Monday, 28 April 2008

Hobart 1

So after a precisely tuned departure from work, a picking up of The Frenchman, and a negotiation of ANZAC day traffic (mostly headed to local watering holes in my observation) we get to the airport with way more time on our hands than normal so have a reasonably gourmet breakfast on the ground rather than a less so one in the air. In fact it is remarkably good. I might even head to the airport just for it one day, maybe.

Virgin spits us out with some quip in Hobart and the freezing day we expected has simmered into a reasonably warm one. We are picked up by the gorgeous Sean, and head to Port Arthur exploring along the way. The cafe we've been hanging out for since 1995 when we first discovered it is still operating - Eaglehawk Neck Cafe - but as we arrive we find it's closed for ANZAC day - bloody hell - all this way (and time!) and lunch plans are demolished - but by now it's after 2pm and the list of options is rapidly narrowing. The last time we ate at Port Arthur was shortly before the massacre happened there and that cafe is now a memorial... So we eat generic food elsewhere, then wander around and I actually like it here a lot more this time than last.

The sandstone on the decaying buildings has none of the wear of those in Sydney - it looks like it's been freshly quarried and at times I wonder if it has, must be something to do with the pristine air they talk about down here - though today it's a smoke haze with forest back burning that seems to have been very poorly planned in recent days, and we're coughing and my eyes are a bit sore, but I'm away for the long weekend so I'm still happy.

We head back to civilisation and our accommodation at The Islington Hotel in Hobart is it. We're greeted by Kelly who is at once warm, engaging and beautiful, and we feel at home right away. The rooms are sensational, and ours subtly has the seal of the hotel's owners in a painting of two naked men sitting together (though you have to look twice to see that that's in fact what you're looking at.) I've been up since 6.15am and I collapse into the huge bath for an eternity before heading out to dinner. Marque IV is the place - and the food is sublime. My main is 3 variations of Salmon and I can still taste them all (in a good way). More please!

1 comment:

Sh@ney said...

Great to see you had a nice time..And by the sounds the weather was not too bad either.
It looks like a fascinating place to see.