Friday, August 24, 2012

Melbourne Baths via Beechworth

The roving breezes come and go, the reed beds sweep and sway,
The sleepy river murmurs low, and loiters on its way,
It is the land of lots o' time along the Castlereagh.
Last school holidays, en route to Melbourne, we called in at Beechworth (again).  For an inland town old Beechworth has a lot going for it.  Wide streets with fabulous shopfronts.  The famous Bakery with the most incredibly well-stocked newsagent opposite.  Restaurants galore.  Dreamy walks.  History.  Wood fires at this time of year.  

It is stuffy in the steerage where the second-classers sleep,
For there's near a hundred for'ard, and they're stowed away like sheep, --
They are trav'lers for the most part in a straight 'n' honest path;
But their linen's rather scanty, an' there isn't any bath --
Stowed away like ewes and wethers that is shore 'n' marked 'n' draft.
But the shearers of the shearers always seem to travel aft;
In the cushioned cabins, aft,
With saloons 'n' smoke-rooms, aft --
There is sheets 'n' best of tucker for the first-salooners, aft.

One highlight of our visit to Melbourne (otherwise marred by the worst accommodation we have ever experienced), was an excursion to the Melbourne City Baths on a wedge-shaped block between Swanston and Franklin Streets.  The Baths opened in 1860 and mixed bathing was only permitted in 1947.  It's a gorgeous, quiet sanctuary in the city.  Used frequently by film crews as the setting is brilliant with its immaculate heritage detail carefully preserved.
Poems: (1) From The Travelling Post Office by AB (Banjo) Patterson. (2) From For'ard by Henry Lawson.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...