October has certainly been turbo-charged. It is THE month for socialising, both on a personal level and more generally for the local community. Spring is party time.
We shared the start of the month with a special friend who had a special birthday at a secret location. It was a perfect spot for a birthday celebration. A few of us drove in (all wheel drive only). Others hiked in. Everyone brought something to add to the birthday feast. We camped overnight. It was a bit nippy, but oh, the serenity. I’ll definitely be returning.
(Click on photos to enlarge)
In September/October, there is a big tulip festival, Floriade, in Canberra organised by the local government. On the outskirts of town is another private garden, Tulip Tops, that also opens to the public each year. My friend and I visited Tulip Tops on a grey day. Such a spectacle of beautiful flowering ornamental fruit trees under sown with drifts of tulips and other flowering bulbs – it was almost too much for me to take in. Everyone had their cameras out; at every turn, the perfect Instagram moment!
What a huge undertaking this must be for the owners of Tulip Tops. Unlike Floriade, there is no huge marketing budget to attract visitors, but the place is magic and every year visitor numbers grow. As my friend and I were leaving, a young lady and her beau entered carrying a beautiful yellow dress. Wedding photos or an Instagram photo shoot perhaps? Anyway, good luck to them.
I much prefer the delicacy of native Australian plants, but even I had to admit that Tulip Tops was absolutely stunning. The owners are deserving of their success. Each bulb is planted with love. The same can be said for Canberra’s Floriade flower display. Floriade is a little more programmed, rowdy and crowded, but it too is a labour of love. So visit both if you have the opportunity. Appreciate the differences. Spend time and relax. Or if you are a (big) kid, race around madly. The flowers are nice, but the people are the real story.
Further afield, there was also plenty to see. We happened to visit Harden-Murrumburrah on the day of their kite festival. The main street of the small town was like a car park as cars queued for miles to get into the festival grounds. We were there for another reason (ie. honey – see Something’s Cooking in Harden Murrumburrah). The kite festival looked so much fun. Just down the road, the Temora Aviation Museum was holding the Warbirds Downunder airshow. 20,000 visitors were expected. The following weekend, Murrumbateman held its agricultural field days. See, it is all happening in October.
Not only people have been soaking up the warmth of the spring sun. The reptiles have been out and about too. We spotted a shingleback crossing the road and an Eastern Bearded-Dragon trying on a new skin for size.
As for the birds, they’ve been extra busy building nests and raising chicks.
Congratulations if you’ve got this far. You must be exhausted. Soon we will settle into a slower pace. Nothing marks the end of this period of fecundity more than the fluff falling. It is said that if you haven’t started studying for exams by the time the fluff falls, you are in trouble. To me, the fluff signals lazy days ahead.
Every month Su Leslie from Zimmerbitch hosts a monthly photo challenge, The Changing Seasons. Check it out and join in the fun.