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Grow. Gather. Hunt. Cook.

escape to wild

It was just what we needed. An adventure down to Tasmania to finish off one hell of a year. Thanks to the hard work of our Tassie friend Michelle we made our way south for a cooking and rabbit-stripping demonstration she organised for me at Mona, the art jewel of Hobart. Road tripping sights.

I love the beauty of mixing a bit of work with pleasure. We left the mainland after the Hobart demo was done and road tripped to Bruny Island via the beautiful Huon Valley.

Bruny Island, even though it's dotted with plenty of established farms and houses, has managed to retain a certain wildness and rawness which I was immediately drawn to. My wild man instincts went a bit crazy, in fact I wasn't the only one affected by this embracing of wildness. Henry boy had what we called a case of Lagoon Fever where he ran wild like he'd been stung by a swarm of bees. We were at a place called Big Lagoon (aptly named because it is both a lagoon and large in size), and that dog ran and ran, seemingly covering kilometres in seconds. He slept like an angel that night (but snored like a drunken lord).

Big Lagoon, where the wind was so powerful, all proper fly fishing casting techniques go out the window.

We spent most of the time fishing and foraging for the most beautiful food. Oysters were mind-blowing, straight off the rocks and down the gullet. The mussels were some of the finest, cooked in garlic and wine, simple stuff but wowsers!

The days spent in the little boat were the best. Kate's papa Warwick (aka Wazza, Wayne, Gary, Grampa James Brown, Darren, Ramish) was kind enough to let us take the boat for a few days in Adventure Bay.

Late each afternoon he'd drive on the beach to pick us up and we'd then head over the rolling hills of Adventure Bay up the steep drive to his humble island retreat where we'd fillet the fish and cook them all kinds of ways.

Here is a man who has worked like a dog all his working career, and now he lives a life with almost nothing, but in fact he appears to have everything he ever wanted. It's obvious to me that he made the choice to simplify life, and he's actually been successful. If you ever meet the bloke you'd understand why, it suits his "I can do what ever I want" approach to life. He's a pig in poo down there, what a breezy life he lives.

Warwick's clever outdoor kitchen table he crafted with salvage timber complete with sunken herb garden. He could sell these tables. But he probably couldn't be stuffed. I don't blame him.

How rad are the little raised beds made from salvaged stuff?!

He's (Warwick) inadvertently put me back on track, in regards to simplifying things. This year has been both cursed and blessed. It's almost at the end, and I'm feeling like positive changes are afoot. For now, I'm just having a few days of doing very little and dreaming of being back on wild Bruny Island eating oysters off the rocks.

Thanks Kate for letting me steal most of your images, and sorry I was in holiday mode and reluctant to get the camera out.