Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Websites Listed in My Favorite Bathroom Book (Part 7)

 It's time for me to look at another website listed in my favorite bathroom book!

At some point, I will take a break from the website and we shall go to the zoo. I'm not in the mood to go to the zoo. Nor am I in the mood to write this post. It's one of those days.  Do you ever have days like that? Nothing in particular is very wrong. But you just feel blah?

I'm hoping, though, that writing this post will help me get out of this mood. The zoo might be helpful too.

Anyway....

Today I'm looking at Como Cottages in the Dandenongs.

The Dandenongs is in Victoria; not too far from Melbourne, I believe. I think it's east of Melbourne.

I'll look at Google Maps to see if I'm right or wrong.

I'm totally right! It's 48 minutes east of Melbourne. I actually thought it was a bit farther than that. I was thinking a couple of hours.

On the Como Cottages website, the Dandenongs look really beautiful. It's very green and flowery. And I love the cottage. One of the windows has stained glass on the edges.

It all feels kind of magical.

It makes me feel...something. I'm not sure what. But I'm definitely attracted to this place.

Now I'm going to read the few paragraphs on the home page.

It's a bed and breakfast.

It's supposed to be romantic.

I wasn't thinking romance when I looked at the picture. I think I was imagining something more solitary.

Maybe it would be a good place to be a hermit. Or a witch.

The writing on this page is annoying me. They say.... and you have the luxury of climbing into bed made with crisp white sheets, after a soak in your claw-foot bath or a bubble in your large, romantic two-person spa. Complimentary chocolates, quality toiletries, a selection of pillows, in house massage, tv, dvd, cd hifi and board games are provided for your complete comfort and entertainment.

That sounds too ordinary for my magical hermit-witch retreat. What I want them to say is This is a quiet place for you to work on your spells and divination skills. Or perhaps you'd like a nice place to return to after you go on your astral travel adventures. Our cabin will fulfill all your magical needs.

Although they don't push the witch or solo travel idea; they do go beyond romance. Kids are welcome.  So it could be nice for a family vacation. They also allow pets in some of the cottages.  I like how they say it. A couple of our cottages are pet friendly too, for those who can't bear to leave their loved ones behind.  That's very sweet.

This page of the Como Cottages website has information about their different cabins and their spa.

There are seven cottages. Two are for families and four are for  couples. Then there's one that can't be used for couples or families. And I'm sure they're not strict about who stays where. If a couple wanted to stay in a family cottage, I imagine that's fine.

Minor interruption here. I just wanted to say that I'm now listening to the most beautiful song on my Aussie spotify list.  It's so sad...but also lovely.  I have a lot of wonderful songs on my Spotify list, but I think this one's extra special.

The song says:

When fate delivers me, all I'll ask it for. 
Is a Place to Rest and Shelter for My Soul.

Now THAT is what I feel should be the purpose of Como Cottages. It's not romance or a girl's getaway, or a family holiday. It's a place for a sad person who needs to get away—a person who needs shelter for their soul.  It doesn't have to be a witch. How about someone who has lost the love of their life?  Or they just learned what happens to Donna Noble.

I'm going to look at the different cottages.

Lavender Cottage is the one with stained glass on the window.  It has two bedrooms and can fit four people.

If you have a big family or big group, Costwald Cottage is probably the right choice. It's the biggest cottage on the premises, with three bedrooms.

The Forget Me Not Cottage has a cool Cadbury sign. This is the cottage that is listed as being for family or romance. It fits two people. So maybe it's the one that's best for single-parent-with-a-single child trips. Maybe the other two people cottages are a bit romantic, and things might be feel awkward. I don't know.

The website provides a lot of photos of each cottage. I didn't notice that before.  I mean I didn't notice until I got to the Forget Me Not Cottage, and that's when I saw the Cadbury sign.

Now I'm going to look back at the Lavender Cottage and the Cotswald Cottage.

The Lavender Cottage reminds me of the Pinnacle Loft in Halls Gap. They have the same type of bedroom...where there's no door.  I wasn't a big fan of that.  The TV sounds coming from the den downstairs were too loud for me. And I felt like there was a lack of privacy.

One of the rooms has an old fashioned typewriter. It's very cool.

They have pictures of the Costwald cottages in the snow. It's a total fairy tale.

 I was about to say I'd love to stay there for Christmas. SILLY me.....

Ah! They have a Bill Bryson book in the cottage. So if you get tired of reading your numerology book, you can look at that.

I'm looking at the Forget Me Not Cottage again. I think I made a mistake. I thought it said it was for two people, but now I see that the bath is for two people.

They don't say how many people fit in that cottage, but in the pictures I see a queen sized (or double?) bed and a single bed. So you could probably fit three people.  It would be good for Tim, Jack, and me.

Now I'm looking at the Garden Cottage. Most of the photos they provide for that one are of the exterior. I'm wondering if that's because the inside is not impressive. Or is it because the outside is the highlight. It IS called the Garden cottage, after all.

They do have a picture of the kitchen, which has this awesome old-fashioned refrigerator. I love it.

I like the hill leading down to the Como Cottage. I don't like the bedroom much, though.

The kitchen is nice.

It seems all of the kitchens have something called a Kooka stove. I have no idea what that means, but I guess it would excite some people.

Lord Wiki says they were made by a company called Matters. And guess what...Kooka comes from Kookaburra.

I didn't consider the idea that it might be an Australian thing.

Now I'm excited about it.

Well, I spoke too soon. Not all the cottages come with the Kooka stove.  It seems the Mills Cottage doesn't. Or they forgot to mention it. I think the Kooka stoves have kookaburras on them. The Mills cottage oven doesn't. But it still has that cool old fashioned appearance.

The bedroom has a porch, and the door for that has stained glass. It's pretty.

Their simplest cabin is the Caretaker's Cottage. It doesn't have a fancy bath or Kooka stove. They do say, though, that this cabin might be good for solo travelers. So they're not ignoring that type of holiday.

Now I'm looking at the spa offerings. None of it interests me. I'll move on.

You know...this post is cheering me up. And now I AM in the mood to go to the zoo. I hope we go soon.  I'm really not in the mood to see any particular animal. I just feel like being outside, but not in the general outside. I'm in the mood for a tourist-attraction type outside.  I'd love to be at Disney World today.

Here's a list of the facilities included in your Como Cottages stay.  A lot of it seems to be what's typical and should be expected—like sheets and towels.

There's a VIP Pass and complimentary limo transport to a place called Sky High. Here's their website.

To get the free limo, you have to eat at the restaurant. And they do the free transport only Monday through Thursday.

The limo comes from Sky High not Como. They do pick-ups and drop offs from other local bed and breakfasts as well.

This page has breakfast information. It's not the type of bed and breakfast where you're served brekkie by the hosts and meet your fellow travelers.  Instead the food is there for you in your kitchen. I'm guessing you cook it yourself. That might be fun with the Kooka stove.

One of the foods provided is baked beans. I didn't know that was eaten in Australia. Is it usually served for breakfast?  In the US, I think it's more of a dinner or lunch food.

Lord Wiki says baked beans are part of a the whole full-English breakfast thing. And they are known for causing farting.

Do they cause more farting than other beans....like black beans?

This website says baked beans may cause LESS gas than other beans. And in general, canned beans cause less gas than dried ones.

Well, we just got back from the zoo. It was lovely. Today the Tawny frogmouths were facing frontwards, so we could see their faces. That was very cool.

We also saw two kangaroos and the kookaburra.

I should have told the kookaburra  that there's a stove named after him. He probably doesn't know that. He might not even know he's Australian. And he probably doesn't know that Gough Whitlam died.

While we were at the zoo, I started wondering if there is anything like the Dandenongs near us. It won't be as good, of course. There'll be no kangaroos, koalas, or eucalyptus trees.  No Galahs or cockatoos. But still. It still could be nice. There'd be trees and birds.  I like trees and birds...even when they're not Australian.

Ah! I think I found a place. Hill Country. I've actually heard of it before, so I kind of had it in the back of my mind. Then when I googled cottages in Texas, that's what I got.

Maybe we'll go there someday.

Anyway...back to the Dandenongs.  This page of the Como Cottage site, has a long list of nearby businesses you can visit.

There's a place called Chocolate Sensation.

There's a lot of food besides chocolate. I mean...a LOT of food. I don't see much chocolate. What's the deal with that?

I'm not impressed.

The place that excites me most on the list is Miss Marples Tea Room. But the link doesn't work. The website seems to be gone. I wonder if that means it's closed.

I just watched a promotional video for Miss Marples Tea Room. It's fantastic. The narration is mesmerizing.

Their reviews on Urbanspoon aren't so good though. Their general rating is 62%.  At least two people say the scones are more like cake. I wonder if they're serving American-type scones. That would be WEIRD.

I'm not seeing much that would interest me in the Dandenongs, so I'd probably just hang out at the cottages all day. That wouldn't bother me in the least. I'd relax, read my book, take walks, and look at the birds.

Wait! I think I found a place. It's Yarra Valley Chocolaterie and Ice-Creamery.

Or maybe not. I just looked at Google Maps. It's thirty minutes from Como Cottages. I think I'd feel too lazy to take the drive. I get really lazy when it comes to staying at cottages in Australia.  I'm fine with walks, but I have little interest in driving anywhere.

Then again...when we were in the South Coast, we drive to Kiama. I think that was 25-30 minutes away from where we were staying.

When we were in Halls Gap, though, I didn't want to leave. I think the problem was we had only four nights there, and I loved it so much. I didn't want to subtract anytime there by riding in a car and going somewhere else. I loved the tiny little town, and I felt it had enough to offer.

The last page I'm going to look at, on the Como Cottage site, is the prices.

They're actually not too awful.  Or at least it's cheaper than other places I looked at in my bathroom book.

For the three of us to stay on the weekend, in the Lavender Cottage, it would $327 per night. That's more than we usually spend. But oh well. We'll splurge...in my imagination. Since we're not really going there.

The cottages in Hill Country are much more affordable. But they're really ugly. Usually that doesn't bother me, but now that I've seen these Como Cottages, I feel picky.

The insides look decent, but not the outsides.  But they're no worse than Australian holiday parks.  I like those. I should be able to deal with these ugly Texan ones.

At least with Australia, though, there's a chance you might see a koala in a tree. And all the people have cute Aussie accents. That makes up for the ugly exteriors of the cottages.

I was going to end this post with the paragraph above, but then I decided to add this: I am feeling much better. I think the main thing behind my blah feeling is Minecraft. See, I kind of stopped having fun with the Doctor Who Minecraft. That was kind of disappointing, because I was really excited about it. You know...when you really think you love something and you look forward to it, but then you start to realize it's not so fun after all.

But then on the way to the zoo, I got the idea of playing regular Minecraft and creating a huge resort. Writing this post is what inspired me to want to do that.  I think I'm going to have it like Disney World...where there are multiple hotels. That way I can make different types of buildings. I'll have cottages, cabins, maybe a skyscraper hotel.....

The problem is I'm horrible at building. But maybe that's good. It gives me something to learn...a challenge.