Monday, August 28, 2006

Niagara Café in Gundagi

I think this is the name of the café that we have visited on our way north. It is run by a family, I believe they are Greek. The location is the main street of Gundagi famous for the dog on the tucker box story. There is a monument to him not far from the township, from memory you can have a picnic there, appropriate really.

The first time we went there it was by chance [as with so many finds in life, a chance encounter and you can be hooked for life.] A car load of kids, a start of a holiday, lets give the kids something historical to see. What better than iconic Gundagi and seeing we were on the road there, the song came next, ‘On the road to Gundagi’ had to be sung as we drove the last few kilometres off the main road. Having got there it was a very ordinary little town. Main street with old shops and pubs, a playing field and picnic area down towards a river from memory. Having taken in the surrounds with a sweep of the main streets in the car, we decided first things first, fill our stomachs, that was the purpose of the visit.

I think we had a choice of a couple of eateries and a hotel or two. When I looked through the windows of the Niagara it looked like something out of the 1950s or 60s , with bench seats and fixed tables. Pictures on the wall of politicians was a bit different and mainly Laborites too. From memory outside was cold and inside was warm and welcoming. Milk bar counter and the front of shop and tables on the other side. The back was shielded with some panelling and fly trap type plastic strip doorway to a kitchen. Menus on each of the tables showed basic fare, including baked beans on toast and of course hot chips. A range of toasted sandwiches were chosen along with drinks and chippys, and while I waited I watched the family busy themselves around the shop and kitchen preparing meals and serving customers. A little disorganised to the untrained eye, but in a matter of no time the food was on our table and being devoured. The daughter who served us was beautiful in that dark Greek way. I think my eyes followed her around the room for the rest of my meal. She had a look of must get out of here one day soon. I imagined her wondering about the lives of her customers and their trips back to the city.

I think there was a picture of Bob Hawke or Paul Keating on the wall possibly saying “Hi” to the owner. Maybe it was both Bob and Paul in their buddy period.

Every time we go anywhere near Gundagi we call in on the Niagara Café. I hope it is still going and the beautiful Daughter I wonder if she ever caught a bus out of there and found what her heart is looking for.


Spring has sprung

The weekend went by with a blur of basket balls and some good music down at the local. Fire and Theft are really hitting their straps now.

Ev and I saw some amazing coins in the Ian Potter museum up at Melbourne Uni. Quite unexpected having spent half an hour looking at out of focus photo prints we found these amazing little coins that date back over 2000 years. They looked new straight from the mint.

Well to the Spring, for the first time in a long time the morning walk with dog started in daylight and there was a mildness in the air that makes the nose tell the brain that spring is in the air. The elm trees are pushing out their new leaves that look like clusters of green flowers. The air is thick with smells of blossom.
Tomorrow it will probably rain and go all south wind cold again. But for today Spring has Sprung here in Melbourne.