Our first big lesson in Tasmania was the limited hours of daylight. We arrived on Bruny Island by ferry at 5pm, by which the sun had set! James had intelligently upgraded to an automatic car (driving manual with the left hand - not so easy) and he expertly dodged marsupials running out into the road, as we made our way to Tess and Halsey’s home. They warmly welcomed us with a dinner at the Hotel Bruny with some of their friends and on the drive home we spotted an albino wallaby, common on Bruny. Halsey is a distant cousin of James, so this was the first evening that we all had a chance to really get know one another and it was a total blast. Halsey and Tess were drawn to Bruny Island from the States for the opportunity to work at the acclaimed Bruny Island Cheese Company, founded by Nick Haddow. At BICC Halsey is the cheese maker and Tess assists with the cheese making, as well as other aspects of the business. More deets on Bruny Island Cheese Company in it’s very own blog post!
Seeing Bruny for the first time in daylight on Friday morning was something quite special. From the deck on the back of their house, there was a striking view of the bay and rolling hills beyond. James hustled me out the door, eager to get to Cloudy Bay for a surf check. Unfortunately the surf was pretty small but the bay was BEYOND incredible! It’s surrounded by rugged green cliffs extending out on either side and features an endless white sand beach. A quick passing rain cloud caused a spectacular rainbow directly over the bay. I thought this was Bruny’s way of welcoming us (specifically!) but apparently rainbows are like every hour on the hour, throughout the wet winter. Maybe its because I’m a city kid but I was struck by the sounds of Bruny which were limited to birds, ocean, rain, light wind in the trees and the VERY occasional car driving by. It was so tranquil, in the evening (while the birds slept) at Tess and Halsey’s home the only noise was the ocean beyond the bay. Except for our first night when a possum mating war went down, which sounds like screeching aliens.