Hi there, here is just a quick rehash in case you have missed the first episode of the last Bribie Islander. My short stories are all about our family, Richard my hubby, Ginger our daughter and myself Sabine, going on a 15 month trip of misadventure in a bloody big rig around Australia, on a mission to find the place to call home.
Our next stop was Woodgate, a sleepy village right on the beach, lined with lots of white shells and a variety of Bunning’s plastic chairs, assumedly for ‘happy hour’? A gorgeous bike ride lead along the water’s edge to the most amazing public toilets, ‘a Loo with a View’ … all that and more, just a couple of hours north of Hervey Bay!
The caravan park was right next to the beach, and the ‘parking in’ went without a hitch or catch, except for the park manager, who is a bit of a catch himself! With his accent and manners, I thought I was meeting with the policeman from Doc Martin. However his name was not PC Joe but Todd, and he was very helpful with our support car – the Wagon. I would zoom ahead in the Wagon to check out our new camping destination and Richard would follow with the Dodge pulling the 5th wheeler.
This old Ford was a dear companion to my hubby for years, when he spent days on the road seeing clients. I always called it ‘the Lemon,’ but lately, it had a few more issues than usual, like the starter motor, transmission or a wheel falling off while driving on the road. I was about to go shopping with Ginger when the Wagon just stopped – no big bang as you would expect, nothing – just kaput.
This time the RACQ man could not start the car found some oil in the wrong part of the engine and was shaking his head gravely… do I need to say more? Richard tried to find out how much he could get from the wreckers, however, none of them wanted the car, not even for free! He then came up with one of his grand plans; namely to get the RACQ to tow the Wagon for free to a garage in Hervey Bay, which is licensed to deal with cars on gas. This garage could give the car the ‘death certificate’ and organise the wreckers all in one.
My hubby was so devastated that we held a wake, taking a final photo of him next to the Wagon with a sign showing 534,000km and washing down our sorrows with a bottle of bubbly. This is a tradition from my home country Austria, where you have a stiff drink for any good or bad situation.
After a week Richard finally got ’the call’ from the garage: “Its ready to go mate”. Richard, still wanting to know at least where the Wagon will have its final resting place asked: ”Ready to go where?” There was silence on the other end of the line until finally, the guy said: ”Ready to pick up mate” Richard could not believe that they actually fixed the car, once again.
Something about not generating a spark and needing a new condenser…not sure what it was called but the car was fixed. Well, this was the right time for a bottle of bubbly!!! Talking about bubbles, Ginger was doing the dishes so diligently each morning, that whatever wine I drank always had bubbles in it, like a ‘dishwashing detox’ from the inside out.
This detox kept me regular, and to avoid filling up the black water tank, we mainly used the caravan park amenities. However on the clean white shower walls were large bloodstains from huge squashed mosquitos, cutting down on any leisure time spent on the loo. To sooth our bites, we finally found a good website with some decent remedies. Those nasty little critters could be kept away by immersing yourself in either garlic oil, Listerine, Vicks vapour rub or toothpaste!
I gave the latter a go when I was heading to the beach, trying to put on some sunscreen and finding it rather sticky, just to discover I mixed up the zinc tube with the toothpaste tube! Well needless to say – no bitey critters got near me! After our three weeks stay, we were ready to pull up stumps. As usual, we reflected on our time in Woodgate and surrounds.
One of our favourite places was the original old pub and although it was missing the amazing views one gets from some of Bribie’s establishments, it still had a really quirky interior and we enjoyed the food and entertainment. This was closely followed by the spring art festival market, the Bundaberg Rum factory, and the ‘Bird sanctuary’ with Ginger’s dress colours melting into the Rainbow Lorikeets.
Although this is the end of this episode, I hope you can join me in the next edition of ‘The Mini Bribie Islander’, when we head north to Agnes Waters and Kinka Beach on ‘The Long Way Round to Bribie’!