His Royal GOFness descended from his lofty perch late last month to beat me with sticks and belittle my life choices pay his little princess a visit. He amused himself for a few days while I was at work, then for one reason or another we ended up at Ballarat for the weekend.
I thoroughly enjoy Ballarat each time I’m there, but for the life of me I can’t put my finger on why. Maybe it’s the beautiful old buildings, or the golden, violent history, or the fact that I’m the only person within a seventy kilometre radius with the vaguest drop of ethnicity.
Or it could very well be the property prices. GOF had his arm wildly clutched by an overexcited Inga on several occasions as we wandered past glossy real estate agency displays featuring armies of 3 bedroom homes for $200,000 and well under. To compare, $200,000 in my suburb would currently buy me a pebble and a mailbox to put in front of my pebble.
Real estate revelations aside, the rest of the weekend was groovy. GOF greeted Ballarat with his usual gruff observational narrative (“there’s a big bugger with a pick on his shoulder”), then proceeded to edify me with the history of the cantilevered verandah. We shivered our way through the Botanical Gardens, and he graciously tolerated my fangirl obsession with the Waubra Wind Farm while I graciously tolerated his misnavigation on the way to St. Arnaud and his making the Subway girl think I was his mentally challenged daughter. We visited the requisite relatives, then I threw him on a plane, slapped its hindquarters and sent him back on his way to the Far North.
Sadly, there are no photos to add to my blog post. If there’s one thing GOF and I have in common (I suspect there’s more than one thing, but if I think on it too long I start to get hives), it’s our inept holiday photography. Mrs GOF was aghast when GOF came home with a grand total of eight snapshots for the whole trip. As I pointed out to her, she knows perfectly well what we both look like, and we certainly don’t look (or behave) any better in different latitudes.
So instead here’s a photo from his last visit in 2009, when he made me drink the ickypoo shitwater from the Daylesford mineral springs: