25 Jul 2010, Comments (12)


Author: Helen

It’s Sunday! Let’s NOT write about the election! What about something less depressing and more relaxing?

One of my favourite things to do is to visit my brother in Tinytown, where he bought a Country Seat a while back. Not a bush block, a house in a quiet part of the town (if you don’t count an occasional milk tanker roaring past in the night.) He sold his house in Footscray and visits his place in Tinytown every weekend to dig the garden – a variety of potatoes, garlic, and every other kind of veg – chop wood, explore the surroundings on a little Postie bike, and drink red wine by the wood stove with his GF and any visitors and dogs who might be there.

Brother’s veg garden is not like my veg garden. Bro’s garden is some serious shit.

My brother's vegie garden in Tinytown, featuring a honking great trench. For potatoes? Or murdered neighbours?

My brother's vegie garden in Tinytown, featuring a honking great trench. For potatoes? Or murdered neighbours?

Victorians will easily be able to work out Tinytown’s real identity, but I’m keen not to raise the profile on Google in case it becomes the next Fitzroy. There have been upmarket cafe sightings.

One of the many things I love about Tinytown is the murals. They’re everywhere – on the supermarket, the servo, the side of every shop. When the people there get up in the morning and there’s not much to do, they paint a mural.

How do you pronounce Trompe-L'Oeil anyway? Maybe that one should be Mobile-L'Oil.

How do you pronounce Trompe-L'Oeil anyway? Maybe that one should be Mobile-L'Oil.

Some have the kind of picturesque themes you’d expect in a country town – horses, wagons – but some of them break that mould utterly.

Mural on the side of a shop with a small biplane in flight. The artist has extended the wing up above the wall line using wood or some other material.

Unfortunately, no airstrip here as yet.

I must get a detail of the trees in the bottom right corner – awesome.

There’s even a mural on the back porch of my brother’s house. That part will be demolished at some point, so here’s a picture for posterity.

Back of brother's house with a mural painted on it of a Jane Austen-ish scene with a little "mansion" type house and women/girls in long dresses.

Who are the Tinytown mural artists? There’s an interesting interview opportunity here for some enterprising magazine writer.

Comments (12) »

  • Tony says:

    (It’s in one of the murals.)

  • Helen says:

    I think there are different ones, but I could be wrong.

    You’ll like this one (It’s a photo gallery so if the link doesn’t resolve to the specific photo, it’s the cricket mural- the human figures look like a similar style to the one on my bro’s house.

  • hannah's dad says:

    OK I’m gonna try to make you jealous.

    We’ve been here for 20 years now, mostly semi permanent, permanent for 8.

    ‘Here’ is a house set on 700 acres perched on top of a cliff overlooking what used to be a wetland until the irrigators [of which I am one] snaffled all the water and killed it and its mates.
    Our nearest neighbour is a km away and the next about 3 kms as a crow flies but further if you follow the roads.
    Our nearest shop of any sort, country general store, is 27 kms away so shopping requires a major expedition on dirt roads through scrub with not a stop light anywhere at all at all and only the occasional other car whose driver will wave as we pass.
    At night the stars are overwhelmingly bright, the nearest light pollution is a 100 kms away and even so is visible as a dull shine on the horizon.
    Its noisy here at night, never quiet.
    Frogs [even without the wetland they persevere], crickets, boobook owl, rustlings and scrabbling of the occasional wombat, maybe the ones that sit on the warren we can see from the kitchen window when we do the dishes, occasionally a thump as one of our resident roos goes past, we have 3 species here.

    The veggy garden has caused us lots of grief.
    The first one did well, O the taste of homegrown tomatoes and stuff, until the roos agreed with our opinion and jumped the fence and helped themselves.
    So we shifted the garden next to the house and that stopped them.
    For a while.
    So we moved again and built a veggy garden fortress and composted it and mulched and kissed it and got it going and then the bloody irrigators pinched all our water and left us with what falls out of the sky and that is just enough to eke out a few veggies only complemeted by judicious use of grey water.
    Even so half of dinner last night consisted of home grown tucker and brekky this morning was eggs from our neighbour whose chooks have names.
    Every morning hannah wakes us up at sunrise, or before, and if she didn’t our current morning chorus of butcher birds, kookies and the recently arrived pair of grey fantails would. The fantails like the tree outside the bedroom door. Out we go ‘walkies’, all rugged up, around the block on which we have planted 15-20,000 local native trees looking at the roos who are looking at us and then we retreat to the house cos its been a bloody cold winter.
    Later this arvo, after the footy, I’ll put the fire on and cook dinner on the stove but I’ll probably give Tony and Julia a miss.

    Did I succeed?

  • Helen says:

    Yes! 😀

    Except for Hannah waking you up so early. She should take some sleeping in lessons from Maggie who seems to be following her teenage owner’s sleep patterns.

  • genevieve says:

    That aeroplane photo has its own trompe-d’oeil effect – I thought the paving was brown fields for a tick there. VERY CONFUSING and very clever.
    Lucky bro, lucky Hannah’s Dad.
    ‘Election? what election? I’m going to the film festival…’

  • Bernice says:

    Despite my father being a Victorian and having spent numerous school holidays in various parts (bet none of you have had a weekend in Chinkapook…)I’m often appalled at my ignorance of its places. So thanks – another place to add to the Must Visit list.

  • Kath Lockett says:

    Ooooh, I want to go to Tiny Town but I honestly truly have no idea where it friggin’ is and assure you that I have no intentions (or money) to do anything upmarket to it.

  • Ann O'Dyne says:

    Just read a quote from a tall slim rich gorgeous acclaimed NYC-LON AUS girl who just married a civilised heart-throb … and she said she just wants “a cottage on acres and a big veggie garden”.
    I believe that food self-sufficiency will be the big trend of the coming years.
    This week’s Weekly Times shocked me when I read that we have all been eating pears from China for the past 11 years.
    Please everybody, read the labels before you buy.

    WT also advises that those ‘free range’ eggs you buy, are from chickens where there are fewer than 1500 to a shed. That is the technical definition of free-range by Pace and farm pride. Please DO NOT encourage these awful people. Reading the Weekly Times is a big shock you should try.

  • I do like wall art like those 🙂

  • blue milk says:

    Love love love the aircraft art.

  • James McDonough says:

    Mirboo North the next Fitzroy? Korumburra the next St Kilda, as likely. It has lovely murals too, you know. Same artist I’m pretty sure.
    I was at the Mirboo North oval a couple of days ago. Son #2’s soccer team thoroughly demolished Trafalgar.
    Honestly, I’ve been close to Mirboo North for a quarter of a century and beneath the touristy veneer it’s just another dark and ugly country town.

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