This Adventurous Age

Adventures travelling and working around Australia.

2015 Travels May 11

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A slow start to the day. The Cowra night was nowhere near as cold as Canberra had been.

I had a wonderful morning shower – continuous hot water. But there was the problem of the shower curtain getting too up close and friendly. I hate shower curtains!

After an early lunch at Bus, set off to visit the Japanese Gardens.

Cowra was the site of imprisonment of Japanese prisoners of war during WW2. These modern gardens are symbolic of subsequent friendship and Cowra’s modern emphasis on peace.

The town also has a Peace Bell, a replica of the one that stands in front of the United Nations building in New York. It was apparently a great honour for Cowra to receive one of these.

John and the bell

We left Couey in the car. The day was not hot, so she was fine there. Entry to the Gardens cost $13 each, which turned out to be good value.

The Gardens were huge and it took us quite a while to wander through them and admire all the different outlooks and cameo views that such gardens feature. These were beautifully done, and in our view, worth visiting Cowra for, all by themselves.

The upkeep required would certainly generate employment in the town – all the highly manicured lawns, for starters.

What an intensive design effort must have gone into the Gardens, in the first place, because there were so many micro elements and features within the larger whole. Just nothing had been left to chance – except maybe the odd wild bird that had taken up residence.

There were little features to look at around every curve, like a particularly shaped rock, or a diosma bush trimmed to a circular shape.

One needed to look at the immediate foreground, as well as the distant vistas, I loved it and John was pretty impressed, too.

Traditional Japanese tea house

The only part that left us cold was the bonsai display house. I know that creating bonsai is an ancient art that takes huge skill and time, but to me it is cruelty to plants.

Way back in 1998/9, we spent the Xmas holiday silly season hiding out in Toowoomba, away from the hordes at the coasts. I used to enjoy walking in the Japanese Gardens there, but they paled into insignificance beside the Cowra Gardens.

In the inevitable gift shop, we succumbed to temptation. I bought a set of wind chimes – large hanging tubes. Something I had wanted for a while but had not been able to find quite the right ones. I wanted to be able to hear them on even a slight breeze, but for them not to have a tone that would scare me awake in the night if there was a sudden gust of wind. These had really pleasant tones.

John was very taken with a dichromatic glass small platter in tones of blue, so we bought that too. Both items were reasonably priced, I thought.

After the experience of the Gardens, any other sightseeing today would be an anti-climax, so decided to head back to Bus. But the road that had taken us to the Gardens, led on to a scenic hill lookout, so we went that way.

That, too, was worthwhile. There were extensive outlooks over the town and surrounding countryside. We walked from the car park area up a short foot road to the top. This was also a walk for dog.

It was attractive countryside around Cowra. From the lookout, we could also see the Lachlan River winding around the town.

Cowra from Lookout

Continued on – driving down the very steep and narrow, one-way, road from the lookout, direct to town.

Packed our new treasures carefully away in Bus, under my bed.

I made hamburgers for tea, using a slice of toast for John’s, instead of a bun. Maybe a bit more healthy? Mine came with no bread. Did that make it not really a hamburger at all? I pondered that philosophical question whilst cooking…

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