A Weekend at Sovereign Hill - Part 4 @ Saturday, August 13, 2016
Sunday 17th July
Slept in, whoops. Didn't have time for pancakes, though we packed pretty quick, as we were only there for two nights we just lived out of the suitcases. For someone who doesn't travel I sure have a lot of suitcases and travel kits. I don't travel because I don't know if it's safe... also can't afford it. I don't backpack, I stay at hotels. But then it's so nice it's hard to leave!
Knife Fork Spoon for coffee, well hot chocolate by Grounded Pleasures made locally. KFS was almost a place out of Hipsterville! Except it was indoors with no windows or courtyard. Full for brunch, with a line out the door! Prices matched Hipsterville.
There were beautiful cakes in bell jars and the likes, that reminded me of 'The Stables of Como' (a very popular brunch spot and event venue) and Alice Nivens (suits cafe, open M-F closes by 4pm).
Next door was a Rockabilly Shop, though they were closed.
Back to Sovereign Hill, Day 2. It's a buy one day get one free deal, and you'll need a day and a half if you want to see everything and go to all the talks.
Jas ran off to the wagon/stables talks while I went to the candy store, where a few things had sold out! While I have a jar of raspberry drops (their signature candy) I bought another as well as salted caramel and acid lemon drops. Also a toffee apple to share.
Soon there was a red coat rifle demo (yes the same as yesterday) but this time we were outside, and the irritating sound of many children crying at the same time right after the shots were fired were heard. Soap bubble snow and carols followed.
I'm still O.o that the name of the candy shop isn't right above where the shop is. Instead it's around the back near the kitchens.
The post office is where you can get your tickets stamped to get in for day two, as it's not auto. Around the back is the post master's house. It's dark, not airy and bright like popular photo locations and brunch spots. Someone's popular! A waiting room. What's that reflector? Surely not a tv screen...
The kitchen is separate to the rest of the house, in case of fire. Also the smoke, cancer. Though not so known back then. Why aren't kitchens separate these days? *accident prone*
Charles Napier Hotel.
United States Hotel Bar - Well this is taking a while...
Lunch from Hope Bakery, beef/veg x apple pasties. I asked, there's no secret menu, and there are definitely no pumpkin pasties. Half savory, half sweet it was pretty awesome! But would meat and apple bake at the same rate?
At the bowling alley the ball felt like it was made of metal!! It was heavy and the lanes were long, unlike the lines. Pure novelty as no one wanted more than one go.
Another school? I feel that this town needs a Pottery Barn. There's a classroom set up in the left window and brass-ish store on the right. Left is the bowling alley.
Uphill to the National School, where only wealthy children went both girls and boys though they'd learn different things. The girls how to be a housewife (cook, clean, sew) and boys learnt (stuff?) and how to draw and read maps. With my sense of directions we're lost! Hope someone bought the flares.
The teacher was harsh and offered no smiles. Well life was hard, and dirty (dusty/muddy), discipline at school was fine. Nowadays for us (Americans) it's not ok at school, but at home it's up to the parents. Le beau says it's generally not ok here, instead they bribe the kids to be good.
We were in time for a demo, first you'd practice in a sandpit, then chalkboard then finally with ink. 'I swear that I am solemnly up to no good'. XD The ink fades as you go, as unlike pens these things don't hold the ink.
Most of the kids go the year wrong, but July 17th 1854 was a Monday, not Sunday. There was text to copy from the board (its been a while since used blackboards, science 2009?) but I decided to be my own thing. Do you think you're smart? XD No. The teacher asked what's wrong, and it took me a moment to realize the line wasn't as I recalled! The 's' was missing! She says quite a few people recite that line and get it wrong.
Jas was judged as a lefty XD Been not mainstream/creative was not cool back then, and was on way to fastback yourself to being accused of witchcraft. Which isn't real, it's a means that girls use against other girls they don't like.
There was a second school, surely the town isn't that big that you need two? I also thought the church could double as a school, though jas says back then church was a daily thing?
Exploring cottages, small bedrooms are actually ok if you have a separate room as a study. There are ikea houses this size I'm sure, though things are made more compact and less cramped. Was that bed put together in the room? How else would you get it through the door?!
The laundry was depressing. Wouldn't you have servants? No says jas, not for a cottage of this size. I would have liked to see the mayors house. It's not the goldfields but if you're interested Como House was built in 1847, though focuses on the Armatages, who moved in in (year) and stayed till the 50s.
Making the most of winter.
It was pretty cold during the day, though after 4pm was when it was freezing! On the streets were these bins of wood with fires. Did someone bring a s'more kit? Because they weren't selling any. :(
Down towards the entrance was the Chinese Village. I'm pretty sure someone (a teacher?) told me that they were allowed to come over as vegetable farmers, but I'm slightly confused. Captain Cook claimed Australia for England, for Queen Victoria. So why were other people allowed to come over and dig for gold?
There was a Chinese temple/church which was quite dark, nothing like our churches with uncomfortable pews/benches and lots of windows. Can we smoke opium in here? :P *Not sure where the pictures for this section went...*
Many of the huts featured interactive screen where you could read about the place. The Europeans were suspicious that the Chinese weren't hygienic... yep. While I think certain races (some asians among them) are less clean than others related to their culture and up bring I can also name more than half a houseful of white people who shower weekly around me. I think they were just caught being unclean more than others?
Tradition Chinese medicine, a bowl of black water. You can still go to these shops today in asian areas.
Something I noticed was that we saw white cottages/cabins and Chinese tents, but not any European/British tents? The weather would have been different back then but surely not everyday was a lovely spring day followed by summer nights? It would have been freezing!
The carriage rides while smelly were popular.
For those who refuse to try new things and want to go to your typical cafe there's one those. Behind the town on the eastern side, it was so out of place! It reminds me of those cafes like at the museum and zoos.
Entry to the hill also included entry for the Gold Museum across the hill. Along with the history of Sovereign Hill there were also exhibitions on WW1 and coins.
The Regent is a movie theatre, there's also either Her Majesty or the Princess too.
The sun was setting as we drove back home, passing a few McDs paired with gas stations. The Happy Meal is now $5.05?! I recall it was always mean to be $4.95 to compete with the other fast food $5 meals.
We had a good time, though didn't get a chance to see Lake Wendouree and Ballarat Botanic Gardens, but I did have a dream about watching the sunrise at the lake with le beau.
- BYO food to SVH
- Bring cash, wet wipes
- Bring boots, your city shoes aren't going to survive this dust storm, or the mud if it rains
- First stops: book mine tours, candy shop
- Wet wipes!!
Quick & easy foods using just a kettle & microwave.
- 2 minute noddles
- soup sachets
- porridge, just add milk
- We also bought along a jaffle maker for pancakes.
- Being winter we bought thermos for tea/coffee/hot chocolate.
I would have liked to have seen talks on getting dressed in the morning, daily life and the likes.
Part 4 - This Post.
Have you been to Sovereign Hill? What are your tips for a weekend getaway?
Hi. I'm Charlie. Capricorn. ISFJ. An Events Planner. An American, San Franciscan in Melbourne.
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