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Published: July 31st 2008
caught having a siesta
Our first leg north, time to leave the big city and see some real Australia, very handy was the fact that we only had to cross the road from the hostel to the get to the bus station. After waiting around for a little while our bus driver started ushering us on and giving us our seat numbers. A funny guy, he gave us the briefing of bus rules and we were soon on our way. Across the giant coat hanger, Sydney harbour bridge, and up the highway, a real sense that our adventure was starting.
Newcastle was our first stop, now if this city isn’t already twinned with Newcastle, UK then it really should be, it is the steel and coal industries biggest and busiest port in Australia. Quite a dirty industrial city, one more for it’s practicality then anything else, the capital and gateway to the Hunter valley, we are helpfully informed by a road sign. I think the less we mention our accommodation or time spent in the city the better, it was to date the most expensive hostel and the dirtiest.
The next morning we knew we had to get out and move on, so
once we had washed up, we ate breakfast and the washed up again, paid at the door and made our way to the bus stop to catch our bus to Port Stephens. Given it’s dues we possibly didn’t see the city in it’s best light, but we saw enough to know it was time to leave. So we were off again and this time to greener pastures, the industrial city behind us the houses thinned out to farming plots and signs to the sea were heading our way.
Anna bay was our destination and we had been told if we mentioned it to the driver then he would drop us outside the backpackers lodge, we did and he did. Melaleuca was the name and it was beautiful, wooden cabins on stilts set in the brush with raised walkways between the main buildings and a big camping field with a few trees littered around.
We had opted for a shared cabin although there being only four people staying we had the whole cabin to ourselves. One girl had the whole dorm and there was a guy who was in his tent. So going from the packed out hostels and
hustle and bustle of the cities we had found peace and tranquillity. We soon unpacked the bits we needed to and it was off for another recci of our new home.
Now we weren’t the only ones to call Melaleuca home for a they have a resident kangaroo called Josie and wild koalas in the trees, it didn’t take us long to spot and get equated with little Josie and as we stroked her and introduced ourselves we soon spotted a koala watching us too.
We spent the rest of our day talking to the owner and other guests, cycling up to the village for supplies before making the short walk across the road to one mile beach and watched some wildlife and surfers.
After a good night sleep we got set for the day, all clued up with our new knowledge we caught the local bus and headed across the peninsular to see what we could find in Nelson bay. We had booked ourselves on a dolphin cruise of the bay and we were very shocked when we arrived, as there was only the two of us. The crew didn’t mind, lines away and our own
private charter was off across the bay. Soon the dolphins were swimming with the boat dipping in and out for breath as we tried to time them for the photos.
That night whilst we were eating our dinner, there were sudden thuds across the roof and then big eyes at the window, our first possom had come to say hello. When we woke up the next day, I opened my birthday cards and had some celebratory wheat-a-bix before packing up and saying goodbye to Josie and the koalas. After a short walk on the beach it was back on the bus and back to Newcastle to catch our Greyhound.
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