DM's Hobart 2017 Diary

Day 2 - Salamanca Market

Saturday, 23 December, 2017

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21:31

I slept poorly because of a sore upper back. It was so uncomfortable that I couldn't lie on my back or front without it hurting every time I breathed, and could only scrunch up on my side in an attempt to get to sleep. Every time I tossed or turned in my sleep, the pain would wake me again.

We woke up and it was light outside. Checking the time revealed it to be 6:45, so we got up and M. had a shower while I tried to stretch my back out. I looked up physiotherapists in the area, but most were closed on Saturdays. There was one open from 08:00 however, not too far a walk from the centre of Hobart.

After we dressed and left to walk down to Salamanca Market, we began to realise how high up the hill we were from Hobart. The street our motel is on has a marvellous view over the city and the Derwent River, though interrupted by nearby houses and trees. The street we walked down sloped steeply downhill. Near the bottom we stopped at Pigeon Hole Cafe for some breakfast. Since it was now a bit after 8:00, I phoned the physiotherapist and made an appointment to go in at 11:30, giving us most of the morning to browse the markets. For breakfast we both chose the gingerbread granola, which came with rhubarb, plums, cherries, and a whipped yoghurt that was airy and fluffy. It was good. M. also had a coffee and said it was good too.

Gingerbread granola
Gingerbread granola at Pigeon Hole

Then we continued walking downhill, turned left into another street and continued downhill until we reached Salamanca Place and the markets there. It was around 09:00 an they were bustling with activity already. Hundreds of stalls lined the street and the paths between them were choked with people, making it fairly slow going to weave your way through.

Salamanca Market
The crowd at Salamanca Market

We walked down one aisle and then back up most of the parallel aisle, enjoying the sights and sounds and smells and tastes of the market. Many of the food and drink stalls were offering free samples. I tried different types of cheeses, some truffle pate, a smoked salmon spread, nuts, chocolate, peanut butter, and a few different types of gin! The peanut butter was good, made with heavily roasted nuts and carrying the flavour of the roasting. We bought a jar of it, which I thought was for us to take home, but it turned out M.'s plan was to use it this week on bread that we buy to make ourselves lunches!

Vase display
Gingerbread granola at Pigeon Hole

M. wanted to return to a stall where she'd tried a silver armband earlier, and we tried to backtrack and find it, but didn't manage to do so when the time began to get close to when I needed to be at the physio, so we had to give up and wend our way north through the market until we emerged into Hobart's CBD. We continued several blocks further until we reached the physiotherapist office. A woman there treated my back, gave me some exercises to do, and recommended I take some Voltaren tablets to reduce the inflammation. On the way back into Hobart we stopped at a Chemist Warehouse to get the Voltaren, as well as some dental flossing picks, since I'd forgotten to pack floss at home.

We stopped at Daci & Daci Bakers for lunch. This was a really nice bakery with cafe tables and light meals. M. chose a sweet potato tortilla, a kind of frittata slice really, while I tried the Moroccan lamb sausage roll, which was really good. I also ordered a passionfruit meringue, since I'd been craving something like a pavlova. This was a softball sized meringue, which had softer meringue inside the hard shell, but unlike a fluffy soft pavlova it was actually chewy, more like a toffee. It came with a small pot of cream flavoured with vanilla bean, which helped offset the sugary sweetness. It was okay, but not what I really wanted.

Good baked goods
Daci & Daci Bakers

We walked back to the market and this time found the stall where M. tried the arm band again, but it didn't fit properly, not going past her elbow, and the woman at the stall said it would need heating and a jeweller to resize it, so M. decided not to buy it. We checked the small part of the market we hadn't walked down yet, and also some of the shops in the buildings along Salamanca Place.

Windeward Bound
Brigantine Windeward Bound, at Constitution Dock

With it getting close to market closing time of 15:00, we left to walk along the waterfront of Constitution Dock. We passed a couple of square rigged tall ships, though fairly small ones, and motor cruisers and fishing boats, all mingled together. It was getting hot in the sun now, so we turned at the far end of the dock to seek shade in the city shopping area.

Constitution Dock
Fishing boats at Constitution Dock

We wandered around the various malls and arcades, and found a cafe called Beaujangles to sit and rest while M. had a cup of tea, so we could use the toilets. We sat for a while as we were fairly tired by now. M. said she had phoned while I was being treated at the physio to book us a place for dinner, at 18:00. She didn't tell me where, but told me it was in Salamanca Place. When we left to slowly make our way there, it was 16:30 and a lot of shops were already closing, though some were staying open until 17:00. But after then there was nothing to do so we walked over and sat in a park near Salamanca Place for a while, enjoying the shade of several large oak trees. There were people having picnics on the grass, or playing frisbee or juggling, and it was turning into a very pleasant evening.

Hobart with Mount Wellington
View of Hobart and Mount Wellington from Constitution Dock

We decided to pop into the Salamanca Fresh supermarket to buy some cereal for breakfast, plus some apples, chocolate, and sandwich bags for packing lunches. Then we headed to the address M. told me, to find our dinner spot. I thought it was an Indian restaurant as we approached, but it turned out to be a few doors closer, a place called Rockwall, which was a bar and grill... not at all what I expected. One of M.'s work colleagues had recommended it to her, and M. had checked the menu online. It had a few decent vege choices, and she chose the mushroom risotto, plus bread with olive oil and balsamic vinegar to start. I couldn't decide between the twice cooked duck, pork loin rack with spicy plum sauce, blue eyed trevalla, or beef and Guinness pie. M. asked the waiter what he'd recommend and he said he really liked the pork, so I chose that. I also tried the lobster paté for a starter, which was interesting and delicious on hot bread. I had a martini while M. had a glass of Pinot noir. When the mains came, M. refilled with a Sauvignon blanc, while I tried a Moo Brew hefeweizen beer.

Pork loin rack with spicy plum sauce
Pork loin rack with spicy plum sauce at Rockwall

The pork was amazing. It was so tender and juicy, and flavourful. I can't recall ever having pork that tasted so good before. When we were leaving, I made sure to find the waiter and tell him how glad I was that he'd recommended it. We were so full after the meal that I couldn't even consider dessert.

We walked back home, up all the hills, arriving in at 20:30. The motel owner had put a bowl of fresh cherries into the fridge for us, and I tried a few as a tiny sweet end to the day. They were a little tart, but delicious. Then I had a shower and wrote up this diary before bed.



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