Saturday, December 17, 2011

Australia Part 7 - Brighton Beach Boxes and Mornington Peninsula

I look across the street as we get in the car to see a bit of graffiti on the fence across the street. "Joy" it says. I don't think I have ever seen uplifting graffiti here in the states. Only gang names and profanity. Each time I looked at the word "joy" I had to smile. What if we engaged in uplifting words and beautiful art on our public walls? I saw so much here and loved it all.

On this day, we headed out to pick up Eva's friend Pam, who was our tour guide to explore Brighton Beach and the Mornington Peninsula, located south of Melbourne. I can't get over the color of the sea here. Depending on how close you are to shore, it ranges between exquisite shades of aquamarine, sapphire and lavender. The wind was strong this day and the waves were tipped with white. We parked on the street and walked through the beach access gateway and at first, could only see beach and sand. But as we walked around a point, we were greeted with the site of colorful beach boxes.

The boxes originated in the Victorian era when modesty had great value and allowed for dressing in private. The boxes are primarily passed down through the family, but occasionally are up for sale and can fetch as much as $200,000 for this small (appx 8' by 12") shed. The owner maintains the paint job, but the designs have to be approved by the beach box associations. But they are striking in appearance. They are found all over Mornington Peninsula, but the most famous are here at Brighton Beach.

After exploring the long line of beach boxes, we drove into Mornington and explored the small stores that lined the streets. We shared !!a delicious lunch at a local hotel pub. There is always lamb on the menus here and I took advantage of this throughout my visit to have lamb whenever possible. Today, lamb shanks in a rosemary sauce...ummmummm!!

After a full day of exploring, we headed back to Melbourne and home. As we left, I saw this very old church with a very young take on sending out a message. I love this country!


Lucy said...

Beautiful words & photos Jan!
So lovely to look at your pics & read your words of things that we take for granted here in Oz.
Makes one love our Country just a little bit more!
Hugs, Love & a Very Merry Christmas to you & yours, Lucy

Ro Bruhn said...

I'm glad you got to see my other neck of the woods too Jan. For the past twenty years I worked ten minutes away from where you visited, and at least three times a week I would go down there in my lunch break to sketch and to walk, it's a lovely spot. We regularly go to Mornington for breakfast, including yesterday, the weather was divine so people were really lapping up the sunshine. I found a new shop there called Samsara, they have beautiful exotic furniture from all over the world and fabulous nic nacs, loved it all. I hope you have a lovely Christmas and a very creative 2012.

Jen Crossley said...

I always loving reading your blog and wish to myself I could write as beautifully as you do.You are a true story teller.I love the sign whelan the wrecker it reminds me of a real aussie saying.Your photos are just gorgeous

Bevlea said...

so glad to have you back jan.. loved your class, your company and your travels... hope to see you back again :-)