Saturday, 12 January 2008


Despite our concerns over spiders and snakes, and no previous experience, we're camping, in Australia, and actually enjoying the experience!

In preparation for this latest adventure, we bought;
40 paper plates
A pack of 6 sets of plastic cutlery
A milk pan (no joke) for cooking beans in
A 3 man tent
2 roll mats
1 sleeping bag
2 plastic mugs
Tin foil to protect our vegetables from the very meaty Aussie BBQs

This isn't much, considering there is nothing except for a kettle and toaster in the camp kitchens, but we're actually doing OK (we even set up our tent in the dark in Coffs Harbour, and Ben is positioning the tent perfectly for maximum shade).

The plan is to spend about two weeks getting from Sydney to Brisbane along the East Coast. We originally thought we would do this by Greyhound bus (a prospect we weren't too thrilled about after our Mexico/ US border crossing experience), but we discovered Country Link train/ bus service was actually cheaper and more convenient, so we decided to go for that instead.

We left Lisa and Darren's on Monday, laden down with luggage, and hopped on the Sydney to Broadmeadow train, then took a bus from Broadmeadow to Forster (inexplicably pronounced 'Foster') for our first adventure. We're already had some interesting experiences (sitting behind a man with an imaginary friend/ wife and kids on the train, and met some great people (like a Jennifer, a seasoned traveller who backpacked through Asia alone in 1975 using the first Lonely Planet guide (wow!) and kindly offered us a place to stay which we couldn't accept because we were already booked up in Forster) so we're really glad we took this route, and decided to go it alone, away from the bosom of friends and family for a bit.

In Forster, we stayed at the Smuggler's Cove (yes, a pirate themed caravan park - great!) and were adopted by our neighbours, a lovely family who turned out to have the surname Charlton, and could possibly be related to Ben (Brett, the dad, has a family legend that says Hadrians Wall was built to stop the Charltons gettnig into Scotland; and Ben's grandma is descended from the Charltons, who were border raiding cattle rustlers. Could there be a connection? We're currently investigating, and hope there is). Here's a pic of us all:
So, now we're at the second of three camping locations - Coff's Harbour, which seems to be full of people who don't want to talk to strangers, but we're still having a great time lounging by the pool eatnig Calippo Gelatos. I know it's cold and miserable there, but if you haven't tried one yet, go to the shops, buy one, go home, turn the heating up, and enjoy the fruitiest, tastiest ice lolly of all time. We kid you not, we love them! Here's Ben eating his fave flavour; Berry, and Debs eating her favourite flavour; Mango.


Debs and Ben

1 comment:

The Charlos said...

Hi, so proud of you Ben, setting up your tent in the dark - you obviously have it down to a fine art.
As for Calippo's - definitely agree with you on that one. They're great.
We were all very excited to be included on your blog - especially the kids. One thing you forgot though - to mention your and Ben's wonderful effort at boogie boarding. Hope you get the chance to try it again.
Hope the weather isn't causing you too much bother I heard it's been quite bad up the coast.