It was a learning experience this weekend past. And quite the lesson was taught.
You see, what I was able to learn, was the value of short weekend trips.
With our Indonesia and East Timor trip still a couple of months distant, we received an invite from a good friend Tarni to join her and a few others at the Heathcote Wine & Food Festival.
Accommodation had been arranged at a farmhouse named ‘Wyuna’, just outside the nearby town of Axedale, and it really provided all we needed and more (It’d be a great place to bring a family with young kids).
Initial impressions were good (we didn’t actually see the surrounds until day 2 as we only arrived around 9pm on the Friday night). The owners had left the fire set up ready to go, fresh farm eggs, milk and bread was waiting for our morning breakfast and there were plenty of beds and bedding.
The fire was promptly lit, a few bottles of red were opened and before long there were marshmallows toasting.
One by one the girls drifted off to bed, before the last 3 standing indulged in a round of Scrabble.
With the morning, I was able to discover (with some excitement) there was also a Vegetable Garden, a field made for Bocce, and what would delight any small folk, farm animals! (a Goat, Sheep and an Alpaca to be precise)
Sarah and I took a brief walk (and met some cows) after I’d whipped up a few batches of poached eggs for the girls back at the house, as we waited (ultimately quite a while as it hadn’t been arranged the night before) for a taxi to ferry us all to the wine festival.
By around 1pm we made it to the festival, grabbed ourselves some lunch (only responsible with the prospect of many a wine tipple to come) although it did come as a surprise to us that many of the food vendors were already out, or running out of stock. Not the best way to ensure the well being of the patrons!
The weather was surprisingly spectacular. We’d had reports that it was going to be a pleasant weekend, however what we encountered was if anything, too hot!
Still, we undertook our task of wine tasting with gusto, finding many a good drop along the course of the afternoon.
Tarni had the forethought to grab a selection of nougat for our return to the farm, whilst Sarah and I earned the mantle of “Best played on the day” for managing to sample a beverage from all but 2 of the stalls in attendance.
Cleverly we had also arranged for our same taxi to collect us at the days conclusion, to ferry us back to the farm.
It was certainly a smiling, bottle laden group that next faced our driver on his return!
With the evening so balmy, dinner was cheese, bread, olives and crisps, with a few more bottles of wine thrown in for good measure.
With a surprisingly lighter head than i would have expected, Sarah and I managed to rouse ourselves very early (only briefly, we did return to bed) to catch what was a beautiful sunrise over misty fields.
It was a beautiful way to remind ourselves that wonderful trips can be close to home, and don’t necessarily need to be longer than a couple of days!
Find more information on our wonderful farm cottage here: