Friday, March 8, 2013

Tasmania, Days 1-2

Wed., March 6, 2013

I'm catching up on my posting, so I have to do a bit of backtracking here. 

Okay, we flew to Tasmania on March 6, on Tiger Airline.  Or Tiger Airways.  Maybe it's Tiger Air.  At any rate, they have the tail of the plane painted like tiger fur, and a jumping tiger logo painted on the side of the plane.  I was told by the flight attendant that we couldn't take photos on the tarmac, or of the airport, so I had to stop before I was arrested for taking pics of the cool plane.  But I liked the tail!

We rented a car, a lovely Yaris (wooohoooo!) so I drove to our hotel.  Except it was night, and of course we had no idea where we were going, and apparently one should stay in the right hand lane because the mandatory left hand turns took us off on some side highway that wound out of Hobart and off into who knows where - fortunately, our navigator (Richard) was able to get us back to Hobart, and someone could direct us to our hotel.  (And I only went in the wrong direction on a one-way street for half a block, so I think I did very well!)
Hobart is a cute little city, quite old, some buildings going back to the very early 1800s.  I know, not really that old, but Australia and New Zealand are actually quite new countries, despite the fact that the indigenous peoples have been in these countries for centuries prior to the entry of Europeans.  (We were told the Aborigine presence in Australia goes back some 60,000 years.)

At any rate, Hobart has a lot of old buildings, some new buildings, and notably (for us) Australia's first synagogue, consecrated in 1845.  Very interesting building, with trapezoid windows - hardly what I'd expect from 1845!

The court building had a 3-D version of the national seal of Australia - I love the kangaroo and emu!  (Ostriches are in Africa, emus are here.  Who knew?)

And there are parks all over the city:  Arthur's Circus (which is a small park in the middle of a roundabout); Prince's Park; Elizabeth Park with lovely fountains; and St. David's Park, complete with lions flanking the entrance gate!  (St. David's Park is, appropriately enough, located on Davey Street.  Not sure if the street is named for the saint, or what.)

And then, because people in Australia, or at least in Tasmania,

are as quirky as people in New Zealand - and because there are bakeries all over - and because Easter is approaching in a few weeks - I saw these two wandering around the city, the young woman offering people "Easter buns" which are just hot cross buns.  

So of course I had to get their photo.  The young woman did offer to take my photo if I wanted to pose with the bunny.  But I didn't.  I just wanted their photo.  Because this is just one of those weird and random things you find when travelling.  Or at least, when I'm travelling.

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