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Jim’s Travel Diary

Sunday, 12 Aug 2007

Location: Australia

MapRain, Rain and more Rain

Kalbarri was our last sunny day. The next day we set off south amidst rain and hideous winds, stopping briefly to change the wiper fuse (Thank god for Jim really) and then longer than expected because of the flat battery that neither of us will take responsibility for! (Although Debbie was driving and left the lights on when we stopped - neither of us will take responsibility for it!!?!?!) Cervantes was our next stop to see the mighty Pinnacles. Loosely described as the Aussie Stonehenge they are by no means as big but as far as the eye can see there are stones randomly clustered everywhere, ranging from 1 foot to 10 foot high! Try and spot me in the photos when they eventually make it online.

The rain continued as we headed across to New Norcia, a monastic town famous for itís bread, and followed us all the way to the Swan Valley just north of Perth. Thatís OK, you donít need good weather to wine taste but apparently here you need a very good map. It has to have been the strangest wine region we have been to, vineyards interspersed with bankrupt petrol stations, caféís, mechanics and factories. As you can imagine we struggled through and managed to find some lovely wine and somewhere for a slap up lunch.

We come back to Perth for a few days before we eventually depart this hemisphere so we decided to head straight through it to the popular Freemantle, where it kept raining so we had to take refuge in the bookshops and caféís. It was awful I can tell you! The rain again followed us the next day to the beautiful Margaret River region where you find us now. Tasting chocolate, cheese and wine from dusk till dawn. Itís just such a shame that we can only buy enough to last us the next week or so.

Now I shouldnít complain about the rain really, god knows Australia needs it but this late in our travels after 2 months of Dry it is starting to wear us down a little. We have stopped enjoying the delights of cooking out in the open and started searching for caravan parks with good camp kitchens to huddle inside (if the grey nomads donít hog the place all night when they could be in their nice warm vans which they are doing as I try and write this with numb fingers!)

Never fear we have sussed out a fancy shmancy hostel in Perth to move into in a few days and are busy enjoying the delights of the south before we head back.