Wednesday, 6 May 2015

Going for broke on red

Not a reference to Roulette, nor the Broke Road (a good source of red wines) but our purchases around McLaren Vale this afternoon.

As we set off this morning we noticed some Australian Wood Ducks on the park's swimming pool.  Their peace was soon disturbed when the Park Manager emerged and shouted at them.  Apparently guano doesn't mix well with chlorine, and the birds were reputed to be a source of salmonella.
As we finished our subsequent tour of Playford lake I looked up and spotted a fat chap sitting high in a tree above the path.  At least the branch is in focus!
Frances went to look at the Black Rose exhibition in the Art Gallery of South Australia.  As small dogs wold not be welcome in the Gallery I took her for a walk along the Torrens lake.  A strange sight was the looming refurbishment of the Adelaide Oval.
When we lived in Adelaide one of the cultural laws was that members had to be able to look across the Oval at the Victor Yorke Richardson Gates.  Obviously that has gone out the window now, probably reflecting that the members are more interested in their mobile phones and networking than contemplating a pleasant scene.  Plonkers.

At least they have kept the old scoreboard and a small amount of grass in front of it!  I was just able to get this snap before asked to leave the premises as it wasn't open.  (I did guess that I shouldn't have walked through a gap I found in the relaocated Victor Yorke Richardson Gates, and having a terrier on a lead possibly indicated I wasn't there on business.)
People going there more officially have to pay a minimum of $35 to watch a game, even from the Mound.  I did notice that the swanky restaurant is called the Hill of Grace - presumably a reference to the wine (nb: I tried to put in a link to Henschke's site but it was undergoing 'maintenance'), but as this isn't the SCG it should be Mound of Grace rather than the Hill.

They have spent $40m on a footbridge to take punters from the Oval to the station.  From conversations I picked up it seems that the one thing everyone knows s that this cost 40m!  It is very attractive, but apparently can't deal with the crowds who want to use it after matches.
Again indicating how things had changed the Torrens Parade Ground, which used to be a sacrosanct military site was now being used for a few token lefties to start a May Day March.  Being of the Left they were a fashionable day late and running their march of May 2!
This lot are from the CPA - I have obfuscated their faces, although if you're going to walk down King William Street carrying a Red Flag I presume you don't mind being identified as a twerp.
This got a prize for best poster at the event.  (The dog owner asked if we could move as the dog was about to start fighting with Tammy: I reckon that she'd have won, with him being encumbered by the sign but decided not to test it.)
For some reason the Vietnamese community were having a ceremony involving a lot of old dudes in uniforms .
.... and young women in silk dresses,
Proceeding on I had enough time to go up towards the zoo.  Obviously I couldn't go in with my little bit of lion tucker beside me, but as i approached I heard an unusual sound.  Actually it was uusual for Adelaide but common n many other places: a colony of fruit bats!
I spoke with a zoo person about this, and she said they had been around for years.  Most of the colony lived in the botainc gardens but they all move to the zoo area when the V8 race is on.  (Actually it is probably the spectators, not the cars which drive them away!)

Frances suggested I go and have a quick look at Black Rose and it was very good.

In the afternoon we picked up sister 1 and went to the Southern Vales to explore some wineries.  Our first stop was at Shingleback where James Halliday had given a large score to the 2012 Haycutters Shiraz.  They seemed a tad preoccupied with an impending tour bus, but we acquired a few samples.

Then on to Dogridge, again recommended Jimbo.  Tammy wasn't allowed in the tasting room but the lady in charge did bring samples out to us at the tables on the lawn.  Very pleasant drops they were too.  Purchases were made.

Our final winery stop was at Pirramimma where we got a whole lot of stuff on our last trip.  We were a little more restrained this time (mainly because of the impending swing through Rutherglen.  A very pleasant Shiraz was tasted and purchased.

We then went back to Maslins Beach to see if the birding situation had improved.  It hadn't, but the cliffs looked pretty.
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