Are you a hibernator or an insulator?…..

Are you a hibernator or an insulator?

A question asked of me the other day to which I replied – it depends on the day.
Cold wet and miserable – I’m certainly a hibernator
staying inside with the fire going to keep me warm.
Cold sunny and dry – I try to be an isulator
outside enjoying the day, wrapped up to keep warm!

Sunday morning was cold and frosty but oh so sunny with hardly a cloud in the sky – not a chance of showers anywhere in the state.
Looks like it’s an insulator day ūüôā

Such a shame to miss one of those glorious precious Winter’s days so what do we do but pop out to Healesville to see how much water was in the Maroondah Dam.¬† Yes, such is the way of we older ones who look for ‘thrills’ on the cheap lol

Two minutes out of Lilydale and onto the Maroondah Highway
for a short half hour drive.  Trivia fact here РMH was originally called Three Chain Road because it was 66 yards (60 m) wide!

Photos were taken out of what turned out to be a grubby windscreen – they do look¬†much better if you enlarge them.¬† With all this on my doorstep you’ll get the idea of why I love living out here in the eastern suburbs

Maroondah Highway

We pass lots of Yarra Valley Vineyards
Some with home paddock sheep to keep the grass down – some bigger establishments without!

Some with a few home paddocks sheep

Some without

There are definite signs of Winter along the way when you look at some of the big deciduous trees favoured in this area

Leafless trees signs of winter

Through the busy little town of Healesville, set in the foothille of the Great Dividing Range, busy on a Sunday same as any day, but see the trees are bare on one side of the street but not the other – must have a different micro climate. More sun more shade??

Healesville trafficHealesville Grand Hotel

Loads of cars in the car park
Looks like the cold 5c/41f weather hasn’t deterred too many.Dam car parkand this is what we have come to see

Maroondah Dam Aug 2014

I’ll leave it there and come back another day

Word of Mouth advertising………………..

Whilst we were in Singapore we once again stayed in a hotel at the top end of Orchard Street,¬†very reasonably priced and a favourite with¬†Australian tourists as well as¬†aussie business men/women.¬†¬†Chatting to someone at breakfast in the¬†Cafe one morning we discovered he was a ‘local’ to us living near Healesville in the Yarra Valley¬†– local being about a 20 minute¬†drive from our home and the place where The Golfer golfs.

Amongst some¬†of the things we discussed¬†(his¬†Chinese contacts who¬†were involved with the wine industry, the weather, the new Australian government to name a few lol)¬†were cafes, coffee shops¬†and restaurants in the valley particularly ones springing up in Healesville itself, one of which was¬†new to us¬†called Essenza.¬† On Main Street he said – look for the hole in the wall like an arcade and they serve great coffe!¬† ‘Word of mouth’ recommendations are usually good tips so¬†we¬†drove out there the other day¬†and¬†walked down Main Street¬†looking for the cafe.

Healesville isn’t a large place (a couple of years ago the pop. was¬†about 6,000)¬†– it’s on the Maroondah Highway about 50kms away from Melbourne city centre –¬†close enough to get to ‘the big city’ for business and far enough away¬†to attract visitors out to the¬†forests and wineries in the area.¬†¬†There is also lots of through traffic especially in the winter time making its way¬†out to the ski fields¬†at¬†Lake Mountain¬†then¬†through Mansfield to the resort at Mt Buller – hence its abundance of places to eat.

Get your foodie fix in Healesville, a regional food and wine hub surrounded by stunning scenery

¬†Moving on down¬†– lots of food places to be seen – lots of traffic on the road.¬† Don’t forget these photos will enlarge with a click.

Top end of Main Street Healesville

Top end of Main Street Healesville

Is it a dog or a horse??

Is it a dog or a horse??

It’s a nice street to wander down – people nod and say hello – even bring their horse like dogs to town (isn’t he a beauty) Don’t they feed them at home??

And of course you can always eat and drink at the pub Рthis one is famous

The Grand Hotel Healesville

The Grand Hotel Healesville

Pottering on down the street looking for an alleyway near an estate agent – this might be¬†it¬†‘cept it’s not very wide

Looking good

Looking good

Gosh it's not very wide !

Gosh it’s not very wide !

Might take a step back for another look

Looking better!

Looking better!

Waiting for 2 flat whites and chocolate filled croissants – yes I know CFCs¬†aren’t on the menu at home but that doesn’t mean to say they can’t be eaten elsewhere¬†lol

Books and papers to read - music to listen too as well :)

Books and papers to read – music to listen too as well ūüôā

Latte Art on top and hot as well!

Latte Art on top and hot as well!

Here’s the coffee – nice tasting and hot.¬† Shame we had to remind them about the rest of the order ūüė¶
You can read about Essenza in the above links
I know all¬†our tastes are different –¬†Doesn’t always follow
that what you enjoy I will enjoy
In this case I do believe word of mouth advertising/recommendation was good.

The Weather Man said…………………

There was just a small chance of showers
So we went for a drive
Just a little way up the road
Into the Valley
(All photos enlarge with a click)

Vineyard hills

Into the Yarra Valley that is
Past the vineyards where the roadside Wattle was beginning to bloom

Vineyard Wattle

Along the Maroondah Highway
Past the wineries that line either side of the road
(And are hard to photograph travelling at 100kph/62mph lol)

Vineyard sky

Past the sheep grazing in the paddocks on the roadside
Who are also hard to photograph in a fast moving car lol

Sheep on the roadside

Past the vineyards where the pruning gangs
had been working  Рmaybe in the past week
(in the rain)

Vineyard trees

There was nobody to be seen
so it looked like they were enjoying a day of rest
Even tho’ the weather man had said
There was just a small chance of showers ūüôā

Skywatch Friday can be found here –