David dragged me out the back door of the shopping centre and we began walking down a non-descript street past non-descript small businesses along a badly kept footpath.  He was a man unaware of the large ‘me thirsty, now!’ hints I’d been dropping – I thought, plainly enough!  And none of these places were anything remotely like a café or restaurant!  It was very hot and my feet hurt – I was later to discover I had a very large blister but I only knew I hurt at this stage.  I’ve worn those shoes for miles and miles and miles without problems here at home but my feet were swollen so I guess they’d rubbed.

We rounded a corner, grudgingly in my case as the known café was getting further behind, and there was a pub.  I’m not one to encourage David’s alcoholic intake at any time but they served wet stuff and that was all I cared about so in we went.  It was actually a very nice old building and comfortably decked out.  David had a beer and I had a huge glass of water with ice that didn’t even touch the sides on the way down.  I made David have a glass of water as well, poor hen-pecked healthy man!  And then we had another that I actually tasted and we lapped up the air conditioning while we watched numerous buses go past the window.  This intrigued us as the timetable showed the buses ran every 15 – 30 minutes but they were passing by about every 5 minutes.  Who knows!

Once sufficiently cooled and quenched we had already seen that there was nothing else to offer in town so we continued up the bit of a hill to complete the square back to the bus stop.  It really was quite warm out there and probably was higher than the 39°C that the city got that day.  It wasn’t long until the bus turned up and we had the entertainment of the driver taking a wrong turn and having to chuck a Uey.  Made David feel better that he’s not the only driver that forgets which route he’s running.  And so back to Adelaide via the main highway rather than the scenic route we’d taken on the way up.

Once we arrived in the city we made our way to the Woolies in Rundle Mall and bought an assortment of fruit and some more bottles of water.  Woolies was most strange and had some stuff on ground level, personal hygiene things and some foods like biscuits, lollies etc and a bottle shop at the back, but the rest of the shop was down an escalator.  The aisles down there were all on a diagonal to the shape of the room, which felt most odd, but I guess it wasn’t detrimental.

On the way back to our hotel we were looking at the Christmas decorations which we’d seen workers putting up the night before as we’d walked back from the Jasmine Restaurant.  This one caught my attention in a big enough way to want to take a photo as I stood there laughing at it!

Poor Elf

Poor Elf

Not a lot to say about that eh?  Except perhaps to bring it to mind if you ever think you’re having a bad day ROFL  Don’t know what he’s doing with his arms but it’s probably semaphore for ‘send an ambulance, I’m in big trouble!’

We truly weren’t hungry for a big meal so had our fruit instead.  I’d taken a sharp knife and 2 plastic plates with me in my luggage in case of just such a situation so we prepared it all with ease and it was a lovely sweet, light meal for a change.

After this we partook in some gratuitous tram riding, just for the sake of the fact that it was free and we had the time to do anything we pleased.  Well why not?  We got off at one point and walked to an ATM to get a little money for the weekend as well but it was just an excuse for being on the tram really.

Once back to the hotel David gave me a lovely partial massage.  I don’t know why but two pairs of trusted shoes were bothering me; one giving me blisters and the other causing Achilles tendon problems, so I seemed to be pulling my back out of alignment in sympathy.  David massaged my legs and lower back for me which was well appreciated, and brought us to the close of another wonderful day.

Fri 13th
We had actually done everything I’d planned by this stage so had nothing exactly to do, and 3 days not to do it in!  We decided to take a walk by the Torrens River as we’d seen a path down there as we’d gone over the bridge to Light’s Lookout on Tuesday.  Again it was a 39°C day so the hats and my scarf were put to use.  Yes, by the way, I did get a few looks walking through the city centre with a scarf hanging from below my hat but as I said to David ‘those smart enough to figure out what I’m doing will see the sense and those too silly to figure it out?  Well, who cares what they think!’

So we easily found the path and enjoyed a meander around watching the ducks – I fell in love with ducks on this holiday.  I’ve always liked them anyway but they seemed to crop up everywhere and be extra peaceful and adorable somehow.  We walked across a weir and stopped to adjust my darned shoes before realising there was nothing over there other than a guy with hunky legs wearing short shorts who I had an oggle at.  Not my fault!  David pointed him out to me in the first place!!!

Back across the bridge and then who only knows where we ended up!  Better not to ask and definitely better not to describe it.  But for much of the walk we were alongside a railway track and had the excitement of seeing the Indian Pacific train come along.  David said the driver waved, though I missed it as I was looking further along the train at the time.  It felt like a nice little touch of home knowing it had come from Perth and we stood and waited for the whole thing to pass.  What would be the odds of happening to be there to see that?  I think it only runs once a day or perhaps every few days.  Anyway it felt special.

For some reason the heat bothered me this day.  The only thing I’d done differently was to put some moisturiser on my face.  Interesting!  We stopped frequently under my pretence of wanting a drink but honestly it was my shoes bothering me.  However, both David and I were sick of hearing about my feet so I didn’t dare admit to it hehehehe.  We came across a map at one point in the middle of the park but it didn’t have a ‘you are here’ marked on it so was as much use as a map of Sydney would have been to us, standing there ‘somewhere in Adelaide’.  Anyway, we just followed our instincts and ended up on Port Road with the heat coming up at us from the pavement and headed back towards the city.

Along the way was a group of really old, shabby buildings with a heap of cars in a fenced off parking lot and we eventually realised it was their police academy.  Wow!  Ours is amazing and modern and large and clean.  We were shocked.

There was a sign pointing down a side street for an old gaol museum and we tossed up whether to visit it or not.  There was about 15 mins until it opened and the only thing under question was how far down the side street it would be to walk with the heat and my shoes but we decided we’d cope.  But not until after we’d pressed the cross-walk button that we now didn’t need.  Oops, sorry traffic!  We talked to the police horses in a field along the road and discussed whether police always have grey horses.  It wasn’t a long walk anyway – maybe 200 metres – but they wanted $10 each to go in to the museum and for some reason I felt miserly so we didn’t wait for it to open and in hindsight I’m not sorry.  David’s not a museum fan at the best of times anyway.

Back in the cool of our hotel room we elected to have another spa.  Well, we’d paid good money to have access to it so why not?

Once we felt like venturing out once more we walked to Rundle Mall Woolies yet again and bought some nibblies ready for the boat trip just in case they under-fed us.  No shops once we were there so we felt it best to take precautions.  We bought a bag of lollies each, a pack of macadamia shortbread and 2 large bags of chips.  The lollies and biscuits were both carried all the way back to Perth with us and have been eaten since we got home LOL  We also bought some special blister bandaids which turned out to be a waste of time and money but you don’t know these things until you try.

How Not to Cut Bread

How Not to Cut Bread

And we bought a loaf of crispy uncut bread and some cheese to have a light lunch in our room.  I spent most of the meal laughing at David’s lack of bread cutting skills.  More like hacking skills really!

Admittedly we were cutting with a small fruit knife with a non-serrated blade but I managed well enough.  He had fat-one-side-thin-the-other slices which were totally mutilated in the middle and I kept sniggering for the whole meal.

After lunch we turned on the TV and watched Tiger Woods (and the other players!) in Melbourne and I followed that with a nap while David got stir crazy and bored, poor man.

Once I awoke, it was early for a meal but we felt ready for a nice dinner and looked at my restaurant list and chose Mesa Lunga, the Spanish tapas.  We’ve never eaten Spanish and/or tapas before so didn’t know what to expect and walked up to Gouger Street to see what was in store for us.

Guess what we said to the girl who met us inside the door?  Yup.  ‘We haven’t booked but…’

David at Mesa Lunga Spanish Tapas Restaurant

David at Mesa Lunga Spanish Tapas Restaurant

She hummed and hawed to made it look as if she was doing us a favour (and perhaps she was) but sat us next to one another in the middle of a massive table with about 15 chairs down each side of it.  There were 2 girls further up the table on the opposite side to us, also next to one another.  This felt very strange but the atmosphere in the place was really great.  I should say that one long wall of the room was full of shelves heaving with bottles of alcohol.  The alcohol was such a focal point that I’d actually asked the girl if they served food as well as drinks before we’d asked if they could fit us in.  They even had what I will call a ‘library ladder’ (on a rail so it can slide along) to reach the stuff on the upper shelves.

The owner was very outgoing and cheery and took our orders and they supplied water glasses and kept topping them up.  Good job!  Every restaurant we’d been to so far had the same water jugs – very tall cylindrical stainless steel and this place followed the trend by also having cloth napkins and lovely crockery and cutlery.  To be honest the menu looked more Italian to us but we chose easily what we wanted.  Me more so as it was quite a meaty menu so my choices were fewer than David’s.

David’s meal is pictured above.  Pretty huh?  They’d supplied us with chunky bread, reminiscent of David’s carving efforts from earlier in the day, accompanied by an oil ‘dip’ but we only nibbled so as not to spoil our appetites.

There were people at smaller tables behind us and an ever growing number of people in the part of the room closer to the bar and everyone was happy and chatty, no doubt led by the owner’s personality.  The two chandeliers were amazing, huge creations made of what appeared to be antlers!  As we watched around us the number of staff grew and grew so we guessed it would be pretty flat out later in the night.  One thing was for sure, the owner had an eye for pretty girls to work for him!

The meal was very nice indeed but the staff were slow to come and see if we wanted dessert.  By the time they did bring a menu it was obvious the owner was squeezing more chairs in to the long table and setting up, perhaps for a large party to arrive, and we’d be in the middle of it.  We decided against dessert and called it a night.  It actually took forever for David to attract attention for us to pay the bill.  We have a standard joke that if you want to get wait-staff attention you should set fire to the curtains but we were in the middle of the room.

We decided to wander down Gouger Street to see what else it had to offer.  It was the dining strip of Adelaide and we had other restaurants here listed on my sheet, so it was worth a look.  The place was packed out.  Every restaurant was busy despite it only being about 7 pm by now, which I guess is still fairly early for a Friday night.  We came across China Town and the Central Markets and had a wander around.  Interesting enough but nothing worthy of report except that they seemed to be selling everything off which gave us the impression they don’t open on a Saturday.

From here we walked home, surprised at one long unlit strip along the way.  I have to say that we felt perfectly safe the whole time, even after dark.  It seemed there had been a shooting in Rundle Mall two weeks prior but there really weren’t any undesirable places or people as far as we could see.  Not even any graffiti to speak of!

Once home we watched ‘Witch Mountain’ on the telly while sitting fairly uncomfortably on the bed as we’d got our cases on the ‘lounge chairs’.  We never did unpack.  Mind you, the chairs didn’t look any more comfortable that the bed for lounging on.  And another day drew to a close.

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