Gibb River Hilton – Part 9 “I wanna be a cowboy … baby …”

There is just something about a man in an Akubra Hat, a pair of cowboy boots and tight jeans that does something for me.  I just can’t help it.  Ever since I discovered Dan Brodie and the Broken Arrows, I’ve just had this love of all things “cowboy”.  And so you can imagine how excited I was while on the big adventure with Mr W. when I saw my first Ringer.  Hell yeah.

Now you may think I’m being disrespectful to poor old Mr W., however he knows that I know where my bread is buttered.  Plus, despite the fact that he has been known to wear an Akubra Hat, he has said a flat out no to pulling on the tight jeans and cowboy boots.  Party pooper.  So I have to fulfill my cowboy fantasies somewhere else.

Actually I think my obssession with cowboys makes him laugh more than anything.  He just doesn’t get it.  Take for example our helicopter pilot at El Questro station.  I happened to lay eyes on him at the bar … tight jeans, check … Akubra Hat , check … boots, check … rollies in the top pocket, check.  Not only was he a Ringer, he was also a copter pilot.  Mr W. thought it was hillarious that I was drooling over a man who had a monobrow.  My response?  Wax.

Now that you know about my cowboy obssession, you can also understand the excitement at buying my first Akubra hat.  It literally didn’t leave my head.  I had to buy the one called the “Rough Rider” … it fulfilled all my cowboy/cowgirl fantasies.  Mr W. just rolled his eyes as he watched me wonder around wearing an Akubra and thinking I was some cowgirl coming straight off a muster.  A girl can dream can’t she?

I wanna be a cowgirl ... baby ...

I actually think he wanted the ground to open up and swallow him when I asked the lady at the “rural clothing” store how I could clean my Akubra.  She looked at me blankly … “why do you want to clean it?”.  I looked at her as if she had just asked me why I wear stilettos!  Apparently, you don’t clean Akubras.  Just another lesson I can chalk up to experience.  And so my cream Akubra will remain stained with red dust … a momento of the cattle musters in my mind.

Now all I have to do is get Mr W. to understand my love of country music (again, it’s mainly the cowboy thing) and we might actually get somewhere.

pp xx

Gibb River Hilton – Part 5 “60km of Hell”

Have you ever wondered what hell would be like?  Well, I’ll give you my version … driving 60km along a heavily corrugated gravel road … one that has not been graded for a very very long time.  A road that you should not attempt to drive on without wearing your best sports bra, unless you want black eyes … unfortunately for me I was not wearing the best bra money can buy on this particular day … although it did provide much entertainment for Mr W.

And I know that before I left everyone told me to watch out for the corrugations because last time they went camping they came home pregnant.  Ha ha to be honest, I didn’t really get it … and then after a few kilometres of corrugations I started to understand, although the corrugations on Kalumburu Road certainly did nothing for my desire to bare children lol.

And to make things even more fun, about half way along the road to Drysdale River Station (DRS), which is about 60km off the Gibb River Road, Mr W. turned to me and said, “baby, we’ve got no brakes”.  Certainly not the words you want to hear when you’re travelling 80km per hour on a gravel road with a camper trailer behind you.  I laughed nervously and replied “whatever” … to which Mr W. demonstrated the fact that we really didn’t have any brakes  by pumping the pedal furiously without even slowing down.  Oh yay I thought, I’m going to die on the Gibb River Road wearing a really bad bra.  Not how I saw my life ending.

A few kilometres down the track the brakes returned, however this little issue remained with us all the way to DRS.  Apparently the corrugations put air bubbles into the brake fluid, or something.  I wasn’t really listening, I was more concerned that the corrugations might have burst a can of rum or worse … popped the silver bag holding my cask wine (yes you read right, I’ve become quite a fan … for safety reasons obviously).

And so, we arrived at DRS and Mr. W. gave me the task of going to book in for a couple of nights.  I had never done this, so I jumped out of the car and walked straight into the booking office/store.  Here I was greeted by a lady, obviously the owner, or at least someone who had been living on the station for an awful long time.  Well, she took one look at me and decided that I was definitely in the wrong place.   Mr W. had come in by this stage and was trying hard not to giggle at the lady’s complete lack of desire to converse with me.  In fact, even though I asked her the questions, she turned to Mr W. and spoke to him, as if I did not understand her.  She told Mr W. that there were no more powered sites, to which I proclaimed “but how am I going to charge up my laptop?”.  Apparently I wasn’t helping myself!  Turns out I found a place to get some power though!!

Mr W. informed me later that she picked me as “princess” a mile off.  I looked at him, dumbfounded that even without my nails, my “princess” status was so obvious.  “But honey”, I said, “I’m wearing an Akubra, surely that disguises any princess tendencies”.  This made Mr W. laugh even harder.  He told me that actually, this made me look even more like a princess.   A concept which I pondered with several glasses of cask wine …

Do you think I look like a princess? 😉 lol

I did however find it hilarious that there is a full mechanics workshop at DRS … full of cars that didn’t make it across 60km of hell.  Actually if you sit there long enough you can watch them all come in, one after the other being towed behind a grader.  I decided that this is why they don’t grade the road, they make more money out of fixing everyone’s cars!!  I’ve taken a few photos of life on the station … even though it is quite touristy now, it’s still has the bones of a station … there’s even still some hot ringers floating around (well … not as hot as Mr W. of course 😉

This is the coin phone at the station ... no internet or mobile reception here!!!

Mechanics Workshop

pp xx