Off We Go… … to Toodyay!

Mandurah was wonderful…(I seem to be using that word a lot–probably because it fits!) our concert began with a fine introduction by Geoff, the chaplain who had helped Scott set up our tour. He spoke of the connections between Canada and Australia in the exploratory travels of Captain Vancouver. It set the stage for a well-attended and well-tuned concert, with strong audience participation.

After the concert, the Dean of the Cathedral spoke of the rich poetic theology in the music. The group appreciated the thoughtfulness of both speakers, as well as the spirit-filled audience.

Our accommodation in Mandurah (arranged be Scott and provided by the cathedral) was astonishing. [See the pictures in the last post!] it was unfortunate that we were there only one night!

March 1 arrived, and after a quick breakfast and loading out our gear, we set off for Toodyay! (For the non-Aussies, that is pronounced “tood-jay!”) It is a two+ hour drive into the countryside. Our arrival was greeted with the plans for a “barbie” with our host families at the rectory. We set up, and then ate and talked late into the night before heading home, for a two-night stay with our billet-hosts, Clive and Sheena Hesse. Sheena is Archivist for The Uniting Church in Western Australia, which only added fuel to our conversational fires!

March 2nd we rehearsed in the morning, then we’re taken, along with our hosts, to a family “farm” (that’s my Canadian term) where we were introduced to the making of wine the “old-fashioned” way! Picking grapes by hand, STOMPING them into juice, squeezing the juice, straining, and sampling the unfermented juice was a treat beyond words! Pictures are the only way to do that experience justice, so here’s a few.

1. Sheep – we have seen a lot of these animals, so I included only one picture!

2. A Laden Quince

3. Lloyd and Gordon crushing the grapes!

4. Sarah and Donna adding laughter and flavor!

5. From 8 five-gallon buckets, some 21 litres of juice (plus what we drank, of course!)

A Quince tree laden with fruit!

And, then that evening, after cleaning off the feet, a concert! And thus ended our stay in Toodyay.

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