Melbourne Cup Day 2010
The Melbourne Cup is a horse race held on the first Tuesday in November and it is known as “the race that stops the nation”
Small shops close, office workers go home early, the streets empty as people crowd into pubs and restaurants. It is the day of the sweepstake, they are organised in workplaces, clubs, family groups, the TAB does a roaring trade. People who normally never bet have a once a year gamble, it is huge.
The buzz around Australia is tangible…
In November 2010 we were in Margaret River on our year-long road trip around Australia. We were staying with Jack and Carroll, friends we had found through couch surfing. (this is an amazing organisation that invites people to share their couches with complete strangers. Find out more about it here).
Carroll invites me to go with her to a Melbourne Cup lunch at the home of a member of a women’s group she belongs to. One problem I only carry jeans and shorts when I travel and the only head-gear I own is a bike helmet and sun visor. Hardly suitable attire for a Melbourne Cup outing. The Cup is all about dressing up and the main focus is on HATS.
“No problem” says Carroll and whisks me off to a couple of op shops that solve the problem of a skirt, then she dresses up a lovely floppy sun hat she has with artificial flowers and I now feel the part.
The house is in a beautiful rural setting and the cows gather around wondering what is going on.
These totally unexpected moments are what makes travelling such a joy and meeting and making new friends as you journey along adds magic to the trip.
Thank you Sue of “A word in your ear” for giving us the word “HATS” as the theme word this week. It brought back this beautiful memory of how I spent that “day that stops a nation” in 2010