Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Websites Listed in My Favorite Bathroom Book

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

Today I'm going to be looking at Woolmer's Estate in Longford Tasmania.

Before I look at it, I want to express something that's in my brain right now.

Over the Thanksgiving holiday, I had a semi-argument with someone. We were talking about the awfulness of bullying. He blamed it on the bullies having too much free time.

I pretty much said I thought this was complete bullshit. I am blessed these days with a lot of free time. That's why I can write frivolous posts like this. And I can play Sims 2 and watch Aussie shows on Hulu.

It's not about how much free time you have. It's about what you do with your time. Judging by my use of time, I'd say I was an okay person.  If I was a super person, I'd be using my free time to help sick people in Africa. Or something like that. If I was an evil person, I'd be using all this free time to bully others or terrorize innocents.

Also, if people have a lot of evil in them, I believe, even if they're super busy, they'll find the time to do evil things.

Okay. Now that I got that off my chest, I shall look at this Woolmer's Estate.

Where is Longford?

According to Google Maps, it's right under Launceston.

When I Google the word Longford, the first place that comes up is a county in Ireland. Perhaps the Longford in Tasmania is named for the Irish one.

Lord Wiki says Longford is an agricultural type place.  He also says there's a family called the Archers, and they have a lot of history in the area.  They have big farm estates which are now world heritage thingies.

Oh! Wow. I'm dumb sometimes.

I almost missed this. But guess what. Woolmers is one of these big farm estates.

You know...I should probably get to the task of looking at the actual Woolmer's website.

I assumed it was a lodging business. But I'm wrong. It's a place you visit.  You don't stay the night.

No. Never mind.  I just read the home page. They do have lodging.

The home page also lists the opening times.  The estate is open every day except Christmas and Good Friday. Though on those days, the lodging IS open.

Hours are 9:30-4:30.  There are guided tours. These cost $20 for adults and $7 for children.

If you're like me, and prefer self-guided tours, those are $14 for adults. They don't list the price for children, but do say concessions are available.

There's a message here asking Archer family decedents to fill out some forms, because a second (updated) book about the Archers is being created.

I wonder how it would feel to be part of a prominent family like that. Would I be honored to be asked to be included in the book? Or would I be annoyed by the whole thing?

Maybe I'd feel a mixture of both.

The Woolmer's Estate has a rose garden with a large variety of specimens, so fans of roses would probably enjoy a visit there.

On the side of the page, they say Woolmer's is one of eleven convict World Heritage Sites.

I was wondering why, and the answer is on the home page too.  Many of the buildings on the estate were built by convicts.

Now I'm going to follow some links.

The website is a bit overwhelming. Links lead to more links.

I might just stick with things that interest me.

Well, I followed the link to the Servant's Kitchen Cafe, but there's not much on this page. It just says the cafe is closed from July 27 2014 to September 2014.  I wonder why they're specific about July, but not September.

Anyway, it doesn't matter. All that is passed. The cafe should be open now.  I wonder if the food is good.

This page says the estate was established in 1817 by Thomas Archer and that his last descendant was the 6th Thomas Archer. The date 1994 is given. I guess that's when the 6th Thomas Archer died?

The website talks about how the estate was very large, and at times might have had a hundred people living and/or working there.

Here's a page about the accommodations. They were originally settler's cottages built by convicts. Very historical!  

I'm not sure how to feel about something being built by convicts. I guess my main feeling is that it's very awesome in it's historicalness. But then maybe I also feel a little sadness and regret for the convicts having to do that.  I mean if they were convicts for committing a horrible crime...fine. But what if it was built by one of those people who just stole a bit of cloth?  Should we feel some guilt for enjoying their unjust forced labor?

This page has more information about the cottages, along with some photos.

There are four cottages called Oak, Willow, Cherry Tree, and Medlar. They say it's good for groups or friends traveling together. I'm having difficulty finding specific information about how many people will fit into all these. I guess, though, that it's like a cluster of cottages that a group can use.

The Rose Garden Cottage is for two people.

The Coachman's Cottage will fit six people, so this will also work with a small group of friends. Or maybe a family. It includes three bedrooms.

Then there's something called the Cookery Nook, but the link doesn't work.

The website has a booking page, but only for the Rose Garden Cottage. I guess for everything else, you have to email with enquiries.

The price for the Rose Garden Cottage is quite reasonable though.  It's $145.

I just checked the price for January, which is a holiday time in Australia. It's still $145.

Here's a page about the rose garden. They say it's one of the finest collections in the southern hemisphere. I wonder if rose fans would agree with them.

This website lists famous rose gardens. They list thirteen from Australia, but none are from Tasmania.   That's not proof that Woolmer's isn't one of the finest collections in the world.  It's all a matter of opinion, really.  And maybe this rose website has just never heard of Woolmer's before.

Here's a page about the Archer family. And yes. 1994 is the year that the last Thomas Archer died.

The second Thomas Archer died of Scarlett Fever when he was only 26.  The third Thomas Archer inherited the property when he was only 10. But he didn't take control of the place. He went off to be educated, and the property was leased to farmers.

The fourth Thomas Archer didn't have an interest in farming so he leased the land to farmers as well. He's known for playing golf.  Here's an obituary for him.  The guy was really into sports.  Besides golf, he also did yacht stuff and played cricket.

The fifth Thomas Archer was into growing apples. Yum. I just had one for breakfast. It was good, but not the best. It was a bit soft. I like my apples to be very crispy.

The last Archer is the one who donated the estate to the historical foundation.

I can't help but wonder why the descendants ended there. Did Thomas #6 choose not to have children? Did he have children, but they died?  Did he want children, but never had the opportunity?

I wonder if there's a lot of pressure to have children when there's something huge they are due to inherent. Hell, there's pressure to have children even when you aren't part of a prominent family.

Here's a gallery from the estate. There's a variety of photos.

Unfortunately, I don't see captions. I'm not quite sure what I'm looking at.

I do know that these are very old magazines. That's pretty cool.

If someone is interested in making multiple visits to Woolmer's Estate, they can become a member. It's $55.  They can do as many self-guided tours as they please.  Guided tours are a different story. Those aren't free unless you're accompanied by someone who is paying for the tour.  So it's kind of like a two for one deal.  But what if you want to go alone? Should you be penalized for that?  Maybe then they should give you half off the tour.

The Woolmer's Estate has a Twitter account. Their most recent Tweet says the gardens are looking beautiful because of the recent rain.

Their Twitter feed has a lot of links to their Facebook feed, which has a lot of photos.

Here's a photo of a field of poppies.

Here are some pink roses. I think they're beautiful.  

I'm seeing here that they had an antique fair in November.

The Twitter and Facebook Feed seem very positive and enthusiastic.  There's a nice energy to it.

Here's a picture of some chickens at Woolmers. They're named Brad and Angelina. That's pretty funny.

I'm wondering if I should complain about the Twitter account not being interactive, because I do complain when celebrity (or other personal) accounts are like that.  But no...I think it's different. It is nice when a company or organization is interactive, but not horrible if it's not.  If it's a personal account, then I think it makes the person seem a bit self-absorbed.  Well, then it depends on what they talk about. If it's always about themselves, then it's definitely self-absorbed. If they talk about other things besides themselves and their accomplishments, then that's not so bad.

Woolmer's Twitter account often talks about itself, but not always. There's a Tweet here that recommends the Maria Island Walk in eastern Tasmania.  I wonder if it's a genuine recommendation—the Tweet person actually did the walk and enjoyed it. Or is it a favor-type recommendation?

Back to the Twitter thing. I guess it's too separate things, really: level of interaction and frequency of talking about things that are not about oneself.  If it's a company or organization type, interaction and changing the subject away from itself are bonuses but not necessary, in my opinion.  And if there's too much interaction, it might actually be distracting to people who just want to learn a bit about the company.

With personal accounts, I think it's very tacky when there's too much talking about oneself.  And when people fail to interact, I get the idea that they come to Twitter to post, but never bother to read anyone else's Tweets.

What do you guys think?  If anyone is reading this....

Are you on Twitter or Facebook?  Do you post a lot? Do you read?  Are you bothered by people who talk about themselves too much? Are you one of those people?  I guess you probably wouldn't want to confess that here.

I don't know why I'm rambling about this. I guess it's just something that interests me, and I find excuses to talk about it. Also, I felt kind of conflicted about complimenting the Woolmers account when other times I've criticized accounts. So I was trying to figure out how I felt about all of it.

Now I'm looking at pictures of Woolmer's Estate on Instagram. I'm not looking at their account. I don't think they have one I just plugged the name into the search engine, so now I'm seeing photos from various accounts.

The most recent photo is from Toddbloodaxe's account.  Five days ago, he posted a photo of a garden shed at Woolmer's.

Minivan7 has a lovely photo of the rose gardens.  She also has a photo of an apple crusher that was used for making cider.

Now I'm looking at Flickr photos.

I like this farm building photo.  I like the fences.

Well, I think I'm going to end this here.

I enjoyed my time with this post. Woolmer's Estate seems quite lovely.  I like the flowers and the buildings.  I also like the price for the one bedroom cottage.