Heaven scent and homegrown
Reap the rewards of a rich harvest with a weekend away in the luscious countryside of the Apple Isle
IT WAS love at first sight. I wanted the Pashley bicycle, with its springy large seat and basket overflowing with lavender.
It had my name all over it, surely? I could picture myself riding through narrow, cobbled lanes in some picture-perfect French village with my basket loaded with baguettes, fresh butter, cream, cheese, chilled wine, green stalks of something stupendously healthy, clementines – simply because I like the French word for tangerine more, and beautiful French pastries.
Yes, indeed, I could see myself livin’ the dream so I simply had to win that raffle at the Clare Writers’ Week.
But while I had the microphone in my hand and tried to bully a hundred or more people to focus on the number 636, I realised I was thinking about Tasmania, from where I like to do a lot of my writing in the mainly cool climes when the mainland is sweltering through summer. I was reminded that we have everything we need right here for amazing holidays.
Now I know you may want to stick me in the stocks and throw rotting fish heads at me because I do get to go to Paris most years and travel the world for my work but I’m going to say it . . . the very best bit about globetrotting is coming home.
We have it all going on here – desert, rainforest, beaches, mountains, snowfields, wilderness and our own gorgeous villages and hamlets that may not have the ancient history of Britain, or may not tumble down hillsides as they do in southern France, but our tiny towns are alive with rural activity and if you take the time to visit, you’ll be able to fill your own bicycle baskets with incredible homegrown product.
When in Tassie I go to our local village at Cygnet for the best sourdough loaves I’ve ever eaten, vegetables dug up from the earth that morning, boxes of cherries, bags of just-picked apples from orchards that line the road, and carton-loads of the fattest, sweetest, reddest, strawberries, or plump blueberries plucked that day; oozing amber honey of the highest organic quality, awardwinning cheeses to make your heart sing, cakes, chutneys, pickles, exquisite handmade chocolates – all of this grown, picked, bottled, baked or made within the small Huon Valley.
And while the Huon region is breathtakingly beautiful, it’s