We had a few days of indulgence, staying Sunday night at the vineyard resort. The package included a beautiful 4-course dinner, and hefty breakfast. To work up an appetite for dinner (as if we needed to) we walked up into the hills behind the resort at dusk. I was aware of an odd sound, in the distance, like farm machinery, but at this hour? I turned back to see a cloud of hundreds of white cockatoos settling into the tops of tall eucalyptus trees for the night, and they rose and flew around in a mass, another 3 or 4 times before finally coming to rest. What a sight, and what a sound, even at that distance. Too bad the distance and poor light wouldn't let me capture it on a photo. But here are two photos, the first from the balcony of our unit, and the second a photo of the unit itself, the building on the right, which consisted of two units. It was very peaceful: no TVs, no telephones.
The next day, Monday:
We hiked to some waterfalls but there was no water, although I did get to set up this silly photo. I just made it into the frame. The Man Who Cooks did not fare as well though. When he got up after the photo was taken he discovered that he had sat on sticky sap from that tree. Fortunately he had a change of pants.
When walking back to our car, we saw these beautiful birds, I think they're called Southern Red Robins, but don't hold me to it. Thanks to Rebecca and Catsmum for the correct info and this link.
We chose to go on some back roads on our way to Castlemaine, and are so glad we stopped at the tiny town of Majorca. This was the old general store, one of only 3 or 4 buildings left from the gold rush. At one time, there were more than 50 houses and buildings on the street you see here.
We stopped at this very depleted reservoir. Fortunately some rain has started to fall, and there's even some water in our own dam. The countryside is showing a light green fuzz, very encouraging.