Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Sydney - Rouse Hill

Robin works five days a week so we are restricted to weekends for day trips where she can come. For our first Saturday she chose to visit Rouse Hill which is in Sydney's north west and an area which would be a long trip (42k or 30 miles) on public transport. We went in the exchange family's car.

The visitor center where you go to pay admission to go on the hour long tour.

The race course looking feature is part of the parking lot in front of the House and Farm. The road in between used to be the road to Sydney.

This old road is one of the oldest still remaining in Australia.

Prior to the building of the house, this was the site of a convict rebellion known as the Battle of Vinegar Hill. It did not go well for the convicts.

The school was built in 1888.

The school bell.

We entered the grounds of the house.

This garden is probably the oldest garden in Australia. The gutters were created to capture rain water that flowed down the hill into cisterns.

Initially there was no veranda. The window on the top floor second from the left is false and is for balance only.

The jacaranda trees bloom later than they do in Queensland and they seem to be a darker shade of purple.

We had to put on blue plastic booties to prevent damage to the floor inside. I would imagine that the family that lived there all those years would roar with laughter at this behaviour.

On entry, this is the first thing you see. There are three of them and were imported from England.

Ground floor rooms. Basically the whole house is much the same as it was when the last family member lived in the house.

Apparently, Banjo Patterson is in the photo. Back row to the right of the center bloke. He has his hand across his chest. For non Aussies, he was the bloke who wrote 'Waltzing Matilda'.

The TV was there when the family lived there.

I suspect this was James Rouse. He was quite wealthy.

The tour did not take us up stairs.

One of the descendants had a go at repairs.

Another failed project.

The building was attached to the main house where the forty servants lived and the cooking and washing were done.

Servant's quarters.

Our flat in Melbourne in 1975 / 1976 had one of those Hoovermatic washer / spin drier machines. We laughed to see it but remembered the machine as being pretty hopeless. For the ultimate in entertainment, watch this video of one in action.

We may laugh at the Hoovermatic, but prior to the arrival of washing machines, a housewife would have sold her first born into slavery to exchange this method of washing for a Hoovermatic.

My sisters and I had a scooter similar to this, but not as rusty.

It really is a nice area and the family used it for dances and other large celebrations.

We walked over to the stables.

A fierce-some looking mower.

Looking back to the house. The large two story section in the foreground is the servant's quarters.

Tack room.

One of Rouse's descendants was keen on riding motor bikes and kept records on maintaining his bike on the wall.

Old engine parts left to rust.

Remains of a chicken shed.

The garden was quite pleasant.

The toilet building.

Trunk of a Moreton Bay Fig tree.

A Bunya Pine. We passed through the Bunya Mountains where the trees grow in abundance a couple of years ago. Here is the blog.

Ornate gazebo at the bottom of the garden. 

It was a nice tour and I wished we could have seen more of the house and gardens. There is a limit to what you can see in one hour.

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