The family went for a drive in the hills today, and we hit York for lunch and a wander. It’s great to see the town still holding it’s yesteryear character, and seemingly quite prosperous at the same time. Lunch was vegetarian burger, beer and chips at one of the local pubs, followed by a walk down the main street.

It’s a wonderland of second hand shops, and I grabbed a bargain set of drink coasters with crazy sayings (and even crazier fonts!) for a whopping 50 cents at one of them. I had to explain to my kids that this weird black phone which you had to turn the dial with your finger was the standard telephone in most Australian homes until the 1970’s. Showing my age I vividly remember them too.

Looking through all of these groovy antiques made me think about glass blowing, as in the art of forming glass into objects while the glass is in a molten, semi-liquid state.

Glass blowing is one of those age long trades that was never affected by the arrival of the Internet, more likely it was affected by machinery in general. Once upon a time, the average Australian home would have had a shelf full of hand blown jars and bottles, however nowadays you would think it would only be seen in sculpture and art such as vases.

Well, looks like you’d be wrong. Glass blowing is certainly still kicking along – the University of Sydney has a Glass Studio in their Sydney College of the Arts, Australian National University does glass blowing and there’s companies like Monash Scientific which specialise in scientific glass blowing.

In the Glass Blowing entry at Wikipedia, it is reported that glass blowing is one of the fastest growing hobbies in North America. Amazing!

On the way back from York, we stopped past the York Olive Oil Company for some Olive Oil tasting and factory tour. Having tasted fresh Olive Oil, I think I’ll be ruined when trying the supermarket variety!

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