It's been a long time since I've been to the Royal Hobart Show. A long time. I wasn't old enough to drink. I don't think I was even old enough to drive. Pretty sure Mum or Dad and to drop me off and pick me up.
The show is held the third week of October every year. For my Vancouver based friends it is similar to the PNE but smaller.
It was much smaller than I remembered. Of course that could be because I'm a lot bigger.
I am still amazed by the fact that "show day" - Thursday - is a public holiday. School day is Wednesday and family day is Saturday. Really? A public holiday for show day.
We made it a family event. Well almost a family event. Shaun and Kelly have gone away for a long weekend. So Jo filled in as an honorary Wilson child. Something she probably does better than the real Wilson children.
First up we checked out the farm animals...pigs, sheep, llamas, alpacas, ducks, goats, chicks... Jo was very disappointed that there were no coloured chicks this year. I think it's long been considered not very animal friendly to dye the chicks pink and purple and blue and green.
We did get to see Shaun. Shaun the sheep, not Shaun my brother. Shaun was lost for 6 years and was very woolly when he was found.
Next stop was the crafted items. You know, where people enter their knitted, stitched, painted, drawn, baked goods and get a pretty ribbon for best of show. This section was definitely much smaller than I remembered from 30 years ago. We did get to see the winners of "decorate a Girl Guide biscuit." It wasn't even won by a girl guide. I think a school boy won.
We all marvelled and the fruit and veggie picture. Apparently in previous years the red apples have been at the bottom of the picture and people kept eating them. So now the bottom of the picture is all eggplant and celery and squash and other such delicious veggies.
Time for morning tea or breakfast, if you were like me and slept in and didn't have time to eat before we left home. Show food was a much welcome improvement from the 80's. I remember Dagwood dogs, fairy floss and soggy chips. All of which are still available but we chose a breakfast Rosti from the Rosti Chalet instead. Potatoes, bacon, eggs, very tasty.
The feature event we had all been looking forward to? Watching the wood chopping. Well my Dad was looking forward to it. Jo just couldn't believe that Tasmania had invented the sport of woodchopping. Yep, that's right. Woodchopping as a sport began in Tassie back in the 1800's. We even have a wood choppers hall of fame. Although I think it may have a more official name than that.
After some sawing and chopping we went to watch the Canadian Lumberjack Show. It was okay, not bad but not great Nothing overly unique or Canadian about it. In fact one of the lumberjacks was a Kiwi. Many of the jokes were not very family friendly, they had to "bleep" out quite a bit.
Time to go and see a man about a dog. Actually a lady. My mum's friend, Jo (not to be confused with my friend, Jo) shows chow chows. So we went to say Hi. Her dog had won a few ribbons. A blue one and a yellow-ish one. I know, I'm full of useful information. Maybe mum remembers.
Lunch time. Gozleme. Don't know what that is? The. You are missing out. It's Turkish. The dough is filled with a variety of things, mine was lamb, feta and parsley. After being grilled it was wrapped around spinach and capsicum. Yum.
Back outside for more wood chopping.
A quick walk through the venomous snake display. Did you know snakes are not aggressive or mean? They only attack if they feel threatened. They become accustomed to human contact. Yeah, right. I'm still not getting close to them. They might become accustomed to human contact but I no chance of ever becoming accustomed to snake contact.
Our last stop was at the show bag pavilion. I have memories of buying lots of showbags as a kid. Mostly the chocolate ones. And leaving the show with bag after bag hanging off my arm. Showbags are expensive? How did I afford so many as a kid? Or did I just nag mum and dad so much they bought them to shut me up? I'm pretty certain I used my own pocket money or in later years my wages from Kentucky Fried a Chicken and the florist.
That was our day at the show. It's been 27 years since I was last at the Royal Hobart Show. It'll probably be 27 years before I go again. When I was home in March earlier this year I went to the Bream Creek Show with Dad. I enjoyed the smaller show better.