Super special day!!
Visited my 97 year old Uncle Steve Mccudden who still drives- a tractor! Up in his banana plantation most days of the week! This man was always special as a kid, but now as an adult he is so inspirational.
Had photos out the front of his house that he built with his payout from his service in WWII Breathtaking views from every room in his old little house.
So picked him up and drove to the plantation in Valla. His Daughter in Law Vicky was there packing bananas with 2 other men and her 2 pug dogs. Another amazing woman who lost her husband to cancer 3 years ago. She has continued to run the plantation with Ducass bananas which they brought into Australia by growing them from plant tissue. Most of Australia's eating bananas are imported or grown further up north where they grow almost double as fast, so Vicky and her husband now supply the Asian markets in Melbourne with Ducass bananas for cooking. They can't keep up with demand! Ducass bananas are cooked in Asian cuisine with when green, they are similar to potato. We ate them more ripe/yellow, and they were not as sweet as the cavalish (eating) bananas, and firmer and thicker. Jenson loved them.
Then we all got on the back of the tractor driven by 'Pa' up the hill and back down through the bananas. Followed part the way by cows running after us. We later learned that the trVtor we were in also feeds them! No wonder they chased us!
During our tractor ride we learned about the "suckers", shoots that grow beside the banana trees that need to be cut off so maximum nutrition can go to the main tree.
They gave us a whole box of eating bananas which are just so beautiful. So much more favour than woolies! With no chemicals added! Ducass bananas also don't need pesticides to grow, there are no pests besides the wallabys who seem to "get high on them"! Ha!
After the plantation we took uncle Steve to the Nambucca RSL for toasted sandwiches and a beer. Love listening to this man, especially his story's about his best mate- my Papou. They were distantly related, met up on the deck of the ship that brought them back from New Guinea where they served in the war.
Uncle Steve told a story about Papous dad being a great man, then went on to say that he encouraged both boys to go to the Olympics in Melbourne. He said they were sitting having a drink, and "mick says, "look who's coming" It was the Greek Olympic team, who Mick went on to talk to in Greek.
My goodness what a lovely morning.
After we dropped Uncle Steve home we gathered what energy we had left and went for a quick swim at Shelly Beach. Last time I was there I was 2.5 years old I am told.