We pushed on to Coffs Harbour and arrived at the YHA in time to do some washing...rock n roll. Hoping to find a more lively scene in Coffs we picked out a restaurant from the NSW good food guide and booked a table at Café Fiasco
. The only problem was that after we had booked it, we realised we couldn't find it on the map. We set off, having narrowed it down to somewhere on a mile long road, only to stumble across it almost immediately. And the good news was that it was packed and had a resident guitarist...although he wasn't too keen on playing any Australian country music (perhaps something to do with the awful Australian accent Will used to ask him !). We had a lovely meal and made friends with the head waiter who used to work at the River Café in London and moved to Coffs with his Aussie wife to start a family... although I'm not sure he has quite adapted to the change of pace and certainly his idea that Limoncello and Grappa should be sipped is way off the mark. Shelby had a lovely apple pie.
Next morning we had a fantastic brunch at Coffs Yacht Club overlooking the beach and a wander round the rather hippyish Sunday market before heading off to Byron Bay.
The sound track to our road trip so far had been a very challenging musical work entitled "G'day from Down Under". On it were such classics as 'Tie me Kangaroo down, sport', 'Home among the Gumtrees' and Slim Dusty's classic 'Pub With No Beer'. So when we realised our route was going through Kempsey, home of Slim himself, as well as the Akubra (think croc dundee or steve Irwin) hat factory, we decided we had to stop. We headed for the Tourist Information centre only to be told the only Akubra hat shop in town had closed at midday on Saturday and wouldn't reopen until Monday. When asked about the Slim Dusty heritage centre the reply came 'not a sod's been turned'. After Luce translated for me, I realised our stop had been in vain, thanks Lonely Planet.