This is the day I had been so looking forward to. A 4km dawn walk around the Lakeside tracks in Shepparton -watching the birds, the keen team on the exercise equipment and the father and son bonding over a spot of quiet fishing – so calm and peaceful. But internally I was building anticipation for the delight ahead.
The 90 minute drive to Bendigo was uneventful, but the sight of the huge historic buikdings and graceful Rosalind Park as we drove in to the city centre made the morning come to life. Like many of the other tourists we headed for the Information Centre to get our bearings and then it was off to the Art Gallery with my heart skipping with each step. This was it!
Frida Khalo’s photography exhibition! First time outside Mexico City; only shown in Bendigo; final day of the exhibition and I was there! Wearing my Frida pants and Pelanque Mexican T from my 2015 visit to Mexico with travelling buddy Lizzie Cook-Long, I entered the gallery and was not disappointed one little bit! Wish you were there, Lizzie! Though our visit to her Blue House was stupendous, wasn’t it!
Having satisfied my Frida needs I discovered an amazing exhibition called Daughters Under the Sun in another room of the gallery. Christian Waller was a wonderful illustrator in the Art Deco style and her niece Kyltie Pate was an accomplished potter. So few female artists are known to us, that this was a gem. AND a beautiful piece of Nth Qld potter Thancoupie. Thank you Bendigo for this gallery – it took all the visitors by surprise!
We ambled back through Rosalind Park to buy our Talking Tram tickets and book in to the historic Shamrock Hotel. What stories those walls could tell! Then it was off clackety clacking our way on the Hop On Hop Off tram to the Gold Mine terminal; the Tram Terminal where we saw the resident cat Birnley turn his tail on the group in quiet territorial ownership and the tram restoration workshop; Lake Weeroona for a quick nacho bite (still in Mexican mode I guess); and a quiet look at the Chinese Joss House – such an integral part of the goldfields’ way of live in the mid to late 1800s; and clackety back to Charing Cross corner for a stroll to the Dragon Museum…..what an amazing place!
Wish we were going to be here at Easter to see the Loong Dragon in the street parade…..such a collection of all things culturally Chinese, including the gardens and the temple complex. Splendid! And we found treasure at the second hand bookstore on our way back…… sheet music for pianist grandson.
The Shamrock accommodation had a lift…..yay! As well as listening to the quarter hour melodic chiming of the old Post Office clock across the street, the hotel had the atmosphere and creaking floorboards of a bygone era but with modern room conveniences. Bendigo has been a bonus!