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Thursday, 26 January 2017

Beechworth - and the country race day

For our trip from Canberra down to Melbourne we wanted to experience some of the real Australian countryside, but had no clear plan on where and how we are going to spent those two days. Cruising on the Hume Highway for quite some time can be quite challenging, as the countryside does not change a lot from this 

and this ….. 

So we left the highway and had a stop near the Murray River where we found 

real GOLD. 

Marlene was really lucky and found a nice bit of gold on a stone, what infected all of us with the rush for gold/ “Goldfieber”.

We therefore decided to rush up to Beechwood, famous for its golden history and once host of the largest lunatic asylum and prison for women in the whole state of Victoria State. 

Dude's Beer
The town really surprised us positively despite the disappointment of not finding any piece of gold, as it is charming, very well maintained and some beautiful shops and restaurants. Also found evidence of the strong and globally omnipresence of Austrian missionary activities in the field of beer brewing in this little town, where an Austrian lady is brewing some brilliant craft beer. Language of the folks there is a bit strange, as my order for a wheat beer e.g. received the following response 
“HEY DUDE! this is not drafted, DUDE! - so you better get some drafted ones, DUDE”. 
Marlene thought that this was hilarious, particularly as DUDE sayer/waiter tried to find us plus our pizzas on table 30, while the whole place had only 15 tables (“Hey DUDE, thought you are sitting on 30 not 13; got me all confused”) - “Big Lebowski läßt grüssen”.

A golden drop!

Highlight of our stay in Beechworth was the country horse race the other day close to Beechworth in a small village called Dederang. Had to get into my fanciest dresses with Jules, and somehow we fit the general set up perfectly. 

Women in super fancy dresses incl. some very strange hats (plus a glass of sparkly), while men dressed up quite casually and a bottle of beer in their hand (I like it!). 

There was even a stage....
Early in the day - setting up

Also got heavy into horse betting by trying out different strategies. 

Strategy 1 applied in the first race “Gather all the historical data including bookmaker ratings, analyse and then score”.
Problems started in the data gathering phase as struggled to get anything useful out of the information provided in the race book, which read like that:
Goolewang Star: failed las two but improved substantially in the third last race on muddy ground. Good track to catch up 1 to 14 by 56 and 72???????. 

Anyway, Goolewang Star got good bookmakers rating, so put my first two dollars on it- and ——————   Goolewang star came last. 

As Strategy 1 failed I did apply Strategy 2: “Follow the advice of a trusted expert in the family i.e. Marlene Hamedl/ horse whisperer” 

Before the second race I watched the presented horses together with Marlene and let her judge the physical attributes/ conditions of the horses. Judgement was easy - “Daddy, the horse with the longest legs is the fastest”. Sounded absolutely reasonable and it did not take too much time to spot the winning/ long legged champ. 
Unfortunately “grasshopper horsey” had a bad day and came in second last in the race. 

So went for Strategy No 3 by remembering, what my old Latin teacher told me many years ago - “NOMEN EST OMEN”. So bet my whole left fortune of AUD 2.0 on Thysons Tiger in race number 3 and see - Thysons Tiger came in 2nd place. Still no money won, but at least some prestige for my beaten up pride at the end.

Winner of the day was certainly Marlene with an unbelievable win of AUD 6,2 in the last race. I reckon she used a couple of more criteria in her own judgement and certainly more than she would have told me. 

Unfortunately we had to get on the road again at the end of the race around 4 pm and before the real fun started - THE BIG BOOZE in the nearby Pub! 

This apparently is the big thing and for many the real reason to join the racehorses - but do not worry people of Dederang - next time I will be there (w/o the kids!).

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