So we left the grey skies behind for sunny days, blue skies and a relaxed camping atmosphere. We set off from Perth prising the kids away from uncle Dave's tv to arrive in New Norcia, the only monastic town in Australia. We did the tour of the town and for once even the kids enjoyed the tour (well we bribed them with the hope of lollies at the end so they stopped complaining), the tour guide was so interesting and regaled us with lots of information and personal recounts of life in a monastic town.
After the tour we visited the hotel and sank a few abbey ales (well I did, none of that boutique crap for Mike) and listened to the live music, it was such a relaxed afternoon, hopefully setting the tone for the next leg of our trip. After stopping to stock up on fresh baked abbey bread, we left early the next day and had a long 6 hour drive to Kalbarri. We pulled up at the ranch and hit jackpot. A beautiful horse ranch with lots of animals for the kids, shower and toilet to keep mum happy and cheaper than a caravan park to keep dad happy!
We ventured over to happy hour near the camp kitchen to find a 'mixed bag' of interesting travellers, (who would soon become great friends), some were WWOOF's, who need 12 weeks on a farm for their visa to be extended, couples and other families who were travelling together around Australia. Lola was rapt to see a little girl her age and quickly made friends, we were happy to find such a relaxed bunch of people to enjoy a beer with and such a great spot to explore the Kalbarri National Park from.
The first night we pulled up the kids were so excited to be setting up next to the penned in area which held a crazy looking goat and sheep. We all snuggled down after a long day driving for a good nights rest, in the middle of the night I was woken by a strange noise, I couldn't work out if someone was being strangled or pleasured....or both...listening from the opposite bed to Mike I started to question whether Mike was having his own 'very bizarre alone time' in the middle of the night, but he was still snoring happily In his own bed so I ruled him out, the 'noise' kept going and going, I wasn't sure if we had some late night campers finding a romantic spot in the bush.....then I realised it was the bloody goat!!!!! The goat has clearly mistaken his blue feeding bucket for another goat and attempting to 'befriend' it in only a way a goat could, it truly was some of the weirdest noises I have ever heard, and geez I was fortunate to listen to the blue bucket loving nearly every day of our stay!!! After a few days into our stay, we were discussing the goat, and Deb, one of the other travellers told us that the first night we arrived she thought the noises were coming from us!!!!! Hehe no 50 shades of grey in this campervan!
We have had such a great time, exploring the beautiful gorges and Murchison river, the scenery is spectacular and I know that the landscape only gets better and better on this next leg of our trip. Oscar set up his hammock and spent many a morning relaxing in the breeze, I certainly think this week has reset the kids after 2 weeks of 'city life' The kids were lucky enough to be offered pony rides, Scarlett was so blissed out, she loved it, until Krystal took her for a trot and then the look on her face was priceless!!!! We have swam in the pool, Oscar attempting to better his balance by crossing the slack line that was set up over the pool, Lola and Scarlett have been practising their gymnastics on the slack line and enjoyed playing with all the other kids (big and little) on the grassy area, it has been a chilled out week of relaxing and enjoying the company of others at the extended happy hours around the fire.
We finally dragged ourselves away from Kalbarri, arriving at Monkey Mia just in time to have a beer and watch the sunset! The kids are looking forward to seeing their friends from Kalbarri in the next few days, feeding dolphins, a boat cruise and swimming in the ocean! Geez it is a hard life we lead:)