Published: June 17th 2012June 17th 2012
National Film and Sound Archive
Note Chloe throwing a tantrum in the middle of the road.
29th May 2012
Well we survived the night unscathed, we quickly hitched up and headed up the road towards Batemans Bay, and then turned off towards Canberra, the drive was very hilly and windy, great if you were on a motorbike or in a sports car but not when your towing a 3 tonne caravan. The forest was pretty and some great views got a few photos and did some video but there were bloody trees in the way, but I guess that’s what u get when you’re in a forest!
Arrived in Canberra with no dramas the average IQ of Canberra rose immediately. We set up camp in the showgrounds where there were amenities electricity and water. Needless to say Mandy was a happy camper. We planned the weeks activities, pumped up the heater and electric blanket and had an early night ready for a busy couple of days!
30th May 2012
Woke up to Trav’s fog horn of alarm, that I didn’t appreciate, so I swiftly told him to change the alarm tone, I couldn’t possibly keep waking up to that everymorning. If you haven’t already guessed I am not a morning person!
our packed lunch we set off into the city of Canberra, we first went to the National Film and Sound Archive we found it without a worry and no traffic. Kids really enjoyed interacting with all the different things to make movies through a projector. Maddy kindly asked if these movies were around in the olden days when I was a kid !! Ha My response was No I am not that old . She then asked what about when Nanny was a girl. I said yes that’s more like it. Sorry Mum just telling the truth. It brought us back down memory lane with costumes from Priscilla Queen of the Desert and clips from A Country Practice, The Sullivans, Kingswood Country etc I had to ask Trav if he got these shows down in Buchan when he was growing up . He just looked at me so I guess that’s a Yes He He He .
Next we were off to a place called Cockington green. It was around lunch time so we decided to have lunch first and then have a look around. If you havent’t heard of Cockington Green its basically miniature buildings and towns from
all around the world. All afternoon Chloe wanted to go on the steam train that she called Thomas. So after looking at the buildings and looking through the gift shop and at the huge doll house, and fairy garden, which was the older two’s fav, we got our tickets. We sat on the train and a couple of seconds later Chloe decides she doesn’t like the train and wants to get off Grr Grr . So on the video footage Trav has taken of the train going around the gardens will be Chloe’s screaming and crying. To her defence it was way past her arvo sleep time. The kids bought themselves something from the gift shop and we were on our way home after a busy day. Looking at the forecast it was going to be -2 c overnight so decided to heat the girls a heat bag and waterbottle to keep them warm as well as wearing leggings and a long sleeve top under their pj’s . This also gave us a chance to put the timer on for the heater and trial it out for the morning. Because cold early mornings do not go down well with mummy
and you don’t want a grumpy mummy first thing in the morning.
31st May 2012
Well the timer worked on the heater and you have a happy mummy! Van was as warm as toast when we woke up! With a busy day planned we were out the door just after 9 not bad seeing as I struggle on a normal school day. First we arrived at the War Memorial which instantly gave us goose bumps and a lump in my throat. Until this day I didn’t really have a true understanding as to what these brave young men and women put themselves through for others and our country. Trav and I both had grandfathers who served in World War 2 and at some stages believe it or not were on the same ship! We knew this before coming here but we wanted to know more. I gave mum a quick call to get the name of the ships they were on id numbers etc. The Enormity of the memorial left me speechless, proud and emotional all at the same time. I was proud before, but now I have an even bigger respect for those who fought for not
just my but my kid’s future. We truly are ‘The Lucky Country’
Overwhelmed by so much information and history the kids were starting to get a little bored but also had so many questions and in true Tayla style they were out of the ordinary heres just a few
So did pa pa ted use this big cannon ?
What sort of gun did he have?
Why was he allowed to go when he was only a teenager?
Who did Pa Pa Ted kill?
The last one really threw me but at the same time knew that her 6 year old mind was in overdrive and really I should expect this sort of thing from her curious little brain. After 3 hours at the memorial we decided we would definitely come back here one day by ourselves to get the most out of it, WITH NO KIDS! You could easily spend a whole day wondering through looking and reading all the displays, and taking it all in.
After some lunch we were headed to the Australian Institute of Sport. We booked in for a tour and got shown around by one of the
Para-Olympian 400 metre runners. There is a great interactive area here where the kids and big kids get to trial out different events of the Olympics stand on the podium etc lots of fun.
We continued on the tour and got shown around the different areas, the indoor stadium where the WNBL Canberra basketball team plays and the girls favourite where we got to see the gymnasts train. When I say gymnasts, they’re aged between 8- 16 years of age. They train between 4-6 hours per day, and do homeschooling the rest of the time. My girls have now decided they want to do gymnastics. Ah Ah, until they see something else and in-between dancing, swimming and netball! We next saw the volleyball stadium, and also the aquatic centre where some swimmers were training. Question time again from Tayla, or I should say a statement. ‘Mum that girl swimming only has one leg? Yes Tayla I reply, then comes the Why? I handball this one on to Trav as were with other people in the tour. I think Trav answered car accident or something. That was pretty much the end of the tour and it was back in the
car and back to our little home on wheels.
1st June 2012
Another cold early start in the nationals capital we had a busy day so it was in the car early again, one thing we have realised about Canberra is that is quite nice its easy to get around, and there is no traffic or crowds, if it wasn’t such a cold boring hole in the middle of nowhere it might be a nice place to live.
First up we went to the Royal Australian Mint, where they make all the coins, there was displays about how they make the coins and how it has changed from days gone by, as well as a lot of old coins etc, we were also able to watch the production line of the blank coin being fed into the hopper, going thru the metal press etc, the kids were fascinated by it. After looking at everything the girls got their own freshly minted $1 coin, however they cost $3 each didn’t quite add up if you ask me.
After a quick snack our next stop was Questacon, which is an interactive science museum, (similar to Science Works in
Australian War Memorial
Plaque dedicated to the WW2 navel ships, some of which both our Grandfathers served on.
Melbourne), the kids had a ball playing with all the different things I think that half the time they were playing and they did not realise that they should be learning something from it. Chloe was transfixed with one of displays it was a series of vacuum tube and you put a piece of cloth in a chute and the cloth would go through a tubes and spit out the other side of the room, she was there for ages running around and chasing the cloths and putting them back in.
Last and certainly least was Parliament House, as parliament were not sitting that day there was not a hell of a lot to see, we wandered around and looked at all the painting and displays, we looked at were the Senate and the House of Reps sit. I tried to explain to the kids, and Mandy which was which and the roles they play. Whilst in the house of Representatives Tayla pipes up with “So what does Julia Gillard do here?”, Trav and I both look at each other and at the same time say “Not Much”. “Oh” she says.
Considering it’s one of the most important
Australian War Memorial
Pool of Reflection and the Eternal Flame
buildings in Australia it was pretty boring and smelt like a hospital, I think the best thing was getting up on the roof of the building and looking out at Canberra, the view back over Lake Burley Griffin and up Anzac Parade to the War Memorial Build was quite spectacular. When we got back to the van we got as much packed up as we could as we were off the next day.
Nothing much on today, we just have a drive to another free camp half way to Sydney. It rained all the way to the Gordon VC rest stop, the rain and did not stop all afternoon or night. I may have mentioned that there was a sign that said ‘Road subject to flooding ‘, and the girls must of heard me, so all night they kept saying ‘Are we going to be flooded ‘I will keep it to myself next time. Once again at the rest stop we had the option of using the long-drop toilet, at one stage Tayla needed to go number 2, and as the van toilet has a no poop policy, I took her to the long drop toilet
I opened the door and the smell was like being hit in the face by a baseball bat made out of week old soiled nappies, I quickly made an exception to the no poop policy and let her do her business in the van.
The quite afternoon gave us a chance to catch up on school work and watch some TV. I must say they have hardly watched any TV at all , or played their DS’ yet, lets see how long it lasts. It was an early night for the kids and it had been a busy week in Canberra and was going to be another busy one in Sydney.
That night Trav sat in bed with a bottle of red and watched the Carlton v Port game live on the iPhone, the wonders of modern technology, but he cracked the shits before the game had finished as the Blues were getting smashed, he then switched over to the Melbourne v Essendon game and cheered the dees home as they won their first game of year when the upset the bombers, I had to keep telling him to shut up as he will wake the kids
There are more photos below