Chocolate Socialist (braisedbywolves) wrote,
Chocolate Socialist
braisedbywolves

Australia Days 8-11.5 (Sun 16th-Wed 19th)

The next three and a half days share a certain structure: get up a bit late and check out and get in the car and go to the next place via taking photos of very large things, and go to bed early, with spare time to Do One Thing somewhere in there. It was still lovely as a framework to hang out with Jen.

On the Sunday we stopped off at the first small town for breakfast and a wander - literally the first person we saw on getting out of the car was wearing a T-shirt that said "Born to fish - forced to work", it was that sort of place. Also the puzzling possibly-geese that were sitting sleeping on the bollards on the pier turned out to be pelicans!

The main selling points of the first two stops were that they were 1/3 and 2/3 of the way from the wedding to Melbourne - Eden was more of a big street than a town but it did have whale-watching trips the next day. We decided we probably wouldn't add that much hassle - and driving back from the sight of the sea, we spotted another beach, we went to look out. The sun setting behind us on the other side of the peninsula gave the clouds the impression of being painted, and a couple of minutes after that photo, we saw some whales anyway.

The next day, after passing by a Big Fish, the big thing for the day was a trip to the Buchan Caves - after that we went on to find out that the Airbnb of the evening was in essentially a shipping container converted to a barn, with parakeets outside. The wifi wasn't working so we played Trivial Pursuit - frontier spirit there. We also played it using blankets as shawls - we had driven basically as far as London to Edinburgh, so we should probably have not been so surprised by how cold it was getting.

The couple providing the B&B were lovely though, and had been to Ireland and Scotland - they were off again in the morning or we'd have loved to talk to them.

The last full day's driving saw us pass by the Big Cigar in Churchill and the Big Pint of Beer in Mirboo North - somewhere in here the GPS threw us its only wobbly, sending us down what was Not A Road (though it did connect two roads, which is presumably what the GPS was thinking of). This fortunately wasn't the bit of the day where it was raining, or we would have struggled to get the tiny car up the slight slope at the end.

And then to Philip Island, and the Tiny Penguins! This is the bit where it was raining though, and we sat and watched them come in to the shore and freak out about whether they'd be able to make it across the beach for about half an hour, before heading back ahead of the serious incoming clouds.

The Airbnb couple here were lovely as well - a tale of love found in later life after "his wife passed on, and my husband passed on with another woman!" which now features two mad terriers. This was the one where we remained confined to the room though - when you see Other's People's Stuff in the bathroom, it changes things.

And then up in the morning for the last drive and a tonne of Big things - a Tap, a Koala (by the Koala Conservation Centre, which we went for a wander through), Chocolate Cows, a Wave (with a surfboard inside if you want to pose), a Worm, a Shark, and finally the thing that made this slight preoccupation all worthwhile, the enormous shiny Garden Gnome. I don't know if you've been clicking through to Instagram for any of these, but trust me, click that link.

And then on to Melbourne, where we immediately got caught in traffic and spent 40 minutes on the last 5k.
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