What being “Pilbara-ised” means to me …

Last night I went to the local pub for a drink to celebrate a friend’s birthday.  I wore heels … gorgeous black and white satin heels.  It seemed like a great idea at the time … but after an hour (ok five minutes) it just made me feel sore and awkward.  And it got me thinking about what it means to be “Pilbara-ised”.  My girlfriend and I laughed at the fact that all we wanted to do was go home and take off our heels … we laughed at the fact that we would rather be wearing thongs … or worse still, steel capped boots.  OMG who am I?  And what happened to the girl that moved here nearly 2 years ago?

To explain where I came from, I’ll quote a sentence or two from the “about” section of my blog … which given the events of the past 2 years, perhaps needs to be brought a little more up to date!

I love champagne, cocktails, anything sparkly, stilettos are my best friend and I wouldn’t be caught dead in tracksuit pants.  I only drive automatics and need my nails done every second Saturday.  My mobile phone is as much a fashion accessory as it is a method of keeping in touch with friends and family … and I need at least 2 take away coffees a day just to keep the bitchiness at bay.

Now, add to this … would not leave the house without a full face of make up, would never be caught dead wearing a hat of any description, had to wear a huge assortment of jewellery on every finger, arm, neck, wrist available at all times and I think you should just about get the picture …

Fast forward nearly two years and here I am … I haven’t worn stilettos in who knows how long (I didn’t even wear them on my wedding day … yes I know there are red stilettos in the photos, but I only put them on for the photos, I was really wearing ballet flats – oh oh secret’s out!), I no longer have acrylic nails, I love my Akubra hat, I only wear a watch and only put my engagement & wedding rings on to “go out” (you know, to Woolies and stuff), I have a coffee machine at home (no take aways here) and I OWN A MANUAL CAR – yep, remember how good I am at driving them?  I do still like make up, but don’t wear anywhere near as much as I used to.   Oh how times have changed!

I did love getting all glammed up for my wedding day … I got eyelash extensions and at least an hour’s worth of face paint.  I loved every second of it, every second in my gorgeous pair of ivory ballet flats 😉

Now Mr W. would argue that there are definitely still some “city princess” traits lingering … like the fact that I HATE it when he drives with the window open … 10 hours of wind is not good for my hair, hence I have to take my Fiorucci Scarf on long trips to ensure my hair stays tangle free … it’s more about the knot factor than the actual asthetics, trust me.  I still have designer handbags (didn’t you know that Oroton goes really well with black thongs?).  But given the fact that I would now rather squat on the side of the road rather than use some road house toilets*, even he would have to agree that I’ve come along way!

pp xx

* Remind me to tell you a really funny story about using the side of the road as my personal restroom … trust me, it’s a good one!

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High Vis Princess

It wasn’t so long ago that I arrived in sunny Newman (and yes I am saying that in a sarcastic tone) … with my acrylic nails, stilettos, face full of makeup … I would never be seen without my pink designer bag … or make up for that matter.  Well, fast forward 9 months and check me out now!  Thought I’d share a few photos that I took at work last week …

This is me at work ... just hanging out ...

I’ve replaced my stilettos with a pair of super comfy steel caps (accompanied by Mr. W.’s socks of course!).

just in case you missed it the first time ...

And back to that “sunny” thing for just a minute … can you believe that when I got in my 4×4 (yep, there’s no “car” anymore) this afternoon it said 50 degrees on the temperature gauge … can’t talk … melting!!!

pp xx

Bride. Groom. Wedding. Soon.

So, I’m sure you’ve heard the news … Mr W. and I are getting hitched!!  Our whirlwind romance (and I use that term very loosely) continues … who would have thought that when I met Mr W. on 9th March 2010 that we would be engaged on 22nd October … wow!!  Now when I look down at my scungy nails, minus the beautifully manicured acrylics that used to be there … I see a beautifully sparkly rock (well come on, I moved to Newman, I deserved more that the average engagement ring!!).  So you ask, how did all of this come to be?

Well, I started dropping hints back in August that perhaps for my birthday Mr W. might like to buy me some jewellery … of the super sparkly variety.  This was followed by a few discussions about how our wedding would be, how I would envisage my perfect proposal etc etc … But like most women, I had to take it just a little bit too far.  By the time September came I was dropping hints left right and centre, leaving Mr W. wondering what the hell was happening.  I made sure that he watched the final episdoe of Farmer Wants A Wife and ensured that he watched Farmer Nathan popose … I even got my finger sized when I flew down to Perth … and started educating Mr W. about carats (and how these were different from the bugs bunny variety) … and the fact that I was expecting more than 1.

But alas, my excitement was to be short lived!  Upon arriving back in Newman after a short trip to Perth for said finger sizing, Mr W. sat me down and calmly explained that it was just too soon to be thinking about marriage, after all, we had only been together for 6 months.  Devastated, I bawled my eyes out for 2 days (yes, in the interest of entertainment, I will admit this) … well that would serve me right for bragging to all and sundry while I was in Perth that there would be a proposal before Santa came down the chimney.  You see, I thought that Mr W. would propose with my more than 1 carat ring when we flew to Perth together for my birthday …

And so, we flew down to Perth for my birthday … staying in 5 star luxury and loving every minute.  And so sitting in the hotel room on the day of my birthday, Mr W. told me to close my eyes.  He placed a little box in front of me … my heart started pounding … I ripped off the paper and discovered a Pandora Box … still very exciting … but not what I was hoping for!!!  I was totally spoiled for my birthday … treated like an absolute Princess.  And then Mr W. said to me … “wait, there’s one more … and I was going to wait until dinner, but I’m going to give it to you now so that you can brag about it to everyone”.  Again, my little heart started beating … I closed my eyes and Mr W. placed yet another beautifully wrapped box in my hands.  Ooooh this is it … I thought!  But again, Mr W. had fooled me.  However, what was inside was nothing to sneeze about … a pair of the most divine white gold earring you’ve ever seen … I decided to just forget becoming Mrs W. … well this year anyway …

Bring on the next day … Friday, 22nd October.  Mr W. was being a grumpy so and so all day.  To the point where I was ready to go and book myself into a separate hotel room and drown my sorrows in my own personal collection of Moet.  Ho hum.  Now, that night was the Metallica Concert (the real reason Mr W. had brought me to Perth … see what I mean about that romance thing!!).  And so, later in the afternoon, I set about making myself look bogan enough to attend such an event.  Dark denim, check.  Black T shirt, check.  Bridget Jones Underwear (can’t be a chunky bogan), check.  While I was attempting to straighten my locks, my little ears pricked up.  Was that the safe I had just heard?  No it’s just your imagination playing tricks on you.  “Kate”, Mr W. called me from the other side of our hotel room.  “Babe, there’s a letter here for you, I wrote it the other day and forgot to give it to you”.  Annoyed that I was interrupted while trying to put the finishing touches on my hair and makeup, I stormed out to the desk and picked up said letter.  Hmmmm.  Interesting.  The letter was absolutely beautiful … a declaration of outback love at it’s finest.  But by the time I got to the end I was confused …
“2 months ago I made a life changing decision, 6 weeks ago I made a very expensive purchase and a week ago I made a phone call to which the answer came back YES”.

Confused, I moved the letter to ask what in God’s name he was on about … and that’s when I saw Mr W. on one knee holding a perfect little box … with a more than 1 carat ring inside … OMG!!!!  Did it just snow in Newman because Mr W. just proposed!!!!!!  And it was way better than Farm Nathan’s proposal – he was actually down on one knee!!  And that my darlings, is how Mr W. and the Pilbara Princess became engaged.  This also meant that the ring had been in the house for like 6 weeks and I hadn’t sniffed it out!!!  Hmmm my bling bling radar must need recalibrating!!!!

Bling Bling!

Stay tuned for the next instalment … our wedding plans are sure to be nothing short of hilarious.

Love you Mr W.

pp (aka, the future Mrs. W.) xx

 

Gibb River Hilton – Part 2 “It’s a Steep Decline into Cask Wine”

Well … we’re on the road … and by we I mean, Mr W., me and 3 other chicks.  Yes, that’s right.  Mr W. is camping with 4 women (he will have 7 women by the time we get to Derby!).  A lucky man you may say … and you know I think that at the time he thought so too.  However now he’s actually on the road, I think perhaps his perception has changed.  Now you may ask how a good looking rooster like Mr W. ended up at Eighty Mile Beach with his gorgeous princess and 3 other lovely ladies, but that my friends is a whole other story … which I might leave for another day.

So Mr W. and I left on Tuesday and headed to Port Hedland.  We shared the disappointment at how the cheeseburgers really didn’t taste as good as we remember.  And Mr W. held me as I cried when they removed my acrylic nails.  Yes folks, you heard it here first.  It was decided that acrylic nails and camping were not a great combination … and so a lovely lady in Port Hedland removed them for me.  After not feeling my finger tips for well over 2 years, you can imagine the shock.

After a night in Port Hedland, we have ended up at Eighty Mile Beach.  A beautiful caravan park (before Cyclone Lawrence got hold of it).  It’s no longer a green oasis on the edge of the Great Sandy Desert … although the beach is still spectacular!

Now, after about 3 days of camping I really have learned a lot.  And like any good princess, I feel that it’s my duty to share these lessons with you, so that they may help you on your way, especially if you ever find yourself out here …

  • Don’t eat copious amounts of chilli prior to undertaking a four hour drive.  If you would like further details on this, please feel free to contact Mr W.  He will be only too happy to share his experiences.  It’s quite funny to see him charging through the bush like a bull that’s just seen a red rag, roll of toilet paper in his hand, holding his belly and thinking the world is about to end.
  • Spinifex hurt.  No seriously, they are very painful … especially when you are traipsing across the country side in thongs and get them stuck in your feet.  Note to self … while sneakers may not be the height of fashion, they will prevent serious injury.
  • Racehorse goannas bite!  They may look cute from a distance … but they aren’t much fun close up …especially when you see the size of their claws!
  • When travelling cask wine is a much safer option than bottles (and remember, this side of the Tropic of Capricorn, it’s all about safety).  However, it should also be noted that sometimes, you can’t buy more than 2 casks at a time (which is bad when you are heading bush for 4 days) and often, these casks can’t be purchased prior to 2pm.  Again, remember that you often end up drinking way before breakfast up here.  And even flashing certain parts of your body will not change the Bottle Shop Attendant’s mind, just in case you were wondering.
  • Leaving casks of red wine in the sun makes port.  Port made in this manner is not pleasant.
  • When camping you need to multitask.  You can use the power points in the caravan park ablution blocks to charge your laptop and camera while you shave your legs.  It’s just good time management really.  Well that and generators are not allowed in the caravan park … no matter how much you argue with the ranger.
  • Bourbon and coke is a very acceptable alternative to coffee upon waking while camping.  In fact watching the sunrise with a bourbon is something you really should put on your bucket list.
  • If you don’t have shot glasses, just have “Bush Jagers” … a swig of Jager straight from the bottle, followed by a swig of red bull … shake your head side to side to mix them together and then swallow.  Continue until there is no red bull left.  This is great fun at 10am in the morning … really sets you up for the rest of the day.
  • Camping is not romantic.  You don’t make love under the stars and snuggle up together in a sleeping bag.  You don’t sip wine and watch the sun go down, holding hands.  And you certainly don’t stay up all night getting to know each other better.  No girls, it’s really not what you thought.  Although … I’m sure that Mr W. has some romantic things planned for later in the trip … don’t you darling?
  • When the “tide guide” says high tide at 2.30am …. you can’t go fishing at 2.30am and expect to catch anything.  You need to be there approximately 3 hours before high tide.  However waking up at 2.30am for a failed fishing expedition is a great excuse to stay up drinking for the rest of the night.  There is nothing like greeting your princess in the morning with bourbon breath.
  • Ooooh and back to the cheeseburgers that weren’t as great as we remembered … well turns out that if you have leftovers, wrap them in alfoil and put them in the campfire the next morning … they actually don’t make a bad breakfast!

My stash of cask wine ... OMG!!

That's the Gibb River Hilton on the right ...

Racehorse Goanna

Amazing 80 Mile Beach Sunset

Tomorrow we are heading to Broome and then to Derby … and then the real fun begins.  After that point there are no more showers or swimming for that matter, unless you want to be eaten by a crocodile.  And so you can imagine I am just about bursting out of my crusty salty skin to get to that bit.

Until next time … keep the bourbon cold and the casks out of the sun.

pp xx

ps … I’ll be out of internet range again for about 3 days, so my next post will probably when we get to Derby on Monday or Tuesday … and lots more photos … I’m sitting in a pub with my laptop plugged in at the bar in order to post this!!   pp xx