On very good local advice, we located ourselves at the beautiful little town of Port Eliot, just north of the bustling hub of Victor Harbour. We booked a cabin at the caravan park, opened a bottle of red and made a plan.
I had an agenda. I wanted to have a look at the place where Cicero John Tully and his wife Ellen Hanlon lived in 1867. What a momentous year for them. They had migrated from Ireland and in 1850 married in Adelaide and were to have nine children.
By 1867 they had settled in Wellington on the mouth of the mighty Murray where it emptied its fresh water into the massive Lake Alexandrina. There is no fresh water today! It was here that a ferry operated and still does, carrying passengers and goods across the Murray. It is dangerous. The current is notorious and it was here that Cicero John and Ellen lost three children. In 1867, the year my great grandfather Henry, was born, thirteen year old Ellen tried to rescue her little brother Cicero John aged nine. They both perished. Just five years later, in 1872 the river claimed another of their children, Ethel, who was just eighteen months. The family moved away. They headed to Broken Hill where they spent the remainder of their lives.
It was a perfect day for a drive- overcast and cool. The countryside was flat. For a short while we travelled along the shore of Lake Alexandrina and were in awe of how huge it was. We arrived at the Murray just as a ferry pulled in with its cargo of caravans and campers. It’s the season! It was lunch and what we thought was the pub seemed to be open. It was the Old Court House. We were met at the front door by the woman who had organised a family gathering. The place sleeps twenty!!! The pub was just around the corner and the lunchtime fare was good pub food.
We returned to Port Eliot and checked out the town. It is so beautiful. I wish I had taken more photos. Lots of stone cottages and every now and again stunning architectural homes grasp the cliff face and capture the spectacular view.
We were in the Longhorn Creek area and on recommendation we visited Bremerton and Lake Breeze cellar doors. Brilliant!
Amazingly, we discovered we would be in the same area -the Barossa- as friends from home. We met up and did wine tasting, cheese tasting and visited Maggie Beer’s Farm. Enjoyed meals together and shared our stories.