TOCA NSW on New Years Day at Wisemans Ferry
17th January 2024
By Morris Rapaport
Since reading Kate Grenville’s, The Secret River, I lamented that although Sydney-born, I had never been to Wisemans Ferry. Therefore, Pauline and I readily took up the TOCA invitation from Steven Du, NSW State Representative, to meet there on New Year’s Day.
On the morning after New Year celebrations, we cruised effortlessly through the Sydney Harbour Tunnel in our red Model S along the M1 and M2, noting with mild displeasure that tolls went up that very morning. We continued along the Great North Road through Dural, Glenorie and Maroota, which, as far as I can tell, is called the Old Northern Road as you get closer to Wisemans Ferry (population 233). This road was built by convicts between 1825 and 1836.
After one hour and fifteen minutes of driving 75 km NNW of Sydney, we arrived at the Wisemans Ferry Café, where we met other TOCA members, none of whom we previously knew. Still, our hosts, Steven Du and Robin Smith, quickly introduced us, and everyone we chatted with was friendly and interesting.
Photo: The six Teslas looked fantastic in front of Wisemans Ferry Central shopping precinct
Photo: TOCA members in Wisemans Ferry Central, waiting for others to arrive and the drizzling weather to clear
Next, we went a few metres up the road to the Wisemans Inn for lunch. It stands on the original home and Inn – the black & white photo indicates that it was nicer then - of Solomon Wiseman, Kate Grenville’s great, great, great, grandfather. There is a statue of him outside.
Once again, we very much enjoyed chatting with Geoff, an engineer, and his partner Bibi, who does research at the UNSW Black Dog Institute. You do meet interesting people when you go to TOCA events.
Of course, a visit to Wisemans Ferry would only be complete with experiencing the punt across the Hawkesbury River. Remarkably, this service operates round the clock, except for Tuesday mornings when it temporarily closes from 9 am to midday for maintenance, and it's free of charge. However, you wouldn’t want to arrive Tuesday morning unaware of this temporary closure.
Photo: Ruby & Mohan in their blue Model Y, while on the punt. NB: the EV-loaded punt didn't sink!
After crossing the river, we drove 21 km further to the beautiful sandstone Settlers Arms Inn at St Albans. That’s when Steven realised that by chance, amongst the group, we had a Tesla Model S, a 3, an X and a Y, so of course, we had to line up those cars to spell out S3XY (sexy) for a photograph, not that it’s obvious to the casual observer.
Photo: SEXY Tesla line-up outside the Settlers Arms Inn at St Albans
Our last stop before returning home was the Hawkins Lookout, which gives you a beautiful, elevated view of the river.
Photo: Beautiful line-up of Teslas with an amazing backdrop
Pauline and I thoroughly enjoyed our day. Given that I hold Member #59 status, it's ironic that it was our inaugural TOCA daytime outing. Anticipating the enjoyment we look forward to future TOCA events. Thanks to Robin's encouragement, we are even contemplating organising one ourselves for later this year.
Additional Material Added by other TOCA members:
Steven: Tesla's Model X navigation at Wisemans Ferry destination. Spotify playing the free audio-book on Elon Musk
Steven: TOCA members in Wisemans Ferry Central, waiting for others to arrive and the drizzling weather to clear
A bystander took photos of us in front of Wisemans Ferry Central shopping precinct
The six Teslas looked fantastic in front of Wisemans Ferry Central shopping precinct
Steven: TOCA members, Lynne (left photo), Ruby and Mohan (right photo) enjoying the views while having lunch at Wisemans Inn
Steven noting Wisemans Ferry is a favourite ride and destination for motorcycle enthusiasts
Everyone enjoying snacks & drinks in the outdoor area of the Settlers Arms Inn, at St Albans
Steven: SEXY Tesla line-up outside the Settlers Arms Inn at St Albans
Pauline: Scenic return trip on the punt before Hawkins Lookout
Ruby: Steven giving an impromptu presentation on the benefits of EVs and how fantastic a Tesla is!
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