Adelaide and beyond.

Heading into September and trying not to risk getting too far behind on where we’ve been and when.  We’ve been fortunate enough to be staying at a vacation retreat in Goolwa (about 1.5hours south of Adelaide) of a friend of a friend and while the weather has been cold & rainy it’s allowed me to get caught up on quite a few things.  A quick recap of the last week and a bit.  

A few random thoughts, first:

I’m not sure what direction this blog will take.  I’m still trying to figure out the technology part and how much detail to write.  Plus, sometimes struggling to find the time to write, while keeping on top of our trip and planning schedule.  I’m enjoying the way it’s going so far.  It allows me an outlet to comment and reflect on whatever I feel like, Sully seems to be delivering the play-by-play of our trip (he would do 2 entries/day if we had time!?) and Max, well he just seems to get 'exosted' with whatever we do. ;)  Ha.  But he’s fully engaged in it, too.

Speaking of that, yes the boys are writing their own entries.  I’m not directing them at all in what they write and essentially I’m submitting it as is.  The only thing I’ve asked them to do is provide as much detail as possible when writing.  Pretend like they’re explaining something to someone who has never experienced what they are writing about.  I think it’s hilarious and telling what sticks in their heads, and what they want to share with everyone.  I then try to add some pictures that go along with their story.  

They are LOVING reading all of the comments from their entries.  Thank-you for that!  It’s amazing the impact positive feedback has on their interest in blogging (not really though, positive feedback for all of us is a great thing).  Please continue to comment whenever time allows.  It’s very much appreciated.  And also include your name so they know who it’s from. 

If you repeat, ‘left-hand side of the road, left-hand side of the road, left-hand side of the road’ constantly while driving, it really works.

I’ve been talking to myself a lot. Probably since I’m the only one who’ll listen.

If I don’t pick up after him, Max will have nothing in his suitcase by October.  Oh, man.

It’s difficult to continually be planning ahead. 

Edge of Seventeen by Stevie Nicks is a great road trip song.  So is, I Need a Doctor by Dr. Dre.

Ok…where and when.

Most of you know (thanks to Sully & Max) that we landed in Sydney on August 25th and flew directly to Ayer’s rock 4 hours later.  We spent the night there, watching the sun reflect off the rock as it went down.  An amazing colour show.  I couldn’t help think of Pricilla Queen of the Desert and we were driving up to it.  An amazing movie from my university years!  And an even better soundtrack, right Pritoula & Deej??  The sun in this part of the world sets around 6pm, so it makes for an early night.  And an even earlier bedtime (which most days is a beautiful thing).  The following morning we woke up with the sun to get out and watch it rise and reflect off Ayer’s neighbour, Mt. Olga.  Again the light reflecting off of the rocks was spectacular.  We rented a car to drive to Alice Springs and were fortunately upgraded to a 4X4.  A real 4X4, not one normally seen in the downtown cities of North America.  The boys loved it.  This allowed us to meander off the main highway and explore some of the Outback roads.  One such side trip was to the Henbury Meteorite Conservation Reserve, where meteors made craters 1000’s of years ago.  

We spent 2 nights and days exploring in Alice Springs, exchanged the 4x4 for a regular car (way better gas mileage) and headed south towards Adelaide.  It’s a 17-ish hour drive to get to Adelaide and I wanted to do it in 2 days.  I broke it up, driving 10 hours on the first day (did not want to be driving at night - serious kangaroo road kill on that highway) and 7 hours the second.  We stopped at quite a few places along the way, any time we felt.  The landscape in Australia is stunning.  It was lost a little on the boys (I can’t imagine the landscape of somewhere being too exciting to me when I was 7 or 11 either?!) but they managed to lift their heads from their e-readers to see mostly everything.  Crazy how they’re able to read and ride at the same time.  

When we passed through Port Augusta (about 4 hours north of Adelaide - also referred to as the gateway to the Outback) the dominant colour of the landscape changed from red desert to lush-green almost immediately. The change was stunning and beautiful.  We began to drive through sprawling hills, lakes, yellow canola fields.  What struck all of us was that in both the Outback and south of Port Augusta, you were  able to see for miles and miles.  Clear, all the way to the horizon. 

We arrived in Adelaide and P.M. or Post-Meltdown (see previous blog entry…ugh) we met up with one of my sister Jodi’s best friends, Judy Brown.  Judy picked us up at the airport and we stayed with her for 3 nights. We’ve been so fortunate for the friends that have opened their homes to us so far on this trip.  In Adelaide, we explored Genelg Beach (funky area where Judy lives), a chocolate factory and hiked up to Mount Lofty.  Spectacular views of the city. 

On September 1st, we headed to where we are currently staying in Goolwa.  Judy’s good friends Sarah & Nigel own a vacation retreat on the ocean here. It’s a an old church built in 1897 that has been moved from northern South Australia and rebuilt here in Goolwa.  It’s beautiful.  They graciously invited us to stay here for free.  Throughout the year they provide 45 nights of free accommodations to those people in and around Adelaide who are living with or have survived breast cancer.  Sarah felt it was fitting that we stay and really just wanted us to chill and enjoy ourselves.  An extremely generous of both her and Nigel.  If you’re ever in Adelaide, check it out at:

Shots of and around the property.

Tomorrow we’re driving back to Adelaide for the night and then leaving for Melbourne on the 5th, via the Great Ocean Road.   We're flying to Sydney on the 9th and staying there and at Manly beach until the 18th, when we leave for Brisbane and the Sunshine coast.  My sister Jodi is flying up from NZ to hang out with us while we’re there.  So excited for that!  Eventually we’ll be heading up to Cairns and the Great Barrier Reef (#1 on Sully’s list) and then off to Bali in early October.  

Dinner time…hungry boys.  Tacos on the menu.