Is that Highway 1 the Pacific Highway
Trip Start Dec 25, 2006
26Trip End Jan 30, 2007
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Alex packing like a mad woman as I got in so late last night was the scene at 09:30 clothes in little piles and desperately trying to ram everything into the suitcase in double quick time. I was supposed to be at the car hire place at 09:00 and had to be out of the apartment by 10am. I made it out by 10am, but everything was a little higgledy piggledy
A quick check out and a taxi ride across town, I wasn't going to do the 20 minute walk with my entire luggage. That would have been silly. Only to be greeted by the most enormously long queue. This is my third visit to Hertz in so many days; all I need to do was to pick up the keys. But the back of the queue beckoned and there I stood shuffling my way forward at 1 meter every 5 minutes I think was the pace. Slow it's called, I decided to read my guide book and once I read enough of that, I retreated to the world of Fiona Walker. I needed something to take my mind off the pain of this queue. Eventually after standing in this beautifully ordered queue, at least the Aussies seem to know how to queue, or was it just everyone who isn't Aussie as there wasn't a single Aussie in the queue. I was at the front and about to be served. My reward for this patience, I got an automatic Corolla, instead of a manual for the same price. Which I think is just rewards for being so patience and also for booking it in advance. Some of the people in the queue where having to wait for cars to turn up as they hadn't yet arrived.
Having never driven a Corolla before I have to say it's rather uninspiring, reasonably comfortable. But the wipers and indicator stalks are the wrong way round. Even after a six hour drive, I still try to indicate with the wipers. Very very frustrating. Getting out of Sydney was easy as I followed the instructions, I think couldn't find the map for NSW. I ended up going on what was signed the Pacific Highway, but was seemingly the other Pacific Highway as it certainly wasn't Highway 1, more like Highway 33334444. Or what ever number it was. Eventually I stopped hunted for the map, which was stupidly in the boot. How it got there I have no idea as I had thought I had put it in my bag. Then started to leave and this little light came on saying, door open, door open. I got out stomped to the back of the car and slammed the boot shut. Then set off again, with map open at the correct place, which enabled me to follow the correct Pacific highway.
Tootling along is easy, in fact it's so easy I was after an hour already falling asleep. The view didn't help nothing but a forest. Tree after tree after tree and they all looked the same. I decided after struggling to stay awake to pull off the soporific highway and head into a town to buy some provisions. I came off and noticed that there was no perceivable re-entry onto the highway. Great, what had I just done, looked like I had entered a world that I wouldn't be able to leave. A short drive into Avondale and the purchase of some diet coke, bread and other sustenance it was back on the road. I had asked how to get back on the highway; the entrance was not at all obvious as you had to drive two sides of a triangle to get to it. Why, is this to confuse tourists so they stay trapped in Avondale, because no-one ever visits. Eventually I got there and headed back north again. The drive became more interesting and the little radio adapter I have for my ipod has come into its own. Thank-you Andy, a brilliant little device.
Arriving in Coff's Harbour, I noticed a couple of things, life is much quieter and consequently had to eat much earlier than I normally would, so at 01:00, when I'm writing this, I'm now really hungry. Two, it's a lot more humid and it's still raining, didn't manage to leave that in Sydney then. In fact I think I have brought it with me. As Sydney's weather was improving for the weekend. Typical influence of Alex, if she can influence the weather at all. Three eventually found somewhere to stay that had wireless broadband, but I have discovered that a nice local also has broadband which isn't protected so I have simply hijacked that one. Much easier and also cheaper, ummm and maybe a little cheeky!