Well, the big build up to Jan, Mary and Shelley coming to Western Australia has been and gone, in a flash. There is so much of this part of the world that I would love to have shown them, but distance in between places and time, doesn’t always make that possible. Next time!
It was with great excitement that I made my way from Geraldton, on Friday 30th March, 2012 – a road trip of about 5 hours. On the way through the little seaside town of Cervantes, I called in to check out where to go for lunch in a few days time. I wanted to make sure everything would go according to plan. I arrived at our unit in the city by using my new Tom Tom app on the iPhone. At one point I didn’t move quick enough into an exit lane and found myself going on a little adventure through the city. Yikes! I parked the car to check out where the unit key was left. By the time I had worked everything out, a parking inspector must have come past and booked me for not displaying a parking ticket. God forbid! Didn’t they know I had no idea where I was?
Anyway, off I went to the airport, arriving with a few minutes to spare and enough time to grab a cup of coffee. Next minute my phone rings and Nandini Trehan has come to the airport to welcome our visitors too. How exciting! Eventually they came through the doors, Mary first, followed by Jan, then Shelley. It was big hugs all round. The luggage was gathered and off we went back to the unit to unpack and settle in. By this time it was getting to be late evening and as it was only a short distance away from the East Perth restaurant area, we walked there to meet up with Chris Bray, Australian Adventurer and photographer and his companion Jess. After a wonderful meal we headed back to the unit for some catchup and computer time.
We were up bright and early Saturday morning, to head over to Sticky Beaks Cafe at Kings Park to have breakfast with my daughters Helen and Melissa and two of my grandsons Harley and Arden. My omelette was very scrumptious and from the looks of what was left on the plates, everyone else enjoyed theirs too. From there we drove up to the main King’s Park itself to show off the sites of Perth from up on top of the hill. Very picturesque up there.
In the afternoon, we drove over to Scarborough Beach and had afternoon tea at The Dome with several of our fans, Wendy, Anne, Anne’s son Eric, Marg, Isobel, Janet and Nandini. What a lot of fun and laughter we had that day. It was quite late by the time we thought about leaving, so instead we stayed on to watch the sun set over the Indian Ocean and had dinner in a Thai Restaurant.
The next morning, it was a quick breakfast and off we went on the Rottnest Express ferry to Rottnest Island (Rotto for short). The weather had come overcast, but turned out to be a perfect day, with only a very brief shower of rain. The ferry took us down the winding Swan River to Fremantle, passing some of the luxury homes along the rivers edge. Once we got to Rotto, we hired some snorkels and walked up to The Basin and the lighthouse for some snorkelling. It was a tad cold in the water, however Jan and Mary braved the water and did some snorkelling but could not see anything. Although I did get wet, Shelley and I decided not to snorkel. Back down on the main jetty, we had a lovely lunch at Aristos Waterfront Restaurant. Then it was time for some sunbaking on the beach. Funny thing though, Shelley and I stayed in the shade, while Jan and Mary did the baking. Literally. As Jan said, she was “nearly in the shade”! All too soon, the day was over and it was time to catch the ferry back across the ocean to Perth. That nights dinner consisted of cheese and crackers and a glass of wine while we did some more p2P talk and computer time.
Monday morning had us up early again. We normally have our weekly p2P meetings early on a Monday morning my time, however we needed to be on the road as early as possible, if we were to drive the 2.5 hour drive north to Cervantes to see the Pinnacles at Nambung National Park. This would give them a taste of the countryside near where I live in Geraldton. It turned out to be a glorious day, with a little cloud cover, a light sprinkling of rain, viewing of the huge yellow pinnacles and a lovely lunch in the quaint Seashells Cafe with p2P fans, Pam, Sue and Donelle, who drove down from Geraldton just to meet up with Jan, Mary and Shelley. That was very special.
All too soon, the day was drawing to a close and we had to head back to the city. We were to be wined and dined at Nandini’s home to traditional Indian Cuisine. It was getting late when we were nearing Perth, so a quick phone call had us heading direct to her home, but not before we saw some kangaroos in the bushes. There were plenty of signs telling us to beware of wildlife, but none to be seen until we were nearly back in the city. No emus or echidna’s unfortunately.
Nandini and her husband, Viney, put on the best Indian meal I have ever tasted. The evening was very relaxing with a lot of laughs for the final night in WA. The next morning was a bit more relaxed. We had a late check out, so we caught the CAT, the City Area Transport bus, a free service to hop on hop off around the city. That helped our tired legs. The city has a fascinating arcade called London Court, decked out with shops that look like you had just stepped into Tudor times in London. There was some time to kill before lunch, so we treated ourselves to a pedicure. Lunch was at Miss Maud’s a Swedish Restaurant with fans Ann Cook and her son, Eric, Nandini, Jan, Mary, Shelley and myself.
All too soon, it was time to head out to the airport to say our final goodbyes. What a great few days we had with the girls. It was very special and lots of photos to show the wonderful time we had.
I spent Tuesday night at my eldest daughter’s home to recover before heading to my second daughter’s home to look after the two grandchildren over Easter. It should be a lot of fun and I’m guessing I’m going to need a few days to get over it all by the time I get back to Geraldton in a few days.