At the Mundaring Weir
The Weir feeds a pipeline extending all the way to Kalgoorlie, some 350 miles to the east, providing water to the entire region (including our destination, Merredin).
The Golden Pipeline, near Merredin.
We didn't want to take the main highway to Merredin, so we took an alternate route passing through a town called Toodyay, where we stopped for breakfast. Continuing our drive, I learned my first lesson of this vacation: provide yourself with detailed maps before driving in unfamiliar regions! We spent a while driving north when we should have been going east, but the countryside was beautiful and we had plenty of time. I stopped in a place called Wongan Hills, bought a map and got back on track.
Arriving at Merredin, we stopped at Lorna's sister's house, but she wasn't home, so we went next door to her mother's house. L's mother is 95, and I was pleased to see that she hadn't aged much in the 10 years since we last saw her. She has a little more trouble getting around (she uses a walker), but is still mentally sharp. She told me that she occasionally forgets a name, but then so do I. She is the oldest person I've ever known.
While we were in Merredin, we stayed at another house L's sister Thea owns on a property just out of town. It wasn't anything fancy, and we had to learn how to keep a fire going in the woodstove to keep the place even a little warm.
Thea's property has a couple of old rock quarries, and she has planted several thousand trees in order (I guess) to turn it into a kind of nature reserve. She keeps a few horses, sheep, geese and ducks there. That's in addition to the native lizards and birds (we spotted a gecko in the house a few times, and woke every morning to the complex song of a honeyeater).
On Thea's acreage.
Quarry, wattle in foreground.