Thursday, 21 September 1995

Botanic Gardens

It was culture day today and Sue had the choice of activities, so we were off to town for a visit to the library. As we had to wait until the library opened at 10:00 am, we walked through the centre of town, by the 'bidgee. A well organised park, which has a good combination of parkland, gardens and items for children, extends from one bridge to another. At the play equipment, we stopped and talked with a fellow traveller, whilst our children played on the equipment.

The Wagga Wagga Council Library is a large well organised collection, which suffers from the usual
trouble of quantity being more prominent than quality. Whilst I read the daily paper, the children grabbed a book and lay about in the reading area on bean bags. They happily spent an hour in this manner and made their parents radiant that they had made readers out of all three of them!

Adjoining the library is the Art Gallery. The current exhibitions were rather uninspiring, but the Glass
Exhibition was interesting and some of the pieces were quite exquisite.

After lunch, we returned to the Botanic Gardens for a lengthy visit. The complex has a variety of things for the visitor and we started with the model railway which has been developed by volunteers who build, maintain and demonstrate the facility twice a week. Their track is extensive and the fully outfitted station, signal box, tunnels and overhead bridges all add to the authenticity of the railway.

A Camellia Garden, featuring buildings in the Chinese style, adjoins the railway and some beautiful plants were on show. Beside this garden, a small but engaging animal and bird shelter or mini zoo has been set into the hillside. The bird life is extensive, with a walk through aviary, caged birds and many roaming free. The aviary contained Rainbow Lorikeets, Cockateils, Zebra Finches and many other variety of birds. Passing through the aviary, I had a shock when I moved the video camera away from my eye only to be confronted by a flight of Rainbow Lorikeets heading straight for me. I ducked so quickly it looked, to the rest of the troops, as though I was going to snap in half!

The whole facility was excellent and to be provided free of charge to the public was unusual, to say the least. The Wagga Wagga Council deserves congratulations for the work It has done in setting it up and maintaining it.

Our last night officially "on the road" was celebrated with pizza.

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