Sunday, February 17, 2008

A norseman in Norseman.

Feb 8-9

As it says on the stubby holders that they sell in the bar (foam beer holders), "wear the fox hat." Say that fast and you might get an idea of where this is. Norseman got its name for the following reason: the Prospector that first found a bit of gold here did so through his horse, Norseman. Norseman pawed the ground one night and woke up lame with a large chunk of gold-bearing quartz in his hoof. Over 100 years later, they are still producing gold in the town named in his honor. Today the gold is a little harder to get to, as the mine shafts reach roughly three km below the surface of the town's lovely pub. The streets here are remarkably wide; it first looks like a fair bit of foresight in a town that has road trains pass through it on a daily basis, however, it was the camel trains that serviced the town until the 1940s that needed the extra room. The population has evened out through the booms and busts to about 1100 – enough to keep the old pub busy on the Friday and Saturday night we were there.

My knee hurt, and I needed a day, so this trumped the need to move. We stayed at Lodge 101 – a small yellow house with green trim. Toilet, showers, rooms and kitchens were all separate rooms with doors out to a small verandah and courtyard. The yellow walls were panted and decorated with what looked like African masks, and over them were grapes growing that gave the place a warm and inviting feel. This was enhanced by our lovely host and hostess, Allen and Eileen. They are an older couple originally from England who have been running the hostel for ten years. Again, as with the proprietors at the Esperance guesthouse, I felt far more like a family friend than a weary traveler. We joined Allen and his mate, Jim, at the pub for what I consider one of the top 5 burgers I have ever had.

No comments: