Long weekend (part 2) - Random Road Trip!

Trip Start Jul 06, 2006
Trip End Jul 07, 2007

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Flag of Australia  ,
Monday, April 9, 2007

Seeing as we were down that way anyway, me and Kerry thought we would do what everyone else I knew seemed to be doing over the long bank holiday, and that was head down to Maragret river (although seeing as we were in Albany, we would actually be heading up!). We managed to secure an absolutely massive hire car which we named Terry (something to do with a butch lesbian, which Kelly said it looked like!) and headed off from Albany, very early on the Sunday morning. Although, Kerry being the genuis that she is, had the wicked idea to put notices up in the Albany backpackers advertising a lift to Margaret river, so that we could share petrol costs with some people. So more precisely, me, Kerry and two random german girls (we think they were german) who we'd never met before, headed off from Albany, very early on the Sunday morning!

First stop was Walpol and the Valley of the Giants Canapoy walk! Unfortunately for us, we arrived a whole hour before opening time, and the weather was not on our side either (perpetual rain actually)! However,  being English, we decided to soldier on anyway, despite the weather, and saw (and hid from the rain) in some really big trees. With the absense of umbrellas, we used the next best thing, which happened to be towels. We must have looked a right state! Ironically, the very minute we returned to the car, the gates for the canaopy walk opened. We decided that we had seen ehough of tall trees and were better off without, so carried on to Pemberton to see, wait for it.......... another big tree!

This time the tree was called the Glouchester tree and is the biggest tree is Western Australia. You can climb it and everything! The attached picture shows me climbing said tree, which I have to admit now was a bit of a scam, as that was as far as I actually climbed (about 2 metres off the ground!). Reason for this being, there was an hour queue and I only had thongs (flip flops, for the non- australians out there) on, and the rain had made the rungs of the tree ladder thingy really slippy. So Kerry and I, jumped the queue and posed on the tree instead! Paid $10 for the privalige and not sure if it was too worth it. Kerry and I have definately decided that if we never see a really big tree again, it will not bother us so much.

After a complete going the wrong way accident (due us thinking we knew better than the random german girls who had actually driven the route before!), we eventually arrived at Maragret river, and dropped them off. Margaret River is a very popular wine making region and is supposed to be very beautiful, though the town centre has absolutely nothing that would point to this in it! We decided to drive a bit outside of the town, and hit gold, with one road, hosting the oldest vine yard in Margaret river (the Vasse Felix - I think?!), a chocolate factory (yep, my third in as many months!) and a cheese factory! Of course, Kerry and I took full advantage of all these things and had as many free smaples as possible- although maybe not so much of the wine. One because Kerry was driving, and two because as much as I drink wine, I still believes it all has the same taste- this taste being acid!! I hate the stuff, but was nice to see the vine yards and stuff and feel cultured for at least one afternoon!

We were supposed to be meeting a load of my hostel friends for the night in Maragret River, as they were supposed to be there for 4 nights camping, but turns out they just stayed in one field, got drunk for 3 days solid, got flooded and then went home early, and saw nothing of Maragret river, so I'm kinda glad they'd gone before we got there, as Kerry and I saw more in 1 hour than they did in 3 days!!! We decided to head back to Perth early. Was so nice to get back to Pirates again, even if someone has stoeln my bed and now I have the crappy top bunk agian! Kinda felt like coming home (well obviously not as much as it will when I actually get home, its just nice to feel settled for a bit!).

The next day, I still had the whole day off (4 days in a row- amazing!), so Kerry and I invited our friends Olly and Lou (from Sydney) and my friend Kate (from Pirates), on a random day road trip. Didn't really have that much time on our hands so we decided to just go outside of Perth to a place called Rockingham. After yet another fish and chips (healthy eating starts tommorrow), we found this random island called Penguin island, and went off in search of penguins and sea lions! Didn't find any wild ones, but did manage to see some orphan, hand rearer penguins being fed which was sweet. But alas, I knew it was too good to be true- work phoned me and asked me to come in early as it was hectic in the resturaunt- knew it was too good to be true! It was double time though so can't complain too much! So its traight back into a 75 hour week and 14 day stretch- no rest for the

Hope all you guys at home are good and it so sounds like your having loads better weather than we are! I'm jealous. Hope you all had a nice easter.

Love ya,

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gemmatthews on

Re: easter
Hey guys!

Great to hear from you. Sorry I havent been in touch sooner, but I'm just so busy at the mo. Have been working 60 hour weeks to get some money for New Zealand! Money is finally starting to roll in now though and should be sorted for when I leave Australia, which is in a month! cant believe it has come round so quickly!

If you wouldnt mind, I was wandering if I could come and see you guys again before I leave Australia? Am leaving from Sydney on the 22nd May, so thought I might pop over from perth to Brisbane on the 16th May (Wednesday), and catch the train to Caloundra and stay until the 21st (Monday) when I'll come back to Sydney? Is this ok with you guys? Of course I'll baby sit for you guys as much as you want :)

Hope your all ok and I agree with what you said about the Gold Coast- I wasnt too fussed about it, though I did only spend one day there!!!

Hopefully see you all soon,


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