Not that I was counting or anything. Oh, but how glad I am it is all over-and so quickly! We expected to be there for much longer, living in limbo, waiting for the freedom that selling our house would give us. And it was all over and done with before winter began.
We decided to make the most of it, and while renovating our house started visiting the local attractions-North-East Park
Ralph Falls and Cash’s Gorge
The majestic White Knights, at Mathinna. Somewhat ruined by the astonishing amount of leeches there, and us not having salt in our kit.
I forgot the camera for Columba Falls. Oh, and Lilydale Falls. The site of the infamous snake episode, years ago. None spotted this time thankfully!
And basically tried to settle in as much as possible-and when you’re us, and you have half an acre of beautiful soil at your disposal, that means producing food. Hello meat, for the first time in four years! We bought five sheep, and ate three. As my sister-in-law told us, we lost our vege-tinity.
Doesn’t he look tasty? But Sam the Lamb escaped the slaughterman (for now), and was sold with the house.
13 Rhode Island Reds kept us piled with eggs.
And hatched seven babies! A chicken book the husband was reading recently stated that RIR’s do not go broody. Obviously a book Mrs Broody hadn’t read.
Um, we ate three of those babies too. Our friend was willing to teach us how, so we had a tatt-covered bloke turn up with lots of very sharp knives. We had lots of giggles about being friends with him-i’m sure most people assumed that with the overload of tattoos and dreadlocks between the three of us, we were up to something more illegal and interesting than sitting around drinking herbal tea and talking animal husbandry.
I’ll keep the photos of the next part of the process to myself though, as i’m sure the vegans wouldn’t appreciate them. Come to think of it, most meat eaters wouldn’t either. IF slaughterhouses had glass walls etc…….
We gardened. This is what a couple of months, a pick and a shovel can do to a patch of grass.
Considering the hail storm we had in late October (see below), we ended the summer pretty well. While people rave about gardening in Tasmania, i’m not a fan. Give me more pests and a longer growing season any day. We literally got about six weeks of okay summer growing weather, and by the start of March when we left we’d had two ripe tomatoes. Considering we’ve lived in places where we’ve had tomatoes all year around…………..they can keep their brassicas!
I finally started my herbal medicine study, but that’s on pause, maybe never to be resumed, as I was horribly disappointed with the quality of the course. I’m still waiting for a resolution of my complaints about references and accuracy-it’s time to go to the next stage of making sure they can’t ignore me, I think. But we grew many herbs, I made infused oils from comfrey and calendula that work amazingly, plus many other practical experiments. I feel like a mad scientist, which is probably why I like it so much.
And that was about it. After living in a few places in a row knowing they were going to be temporary, I just couldn’t muster up the energy required to get out and do permanent-type things there. So I spent most of my time at home, got a hell of a lot of sewing and tie-dyeing done, got obsessed with the classical method of home education and began weaving that into our life, and basically kept myself manically busy while I crossed my fingers that this last hurdle of ours towards a permanent, stable life would be over quickly. And it was! When the house settled we had grand plans of travelling all around Tasmania. In the end we spent four days at Lagoons Beach (spectacular, free, highly recommended)
Then we decided we’d had enough, booked tickets, spent six days enjoying the north-west, and got on the Spirit of Tasmania. A night in the ocean recliners was enough to convince us that we never want to live on an island again (the mainland doesn’t count), we all cheered when our tyres hit the ground in the morning, and we were ready to head north again.
So, we were happy there. But now it’s done, and i’m nothing except glad. Phew.