As I sit bundled up under sweaters and knitted throws, looking out on a cold, grey sky, I’m calling up a warmer day last month when we journeyed out with our mates to experience the Autumn Harvest Festival at Rouse Hill House and Farm. The house and farm are part of Sydney Living Museums, a group of historic structures and gardens, such as Vaucluse House that I wrote about last year.
I’m afraid I went with notions of the familiar American harvest festival, expecting big orange pumpkins, some hot apple cider, and maybe a hayride.
We did get to eat scones with jam and fresh cream while sitting on hay bales! These were proper scones, not the fry bread that Utahns try to pass off as scones.
And there was some beautiful harvest bounty.
I sought out orange where I could find it. (over in the corner. the carrots)
This looks more like spring! But I still have a lot to learn about planting and growing here.
There were stalls with lots of yummy things to eat. Eat Me Chutneys rescues “unsold, wonky and bruised produce and convert it into epic chutneys.” We got some of the tamarind and fig. It was indeed epic!
I found myself enchanted by the lovely displays. I’m a sucker for things in jars. So is my husband. Several jars followed us home.
Things in beakers also win me over!
I didn’t try Loli’s Organic Nut Butters, but they looked delicious.
I can not tell you how badly I wanted to ring this bell in front of the old schoolhouse. If they hadn’t put that sign there, I wouldn’t have even considered it.
Rouse Hill House was constructed in the early 1800s. Six generations of the family lived there up until the late 1990s when it was opened as a museum.
Today, the house on the hill is abuzz with visitors.
The house and farm is built on the site of the Battle of Vinegar Hill, a convict uprising in 1804, led by Irish political prisoners and named for the battle that took place in Ireland in 1798 between the British Redcoats and Irish rebels. It was sobering to look out on the quiet open space and think of the strife that unraveled there so long ago.
I find it quite thrilling to travel down these old roads to find the history there. There are many more Sydney Living Museum sites I hope to visit, including homes, a barracks, the mint, and more. I’ve learned that in some they have candle-lit tours available! Now that sounds fun!