Monday, June 29, 2009

Kangaroos and Australiana

Here we are at a State Recreation Park called Copeton Dam which is in the central-but-eastward-tending (like that one?) part of New South Wales. The area is very drought affected and where these kangaroos are grazing would ideally be water-filled. We meandered for miles and saw hundreds and hundreds of 'roos who live close to the bit of water there is.

I most certainly would NOT frighten them...they're b-i-g-g-e-r than I looked at them and they looked at me and I think we all agreed to leave well enough alone!

The State Park is 2000 acres, so I think we figured there's room enough for us all.

My mum doesn't really like this photo, with the trousers rolled up for pushbike riding (we took the bikes and my trailer out for the afternoon). We're on the Park's golf course, which is pretty rough, even by Australian standards. Perhaps you overseas golfers can think about whether you could bonk a 'roo on the head with a golf ball from this distance.

After leaving Copeton Dam we drove a whole 60 kilometres into Inverell which is a great little country town. From the lookout above town we got an idea of the vast flat landscape.

Lookit me! Inverell has miles of leash-free walks. This one along the river (my mum called it a creek and one of the locals was a bit offended) was great. I was very well-behaved off my lead and it was in this town that I was called, variously - "obedient", "intelligent", "handsome", and "cute".
Just as a little aside, we browsed at the 'Sunday Markets' and spoke to a lady called Helena South who is a "pastel artist". She was selling dog drawings at her stall and said she hadn't seen such a "beautiful Fox Terrier" for years. She didn't have her camera with her, so asked my mum to mail her a photo of me so she could draw me!! (if that was alright with them, of course). How do you spell "R-O-Y-A-L-T-I-E-S". Haha!

I became a bit intrepid and decided to cross this footbridge - but then turned and found myself alone! Gosh! And then I came back because I thought 'they' might get frightened on their own.

And finally, we visited the Inverell Australiana Pioneer village. The lady in charge let me come in with my mum and dad because I looked as though I was a good boy...(so I was special AGAIN). Ho-hum (again). Stardom sits lightly on me.
Hope you enjoyed this little bit of our travels. Of course there's gonna be more, so stay tuned.
Love from Colin Harries xx

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Come along on my adventure

What a step-down! After five great days in the Toowoon Bay Van Park, we had our next overnight "free-camping" in a truck stop! WOW! Only the best for us. My mum and dad said this is part of the adventure and our caravan really is set up so we don't need electricity or bathrooms or anything. I'm on my morning walk with my dad before breakfast. It was kind of fun cooking our dinner in the parking area though, and when we woke this morning there were lots more people parked around us.

After a day on the road, we had another overnight "free-camp" near Uralla on the New England Tablelands. We slept in the parking area at Thunderbolt's Rock. Captain Thunderbolt (aka Fred Ward) was a bushranger in the area in the 1800's and the "rock" was where he holed up to fight it out with the local coppers...who finished him off there, I think.

I don't know why nasty people have to deface everything. I thought this would make a great photo, and I finally got my dad to stand still on a boulder...but look at the graffiti! I wouldn't do anything like that.

I took this photo from my boulder, as my dad continued to stand still as I told him to. I wanted to show you the barren-looking paddocks in the area, but somehow the cows manage to live there. It was very cold on top of the New England Tableland, but I was OK because I have my very own doonah.

Aha! Did you know that cows run when you bark at them?! My mum said it's because they think it's a cattle dog rounding them up - but it was only me from the window of our car! I don't understand who the man was who was waving his fist at me tho.

Our morning tea stop on that day was in a little town called Bundarra. The pub in the background is pretty typical of Australian country hotels...

From Bundarra we drove 45 kms to a place called Copeton Dam. The locals call this "good dirt" road and the car heading towards us was the only one we saw during the entire drive...a bit dry and dusty out there at the moment.
I hope you're enjoying my little travelogue (or is it traveldog) as much as I'm enjoying bringing it to from Colin Harries xx

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Finally on the way

We are in Toowoon Bay, about an hour's drive NORTH of Sydney....yes, we are driving in the right direction for the very first time - north is where the warmth is, and that's for us! See me having to wait for my dad who is waiting for my mum to catch up...c'mon...c'MON...I wanna go to the beach.

My mum is so happy to be in a northerly-heading caravan park that she's hugging me hard in this photo - ho hum - I get so many of those hugs that I could possibly share them around if needed.

And I can RUN, RUN, RUN...because this is Shelley Beach (our van park overlooks this beach) and it's leash-free for miles and miles. But notice the sand erosion? We've had lots of rain this winter which is quite unusual and the winds and rains have eaten away so much sand that in some of the coastal towns houses are teetering on their stumps.

I'm acting more responsibly here...didn't want to run myself into he ground on the first day. My mum also told me that my dad is a pretty old bloke now that he's "retired" and I don't want to make him chase me 'cos it might finish him off before we even start the trip.

AH! the end of another day in hell! I had a little snooze in my caravan bed while I let my dad talk to his friends on my 'puter...I was just soooo tired that I couldn't even do my blog. They make me stay in this bed all through the night...but I am allowed to come into the big bed providing it's daylight...and THEN my day can start again!
Love from Colin Harriesxx

Almost On The Road

I say we're "almost" on the road because although we ARE, we don't seem to be getting very far. This is us visiting with my Nanna and Poppy for a few days. They live in Lithgow (in New South Wales, Australia) which is only about a half hour's drive west of our real home, but we did want to spend time with them - particularly me, because they love me so much (well, Nanna does, and I'm still working on Poppy who loves me underneath it all, I'm sure). My dad did a great job of backing the caravan into their back yard through gates that left him only 3 inches on either side. My mum stands behind the van and has a walkie-talkie and she tells him if he's about to get too close to anything, and I sit behind him and kiss his ears because he's too busy to push me away.

Here's us in their back garden. Nanna Ruth was just about to go and be an umpire for lawn bowls. I think it was a pretty big-time game because she had her new outfit on. Poppy doesn't much like photos, but I stand near him and I know that cheers him up.

One day we went for a drive to a place called Hassan's Walls (near Lithgow). My dad had to hold me tight because it was VERY high where we were...but it was so beautiful looking back east towards the Blue Mountains, which is where our real home is.

And then it was my mum's turn to hold me tight because we were still at Hassan's Walls looking to the west this time...which is just as vast. Behind those mountains the land flattens out into farming and sheep and cattle country. There'll be more photos of that sort of country as we travel along, I know.

Back to the east again...and they still wouldn't let me run from rock to rock - I dunno why!!

So, this is today's mini-adventure. I'm working hard to get you up to where we are, but I keep finding interesting photos of myself, and can't resist showing you.
Until next from Colin Harries xx

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

So Many Adventures

Before actually going "on the road" properly, we went to Shellharbour, about an hour's drive south of Sydney (yep, the place we went last Christmas) for a weekend with 26 of our family. This little guy thinks he's going to put a leash on ME...not a chance, big boy! His name is Campbell and he's my dad's brother's daughter's son. He's only 2 years, so I wanted to be nice to him....better to walk away than do something that's NOT nice, isn't it?

I just KNEW we'd finally have a meeting of the minds and he'd go his way and I'd go mine.

Do you remember this beautiful beach from last year's photo of Shellharbour? It was mid-May and fairly coolish, but who can resist a walk with their dad?

And then there was this dude who thought he could "outplay" me (they will all learn once I hit my stride!)
Back in the van for a rest (who was I trying to kid) - pardon the pun! The kids just adore me...there's my dad's eldest son's daughter whose name is Georgie and she is just lovely to me...and Sam and Ben
who are my dad's cousin's daughter's sons. They also revere me. Haha! I only give you these little family-link descriptions to keep your heads on the hop!

This was just a mini-adventure so everyone could give me hugs and kisses before we headed out into the big world for the rest of this year.
I'm starting to get the hang of this 'blogging' thing again...more coming from Colin Harries xx

Saturday, June 13, 2009

The Adventure Begins!

Well, well, well (I can hear you all chortle)...he's baaack!

Lots of things have kept my paws off the 'puter, mostly that my mum and dad and I have been packing and travelling and were without a 'routine' (whatever that means - it's a "mum" word). We're at Auntie Barbara's house (well, her front yard) in Brisbane - that's in Queensland, Australia, about 1000km/600 miles from home, for my o/s friends. Auntie Barb has her little girl whose name is Calista. She is a Blue Cattle Dog and is very nice to me. There are lots of photos coming up in future posts, taken on our journey to here, but I decided I'd like to START AT THE START and bring you up to date in some sort of order (bein' an orderly sorta bloke).
I was nostalgic when I posted these photos 'cos this first one shows us having morning tea in the front of our real house on 18 APRIL. That's my Uncle Stevie and Auntie Linda and Uncle Bryan (the dad of Noah and the sissies) is on the stool in the front left. This was taken when they helped us move our furniture into the Uncle Stevie's furniture storeroom.

I had friends to visit while my mum was cleaning the empty house...Chloe and I got into trouble because we were walking on the clean floors! I KNOW we had been pulling that broom thing around, but that's what they'd all been doing with it. I just can't understand why WE were the ones in trouble.

Our back lounge room and kitchen sure looked empty. That's my mum in her working clothes, telling Chloe and I not to walk on THAT floor! Where did she think we should go to?

My mum and dad's dear friend, Barbie (who is the one I LUV 'cos I used to stay with her if my mum and dad went away without me) came to help us with the final cleaning. She turned away from my camera because she had her "cleaning clothes" on, she said, but I still don't understand why they all bother with those things called clothes.

Woops! There she is again (Barbie, I mean) going the OTHER way...boy she was hard to photograph!
Hooked up and ready to pull out. It was 25 APRIL and the "tenants" were moving in the next day so we had to go. (It must be Mr and Mrs Tenant who live there now, as that's what my mum and dad kept calling them). I was already in the car so I didn't get left behind.

We moved 10 minutes "up the road" to stay with my Uncle Stevie and Auntie Linda (in their back yard) until my dad finished work on 1st MAY - they call it "retired" but I don't think he's got new tyres on his feet! They look like the same ones to me.
I asked my mum to take a photo of me inside the caravan which is my new home. Apparently this is where I will be living for the next "X" number of years, but I'll be with my mum and dad, so I don't care where we are. It's obvious I will be living rough while we're on the road, though.

The final photo for today. It was rough living in Auntie Linda's back yard...she and my mum and dad had been 'having coffee' (I think that's another way of saying they were squatting on their hindquarters just like I was doing). I do like having my mum and dad at home with me all the time - but they told me not to expect to be the "centre of attention" all the time...WHY NOT?
So, my dear's all started.

I promise to work harder now to show you "around Australia"....
Love from Colin Harries xxxooo