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Published: June 24th 2009
The next few days after the Tablelands can really be summed up as driving punctuated by interesting little towns. After Kurrimine Beach we continued south stopping in Mission Beach to take photos, in Ingham to buy Piña Colada ingredients and Taylor's Beach to drink our Piña Coladas. Taylor's Beach was really just a caravan park, so we grabbed our lawn chairs and supplies gathered in Ingham and headed for the beach. We also took our coconuts we picked up in Daintree as authentic Piña Colada cannisters. We sat and enjoyed the view and the drinks until the wall of mossies chased us back to Janis. We spent the rest of the night in Taylor's hiding from the mossies and cooking in Janis.
The next day we really just drove. We looked for cool beach spots to stop and soak up the sun, but the locals warned us against any of the beaches in the area because they all were patrolled by mossies. After the night before we heeded their warnings and ended up staying in Home Hill because they had this free stop where tonnes of caravaners stop for the night. There is a free kitchen and bathrooms with hot
The gang at the beach
showers. The price was right so we spent the night there. I'm not sure what the taxpayers of Home Hill were thinking when they built the 'Comfort Stop'. They must have been hoping the caravaners would stop there long enough to spend some money. But there wasn't really much to spend our hard earned cash on - other than groceries.
After a restless sleep in Home Hill between the highway and the railroad tracks we headed for Airlie Beach. It is a really attractive little town with streets lined with small shops. We found it quite expensive, but it had a great vibe and the weather decided to co-operate with us for about 24 hours. We walked about the town and saw some markets and even the inside of a pub for once! We couldn't afford the beer though so we bought what was on special... I'm not sure what it was, but it came in a pitcher and had booze - so I drank it - Alex's only qualm was that it was pink. We also decided to book our Fraser trip while here, so we had two more days to get to Hervey Bay where the Fraser
Giant Casowary. This was an awkward photo as there was a truck full of city workers behind Jay mocking me incessantly for getting my picture taken with the giant bird
trip launches. The next morning I awoke early and drove the van down to the water so we could eat our breakfast watching the sun rise high in the sky. Alex was still asleep and a little surprised to wake up rolling around in the back.
Tragedy hit in the form of electronic malfunction on the way to Hervey Bay. Our music player decided to call it quits and we were extremely disappointed. All of our music was on the computer in Mooloolaba when we left, so we hope we can reload it onto our MP3 player when we get there. Until then we will have to talk to each other between radio stations! We weren't sure we had arrived when we got to Seventeen Seventy. Kerri, back in Mooloolaba, told us we had to go to the town that Christopher Columbus found in 1770, so we did. But with less than mediocre weather, there really wasn't much to do. I'm sure the views would have been georgeous had we not been fogged in.
We were hoping to take the tour of the Bundaberg distillary while we were driving through Bundaberg. So we left rainy 1770 early in
A narrow-gauge train built for carrying the sugar cane. This one was carrying rocks as it wasn't quite harvest time yet
the morning and put the pedal to the metal to try to make the 12:00 tour. The rain was torrential, making speeding out of the question as we neared Bundaberg. The major problem with going faster than 90 km/h with Janis is that you can watch the fuel guage drop. So we were running on fumes as we stopped at the first fuel station we saw in Bundaberg. Forty-five dollars lighter, we finally found the info center that told us we were too late to make the 12 o'clock so they would book us on the one. We had to be in Hervey Bay by three thirty so we begrudgingly declined and got back in Janis.
We made it to Hervey Bay at about two o'clock. We weren't used to working on a time schedule so we were glad we had paced ourselves well. We signed our lives away as the only two drivers in the Fraser orientation (in fact they asked Alex and I to go in seperate groups because we were the only ones old enough to drive - we said no) and watched incredibly repetitive videos about dingos and sand driving. Included in our package was
The ingredients for the perfect Piña Colada at the beach
two nights in the Koala's hostel. So we booked our first night's beds but ended up sleeping in Janis with visions of camping in torrential downpours in cheese grater tents dancing in our heads.
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