Walking through Petrie Plaza in the early hours of the morning when the streets are close to empty and the pavement is striving to generate some warmth to protect itself from the 5 degree Canberra weather, you could be mistaken, when stumbling upon the ornate merry-go-round in the centre of the city for thinking you were walking right into a storybook.
Whether this storybook is a carefree childhood story of coming of age or a post-apocalyptic tale of zombies and survival really depends on your previous life experiences.
But coming up to 11am the glassy-eyed horses and elephants spring to life and children and adults alike are delighted by the olde-world charm of yesteryears fair.
The merry-go-round began its life in Melbourne in 1914 when the fifity-two hand carved wooden horses (all individually named) and two elephants were imported from Germany. The brass upright poles came from Scotland and after extensive restoration work the merry-go-round sprung to life in Canberra's Petrie Plaza in 1974.
Music flows from a refurbished German 69 key pipe organ that is kept separate from the ride due to its fragile condition.
The merry-go-round is as wonderous to watch as it seems to be to ride on and adds colour, noise and a whole lot of heart to the middle of Canberra.