The Good Life
Where is the best place in the world to live or to visit? The answer is quite easy, there are lots of them. We have been travelling the east coast of Australia for the last seven months and have stayed in some beautiful homes in some stunning locations.
We feel so lucky to have been able to spend the last seven weeks pet sitting in Mornington Peninsula. Over this period it has become one of our favourite locations in Australia and the world. Being here for such a length of time has enabled us to live like a local and to really experience this region.
Less is more
Today a lot of the smaller towns in Australia can offer as much, and in some ways more, than the big cities can. Less really is more when it comes to living in these rural and coastal regions. Less traffic, less people, less noise comes with more space, more beauty and more time.
During our time in Mornington Peninsula we have felt a special connection with the area. It’s like when you walk into home for the first time and you get that feeling that tells you that this is the place for you.
For us, it’s a combination of many things, the visual beauty of the area, the feeling of community, the farmers shops and markets, the cafes and restaurants, the wineries, the beaches, the cute towns, the yoga studios, the feeling of space and the ability to travel around quickly and easily. The area also benefits from being close to Melbourne, the cultural and style capital of Australia, which is an easy one hour drive away. We are definitely not missing city life.
Meet our pets
On this pet sit we are looking after Winnie, the rescue grey hound, Skye, the thirteen year old labrador, Marvin the cat and seven chickens, AKA The Single Ladies.
Winnie and Skye, like most dogs, love routine. They like their meals twice a day and they love their afternoon walk to the local park. On our very first walk with them we were unsure as to the right direction to the park, we needn’t have been concerned, the girls knew exactly how to get there. Winnie pulled me in the direction of the park and Skye followed behind with Lloyd.
Even in the park routine comes in to play, they both do the same anti-clockwise walk around the park each day, not once did they try to go clockwise nor did they try to go around a second time, once was enough.
On one day when we stopped at the road junction, something behind Winnie caught Skye’s eye and we ended up with Doggy Twister.
There’s no ME in Marvin
Marvin loves to hang around in the garden but he thinks he has an “access all areas pass” and sits by the door to be let back into the house. He claws the door grill in Spider Man style whenever he is ready to come back inside. He also lets out an “ow” sound, he appears to have lost his ability to pronounce the “me”.
Top tip! When taking a greyhound for a walk in a park that is next to a track on which small motorised cars are raced around please ensure that you keep your greyhound on a lead at all times. The whirring sound and the speed of the small cars are likely to bring back memories of former glory days to the greyhound. Winnie would happily jump the fence and chase the small vehicles had we not kept her on her lead.
The young home owners of our latest house sit are so inspirational with the lifestyle that they have chosen, they really are living the good life. Their garden of has numerous fruit trees including olive, lemon and apple. There a wide selection of vegetables including chilies, tomatoes, pumpkins, cucumbers and courgettes and there are herbs and kefir lime trees. Then there’s the chickens delivering on average five eggs a day. It’s a food lovers paradise. What isn’t grown here can easily be found at the many local farm shops.
Seven months of joy
We have had the most amazing adventures since October 2018 with nine pet sits on the East coast of Australia. In this time we have looked after:
12 dogs (Lucy, Benson, Ted, Winston, Cooper, Petey, Spot, T Bone, Romeo, Bronte, Skye and Winnie)
5 Cats (Tom Tom, Gracie, Della, Meg and Marvin)
11 chickens (we made our own names up for these including Agnetha, Frida, Vera, Doris and Broody Beryl)
As the southern hemisphere heads towards winter it’s time for us to head north for the European summer. We have six confirmed pet sits to look forward to including our first pigs and sheep! We are about to enter an age of disruption. Over the next fourteen days we shall sleep in nine different beds as we make our way to our next pet sit.
Here’s some of the things that we really enjoyed in Mornington Peninsula
Hot Hut Yoga. We both practised nearly every day during our seven weeks in this beautiful studio with the excellent teachers including Tracey, Sonja, Angela and Emily.
Benton Rise Farm shop which is inside an old railway carriage selling the freshest fruits, vegetables and breads every week.
Stunning beaches. The peninsula is surrounded by water, the bay on the west side with views to Melbourne in the distance and the ocean on the southern and eastern sides.
World class wine. What goes well with great food? Great wine of course. Mornington Peninsula has a cool climate and produces Chardonnay and Pinot Noir that have been rated some of the best in the world. There are over 200 small wineries and over 50 cellar doors to visit. The climate here is similar to Burgundy in France and quite Mediterranean.
The many walkways across wetlands and along the coastline.
We shall return to this beautiful region on one of the southern most tips of Australia.