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

Cheeseburger Trafficker

How far would you drive for a big mac?  a cheese burger?  What about a bucket of KFC?  You’d be surprised what you would do when you haven’t had it for a few weeks.  While my withdrawal symptoms have settled down now, it was touch and go there for a while.  Seriously … was my gorgeous new man worth a lifetime sans whoppers with cheese?

Those that know me will tell you that I would have faded away to shadow had it not been for me living less than 1km from McDonalds (this is really quite handy when you get home from a boozy night with a serious hankering for a Big Mac … you can walk less than a kilometre when you’re drunk if there is food at the end of the path).  Well, I’ve been in Newman for over 4 weeks now and in this time have not even had a whiff of anything greasy (oh ok ok, I have stood out the front of Chicken Treat and breathed really deeply, but I haven’t actually been in).

And so, when one of our friends said she was heading to Geraldton for a few days and would I like anything from there … I didn’t hesitate in asking for a few frozen Bacon Deluxes.  It seems whenever you head down to Perth, or Geraldton, there are always numerous requests for the couriering of fast food.  HJs in Geralton are so used to this that they double wrap their whoppers.  KFC on Great Eastern Highway in Perth will sell you a “travel pack” for $10 which allows you to put your KFC in the hold below the plane … so as not to drive fellow air travellors wild with the morish smell all the way home.

Actually, having half a dozen whoppers in the freezer makes me feel a whole lot more comfortable about potential cooking disasters … although, in my experience you really need to defrost the whopper before nuking it … salad really doesn’t freeze all that well.

Last time Mr W. flew from Perth to Newman … without me :-(, we pulled up at McDonalds and ordered 23 cheeseburgers (we really only needed 20, but you try driving 20km with a bag of cheeseburgers in the car and not eating any … so we had to account for temptation).  I have to tell you that we really confused the drive thru girl … she ended up calling her manager to speak to us and confirm our order … clearly thought it was a hoax.  Anyway, we loaded up a cooly bag with our 20 cheeseburgers and proceeded to the airport … and even though the bag was sealed, the smell still wafted out.  The security man pissed himself laughing at the site of 20 cheeseburgers going through an x-ray machine, but you can’t tell me he hasn’t seen worse.  I dared Mr W. to wait half way through the flight before ripping one out and devouring it in front of all his fellow passengers … popular man he would not have been.  Although then there was my other suggestion of selling them off at $20 a pop … come on, quickest $400 he’s ever made!  Well to cut a long story short, after about 3 hours in that bag, they were just as hot as when they went in … clearly we all need one of these bags … especially if we are going  into the trafficking business … trafficking McDonalds that is.

Just in case you ever need to know these things I am going to share some Fast Food Trafficking Wisdom with you.  In my experience McDonalds freezes way better than Hungry Jacks (Homer was onto something when he penned the lyrics of “you don’t make friends with salad).  And if you’re ever asked to courier some KFC, it really does travel well, so I’m told.

So, if you are ever coming to visit me … please call me first … you never know what I will want you to bring me from the greasy lands far far away.

pp xx