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2006 Hobart in June – Day 4

Mt Wellington & Cadburys – frozen chockies in the wilderness

Monday – We wake to another crisp Hobart morning.  The sunrise is spectacular – I don’t know what it is but when I am away from home I just can’t sleep in.  I have to be up and doing.  This part of my character drives EVERYONE crazy.  Let’s just face it – the girl can’t help it AND I have to have the cameras going as well.  So that makes me twice the pest that I normally am.

With spectacular sunrises and sunsets not to mention glorious scenery how can anyone stay in bed and miss the best part of the day.  Just as well I have a room to myself.  I shut the adjoining door and mosey on out to the balcony – it is cold – no, it is really cold.  We were promised snow on the mountain but as yet the promise has not come to fruition.  Words will be said and letters will be written!

Our first task of the day is some brekkie.  We have a light snack and then it’s off to the Cadbury Chocolate Factory.  Cadbury’s make the best chocolate!

We are like kids at Christmas with the thought of being let loose – sort of – in a chocolate factory.  Big disappointment!  The samples as you walk around are no longer – we get to choose some little chockies before we go in and then we have to don our paper hair covers and cover all rings and bracelets and watches etc.  How close are we going to get I wonder.  I think our guide must have done a stint in the Armed Forces or a Women’s Correctional Facility.

The factory is not really busy today – there are only a few machines going but it is interesting to see the chocolate – vats of it – being made into cute little bundles.  We do not get close to anything moving and for safety reasons I can understand that – but we are not children and don’t have to be told every minute to stay on the yellow brick road.

At the end of the tour we can visit the Cadbury Store where there are some good prices to be had so of course we buy a few bags before we all collapse from a chocolate coma. This is a ‘once’ tour.  If you go to Hobart you have to go – but once is enough.

The smell of the place is wonderful when you first go in but after a while it gets a bit on the sickly side.  Not enough to make you detour from the shop – but enough so that you do not pig out on what you have bought!  Not for a day or two anyway!

We then have a little drive around Hobart. It is a pretty place.   But now it is up to the summit of Mt Wellington.  Why I kept on calling it Mt Pitt was beyond me.  Maybe I was dreaming of warmer days on Norfolk Island and wishing I was there instead of here amongst the ice shivering off my extremities.

There is ice laying on the ground so we have to be careful driving.  On the way to the top we pass a wonderful little waterfall cascading over the rocks on the side of the road – so of course we have to stop and of course we have to taste.  Off come the gloves and the water is freezing – fool – why did I think it would not be – but the taste of the water is beautifully sweet even though icy enough to make your teeth and throat ache.

We finally get to the summit and there is a wonderful glass building where you can go and admire the views without getting your butt frozen.   But being the pioneer that I am I grab the cameras and brave the cold.  The views from here are spectacular.

You can see right down to the River Derwent – and even the Cadbury Factory.  The others have taken refuge but I soldier on until breathing the cold air starts to freeze my body from the inside out but I keep on moving and breathing through my scarf which by this stage is wrapped around my throat.  The skies are so blue and every now and again the occasional wisp of cloud drifts right in front of me.

It is a brilliant place – and maybe, just maybe I am glad that there is no snow today as we may not have been able to get up here.  It is impossible to operate my cameras so off come the gloves!  Yikes – that is an experience I wish I never had – now my fingers are frozen on the camera. The others decide to venture out of their glass cage and we have a little walk around the back of the lookout.  The views are great but not as overpowering as those over the Derwent.  It is not long before they head for the warmth of the car – cowards.

I bid farewell to the wonderful mountain and her glorious views and thank her for letting me be a part of it – even for such a short time.  By the time I get into the car my bones are frozen – even through all the layers of clothing I can feel them shaking.  Where is a good pub when you need it?  Not on the top of Mt Wellington that’s for sure!

On our way down the mountain we stop at one of the rest areas for a pit stop.  Well, there is no way that I am dropping my draws in this cold that’s for sure.  We arrive back in the ‘warmth’ of Hobart and decide to have something to eat at Mure’s where we sit in the sun on the deck (they also have heated rest rooms)  – and then it’s a walk around the dock area where we are lucky to see the bridge being raised for one lone sail boat.

This has stopped all the traffic – what a hoot!  Because we knew we wouldn’t be back in time, we checked out of our hotel this morning and stored our bags in their safe area.  We drive back to the hotel, say farewell to Brenda who now has to journey back up to the north of the island.

We are flying out at 8.15pm tonight, a long haul home because we have to change planes in Melbourne, so we get our gear together, load up the car and then decide to have a bit of a drive around before heading on out to the airport.  We are getting weary so it’s off to the airport to return the car and find some seats while we wait to board.

When we finally get back into Sydney we were supposed to be collected by our Airport Shuttle Service but he is nowhere to be seen.  Even after many phone calls and messages we are still here waiting and it is getting late – so we have to cab it – which is a pain – but what can you do?  We had a great weekend – and now it finishes on this downer.  Nevermind.

Hobart is such a lovely place – so quaint and old world – but I am sure she rages every now and again.

Highlight of the day : Mt Wellington with those glorious views!

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