Friendly strangers

25th July 2019

Queenstown was always on the list before I even arrived in Tas. It has a firm reputation for it’s red sulphur water and mythical tales. En route we hunted for Black Bobs (A small haunted village filled with off grid murderers…apparently)
Instead we stumbled across a friendly farmer who lived in a quaint wooden house with his large dog Raisin and his softly spoken wife. We bought some honey from them- both relieved and disappointed.

As soon as we entered Queenstown the air changed and we leaned forward in our seats, eyes wide with curiosity. We knew we were in for a treat. It felt like driving into an old Western movie set.
Sian parked up and we began to stroll with the light fading. As we walked around the main high st I spotted a couple with a gang of whippets trotting along in rhythm. I held their gaze a little too long and then darted after them impetuously. I asked to take their picture and we began chatting. They were initially reserved but soon warmed and shared their story. Artists from the mainland, they owned a converted house around the corner.

During our stay we got to know Helena and Raymond a little better. Their house was unique. It was a grand designs contender with a deep orange theme. In keeping with the town’s reputation for copper sulphate coloured water the interior sported a trending number of bright orange objects. On our second evening we were invited over. Gathered around a large dining table we sat in the airy artist studio space filled with paintings and drawings. The couple entertained us with heroic and inspiring stories of love, travel and passion. They giggled that they had once had rocks thrown at them as they practiced cycling their tandem at the local stadium- a concrete and sand filled baseball pit. They were training for their cycling trip around Europe.

So enamoured with Queenstown Sian and I revisited later in the trip and managed to see Helena at the library. It was fleeting and if I make it over to Tas again I shall once again swing by.