It was late afternoon before we had time to duck around to Noorat and find the mystical gates.
‘Hold up! That’s them!’
‘You’re sure?’ Mick asked as he turned the 4 runner car about.
Hidden in the nook of a huge line of century old pine trees was the small gates.
We left the dogs in the 4runner with an ordered “Stay!” and crossed the road to see for ourselves.
We had missed the golden sunshine … Lumineux and her man Geoff would have been here earlier in the day … but it was them all right.
We couldn’t remember which side she posted gloriously coloured in the setting sunshine, as the extinct Volcano Mt Noorat behind it was sheltering it from the last glory of the sunset. So here we were standing in the middle of the intersection of Glen Ormiston Rd &Blacks Lane that the drive enters, arguing the toss over which gate she’d used, like a couple of nongs! Was it the right hand side , the north gate, or was it the left hand side, the south gate? Had she taken it and flipped it or even taken it from inside looking out? Mick the horticulturalist was certain there had been more “Bush” around it and not the bush that we were seeing! Looking at her shot now we realised she really could have been lying in the scrubby foreground of the south gate to get the shot of the North gate that she had lol
A car trundles past, the occupants giving us very strange looks and making us fall on each other nonchalantly admiring the scenery before convulsing in fits of giggles like school kids! It stopped our debate and set Mick off with his trusty Nokia [phone] to capture the shots we needed to prove we’d been here.
After several shots of the gate we debated if we had the guts to go up the drive to see what was there. Finally convincing ourselves it was not trespassing to go up and knock on the front door we climb into the car and drive on through the gates.
The drive … someone had had it ashvaulted once … turned to the left at the top of the incline and there was the beginnings of our dreams come true.
Oh for the money!
Noorat Homestead was built by my estimation somewhere in the middle of the Nineteenth Century [1840s ish] a mixture of Mt Gambier stone and Baltic Pine weather boards. There was the most glorious entrance an even more glorious side entrance with glass conservatory and eventually the blue stone stables down the back.
Every Turn had me lamenting in desire. Every vision was breathtaking for those of us who adore old architecture. The occupants were in the throws of restoration. The weather boards were pink with scrubbing and the iron on the roof was replaced with shiny new colourbond! But there were, on the front part of the house, the original slate tiles left for prosperity with the old chimneys and architraves.
We could not find owners or occupants although I had heard Jazz being played on a piano somewhere in the depths of the house. But no matter how we tried to draw attention to our impatient knocking at the welcoming open back door we were ignored and forced by politeness to leave … photoless!
Never fear though for those of you still itching to see the glory that is the Noorat Homestead, we shall return and offer assistance in the labour of love restoring such a magnificent home to it’s former glory. Then we can take good “Before” and “Duration” shots to post and then eventually show the “After” shots of the home restored.
As we drove from the property, my eyes lingering til the very last sight, I wished for the ghost of the family who created it to come to me and beg me to stay …. But no, I just had visions of happiness and laughter and days of family bliss.
To the owners of Noorat Homestead we wish you continual good fortune and hope in years to come you too shall have memories of glorious days of happiness and family bliss.
Keep Happy! ~ adg & skik :o)