Friday, August 29, 2008

Sun Pictures Broome

Friday 29th August- Well we have been a whole week in Broome settling in. Met some nice folk in the Park that are passing through. Last night we went to the Sun Pictures cinema in Broome. It has been running since 1916. It is outdoors with the old deck chairs. I can still vaguely remember these from my childhood. It is a fascinating bit of history. The most exciting part is that the planes fly straight over top, so close you can nearly touch them. Causes a bit of a laugh as they fly overhead. There was a helicopter in the movie, I found myself looking up to the sky for the approaching plane. The party is on tomorrow so I will be getting my Marilyn outfit on. Must get you some pictures stay tuned. See ya soon Jan

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Broome at last

Friday 22nd – Monday 25th August
We spent the night 35km outside of Broome near the Roebuck Roadhouse. After a leisurely breakfast we slowly made our way to the Caravan Park in Broome which will be our home for the next five weeks. What a drama!! We had to unload Jimny to tow the trailer into the most western part of the park in the corner near the fence. Then we had to drive the bus into its home. While we were attempting this feat our friends Bob & Dtwana arrived and parked adjacent to us. Nothing much happened for the first couple of days we went to the markets and had Mango smoothies (twice) I bought some lovely hand painted items. Tropical colours & flowers. Broome is a tropical area, known for its pearling industry. I purchased a beautiful pearl during our last visit last year. Broome is surrounded by the most beautiful beaches. White, white sands and blue, blue waters. We actually drove up the beach this morning, you are allowed to drive on the beaches as long as you have a 4 wheel drive vehicle and drive carefully. It was breathtaking!! Amongst the white beach are beautiful bronzed and sculpted bodies soaking up the sun. We forgot the camera this morning but I promise we will take photos soon.
Bye for now Jan

Thursday, August 21, 2008

PARDOO Station

We have been off the air for a few days no phone or internet coverage. However we are back now.
Monday. Nothing much happened today, the weather was very windy just a bit of veging out crocheting and reading. We walked down the beach in the late afternoon and had a feed of fresh oysters straight off the rocks. We set off for Pardoo Station where we plan to spend the next couple of nights. We travelled for 500 odd kms north. Pardoo Station is about 10kms off the main Port Hedland to Broome Rd. The Northwest of Western Australia is quite remote with towns several hundred kilometres apart. Sometimes you don’t see any signs of inhabitation. If you take the time to go off the beaten track you are rewarded with some of the most beautiful beaches you couldn’t believe. We have met a lot of people from our hometown up here. It is amazing that in the middle of nowhere hundreds of kms from home you can meet people originating from the same area. We explored the station and checked out some of the beaches and creeks. You have to be careful where you drive on the beach because the tide comes in very quickly and you may be stranded. A couple fishing on the beach caught a small shark and on one line 2 blue salmon. It is a working station of half a million acres that they incorporate a caravan Park near the main homestead. Pardoo stretches approx 80km along the coastline and includes tidal creeks and small islands off the coast. Pardoo consists of mostly very flat, grassy plains and numerous species of Spinifex. Soft Spinifex being looked upon as the best drought-resisting feed for stock. Pardoo in early times ran sheep plus a small mob of breeding mares. Camels were used in the running of the station. Now Pardoo is a cattle station running mainly Santa Gertrudis cattle. There are approx 6000 cattle on the station at the moment. The days are quite pleasant with the nights a little chilly. There is a fire pit where everyone gathers in the evenings. We leave tomorrow to travel north probably bush camping on Roebuck Plains. Talk to you soon Jan

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Bees and Fortescue River

Sunday 17th August 2008
Well we have been here a week and we are not divorced. That’s a plus I think. Today I will tell you a little story. There are bees that make their home underground. They only come above ground at this time of the year and for only about 3 weeks. Only when these blue flowers are out. Which are shown in the photo. The bees are an inch long and half of an inch thick and they do everything extremely fast. They fly straight into the holes in the ground. So fast it is impossible to take a photo.
We went for a drive about 53km South to the Mouth of the Fortescue River. (Check out photos on Flikr)
There is quite a bit of mining going on around there, mainly iron ore. The mine has only recently started and eventually they will pipe it out to sea and load the ship at sea. The only way they can load it on to ships is in a slurry form.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Gnoorea Point 40kms South of Karratha

Days 5th & 6th
We had a lazy day today settling in Dave & Gail left to travel to Port Hedland and we hope to catch up with them later along the way. B.I.L. caught some lovely fish which we enjoyed for tea. We drove along the beach and talked to the fisherman. Doesn’t seem to be a lot of fish this year. It is very dusty and windy! We drove into Karratha for a look around. It is like a little oasis in the middle of nowhere. No Macys or Myers but a lovely shopping centre all the same. Civilisation at last!!! We drove out to Dampier where they mine the salt and to where the Iron Ore is loaded on the ships. The train that conveys the iron ore is miles long. We also went to Woodside North West Gas which is quite impressive. I thought there was a gas shortage? Apparently not up here although I think it is all exported.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Day 3- 13th August 2008
Well after travelling 732kms we pulled up for the night about 40kms north of Mt Newman. We plan to stay the night in a truck bay. We left Mt Magnet about 8am after filling up with 280 litres of fuel and putting air in a tyre on the trailer which was getting flat. We made morning tea at Cue which was only 80kms down the road, drank it on the move. Lunch was at 1.00pm just North of Meekatharra where we gave assistance to a truckie & Pilot Driver. They needed some duct tape as the transportable house they were conveying to Wyndham was falling apart. The road was long and winding with much of the scenery the same. The stereo was blaring and I was crocheting all the way, listening to the truckies talking on the two way, while tea was cooking in the Crockpot. I guess my years as a weighbridge operator has paid dividends as I understand a lot of the lingo. I hope I don’t start spruiking off the language. I have nearly finished the rug I started just before we left. We were going to go across to Nanutarra Roadhouse and up to Fortescue Roadhouse, but Bill has decided to go up to Port Hedland and down to 40 mile beach. We are planning to meet up with my sister and her husband who have been camping there since June. Hopefully we will have a more interesting day tomorrow. See ya soon Jan

Day 4 – 14th August 2008
We were on the road at 8am, first stop was the Auski Roadhouse at about 9am. We had to repair a tyre on the trailer the tyres have been sitting for so long that the valve was faulty. We left there about 10am. There wasn’t much scenery to look at today. Some nice Gorges or rock formations near Newman but mostly just one long licorice stretching forever. Same old thing over and over. I mean Where’s Macy’s? Where’s Myers? Where’s Darryl Lea? What no M & M World!! We drove North to just before Port Hedland which is 17063kms from Perth. We then turned South towards Karrratha so that we could meet up with Sis & her husband at 40 mile Beach. We rang them from near Roebourne and they met us at the Karratha Truckstop. My nephew Murray was there also. We reached camp about 4pm and set up camp. Having a cuppa when loe & behold friends from home rocked up with their van. Dave & Gayle. Big surprise, we thought they were in Port Hedland. Went for a walk to the beach to the phone box. (there is a seat on the beach where you get good mobile coverage) We travelled 605kms today. We will probably stay here for a couple of days. See ya soon Jan

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Dalwallinu & Mt Magnet

Our first stop today was Dalwallinu for lunch. Dalwallinu is about 321kms from Perth. It is a wheat and sheep area, A lovely town, it has been improved since our last visit. Here is a phot of Bill having lunch at our “Patio”. We had a walk around town, visited the local craft shop and picked up a magazine. We travelled then until we reached Mt Gibson and stopped for afternoon tea. Mt Gibson is 85km NE of Wubin or 68km SW of Paynes find. After a quick cuppa and a slice courtesy of Beryl {thanks heap it was delicious) we kept winding our way to Mt Magnet arriving about 5pm.
We camped on a truckies area near the BP garage snd set up for the night. We wandered around town taking photos and taking in the scenery. Mt Magnet is a mining town but it is quite quirky. Note the Pick Axe Store and the Cinema. We travelled 435km today and are now 637kms from home.

On our Way

A sleeping cocky at New Norcia

Camped for the night at New Norcia
Well we are finally on our way. Jimny is loaded on and we left about 12.30. Met SIL on side of road near Midland. She had been baking and gave us a slice for afternoon tea. Had a stop at Gingers Roadhouse, Upper Swan to enable a friend to finish setting up our radio. We travelled through some beautiful countryside and arrived in New Norcia about 4.30pm. We stayed behind the Monastry near the oval, We wandered around the town and met some other travellers. Marie & Bob have travelled over from South Australia. The Monastry is home to a community of Benedictine Monks since the first missionaries arrived from spain in 1846. Today New Norcia continues to be a living expression of 1500 years of monastic hospitality. There are a lot of lovely art galleries and architecture and natural environments to look at. Well worth a visit. We ended up eating our slice for supper. Yummy thanks Beryl. We were in bed by 7pm.

Jimny is in- we are on our way

Friday, August 8, 2008

I thought I would share a photo taken at lunch with some of my friends. We all enjoyed a lovely lunch with lots of laughter and frivolity. I will miss everyone while I am away I hope they don't have too much fun. I also spent a wonderful day sewing at Julia's last Tuesday, this will be the last for awhile as we leave Monday 11th August and probably won't be home until December. We had an action packed day yesterday. We picked up the bus from storage and drove it to my son's to attached the trailer. We successfully loaded Jimny in the trailer, I was going to drive it on but bawked at the last minute. Big chicken, well after seeing my boys load cars on speedway trailers with my heart in my mouth is it any wonder? Anyway we finally took off for the drive home. We only did a few K's when Bill noticed smoke pouring out of the trailer. So we pulled off to the side of the road & called for assistance to the Bearing Company who had just done the bearings for us. The hub was practically fused on. After a hour or so we trundled off home. No more mishaps, after checking halfway home that the wheels weren't overheating, we arrived in the dark. Arriving home about 7pm. I am glad it happened then and not in the middle of nowhere. Well there is only 3 more sleeps and we are off. Have to pack the bus and get organised so probably won't write until we are on our way. Bye for now, will miss you all

love Jan