Amy wasn’t solo on the roadtrip, she actually does have friends (or someone willing to spend 7 days with her)! In this entry Danielle sums up her favourite moments on the trip and fills in the gaps that Amy left behind.
Well, tis the time to give my 2 cents on this now famous road trip. Amy has done a wonderful and extremely thorough job on journaling our activities so I will try not to bore you too much with a rehash of my own daily accounts, rather just mention a few highlights of the trip. Mmm, let’s see…
Now, everybody knows that when you’re on a road trip, it’s a rule to stop at least once at some dodgy petrol station and pay attention to the tummy grumblings, thereby purchasing some greasy food item to satisfy the notion that you may never see another petrol station or bain-marie for another thousand miles! This line of thinking I mistakenly voiced to Amy before we left on our road trip and mentioned something about a chiko roll stop? Amy then amused herself with this so-called unusual and unfamiliar notion (has she not ever succumbed to the allure of an oil top up?) so she then decided to give our road trip a new title, ‘Mecca to Chiko roll’. Yeah whatever Amy…let it be known that I did not purchase ONE Chiko roll on this road trip! Yeah ok, so there were a few dodgy petrol station meat pies 😉
The first bittersweet moment of the trip (actually the second..getting up early to leave really sucked but the actual leaving to go on holidays was excellent!), was arriving in sunny Byron Bay at breakfast time. Byron has to be one of my all time favourite holiday destinations and I eagerly dragged Amy over to the famous patisserie to show her one of my favourite local treats. But I then noticed that my favourite dessert, a Japanese torte, was no longer an item on the menu ? ..but alas, I did end up discovering its new whereabouts later in the road trip at the Bondi Beach café (Day 5). Goodness me..all I’ve talked about so far is the food! Hey, it’s my fav part of any holiday..ah yeah, the scenery was great too.
Yamba had to be one of the most picturesque places of the trip. I had my first dip in an ocean pool there and although it wasn’t as good as the Coogee Beach ocean pool (Day 5), it was notably the first time on our road trip when it had really clicked that we were on an excellent road trip with the wind in our hair and seaweed between our toes (eww). I think it was here that Amy and I felt the urge to text all our friends and make them insanely jealous ? The Formule 1 hotel in Coffs Harbour was an interesting place and this is where I witnessed Amy give herself a mild concussion by hitting her head on the bunk She also twisted her ankle the next morning carrying her luggage down the stairs…a pox on your holiday house??
Nambucca Heads was awesome and I think it was here that I finally found a childhood vacation memory revisited (does that sense make?) ..anyways, the pontoon in the lake reminded me of all those bad B-grade, American horror- flicks, where ‘the Thing’ lives under the pontoon that is commonly used by the local college students. I could just picture the buff sports jock yanking at the scantily-clad blonde girl’s arm from underneath the pontoon..but wait..it’s JUST THE ARM!! …hehe
Trial Bay Gaol was pretty cool. Being a cook by trade, I picked the ruins of the kitchen almost immediately by a rectangular shaped window which seemed like a short order window. Amy confirmed this with her trusty tour brochure. Port Macquarie turned out to be a pretty decent town as well and it was here that we met our seagull friend, Chaser (the most attitude in a bird I’ve ever seen!). Amy and I also found our new calling here in Port Macquarie with the discovery of a fantastic ‘Resort wear’ shop in town! Mmm..love those leaopard skin togs!! Arrgghhh :o) So we ended up in Newcastle that evening and spent the night at a Lakeside motel which was straight out of a James Bond movie with the sleepy location and 70’s style Japanese restaurant upstairs. Of course it was the teppanyaki experience that made it all worthwhile. The coloured lanterns and the friendly strangers..all that was missing was the Bond girl and the martinis. Our first teppanyaki experience..awesome and yes I couldn’t quite catch the fried egg in my mouth. I guess I was a little nervous by the temp of the egg since the chef was flipping it straight off a hot grille! But I should have trusted him coz he proved to be a master at his craft and cooked us some very, yummy teriyaki chicken and Japanese style fried rice.
Another cool thing that Amy and I entertained ourselves with on those long car trips, was noting what businesses had taken over the old Pizza Hut houses (the old hut houses/restaurants used in the 80’s and early 90’s). We saw a carpet shop, a garden centre but the cheekiest business was Subway. They had bought an old Pizza Hut building outside of Nth Sydney and decked it out into the biggest Subway outlet we had ever seen..hehe (Stickin it to ya Pizza Hut!) Visiting Karen and Trevor (my old workmates) out at St Mary’s was another highlight. We got to exchange work goss and have a yummy Pub lunch..and yes, got the excellent idea of Krispy Kremes! Into Sydney we drove, winding through traffic, pedestrians, one way streets and crazy tourist bus drivers! Kings Cross was an eye opener with Amy’s insistence on going into all the sex shops!! (hehe) and Oxford St bookshops were pretty cool too – a visual feast of flesh, rainbow colours and scary book titles..Mamamia! Who needs Kings Cross when you have Oxford St Bookshops! 😉 The upgrade to the penthouse at the Crest was also a definite highlight..that view!! :o)
The Lord of the Rings exhibition at the Powerhouse (which took 3 weeks to walk to!) was a personal buzz for me. Being the nerd that I am I purchased a replica ‘ring’ which set me back a few clams, but hey its 24 carat gold plated and I can control the world now :o) Krispy Kremes and coffee in the city park was another magical food moment, and watching Amy’s eyes water that evening at the Thai restaurant while I slouched on the comfy cushions also gave me a giggle. She got me back though by talking me into visiting the Newtown hotel. 2 drinks later and we were on our way back to our Sunrise lodge, with some interesting people watching stories from the pub and the busy King St crowd. That night of course, our room lost power and during the course of using my mobile phone’s background light, I accidentally knocked the phone under my bed and pressed the redial button. I fumbled to retrieve it and could hear a voice at the other end..`hello? hello’ Holy Smoke! I had called someone at 3am and all they might have heard was a distant sound of expletives and Amy’s giggling in the background. (I wonder what they were thinking on the other end?) Finally, I retrieved my phone and saw that I had of course dialled the Powerhouse’s number (from earlier that day). Well, who else would you call when you lose power?? LOL!! :o)
Our drive along the beaches and eastern suburbs the next day was one of my favourite days on the road trip. For me, it was a trip down memory lane, visiting my old townhouse (lived there in ‘98) and my favourite places to hang out at i.e. La Perouse and Maroubra Beach. The Coogee Beach women’s ocean pool was another highlight and I could spy Amy’s envy as she stood up the top wishing she had brought her togs. By the looks of things, she didn’t really need them anyway! Hehe Bondi was ok and yes, Amy cracked the shits with the parking fiasco :o) but we stayed for an expensive but yummy coffee and dessert. By the time we had reached the Gap, which was spectacular viewing, a huge storm was coming across Sydney. We safely made it back to our lodgings through the pouring rain and flash floods (thanks partly to my excellent navigation which I notice Amy has failed to mention :o) and had delicious Mexican for dinner. Of course that night, we had our token road trip `Deep and Meaningful marathon conversation’ that I think usually occurs when you’re drunk somewhere on a beach or stranded in the middle of nowhere with a flat tyre. Ah well..a balmy evening, late night..we both couldn’t sleep; that will have to do for this road trip.
Next day was Fair day which I happily ambled through while Amy collected lots of pamphlets and Frisbees. She complained later when I had nothing to carry and she was doing a grumpy juggling act hehe..Bye Bye Sydney..off to Tamworth we go. Speaking of horsey towns, the so-called horse capital of Australia, Scone, only had 3 horses in the actual town and one of them was at the local pool?? Go figure?? Tamworth was great and the friendly people were probably the town’s best assets. I enjoyed our motel, the country pub next door with not one plastic chair in sight (take note Norman hotel!) and the impressive storm that came down from the rolling hills in the distance. The Country Music Museum was also a haven for tacky last minute gifts which I stocked up on and also took the prerequisite tacky photo in front of the HUGE golden guitar out front. Yeehar!!
Final leg home.. ipod sorted and a couple of stops in Armidale (very pretty park where I lay under a shady tree), Tenterfield for lunch at the Coach café, Warwick for petrol and then finally Brisvegas. Home at last! We pulled in as the sun was setting over the shimmering lights of the familiar city. Extremely tired with heaps of laundry and a pretty impressive watch tan, were the initial leftovers from an excellent road trip… oh yeah, and the stories/memories plus the excellent pics that we took. Thanks for reading..if you got this far? When’s the next road trip? Wanna come?? :o)