Uncle Carol and Aunty Bruce live on the shoreline of Boomer Bay which is ten minutes north of Dunalley. They have a temporarily absent neighbour, who has let us park in beside their house. Check out the pictures to see our view! What a fantastic locale! And the weather has been absolutely delightful. Although I don’t relish these cold nights quite as much as Monja does. The trip here was quite eventful and emotional.
On the way here Google (or should I say Goosele) told us to turn of at Orford and go down a ’Forest Drive’ called Wielangta Road. They should’ve called it “whyshouldya Road or Forchristsakedontgodownthiswithahugeheavycaravan Road. Looking on the map now, with my nerves settled, I can see that it is a much more direct route to our destination, and it started out as bitumen and in all fairness, it had a little sign saying that the road conditions were ‘variable,’ but at that point it was a bitumen road. It soon turned to dirt, then corrugated dirt, then near vertical, huge rocky, washed out, goat tracky, white knuckle, overheat your gearbox again you fool, dirt. I suppose it was kind of scenic but I was too busy crying and kicking myself for not cross checking Google to notice. Anyway somehow we made it through with the car telling us it had had enough once and with me stopping the car when we saw one particularly precipitous hill ahead and resting it so it could cool down. While we were there looking up at that steep track, a young couple in a rusty ute pulled up to check that we were ok. “We’re right,” I told them, “I just want to give the gearbox a rest before I attempt to ask it to haul this heavy lump up it.” They told me yeah, this is a bad road and many have complained about the state of it and warned of the likelihood of accidents along it. “Right,” says the young fella, “We’ll leave you to it. You want a beer before I go?” He looks in at his girlfriend “You want a beer?” I was in no condition to have a beer but he got two out of the back of the truck, cracked them open, handed one to his co-pilot and put one beside his seat and jumped in and off he went. I was worried that something on the van would shake loose or break under the strain but, apart from the bike rack (which, despite having been re-welded at Lakes Entrance, has practically fallen apart) we managed to arrive into Bruce and Carol’s waiting arms, shaken up but determined never to trust Google again.
The next day was a very busy one as we wanted to get to the Salamanca Markets, (or Salamander Markets as Tim renamed them), and the Bream Creek show was on and we didn’t want to miss that. This was our only Saturday in the area so we had to pack it in. We went to Salamanca early (for us) and although we mucked around trying to find the right parking place, we had a chance to see close to half of it before the crowds really thickened and it got too squeezy to enjoy. There were some great stalls and we got to see Bruce at work and eat a wallaby burrito. We all found it entertaining. On the way between Salamander and Bream Creek there was an episode I will leave to later.
We got to the Bream Creek show in 2019 but it has been going (so says the paperwork) since 1886. That’s a fair stint and you have to hand it to the Bream Creekers. We were interested, yet impassive observers of the lawn mower races and the intense rivalry shown during the woodchop events. There was a crazy pushbike area that kids could ride these weird machine around in and the usual kids against the bullock team tug-o-wars. Tom, an schoolfriend of Monja’s now lives in the general area and we met up with him for a chat and catch up. We got eat a giant doughnut, participate in the lolly scramble and at the animal nursery, I had a long chat with Royce who was well versed in all things alpaca(esque). They are gorgeous animals. They thrive in Tasmania. There is a good market for their wool and I sort of started negotiating a price for a breeding pair to start my herd off. The price of ones that would be like pets is cheaper and they need company as they are a herd animal. And thus my new career starts.
Bruce and Carol have been amazing hosts and they catered to Tim’s need to light a fire, which we took advantage of to cook sausages and baked potatoes on. The next day Bruce, Tim and I went out in Bruce’s tinny to rustle up some fish. I got a couple of these Tassie flathead that I had heard so much about. We went back in the afternoon trolling for kingfish but they weren’t to be trolled that day.
The weather has been very good to us while we have been here and the amazing outlook onto the expanse of Boomer Bay is literally at the back yard. Ten minutes down the road is the unbelievably broad, squeaky sanded Marion Bay, which is fairly deserted (no it’s not full of fruit salad and ice-cream), and a beachcombers dream. I went for a body surf with Lou and although a little chilly, it was so refreshing and uncrowded. Carol tells me if there is a strong easterly you can collect scallops from the shoreline the next day. Crossing my fingers! This place is just wonderful. I could’ve taken so many amazing photos. Not to mention the two resident echidnas.
We all went out on Bruce’s big boat with the intention of visiting Maria (pronounced Ma-Rye-ah) Island but once we got to the open sea Lou turned green so we headed to Chinaman’s Bay for a relaxing hour of stingray spotting.
While Monja took Tim to Hobart to sort out his needs for his Canberra trip, which is our destination as soon as we get back to the mainland, B, C and me coached Lou through a couple of little walks up near Eaglehawks Neck which is on the way to Port Arthur. Again the beaches just astounded me with their beauty, accessibility and friendly surf. There is a town called Doo Town (no joke, look it up) and it is such an idyllic little place. All the houses have names with Doo in them, eg: Doo Mee, Thistle Doo, Lou says she would call hers Doo Doo and I say I would call mine Doo Fuss or if I was a drawer, maybe, Doo Dell.
MONA (the Museum of Old and New Art) has been on our wish list for years. So we finally got introduce ourselves to the place on Wednesday. It was just as amazing as we had hoped and I will let the pictures paint the details as this blog post has already passed my ideal word count. If you are in Tasmania you HAVE to go, that’s a given among us aficionados.
This stop has been a good chance to rest and repair stuff and I put more wire around the silly bike rack than you could poke a twisty tie at. Let’s hope it stays together at least until Canberra, where we’ll see if we can’t get a more permanent solution.
Here’s another one of those—oh no!/don’t panic- episodes that happened on our second day here between the time we were at the Markets in Hobart and the show in Bream Creek. We stopped in Sorrel to do some grocery shopping and we decided that it would be more time efficient if Monja went to woollies on her own and the kids and I wandered down the street and looked at Vinnies or whatever. I took the kids down the street and Lou was in the Vinnies, but I needed to go to the toilet, so I left her there while I went to a nearby public toilet. By this time Tim had found the free WiFi spot and was happily seated there just outside the information centre. I told him he could stay and that I would call him when Lou and I were moving on. Then I tapped my pocket and realised my phone wasn’t on me. I’ll just come and grab you I told him. I caught up with Lou and we mucked around and eventually all headed back to the car to see Monja shopped up and waiting for us. I got into the car and saw my phone wasn’t there. Somebody ring my phone– they did—it rang but it wasn’t anywhere in the car. Ohh the anguish and thinking what? How? when? Has it been stolen? I talked to the people to get a stop put on my google pay account. We started driving away but then I stopped and turned the car around. I better check the toilet as maybe it fell out in the cubicle—There was no other explanation and I was starting to realise that it definitely hadn’t been stolen. We went back to the toilet, asking at various shops and the information centre if anyone had handed in a phone on the way. No luck and it wasn’t in the toilet. We were wandering the streets aimlessly in a fugue looking like emotional wrecks when we saw a police car turn into an empty carpark and turn around. I threw myself in front of it as it went to re-enter the traffic. The guy stopped and wound down the window and to my great relief, there on the seat beside him, was my silly old phone. That’s mine! I wept and I am sure not even the greatest of actors could’ve looked more distraught and relieved than me, he still had to confirm it by allowing me to tell him that I believed that it had been in the toilet. “That’s it“ he says and I got my little device back. Oh dear, the drama!