The 14th and 15th of October marked an end of an era. After opening their gardens for 20 years, George and Patrica Hetrel have farewelled this event in the best way possible. And after 20 years, the crowds were simply phenomenal. And the generosity amazing.
Here is the amazing story behind one of Melbourne Outer East’s most treasured memories. Click on through to support the gardens.
On a personal note, the thing I will miss the most is the Seasol wheel. For most of the years, the honour was given to the State Emergency Services to run this fun activity. And you know what? It truly was fun.
It was at this PR event that I really got to know some of the other members within the unit. Whilst our local unit’s Monday night training gives you the opportunity to socialise between meeting and training, there’s nothing like standing next to someone for an entire day to really get to know them.
One of these memebers is GK. Yes, I’m talking about you and yes, it’s on the blog. Now most of the time, PR events can be boring. Especially as a volunteer in today’s day and age – it’s only when things go wrong and the swarm of volunteers come out and assist do people notice. And so most of the time, most people don’t even know what the SES do.
For a write up you can go over to my why I do this post. For more information on how the SES(please note, this is a state based organisation – and there is one SES for each of the states – for Victoria, it’s VICSES, NSWSES, WASES and so on) help the community and for a handy chart of when to call them…I have linked that directly to the general community PDF available online.
Comments range from “You’re in the SAS?” (That’s totally different and I’d probably not have a social media profile) to “Oh you’re a firefighter?!” (Heck, if I see a bushfire, I’m heading the opposite way. Australian bushfires are dangerous. You only have to look at all these different examples to realise how bad it can be. The real sad part is – most of them are deliberately lit. Well, if we do need to head into a bushfire region to clear out access roads, then the SES do so…)
But it was here that GK showed me the ropes on the amazing seasol wheel and that’s where we had to do it. There were some great lines and very cringeworthy lines…
Spinners are Winners and Winners are Grinners
Spin Spin Spin to Win Win Win!
All in good fun and always with a smile to share. This event was the corner stone for me to sense the way the SES help out the community and to see first hand one amazing couple giving back to us.
The trains were a hit. The face painting? Even better. But most of all, it’s the people I will miss the most. The awesome sense of community and a real sense of serenity as you walk around the gardens. And naturally, the amazing car museum.
Nothing can ever do it justice.
So from one grateful volunteer, thanks George and Pat. Thank you for giving back and allowing us to continue to serve our community. I wish you nothing but the best with your journey ahead.