Starting more or less in the middle of my journey to Malmsbury, about 100 km north-west of Melbourne, here lies the vicarage of Saint John's Anglican church, the outdoor loo, seen on the left, available to any visitor as they enter.
Bypassed by the nearby Calder Highway, the town may have lost some helpful income, but it has retained its courageous charm. The railway station, especially the disused side seen here, is getting to be genteelly dilapidated.
Founded sometime in the 1850s as a supply stop between Melbourne and the Mount Alexander goldfields, Malmsbury has not yet and never will be, I hope, been afflicted with too much make-up.
The train takes you across this viaduct,"believed to be the finest example of this particular kind of construction within Australia", one of a number if discreet signs informs me. It was built of locally-sourced bluestone in 1860. Beneath it is the not entirely rapid Coliban River, straddling the Malmsbury Botanic Gardens.
Not really a tourist destination, the Gardens look more like a slapped-together arboretum. I was happy here. Sometimes it's nice to go somewhere where things are just allowed to age.
Oddities abound, ignoring makeovers and the demands of the bullish consumer altogether. Sigh.
There are some gems, such as this Arbutus, its cinnamon colour strikingly necessary.
As lovely as this - installation, one-time fountain, memorial? I do not know and I do not need to know.
Someone sensible has made this beautiful cafe out of what they found about them, without getting too precious. Tree-changers have been moving into Malmsbury, slowly and carefully. I am sure I'm not the only one who recognises something very touching in a past allowed to speak without being pushed onto centre-stage.
Malmsbury doesn't scream. I crossed the capacious main street several times with only a single distant car once or twice nosing in the distance.
I ate my lunch in the Gardens, attended by my fan-base, quackers of various nationalities, needing a bit of sandwich. There was almost no-one else there.
No-one has demanded that this ruinous shed should be removed from the main street. Hurrah! Live and let live.
Nor this hay-shed, also in the main street. This is, after all, a farming community...
...a pretty one
and an honest one.
I come back to the vicarage, or the sometime garage of the vicarage. I hope the vicar forgives me, taking shots of his private life, or the parts of his private life I'm sure he is glad have not been renovated.
Here then is the spire of Saint John's Anglican church, sporting its rooster. This has been the driest summer here for 30 years. Lately, though, we have had a presage of autumn, some rain falling into our outstretched hands.
The author, seen against a pine at the railway station, heedless of a rationalised world.