Monday, November 29, 2010

Dunley's Down in Dubbo with Dunn's

One of the brilliant things about this trip has been the people by far, and one of the not so good things has been the rain. 

So when it came to all dirt roads in NSW and VIC closed due to the rain (has the drought broken yet?), and we couldn't go to the places that we wanted to (Lake Mungo NP...etc), plans had to change again.  Good to be flexible.  If we kept heading south, we would have arrived in Melbourne very quickly with nowhere to stay, so it was time to head east. 
Dubbo Zoo was a dot on the map, and we had met some great folks from Dubbo all the way back in Norseman (then Esperance, Perth, and Kalbarri).  They had said that if we get close to Dubbo, pop in, so time to give them a call. 
"No worries",  they said, "come and camp on our block, we've got 100 hectares"


On the way we enjoyed the delights of reverse parking, knitting socks, playgrounds in rest stops (!), big things on the way to harvest, more great sunsets and a town called Never Tire.

Time for a taste of the farm life.

Lucky too, as when we came over the hill to see Dubbo, we were a little overwhelmed at the size of it!  It was probably the biggest centre we have come across for a while.

Sheri and Anthony made us feel very welcome at their farm, and it was great to catch up with them after they had been home for 2 months already.

We took Luke, their son, along to the zoo with us.  It was good, the kids loved it, but it wasn't quite what I was expecting it to be.  The "drive around" bit made Matt & I think that it would be a bit like our Werribee zoo, more of an open plain zoo, but it reminded us more of our Melbourne Zoo, just perhaps a little bigger.  In the end, we were all a little tired of getting in and out of the car. 

The boys all loved the new playground at the end with the flying fox.

The museum in Dubbo is really worth checking out.  It is really well done and Lyn, a lovely older lady, showed us around, telling us stories about the older Dubbo.

We also checked out the op shops (as we do...).  There are 9 in Dubbo!  A sign of the size.  Temptation to get a few things here and there...

A swim in the local pool, until we all realised how cold it was! (They said it was heated, but we are now used to warmer waters)

We popped into ABC Local Radio to pick up free stickers for the kids journals (great to do if you are on the road), and they decided to interview us...

But I think the best fun was had was back at the Dunn's property. 

Matt helped Anthony out with getting starting on putting in his new solar system.  Digging in 8 holes to hold up the massive panels, and getting the positioning right.  The boys all helped out.

The boys also loved collecting the eggs from the chickens, playing with Layla the dog and talking to the steers. 

We had a ride around in the ute (apparently, it has to be done), and chatted with the neighbours about, well, stuff.  We cooked, in an oven!!!  Then we left, as it was time to go.  Dubbo, only 800km from Melbourne.  Just up the road.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

To Broken Hill to find Pro Hart...and much much more in Silverton

 I led the way... (this is really just to prove that I do drive for those who think that Matt does all the driving...) from Port Pirie on.  We stopped at Peterborough for a cuppa and checked out the really cool info centre which is a really old train.  Would you love one of those in you backyard!

 Just another oversized thing...there seemed to be heaps of those on the road from Broken Hill to Adelaide...

 Beautiful old houses...I love looking at them and taking pics of them.

 WOW! Another border crossing...although it seemed to be a little quiet...suddenly we crossed. The more we cross, the more boring they become.

 At the border.  How old is this sign?

 Time for a rest.  Not far to Broken Hill, but time to stop for the night.

Finally, as soon as we have left South Australia, we see the emblem of their state!

First stop in Broken Hill was the Pro Hart Gallery.  How fantastic!  I absolutely loved it...I hope that the rest did (??)

The reward of a milkshake at the end was gooooood!

We decided to go out Silverton (25km out of Broken Hill) to stay.  Pop 50!  Our smallest town yet.  One place to stay - Penrose Park.  Pick your own spot wherever you want and only & $18 per night for us!  Brilliant!! Worth every bit.

Great plants for the desert in Silverton.

One of the galleries in town

Outside the John Huges Gallery there were these really cool painted cars (emus)
 ....Looking at you!
 This is covered in bottle tops

 One of the big attractions in Silverton is the Mad Max memorabilia...
 and the lookout to the Mundi Mundi plains where Mad Max, Priscilla, and heaps of commercials were filmed.

 There is the odd donkey around...

At the new (7 week old) Mad Max museum being run by the mad fan (in a great way) Adrian

 Adrian's car number plate..I think this says it all
 I found a sock knitter here, Jacquie, who inspired me to start knitting socks.  Life is not too short to knit socks.

This is the road to where the next Mad Max 4 will be filmed - put off until 2012 due to the landscape to GREEN!!!
 A bridge that was smashed down during recent flooding!
 The Umberumerka Dam - was empty at the start of the year - can you believe that!
 A little rumble over afternoon tea!
 Mundi Mundi
 The old Gaol - one of the best museums that I have been to
 The memorial at Silverton

 Our campsite

 campfires there...nice