Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Day 1 Chapter 2

Brisbane to Wollongbar

Watching TV certainly pays, all those OZ Airport programs had educated me in the 'grief free' entry into OZ, declare everything, no matter how trivial.  I must admit, I filled in the form with a grin on my face, ticking virtually ever box on the form, there was no way I was getting caught for not declaring, especially as the nicotine levels were running on reserve strength. As expected we had to go in the queue for further investigation, taken to one side and questioned - 'What is the food' I was asked, 'Ah, two packs of sweets', next, 'What is the wood?', easy answer "an Ikea picture frame'; I was feeling rather confident, this was a doddle.  Next I was asked 'What are the animal products?' <g> 'Feathers', I replied and that was it, we were allowed into OZ with no case opened, no contents sprawled around the table tops and no camera crews to catch it all on film.  Now the head and body just needed stimulants - coffee and nicotine.  The coffee was easy to sort out and it was one of the best cups of coffee I have had in a long time, car hire next and then the nicotine - Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh, thats better.

With satnav sorted and programmed to avoid Toll Roads, Highways and everything else we headed out of Brisbane.  You know what it is like when you are in a new place, all ears and eyes trying to make sense of what is going on.  

I had to laugh when I saw 'Sunday Mail' written in the sky, I thought that sort of thing only happened in America <g>.

Road works, closed roads, grrrrrrrrrr problem after problem but we eventually made our way out of Brisbane and heading in the right direction for Wollongbar, not a long journey, only a couple of hours (or so we thought).  The two hours turned into six hours (due to the settings on the satnav we took the scenic route), bless Alan, I don't know how he kept going.   The drive was a feast for sore eyes, oh so beautiful, the trees are something else, tall, lean and every shade of green imaginable.

Mount Lindesay - a great view for a pee stop.

Tree line roads, hair pin bends, the sounds of birds, so much for the eyes and ears to feast on and no sand <g>.

Trees, trees and more trees
 We were just about ready for a coffee so eyes were peeled and the nose started sniffing for the aroma that indicated caffeine replenishments were close by.  We found this cracking road side cafe at Grevillia.  Coffee on order and I requested as a joke a couple of matchsticks to hold the eyelids open.  I have now learnt that I will be taken literally here, my coffee arrived with two matchsticks on the side <g>.  There was a very friendly white bird called Bobby who was rather partial to having his head scratched.
Bobby rather liked the camera, I guess he could see his reflection in the lens.
A couple more hours of driving and we reached our destination and what a welcome sight, The Garden Inn at Wollongbar.  I recommend this place to anybody, the couple who run it are super, breakfast is brought to you in your room every morning and is freshly cooked and it is so peaceful (apart from the kids in the next door house but in fairness we have only heard them screeching once).  Oh the bath, what a bath, and what a welcome sight at the end of our trip to get here.

I want one of these for Christmas <g>.
OK folks, that brings you up to date for the day we arrived.  We have to check out soon and head off to Skippy's so I am going to sign off for now.  Will post Day 2 and Day 3 ASAP.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Day 4 Chapter 1

Dubai Airport

I think my eyelids are being held open by matchsticks.  Bless Alan he has not had a sleep at all since he woke up yesterday morning.  I at least had an hour yesterday afternoon and another hour curled up on my two chairs in the airport lounge.  Have just told him I will stay awake now if he wants 40 winks.  We have just been having a bit of a laugh, the last couple of antibiotics are lying on the table, such a pretty blue colour but they look like Viagra <g> (could be an interesting flight lol).  All I can think about at the moment is a bed, a blanket and a pillow and no more food.  So far I have already had two breakfasts but am rather sad, neither of them included bacon. 

As soon as we got off the plane from Bahrain we found a wee chemist and go our nicotine patches.  I have never used them before but maybe 14 hours without a cigarette and then facing Ozzie customs might be too much for my even tempered ways, I may just loose it again like I once did in Amsterdam Airport.  It was not funny when they took my bottle of Vodka away from me (the only bottle of duty free I have ever bought) and put it in the bin and I let everybody know how beep beep beep I was.  Those who know me well know how my voice carries, Anna was trying to calm me down and Carol was killing herself laughing, she had just had 200 cigarettes taken off her. What are we like.

Why is it sometime the simplest of things bring so much pleasure, I can't wait to be able to drive on a proper tarmac road again faster than 30mph - it will be like being at Silverstone.  We have been reliably informed that the only time we have to obey speed limits is in towns, one has to slow down a couple of miles outside of the town as that is where the friendly cops start lying in wait.
Right, that is enough chatter for now, going to have my cup of tea and Viagra ROFL. 

Next stop Brisbain then Wollongbar.  Catch you then.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Day 3 Chapter 1

Wahay, all sorted.  That packing job was a doddle, wonder if that means I have left vital items out.  I am so tempted to put in the tea bags, nearly everywhere we have traveled has rubbish tea, alas no room so I will resist.  This is all a bit surreal, really can't believe in four hours time we will be piling into the car and heading the furthest east we have ever been.  I have butterflies in my tummy and am a bit like a kid on Christmas Eve, what a wonderful feeling.  There are these pictures in my head from TV programs, photos etc I have seen and now I have the chance to capture all this with my own two eyes.

Time to sign off for now.  Next stop Bahrain and Dubai.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Day 2 Chapter 1

Where shall I start today.  It has been one of those strange days with odd jobs to do but still plenty of time to vegetate.  No - the packing is not done yet, just piles of items in different locations waiting to be united in the cases.  The main priority was to sort out the camera equipment, charge batteries, clear memory cards, find the forever vanishing leads etc.  I did get the insurance sorted, pretty good value too.  Thank goodness for SKYPE, long distance calls are a breeze and just to make sure the insurance was as accurate as possible phoning them seemed to be the easiest option.  I wonder how often one phones an insurance company, asks to speak to the person they spoke to yesterday and is immediately put through.  Keep everything crossed we don't need to contact them again <g>.  Tonight is our last night in the KSA for a while, we set off for Bahrain at midnight tomorrow for an early morning flight on the 28th to Dubai and then onto Brisbane, arriving at our first destination at 6:30am on the 29th.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Day 1 Chapter 1

Well this is a first for me having never tried blogging before.  I have no real idea what will be put up yet, I guess it will be whatever takes my fancy at that moment in time.  The plan, if possible is to write about my trip to the Great Down Under (Internet access permitting).  In 48 hours hubby and I will be setting of on a lifetime dream, one we have talked about for 20 odd years, to visit Australia.  We may be getting on in years and backpacking is a bit too energetic for us so instead we are going camping in the outback.  I can smell the land and see the stars already.  Before we do the camping bit we will be going to a great friends wedding, what a start to our holiday adventure.  Thank you 'friend' for giving us the most perfect excuse to come to OZ instead of just talking about 'going to OZ'.