Pumpkin with black spots
Playing tricks in a room painted with orange with black spots and a central cube of mirrors
Canberra – 3 days of culture, democracy, history, education, orientation, law and order, currency, nature and indulgence.
Orientation – Finding a location of significance was easy. Many could either be seen or had signage directing you to them from almost anywhere in the city. Good for tourism. However, if you needed groceries or fuel this was another matter.
Culture - The National Art Gallery – Not only was the Building housing the National Gallery of Australia awesome it was great to see some artistic icons such as Blue Poles and some more contemporary pieces such as Pumpkins and Black dots.
Democracy - Parliament House – The last time we visited Canberra New Parliament House was still under construction. A truly magnificent piece of architecture with so much thought and planning, giving significance to almost every aspect of the building.
Orientation - Views and vistas, colours, artworks, furniture, size and shape of spaces and their uses, courtyards and their landscaping you name it there was an explanation for why it was done this way. While the public could wander around public areas, we opted for a Behind the Scenes tour. This was well worth it.
We saw and we learnt even though we still couldn’t enter the Houses (as they were not in session), we could peek through the doors which is more than we could have otherwise done.
Law and Order - The High Court of Australia – Again an impressive piece of Architecture. The same era as The National Gallery – so essentially sculptured concrete, perhaps not to everyone’s taste. No courts were in session but tour guides at each of the courts were happy to have a chat and show us around. As a result, we both have a much better understanding of the purpose of this court and how it works.
Currency - The Royal Mint - Money, money, money. The history of the Australian monetary system proved much more complex than we realised. Lots of examples of rare coins, fakes and flawed coins. The original Mr Squiggle and friends was a current feature. Little kids were fascinated but the reaction of many adults who grew up watching Mr Squiggle was possibly more interesting. Unfortunately, it was Saturday so there was little more to see than the static displays.
History - The National War Memorial
– So much to see and learn here. We visited twice and still didn’t see everything. It’s one of those places that can be a little confronting. It is enormous with so many exhibits from artefacts, dioramas, films, displays, models, interactives and static displays. There were things to capture the attention of every age group. Like Parliament House, this was a popular venue for school groups. Looking at those in attendance, we were also intrigued by the diversity of the people, their cultural background, ages and high level of engagement. There is certainly a lot more for us to see here in the future.
Nature - Fauna in the caravan park. Obviously, people feed the birds and animal and this encourages them to come in close and personal. This can be entertaining until they poop, steal or become aggressive. Large, bright red parrots are common here and if they thought they would get a treat from you they would hang around until a better offer came along. Similarly, magpies in the Parliament House courtyard café seem to think serenading patrons is a good way to get a feed. They are probably right most of the time. Even a
possum was almost wooed by Greg as he wandered after dark.
Indulgence - We managed to score a waterfront table for lunch at the Yacht Club. It was a beautiful weekend day so many families and groups were taking advantage of the perfect weather to dine in or picnic on the lawns at the Sailing Club. Again beautiful seafood!
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