Wednesday 15 December 2010

Lesson learned

Free tram today, for a change - well-used by locals, which seems a bit of a cheat. Also a cheat is the very picturesque old stone cottage known as Captain Cook's Cottage, where he never actually lived, though his parents did. Brought out in bits from England and rebuilt, testament to Cook's kudos here.

Even greater celebrity was earned by Phar Lap, to be seen up at the impressively huge and modern museum, where his skeleton is on loan from Te Papa, accompanying the museum's masterfully mounted hide in celebration of 150 years of the Melbourne Cup. I've stood next to a few big horses in my time but he was awesome, truly: 17 hands 1 inch. A beautiful animal. (Though it must be said, he only won the Cup once, while Makybe Diva won it 3 times consecutively. And she was a mare.)

The accompanying notes gave proper credit to NZ for his breeding and birth, I'm happy to say. As is only proper.

In other news, we were barked at by the Watch House sergeant and locked up in the dark this afternoon, at the Gaol. That's the last time I handle stolen goods.

(The top photo is of a tapestry at the museum referencing Simpson, the Southern Cross flag of rebellion, 'Weary' Dunlop, who I just found out about yesterday, and Ned Kelly, who was hanged in the gaol. Excellent connections today.)

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