Saturday, July 25, 2009

Part 2 of "Emerald is a Diamond"

Hello again (time for Part 2). I apologise for messing up, but 'sumthin' happened to my photos. I thought they were particularly important to include because I feature, with everyone adoring me!!

Our new friends also like me very much, they say, and I am really a very gracious host, inasmuch as I don't pee on their chairs.

Notice the stables in the background (that's my dad I'm standing with - I have to be careful to share myself around) - do you know that sometimes big trucks come in and unload all these horses and put them into the stables for the night and then the next morning they load them onto the trucks again and disappear. I'm glad I'm not a horse.

That's all for now.......we will be in Emerald until early in I'm not sure how many new things I'll be showing you, but photos of me are always fascinating, I know. Hadehaha! Love from Colin Harries xx

Emerald is a Diamond

Hello everyone! I thought I would start the day by saying that the town of Emerald in Central Queensland is fast becoming a favourite place to stay, and stay, and stay. WHY? Because my dad has taken a "JOB" here. I get confused 'cos I thought my mum said that he didn't have a job any more after we went on the road. But here's the proof - the uniform he wears looks smart, doesn't it? It's got "Emerald Coaches" on the front and my dad is a bus driver again. He told me he thought it would be a fun for five or six weeks. So, we've set up camp in the Emerald Showgrounds...and made new friends as the photos below will show you.

I don't mind, as I get lots and lots of time with my mum and dad who have nothing better to do than focus on me and my happiness. Each morning, my dad and I have breakfast in the sunshine in the annexe attached to our caravan. (Actually, I've already had my breakfast - not a bad idea to be cute and loving and hope for something else though).

Here's our glorious isolation, even though there are probably 30 other vans that stay and come and go in the Showgrounds. The local Council owns the grounds and it's where they can hold rodeos and flower shows and gymkhanas and there are stables and cattle pens for people travelling who have to rest themselves and their animals. There are no marked van sites - just put your van wherever it suits you and hook up to the water and electricity. It costs $15 a night to stay here.

And best of all, there is a five acre fully fenced car park where I run every morning....birds by the thousands and thousands to chase (they're mostly galahs and they're not very brave and fly off, but a couple of pee-wees dive bombed me the other day when I was in the middle of a four-wheel-drift turn to run back to my mum and dad - and I fell over!) Embarrassing, but nobody really noticed, I'm sure, as I leapt to my feet almost without missing stride (but after tumble-turning twice) - my mum made me put this bit in about the tumble-turns 'cos she said I wasn't really being truthful otherwise.

See our set-up. My fence wouldn't stop a fly from getting over it, and I don't even bother trying, but it makes my mum feel better that I am 'somewhat contained' (her words) and won't get run over or kidnapped.

My dad took this photo to show the main oval which is the view from the front window of our van.

And here are our new friends who came by for lunch at our van. We visited with them last week for lunch and have such a nice time together.
In this photo there's Rosemary and Anna and Graham and Alex and John (another John, not my dad) sitting to hook into his steak. The 'boys' are all bus drivers at Emerald Coaches and they also have vans in the Showgrounds. Like us, they are 'on the road', and like us, they thought it would be fun to stay a while and do a bit of work that is different. They are from Western Australia, Tasmania and New South Wales.

I have to do another post...I dunno what I did wrong, but one of my most important photos disappeared, so I'll see ya in just a from Colin Harriesxxx

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

On the Road Again

"On the road again...I can't wait to get on the road again..." (hey, somebody should write a song about being on the road). My last photos for you were taken in Brisbane, Queensland where we stayed for two weeks at Auntie Barbara's house. THEN, we drove a long way on the day we left (about 300 kms/180 miles) and met Dawson Coop and his mum and dad in a town called Miles. Dawson's family live near us in the Blue Mountains and were holidaying for a month so we made arrangements to catch up with them for a couple of nights. Here's out campsite by the river in Miles.

Dawsie's cousin, Coco, was also travelling with them. You can see that Coco's mum really likes me best (or is it because I was the tallest of them all and could reach her cereal bowl before them). We had a campfire that night but my camera ran out of batteries so you'll just have to imagine us all around the fire, with all of us sitting on either our mum or our dad's laps with blankets over us, because it was quite cold

The next night was also a "free-camp"...not quite as salubrious because it was just outside of a town called BANANA and we think it was a turnaround for a gravel pit. Anyway, we all fitted in there and it was rather good fun to be really in the middle of nowhere.
This is really "doing Australia"

We had to say goodbye to Dawson and Coco after two nights because they were heading east to the coast and back south to the Blue Mountains and their homes. My mum and dad and I headed west and stopped for lunch in a little town called Duaringa, which is getting into CQ (Central Queensland). Two days later we were still in Duaringa. This photo is taken in another freecamp park and it was great. Typically Australian red dirt out there and you should see the colour of my paws. I adored the warmth and the dust and just fell down asleep in the sun.

Then my dad found my trailer tyre had a puncture - oh no!! We studied it together and I said to him "yep - it's flat".

And then it all got too much for me - ho-hum - so I thought it best to leave him to his own devices. It's good for him to learn to do things for himself, anyway.
I DO eventually wake up and move....but you'll have to wait until next time to see where to and how and when....
Love from Colin Harries xx

Friday, July 10, 2009

Movin' Right Along

We're still heading north into Queensland (heading to my Aunty Barbara's in Brisbane), and had an overnight freecamp at a rest stop just outside of the town of Texas! My mum and dad like "freecamping" not only because it's free (of course) but it's NOT a van park and therefore less civilised and therefore less rules. Lots of people pull into these rest spots for a night or two. We stayed two nights because it was so beautiful by the Dumaresq River. Our van is in the background, second from left.

Nobody believed there's a place called TEXAS in Australia...but here's the proof. We stopped here because my mum's grandmother was born here and we thought it would be a nice memory of her. There were a lot of Chinese people who lived and worked in this area in the late 1890's-early 1900's, but we couldn't find any historical data on Nanny.

Here's my dad doing the hard yards. Our camp site was about 2 kms from the town so "we" did a lot of pushbike riding. Note the typical Australian bush dirt track that runs between the farm properties. Look into the distance and I think it's possible to see the caravans parked.

Here's another beautiful freecamp site - now just an hour out of Brisbane city. This is our third night "freecamping". That's our van behind us. It's interesting that three other vans came into the area after we parked. I guess they feel there's safety in numbers - lucky I'm not "Colin the Chain Saw Murderer" (but they don't know that, do they?)

And I can run fast back to my dad because he was getting the van ready to move out. I was also excited because we were going to visit with my Aunty Barbara and her son, Langdon, and his wife, Annie.

Can you see why I was so excited to be going to visit...Lang and Annie LUV me (like everyone does, of course)...and I was s-o-o tired after all the excitement of the trip into Brisbane.

We took a day trip to Queensland's Gold Coast, an hour or so south of Brisbane. We called in to check on our unit at Burleigh Heads (my dad says we might live there after we finish caravanning, but my mum says the Blue Mountains are home and better to just spend winters in Burleigh Heads...who cares...I'm good with wherever they decide to go). Our apartment is top floor on the right of the photo. We didn't bother the tenants mum said they would love me but it wasn't polite to just walk in on them.

We took a walk to the beach (only a block away) and this photo shows the Surfers Paradise skyline in the background, looking north from Burleigh Heads.

Some crazy dudes were swimming - but it's winter and quite cold.

That's about it for now...more to come when I get the photos downloaded. We're on the move again so time to blog is limited, but I'll keep trying to keep updated.

Until next time - love from Colin Harries xx