June 6th is Queensland Day.
We celebrate the separation from New South Wales to become an independent state in 1859.
June is a lovely time of year in Brisbane.
Cooler weather and bright sunny days just make being outside so delightful.
On this lovely sunny Queensland Day ( which also happened to co-inside with the Queen's Birthday Long Weekend holiday) the Governor of Queensland threw open his lovely house and grounds to the public allowing them access to some of the rooms in the house and the freedom to picnic in the lovely grounds.
We've never been before and always wanted to have a look. You can't see much of the house from the road as it is situated on top of a rather steep hill with several acres of bushland surrounding it, even though it is right in the heart of an inner city suburb.
We joined the throng of people at the bottom gate and began the climb when the gates opened at midday.
Before the climb bottled water, Queensland flags and an information sheet were distributed to anyone who wanted them!!
The path climbed very steeply up through the bush till we reached a levelled out section on one side where there was a tennis court, a swimming pool and a very nice modern pavilion.
We stopped for a breather and to have a look inside the lovely pavilion and were greeted by kitchen staff handing out Lamingtons. If you've never heard of Lamingtons look here. They have become an Australian icon along with Vegemite and Iced VoVos.
After this generous snack we were fortified to finish the climb to the house,
arriving at the side of the house. The house faces the city from the top of the hill so the view is lovely from the side veranda.
He worked his way down the line apologising for the long wait to get inside till it was my turn to shake hands and chat briefly. I was very impressed by his warmth and friendliness and total lack of formality. Just another Aussie !!
There was very little visible security - Just the Deputy Police Commissioner and another elderly fellow in a police dress uniform and the whole feel was relaxed and friendly.
Before long it was our turn to enter the house.
No photos allowed inside which I find hard to understand.
There were only a couple of rooms open to see but what we saw was very nice - stylish but comfortable . It is not a very big house and these days important guests usually stay in the big city hotels where they can take up whole floors of the buildings but Prince William was a recent exception to this and I'm sure he would have enjoyed his stay where he could swim or stroll around the grounds in the fresh air without prying eyes.
Immediately in front of the house is a lovely lawned area where seats were scattered for the use of families who chose to picnic there under the huge trees
and many were making themselves quite at home there.
By now the line had filled with lots of people and snaked down to the front entrance.
When we emerged from the house on the far side at the back there were a few stalls selling mementos and Tony bought a couple of nice crystal wine glasses so we can be very posh when we next cook a roast on the BBQ......
.......and there was the Governor and his wife again ! Strolling around chatting and mingling with the citizens on a lovely June day !
We live in a very lucky country