Monday, July 25, 2011

Day 5 Thursday 14th

It was not a grey and drear day, but bright and sunny.

The quickest way from Mouth Gambier to Adelaide seemed to be via Narracoorte.We were off by 7. I thought the trip was about four hours. No, it took all day. We did stop off a bit. I really liked Penola. There was a great antique and bit and bobs shop. We only stopped there because R was short of cash and he spied an ANZ electric bank machine.

We took our lunch at a bakery in Narracoorte. It looked to be a nice town. Narracoorte apparently has some fine caves, but after seeing cave like sunken gardens at Mouth Gambier, we were caved out.

I was not tired of driving or losing concentration, but I thought it would be good chance to catch up on the newspapers and play with the phone maps, so R drove for a bit.

We took a brief, stretch our legs, break at Keith where we joined the main road to Adelaide and I again took over the wheel.

We stopped again at Tailem Bend. There was some kind of railway museum there, but we did not look. Tailem Bend seemed to be a place for unmarried mothers who enjoy a Winfield and we saw our first early Australians there. Sorry Tailem Bend folks, but you need to present better.

Have you heard of the Adelaide Hills, the entrance to Adelaide from the east? The road is a freeway, 100kph, while you travel down a steep and winding road. I am not the best driver in the world, but I am quite experienced. Even so, I was a bit freaked out at the speed all were travelling at. Trucks were travelling in the left lane at 20kph, with soft bed run offs in case of truck brake failure. At the bottom of the hill is a large and busy intersection. We were told a truck did get out of control a few months ago and you could see the mark where it hit a fence after cleaning up a couple of cars.

I had a mental map of the roads to take to get us to our digs at West Beach, but I asked R to navigate a bit using his phone. Mistake. The phone map caused more stress than it was worth. In this day and age, why can't phones inside a car connect to satellites in the sky?

We were in Cross Street and going the right way. With a slight deviation, we were in Tapleys Hill Road, a road I was to become very familiar with. We crossed a bridge and I saw the street where we were to turn, but for some reason I did not trust what I thought and continued along to West Beach Road and we were at Adelaide Shores caravan park.

Check in was fairly painless although we did struggle with the code for the boom gate. Our executive (word used loosely) cabin was on the edge of the sand dunes, one of the best sites. It was smaller inside that we had been used to in other cabins, but it was adequate. While it was hardly ultra modern, it didn't seem too old but R later found a date, 1989. It had obviously been updated at some time and well maintained. There were a couple of chairs on the verandah and a decent timber table and benches on a paved area.

We headed for the supermarket we had spied earlier at Harbour Town and bought provisions to cook dinner. As mentioned earlier, we ran into the family from Mount Gambier and had another chat with them. For Melburnians, the place was like a DFO centre, but with a supermarket. But, there was no liquor outlet! We did find one elsewhere, and I can't now recall where. I expect it may have been a Sip 'n' Save outlet, which seemed to be everywhere.

We sat outside in the sun once back at the park and had a celebratory drink. The sun was by now getting low in the sky, so we checked out the beach. It was calm, placid and just beautiful. We walked along the beach for a while and passed quite a few strollers and dog walkers. In between the dunes and the perimeter of the park was a wide and well used footpath for cyclists and walkers. Time for R to find the public barbecue and start cooking. We relaxed for an evening in front of the telly.

I just cannot remember where I took this photo of a lovely Deco building.

This one was in Narracoorte. Which bank? Yes, probably that one.

The fine Naaracoorte Hotel.

A big black train at Tailem Bend.

Tailem Bend Station. I don't think Tailem Bend has a passenger train service and the very nice station seems to be a museum

Our surrounds at the caravan park in West Beach.

Ducks came and went all day every day. We did not feed them, but some people must have been.

My room.

R's room.

On the beach.

As the sun sets.


  1. The West Beach Caravan Park has been done up fairly recently, but I don't remember exactly when. It's a very pretty area. I like your photos. I haven't seen Tailem Bend since 1970. I love that Art Deco building and your photo of the West Beach jetty.

  2. Ah, the West Beach CP! It's the only Caravan Park Pilchard & I have ever been kicked out of!!!

    And few realise Adelaide is one of the few places in OZ (apart from the entire West Coast) where the sun sets over the sea! Cool, huh?!

  3. aw these posts are starting to give me itchy feet. I need a holiday.

  4. Jayne, I would describe it as so.

    River, it was the best one I have been in for public facilities and for the niceness of the gardens. I was probably unfair about Tailem Bend, but that was my impression at the time.

    Red, were you kicked out for riotous behaviour? Come on, you can't tease like that. Err, the sun sets over the sea here in our nearby suburb of St Kilda, and at Mindel Beach. You might be correct if the Australia coast was straight and rectangular.

  5. Looks like you had a very scenic holiday. I'm thinking I need one now, never really been through that area of Oz.

    Oh, before I forget, no that's not a CBA building. It was originally a CBC of Sydney branch, they merged with the NAB. Not that long ago either really, in the late 70's or early 80's I think.

  6. Antikva, it is an undersold area really. There is an awful lot to see and do. Thanks for correct information about the old bank. You are familiar with Naracoorte?

  7. Not really Andrew but I have a lot of family in that area of SA.

    When I was a corporate clown at the Witch Bank, I did a course that included the History of Banking in Australia, I seem to have retained some random facts from it LOL The first art competition I ever entered was a pencil drawing of the branch I mentioned above. I've always been drawn to heritage & history rather than modern.

    Here we have an abundance of heritage but lately everyone seems hellbent on reducing it :( It's become common to cement render the facades. Very sad. When I first saw it I wondered if they thought it would protect their houses in bushfires but I think it's just to modernise the look. We live in a reno'd miners cottage that's retained the pressed tin ceilings but painted & plastered over them.

  8. A banking historian sounds like a good job. My workplace has pressed tin ceilings, much painted to the point where the relief is disappearing. But they can always be cleaned back to bare. While they look nice, I guess they aren't so practical nowadays. Can they bear the weight of batts? Probably. I guess you saw the movie Tim, with a young Mel Gibson in it? Remember a scene where actress Pipa? Laurie complained about a neighbour's house having its pretty brickwork rendered over? Thirty years on, nothing changes. As many people are rendering as are chipping away at old render.