059. Week 10. Day 64. Saturday 16th May 2009. Vehicle woes force us into staying in one place for 4 days…
Wake to what seems to be a clear day. The wind is whipping the trees and leaves are falling around the gardens already overblown with leaves. On the other side of the house big black clouds have grown out of the west and are heading this way. Rain is not predicted but you never can tell.
Here is how it works.
Choose any vineyard participating in the LL and buy a wineglass printed with the Lovedale emblem. The glass has a strap so it can be worn around the neck. It will cost $5 and entitles you to wine of your choice at all the participating vineyards. Just produce your glass and they fill it. Next a menu is provided. This shows all the meals offered by each vineyard. Some sell hors douvres, some entree’s, some mains while others a dessert. Some have a full menu. You can choose to wander from vineyard to vineyard, sampling wines and eating or just stay at one and eat and drink. Yesterday, we were told 10,000 people have booked to arrive by bus from Sydney and all accommodation is full. We thought it might be fun to attend as yesterday the sun was shining and we saw white marquees, tables and chairs being set up on lawns around each vineyard. Now the weather has turned dark and forbidding and we know there will probably be 20,000 people wandering around, it seems the decision to go to Nelson Bay
After a late breakfast and a lost morning it is too late to go to Nelson Bay. Instead, the decision having been made we went to Newcastle, a city in the process of re-inventing itself. After the earthquake a few years ago and the closure of BHP facilities the city went into a decline. Now new money is being put back into making the city attractive both as a place to live and a place to play. Still, a drive along Hunter Street reveals many empty buildings. Parts of the city, close to the dock area have been converted to apartment buildings with lots of open spaces and parklands although to my eyes it appears to be ugly sameness and car parks.
We arrived at the main beach, Nobby’s,