Sunday, March 16, 2008

Somewhere Over the Rainbow

At 3:15 pm today Pete, Mina and I were gathered with our host families at a picnic table in St. Albans at the Settlers Arms Inn (1836) when the band there started playing "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" - which might be exactly where we have landed, the land that we heard of once in a lullabye, where dreams really do come true, a place where Rotary is showing every day what interactions between people and nations can do - and hey, peace needs to start somewhere, so let it begin with us.

This morning we met for breakfast and turned ourselves over to the welcoming Penrith RC. Once we got sorted out - and I don't know whose idea it was - we headed out for a drive through entirely different terrain, flatter, lots of horses, some cattle ... up and down and around curves until we came to a river crossing, which was done by a small ferry that could carry about 12 cars. Then on to the Settlers Arms Inn, a great pub seemingly in the middle of nowhere that had music and sunshine and food - and as we got to know each other, lots of laughs and fun as well.

There was a stunning collection of antique cars there, and one definitely caught my eye: a 1938 two-tone green Lagonda, which I'd never heard of, but it reminded me A LOT of Gram and Grampa's '37 Pontiac, so I was only a year off in guessing its age! Anyway, besides looking like it, it smelled EXACTLY like it, and Mom, Dad, Thom, Karen, you know what I'm talking about. Hey Laura, do you remember riding around standing up behind the front seat (the only seat)? : ) The owner said I could have it, ha ha ... he said the company was founded by an American in England. An exPontiac employee, perhaps?

Had a chat with an older gentleman who was staying at the inn, he'd buried 20 ounces of gold somewhere around decades before and now with the price going up, he thought he'd try to find it ... happy hunting!

~ The inn was built by convict labor of handhewn sandstone andwas a stopover for the stagecoaces travelling between Sydney, Parramatta and Newcastle along the Old Northern Road. Now it's o the wa to the Hunter Valley wineries.

I guess I better go for now, hope all is well with everyone. Tomorrow's another adventure!

1 comment:

karen and thom said...

Great outing with antique cars! Kate the antique car buff - alright! What wonderful weather you must be having and not like here where it is snowing and mounting on Jacob's back - - the goats are inside due to the "bad hair day". Hugs to Kate from Thom and Karen ... possible northeaster early next week!