So, before we start the Tasmania update, it occurs to us we completely forgot to tell everyone what our Christmas dinner was. It was untraditional, but still delicious. There are two kinds of Christmas dinner in Australia. The first is a hot feast, similar to the States with turkey or ham or a roast, but with some traditional British elements thrown in. The other, which is growing in popularity, is the cold seafood lunch consisting of prawns, oysters, lobster, and an assortment of salads. After all, it is summer here. We had steaks, chicken kababs, a mango and blueberry salad, tabouli, and a prawn and avocado salad. Delicious!
Now that that is out of the way . . . on to Tasmania!!
Every Saturday the Salamanca Markets are open in downtown Hobart. They feature the typical assortment of fresh food, clothing, and arts and crafts items. The stands are set up in the streets in front of a mixture of beautiful, historic buildings and new, modern architecture. We were able to go on Sunday only because Christmas was on Saturday so the market had been postponed. While walking around we found a restaurant called the Ball and Chain. It featured mostly steaks cooked on a charcoal grill. We went there for dinner and man was it delicious!
Greg found a cool, custom cast-iron bench. He took a moment to ponder matters of great importance.
This is Salamanca Place. More shops and restaurants, more modern style architecture here.
There was a giant chessboard with plastic pieces. Greg is currently using his kinght to launch a gambit against the black bishop on F4 . . . or, just trying to look and sound intelligent. And awesome.
Tasmania was originally discovered and owned by the Dutch. It was named after the Dutch explorer Abel Tasman in 1642, and below is the statue commemorating his discovery. Although apparently they didn't realize it was a seperate land mass from Australia for another hundred years. There are still several areas and land features that go by their original Dutch name, including the mountains Heemskerck and Zeehaen.