Saturday, January 14, 2012

Getting away from the people who get away from it all

Years ago, the country used to go to the city in search of entertainment. Nowadays, the situation is reversed, and every week, great hordes of people from the city descend upon the country in search of - well, not always entertainment exactly. But enlightenment, maybe? Or possibly just at great expense? One or other of these things is certain to be found in the country, which is full of historic towns, and historic markers, at which historic incidents occurred at historic times in history, opposite this historic tree growing out of that historic grass underneath a historic sky full of historic clouds. (You can tell all these things from the signs telling you about them, which signs were made... historically.) How could you not find entertainment, enlightenment, or expense in these places?

And so it was that Tim joined the manic urban hordes rushing out into the countryside in search of enlightenment, and travelled out west to Kyneton and Castlemaine, where I found - a little entertainment, no enlightenment to speak of, and some more expense. But mostly, I found the city I had just left, poking its face into the doors of the country, crowding into the small country fairs, taking up all the seats at the bars and cafes, and then some of the standing places in the queues, getting in the way of the dogs and cats, tripping up the locals, and generally making a nuisance of itself (presumably in search of entertainment).

I did finally find a place to eat - it looked quiet enough, and seemed to be situated on a relatively tranquil stretch of road, and one or two more or less leafy gum trees seemed to be growing in close proximity. It was only after I had seated myself, and made orders, and got my hat balanced, and made it rather difficult (both physically and ethically) for me to leave that I learned that I had seated myself in a cafe that had just that morning received a good review in The Age. Blimmin' hell! I was surrounded by a flock of Fairfax readers, a mob of manic Melbournites in search of a dear little cafe, in a delightful nook, with wonderful prices. It made me wish I'd bought my copy of the Oz in order to ruffle it ostentatiously in the other customers' faces.

Anyway, after my trip to the country I can report that the leaves were suitably leafy, the grass was more or less golden, the scenery pretty much lived up to its reputation for being scenic, and the tranquility was pretty nea... well, it was impossible to tell from that cafe, but once I left it was pretty good, anyway. And I got several great deals from a huge bookstore at Campbell's Creek.

But by Jove, it's great to be back in a quiet suburb on the outskirts of Melbourne, a place where nobody who wants to go anywhere goes, and to have finally got away from all the people who are getting away from it all.


Anonymous said...

Tim, Castlemaine is Northcote transposed to a once rural locale. You didn't really go to the country.

Helen said...

(Whispers) Psst - Bemm River, that's all i'm sayin'...

TimT said...

Kim - I KNEW it. They TRICKED me with their 'historic town' and 'historic marker' signs.

Good point Helen, must give the canoe an old once over.

Email: timhtrain - at -

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