Double Dare – Naked not long after nine (am)

Trip Start Feb 26, 2010
Trip End Feb 26, 2011

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Where I stayed
Babinda Rest Area

Flag of Australia  , Queensland,
Wednesday, September 8, 2010

I woke up early and did a bit of pottering about in the house and not long after Col joined us and we decided to head off to pick up the van fairly early. As mentioned previously you could get a free days van hire from Wicked Campervans if you arrived to collect it naked. Of course most other people decided that an early pick up gave you a better selection of van so the office was quite busy with two other couples. Sonja had upped the stakes by suggesting she would also add a free day if I was naked with the exception of the cape. I lost the shirt and donned the cape with Lady E still refusing to join in. As soon as one couple left I felt like such an idiot stood in a car park wearing a pink cape and a pair of shorts I decided the time had come. I lost the shorts and ran across the forecourt into the office, wearing nothing but a cape and at the top of my voice shouted "Free Day Free Day". The German couple in front of us took one look then stood absolutely frozen staring in the opposite direction (well it would have been a horrific sight to be fair). The man on the desk laughed and shouted “well done – I know the day can only get better from now on, you have a free day” about 0.5 seconds later I had my shorts back on to avoid anymore naked photo's than just the CCTV camera footage.

Sonja and Col split and we waited around to get fixed up with our super luxury accommodation and vehicle for $27 per day (about 15), this still seems a very odd deal as you can’t even hire a car for that price. No doubt we were going to get a complete wreck. After about 30 minutes we were told to go for a walk or cup of coffee for 20 minutes as our van had gone in for repair and as they had no others we would have to have a newer and better van than they had originally allowed for.

Somehow the discount for nudity ended up being about $75 but with a queue behind us I think the man just gave up balancing the books and gave us $75 instead of $27. We were given the keys and shown to a super looking van (in comparison to some of the others). Amongst other highlights the graffiti on the side said “Zombie Brain Eaters” and “A smile is a curve which sets things straight”, thankfully no herpes in sight.   Erica edit: That needs to be explained, one of the Wicked vans is nicknamed Herpie because of its graffiti – I forget what it actually says.

We hopped in and drove back to Cols to say our goodbyes. After polishing off two dozen oysters we were on our way and drove to Woolworths and Big W to kit ourselves out for the next few weeks. It was an expensive shop but I think the first one or two shopping trips are always going to be. We then headed to Col’s recommendation, Dan Murphy, to stock the van with booze. We have spent our first week in Aus complaining about the price of things but between Woolies own brand and value range and Cols booze shop (as it is and will remain known) we were bargained up to the hilt. We ended up walking out of the offie with 8 cases of wine making the average bottle price on $2.50 or 1.90’ish. We had to buy in bulk as we were not convinced we could find a deal like this again. For price comparison this is less than a half pint of beer. Well beer has gone for good in Aus I think as we can’t afford to drink it anymore. Oh well onto the harder stuff.

After what seemed to be hours we loaded the van with all the stuff we had bought and started to drive south. Cols directions were pretty simple, get to the end of Mulgrave road , then turn right and go straight on until you arrive in a place called Sydney!

We eventually found our way to the Boulders (a free camping spot about 100km south of Cairns near the town of Bubinda. Unfortunately it was full but we found another rest area with campervans a few km away. We got out our gas stove chopped up the cheap as chips chorizo sausages fried them added half a bottle of woollies value pasta sauce, some red wine (it’s almost as cheap!!) took it off the heat, boiled up the value dried pasta, mixed together had a cold bottle of white, some nibbles, then cracked open a red and dined on our rubbish chairs in the dark. The camping ground was reasonable value it had cold showers, toilets and cost nothing so its pretty good really.

Amazed at the night sky we sat chatting and drinking until about 10:30 then headed for bed to enjoy a good nights sleep and marvel at how our next 3.5 weeks would be heaven on earth compared to some of the places we have stayed (obviously Sonja & Col’s, Cheryl and Siong’s, and Steveyyyy U and Lin’s aside). The problem was it was kind of hot, kind of very very very very hot. After about 5 hours of sweating like a big fat pig I caved in and opened all the windows simply to find the van filled with Mosquitos hell bent on eating us alive. I got about 1 hours sleep in total.
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