Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Last post before home 25th AAA

I had one hell of a time getting on to post today. We brought Jim's laptop and I don't think it likes me.

Yesterday we took the advice of the very friendly lady at the Gold Rush Colony and traveled south on the Tourist road to our first stop, Mystery Bay. This is a beautiful beach area with lots of crashing waves on the rocks and we enjoyed a picnic lunch here. The wind also started to pick up here and I'm glad that I brought my little jacket. ** The mystery is about the two miners that heard about a gold find in the bay and came to investigate. They met a geologist and two archeologists from the area and set out by boat to search for the site. After some time with no word back, a search party was sent out to find them. The boat was found intact at the head of the bay with all their documents and supplies but the men were never found! and that's the mystery...**

Second stop was Central Tilba, a historical aboriginal town with lots of little shops. Then on to Tilba Tilba, which is known as Central Tilba's sister town. (much more shops and touristy items) We spent time in the little shops in both places to check out the wares and original art objects.

Back on the tourist road and we stopped along the way to walk out onto the beaches to catch photo opportunities. By this time the wind had really picked up and the sand was stinging our legs and faces as we walked, but true photographers, (or silly ones) don't give up and Jim got some really nice shots of crashing waves.

Jim was hoping to get up to take a picture of a bird! LOL only kidding, he wanted to show the size of the rock.

Thunderous and wondrous sound!!

We drove along into Bermagui Bay and stopped to have Fisherman's basket, (also recommended) which we shared; 4 fish cocktails(pieces of fish), 2 prawns, 2 sea scallops, 2 calamari rings and chips. We found it all very tasty even the calamari that neither of us had a taste for, but it was very tender.

Back on the road again we stopped at one or two view pull offs, but the wind was fierce and we were tired of fighting it. On the way back I spotted a carwash so we were able to wash off a majority of the forest road dirt and clay that had accumulated over the week. I guess rental cars are supposed to stay on pavement, pretty much impossible here.

Back at the timeshare we had a pizza and watched some terrible TV. Although we did catch a nice program about forests and animals that live in them around the globe.

We are laying low today, doing laundry and packing and will probably walk over to the restaurant for supper as we have eaten all (almost) our provisions that we brought and bought. Such a great time we had, but I'm looking forward to home and my kitties and Zulu. It has been a SPOT ON TIME!!

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Tuesday 25th AAA

We started today's journey off with coffee at Batemans Bay. A lovely spot to start the day.
Our next venture was to the Birdland Animal Park and I am going to say that I was not thrilled with this attraction at all. I probably am spoiled by the two animal parks we went to earlier on our holiday that were both clean and I felt the animals were better cared for. We did get some nice pictures that I will post of fb though.

We then traveled back to Mogo to browse through the stores that we always seem to miss because they close at 4:00. My iPhone and Jim's phone don't match with the cars clock, so we are never quite sure of the time of day or even the day. LOL that is what I call a vacation. it is coming down to the wire and we just need to make sure we get to the plane on Friday on time.

While we were in Mogo we decided to journey to "The Original Gold Rush Colony" and I'm very happy that we did. We had a private tour with Jannie and she was very thorough in her explanations and descriptions of the town and it's inhabitants. Right down to the best way to "pan" for gold. Jim did some panning, but we did not strike it rich today. The lady behind the reception counter gave us some places to journey to tomorrow that sound like fun. It is such a treat to just get up in the morning and do whatever floats your boat. Speaking of boats, our timeshare is right on the inlet to the river and this morning as we were sitting on the patio an elderly group of two couples came down and prepared to take to the river. God Bless them and I hope they had an excellent time, but you know about watching paint dry, well that is how slow they had their motorboat moving. It's a wonder they got out of the inlet, but I'm sure they had a spot on time.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Re-do 25th AAA

Since the last post on Friday the 13th we have been driving around enjoying the Australian Coast. I know that I have put a lot of pictures up on fb about the places we have been, but when they say pictures tell a thousand words, they might not be the words you want!

Saturday our time spent at Eurobodalla Regional Botanic Gardens was so complete. It had it all including a café with a lovely and helpful server. I'm not sure if I will be able to drink weak coffee from the states. The lady manning the information/gift shop went out of her way(literally) came out of the booth to advise us on what to see and how to see it. Lovely lady! The sculptures, and I did not put them all on fb, were such a variety of artistic mediums. Jim and I love that kind of stuff. So we wandered through all the walks that they offered and we learned about the large termite mounds and the dam and all the variety of Eucalyptus Trees. I was also very interested in reading "The Aboriginal Heritage Trail" which gave all the Botanical/Medicinal uses for the different plants and trees.

After finishing it all we traveled on to visit the Town of Mogo and to see the shops and that is when we found that everything closes at 4:00. We were able to walk through an art gallery that was a refurbished church with all the walls covered in hammered tin tiles. Pretty awesome, and then into an art gallery with many mixed media collage pictures. It gave me lots of creative impulses that I hope to rekindle when I return. REmind Me! Like I said, everything closed so we headed to the coast. We ended up in Malua Bay where we first encountered the blue slimy thingy on the beach. Avoiding these little things we had a great time walking, collecting shells and pictures. Loving the sounds, sights and smells of the Sea.
Back to the timeshare and while Jim loaded pictures onto his laptop I walked to the IGA and bought provisions for our week here. It is nice that the grocery and a restaurant are within the Resort. Quite convenient. After TV sleepy time

Sunday (Jim's Birthday)we had all planned out and started for a walk to Coman's Mine, an old abandoned mine. It was about half and hour ride on a dirt forest, where we actually bottomed out on a creek bed before we saw the trailhead. The walk was a pretty short and unimpressive one. The old mine was filled in, but the metal parts were somewhat viewable and I found some little pieces of quartz that called my name, or Ramona's.
It was the rest of this journey that was horrific in my mind and I will ask permission to quote from Jim's journal.
Jim's Journal entry: When we got back out a car was coming up the hill and I asked about a different way out. They gave me two options but strongly suggested I go back the same way I came . After a good look at the map I decided on option 1, German Rd. The road got progressively narrower and coated with twigs, sticks, rocks and leaves. All of a sudden Dee says "Jim do you see the tree?", I say what tree and she points straight down the road. A huge tree has fallen across the road blocking our path. I now need to turn around on a one lane backwood road with ditches both sides or back up about a half mile!!

Well, needless to say we were on an adventure. I am always amazed at the patience that Jim has, but this was a trial, not a trail. It took us many switchbacks up and down and around to get us off that mountain and we both agreed that we had enough of Australian mountain roads for this trip! When we were finally off (2hours) we were to late for window shopping so we headed for the coast to calm our nerves and feel the earth in a good way again, with our feet!
This time we headed to Potato Point and we were  not disappointed. We had sand under our feet, shells in my pocket and kangaroos abound. A lovely way to end a harrowing day.
A birthday that Jim will never forget. 
We saw this on one of the roads we were traveling on to get out. Not very encouraging!

Friday, October 13, 2017

Friday the 13th

Well, last night as we were preparing for sleep a group of motorcycle riders came to stay. When Jim went out to our little red car it was surrounded by bikes. I wish we had taken a picture it was a little bright spot amongst the black. I was nervous about sleep deprivation, but they went out for a ride and I never heard them roll in. Certainly heard them this morning but we were all leaving about the same time. So, as we traveled on our way Jim asked if we should go and get our picture of the Sydney Opera house as we were going to be going close by Sydney. We decided to get to a small town and take public transportation rather then drive as they have been talking about how bad the traffic is going into and out of the city. Well, new card for bus and train was going to cost us $20 to go in, take a picture and come back out and we had no idea how it all worked. So, after a long black, and a flat white and Australian bacon and egg rolls at this great espresso shop, Jordi's, we decided to skip the trip and maybe next week before the airport we can grab a picture or postcard for you Colleen. Sorry hon, just wasn't on the radar for the day. So, of course we were in the traffic and ended up going very close to Sydney anyway but couldn't see it. It took a long while with the traffic to get going again.

We traveled along and then pulled of at a viewpoint "Sublime Point Lookout" and it was sublime.
There were padlocks with writings and etchings on them all along the fence. Wish I had one to write J & D TLF 25
It's an Awesome Aussie View!

After that little pit stop we gathered some miles under our tires and continued on our merry way. A little rain, a little sun and we noticed a light house in the distance and decided to investigate. It is so lovely to have no time frame at the moment and just be spontaneous. What a treat that stop was. So many pictures that I will be making a fb post. Jim was so cute in his excitement of it all. I sure love to see him like that.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

25th AAA

A very short post. The day today was all about getting here, and here we are. We started out in the dark, and then it started raining. The good thing about that is that they really needed the rain. It is very dry right now in Australia and there are scrub fires happening. We actually saw the smoke the day we went hunting for the waterfalls and then on our way home, on our long, long way home we traveled through some of the area that was still burning. I guess it happens here as they did not shut the road down or anything. There was a person up by it, so I imagine he had it under control. It burned right down to the road. Oh, anyway, back to our travels today. Lots of roadwork just like back home except the driving speed is quite abit faster here.
We were lucky enough to get to see the dawn sky before it clouded in and started downpouring.
The rest of the day was mile by mile and conversation by conversation about all kinds of things, but one of our most important aspects of our relationship of 25 years married life is that there is no need to fill a companionable silence. It is filled with love and respect <3 and a joint venture and adventure. We love the fact that we brought along dry bagged hiking food from REI, as it has been so great to be able to have meals with an already roasted chicken supplemented by the dry ration bags. It makes the dinners that we eat out sparse but more enjoyable because we have been so good.
Will check in tomorrow if it works

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

25th AAA

Okay, today we are getting ready to pack up and leave early in the morning tomorrow to head to our next destination, Tomakin, but after checking the drive we decided to split it up and we are staying tomorrow night in Gosford which is about 9 hours from here.

Sunday we spent the day hanging around and went for a long walk in the late afternoon to the Dam from our timeshare. It was longer than we expected and ended coming back in the light of our phone flashlight. We caught a lot of the nightlife lizards scurrying around and the owls swooping overhead. It was great.!

Monday was an adventure drive out into the countryside to locate Lismore, which we thought would be a small artist town. Turned out to be quite the large city and the only artist dwelling/shop was closed on Mondays. We did catch a nice museum at the information center and spent some time looking at all of the contributions. It was a very varied collection of artifacts.

Tuesday we headed for Mount Blarney National Park and the various Falls that were advertised therein. What the map failed to show were the constant switchbacks and OH SO very narrow roads. The country side was absolutely breathtaking on every side, the problem being that I had very little air to breath as I was holding my breath and biting my lip a lot. God bless Jim and his patience!! We finally arrived at our destination and it was worth the drive, I think

I must admit the drive back was bad! We told the person at the top that we did not want to go back down the way we came up as it was very treacherous and it would have been worse on the downhill. He told us that it was the shortest way, but that we could go this other way!!!!!!I didn't think we would ever get back, and we ended up night driving for the first time and there are little to no lights available on the roadways. OH MY GOD I love my driver to bits!!!!

We will be on the road all of tomorrow so I will catch us up on Friday (if there is wifi) I will say right now that we don't realize how good we have it in the good old USA!!


Saturday, October 7, 2017

Australian Adventure with Jim and Dee

We have finally figured out how to order our coffee. Jim has a tall flat white takeaway with two sugars and I have a tall water with coffee only, takeaway and of course it is all espresso and Jim's milk is heated with froth. No idea how Dunkin Donuts back home will do that!!

I'm all messed up with what day it is, but isn't that what a vacation is all about. I think on Friday we drove to the Burleigh Heads National Park and walked along the coast and into the rainforest. It was quite the beautiful walk, but I'm happy that most of it was shaded. We also spent some time in the Aboriginal Museum and seems that the natives here had the similar harsh treatments from the Europeans. The place that we have been so graciously offered wifi has a building housing a photographic (limited) history of some of the past Kings, Lynn (curator) is very passionate of bringing the history to the forefront. She is most hospitable and a joy to listen to. She couldn't be more helpful in all areas. We have a plethora of tourist info that we will return on Wednesday as we prepare to travel on.


Yesterday(Saturday) Jim and I spent the day at the Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary. It was unlike the David Fleay Wildlife Park in that it is a huge tourist attraction and advertises that it is a non-profit organization and that all monies go for animal rehabilitation and research. We were able to watch a few of the talks and shows, but the crowds were large and I am short, so couldn't see a lot. There is a large part of the enclosure where you can get up close and personal with the kangaroos, but they pretty much are over socialized and just lay there and eat out of your hand( is you buy the food). I myself enjoyed the first park. It was much more rustic and less expensive. Of course it did not have as much but for me it was more personal. G'day mate we'll be back soon.  We have found a Subway so we are off for lunch and to the grocery store.