So says Baron Carl Von Hügel after travelling 1600 miles from Albany to Hobart in January 1834. My own 'landfall' as I approached Hobart was via the air. The small porthole an aeroplane window— less landfall, more bird's eye view.
|'Landfall' - Monday 9th February|
Like Von Hügel I have arrived in Hobart with a plan — to re-trace his foot-steps as described in Dymphna Clark's 1994 translation of his New Holland Journal. Naturally this means walking through places that might be familiar or recognisable through the descriptions in his journal, but which nevertheless show the markings of 180 years of hard wear.
Von Hügel arrived in Hobart with letters of introduction. Likewise, an old friend introduced me to his niece in-law who walks. So plans are afoot to walk up Mt Wellington with her.
'I began by taking a walk to the so-called Botanical Garden one and a half miles distant, accompanied by Major Deare, Mundy and Capt. Lambert. This is situated on a bend of the Derwent—a glorious site, on which the new Government House is to be built.' p102.
|The gardens of Government House - the 'new' Govt House still to be built when VH visited.|
I have been scouting around some of the places Von Hügel wandered when he first arrived. My accommodation at the Art School abuts the shipping yard. The bustle of a working port with reversing trucks beeping into the night and the sounds of huge containers as they are shuffled around under bright lights keeps me company at night.
|Sandy Bay Rivulet|
rubbish trap filled with aerosol and apples (how Tasmanian!)
Local knowledge has been shared generously, as has transport (Von Hügel travelled on horseback when not walking whereas Meg and Marty generously lent me a car to negotiate and explore my route). An itinerary is taking shape, but not before I head off up the Derwent to visit MONA.