It was lovely and crisp this morning and we decided to go for a family drive around some nearby country towns. First stop was Clunes, a Victorian gold-mining town that somehow survived the 1970s incredibly intact.
It has the most beautiful old shops with verandahs and their original painted signs. I jumped for joy to see an old habadashery but sadly, like many of the shops, it was empty and abandoned.
There are one or two signs of gentrification in Clunes - the old bookseller's houses a real estate agent and there is a smart greengrocer's in the old tailor's shop - but other than that it is like a beautiful old ghost town and I hope it stays just the way it is!
Then it was on to Talbot, home of one of the best local farmer's markets and also some rather nice buildings.
Last stop Maryborough, in itself a pretty ordinary large country town but it does have fantastic thrift shops (there are so many that the tourist office even has a special map). Here is Jacob at the huge Salvo's store clutching his finds.
The best thing in Maryborough is the old train station, which now houses an antiques shop and cafe. We ate lunch at the cafe in front of a roaring wood fire, and for afters I had the lighest home-made scones with a cup of tea served in an old china teapot. Sigh! There is nothing like good company, a roaring fire and lots of old stuff to look at on a cold winter's day!