Week 30 | Whitby House sit Week 2

Day 204 – 210: Whitby – Week 2

Waking up this morning after a light drizzle of rain overnight and I mean light 1.5ml to be exact, the sun is shining and it’s looking like we’re going to have a lovely day.  The washing is out, Andrew is cleaning out the car, I’ve got my painting box out and all set up ready to paint.

Cinta starts to bark, there is thunder rolling around and the skies have turned a very dark grey.  The washing is being pulled in and hung up on the patio and I’m moving our chairs and Cintas bed back under the awning when the skies open up and it’s pouring down.  The awning is leaking at the seams where it is attached to the van and there is water running through over our ground mat.  I’m madly covering up my painting table and getting Cinta inside the van and her storm jacket on.  Within minutes the rain has stopped and we’ve had 8ml.  Just a drizzle really compared to back home.

The next hour is spent inside waiting for the water on the mat to drain through before we go back out and wipe all the tables and chairs down.  We set up the awning a little differently for the house sit with having the legs fully extended onto the ground instead of leaving them locked into the van.  We’re not sure if this is why so much water has leaked through, but we’ll trial locking the legs back into the van to see if it makes a difference for the next downpour.  Personally I don’t think so as it appears to me that the stitching on the awning is starting to fail and we may need to get a new awning at some point.

This week is a very busy work week for me so we won’t be venturing out too far each day.  This morning we are taking a trip to Bunnings to pick up some sealant for the awning and hopefully we’ll have a dry day at some point to see if Andrew can apply it.  He’s been googling the problem and he’s quite confident it will do the trick for now.

Today we are waking up to 4 degrees and we are all feeling cold.  The heater is on and it’s a very slow start to the day.  Cinta has her nose buried in her bed and she is not moving.  Caravans don’t  have a lot of insulation and when the temperatures drop you find yourself waking up to frosted windows and condensation all over the walls and ceiling.

We’ve had 19ml of rain since yesterday and we’re hoping to reach of top of 16 for the day.  Andrew is cleaning the pool today – well putting the robo vac in the pool anyway, that’s all he has to do.  Cinta is constantly amused by it and wanders around and around the pool and almost jumps out of her skin when it comes to the surface and rolls around the edges.  She’d certainly know it if she fell in!  The temperature in the pool is down to 10 degrees today.

Today we are off to the library to do some printing.  I’ve been sending postcards of our trip back to my very dear friend Florrie back at Mission Beach.  I know she’ll really enjoy reading my blog, so I’ve downloaded it and I’m having each week printed out at the library so that I can send a couple of copies each week while we’re here in Whitby.  Next up is the vet to pick up Cintas dog food and then IGA for a few things.  I’m making pumpkin soup again tomorrow in the slow cooker.  Andrew is doing a pork roast tonight in the ziggy and we’ll roast off all the pumpkin for tomorrows slow cooker.

Last night went down to 7 degrees and we’re in for another overcast and cloudy day.  I’ve had my woollen long sleeve shirt hanging on the clothes line for 4 days now trying to get it dry. It  can’t go in a dryer and there isn’t one here anyway.  It goes from the outdoor clothes line to the line under the patio and back again every day.  I’m hoping it will be dry soon!  I have plenty of layers that I put on each day and then I look like a sumo wrestler.  I’m very thankful that I threw in my old teddy bear dressing gown from Brisbane days as it is getting plenty of use over the top of my clothes when we are at home for the day.

Florrie knitted Andrew and I beanies and scarves before we left and Andrew’s beanie is rarely off his head.  His beanie is blue and yellow (Cowboys colours) and mine is my favourite; purple.

Cinta loves roaming the property and although Greg told us the 5 acres is fully fenced we wanted to make sure as she spends a lot of time roaming around right down the back where we can’t see her.  Andrew walked the boundary to make sure and there’s nowhere that she can get out.  He came across this beautiful tiny orchid right down the back near the fence so he had to take me down there so I could photograph it.  It’s so dainty and is no longer than 2cm.  I didn’t realise at the time but have since found out it is called the Donkey Orchid. All of the flowers and shrubs on the property are starting to bloom and each day we walk around and check on them all.  The fragrance is so aluring and I am lucky to pick fresh flowers to have in the van whenever I like.

It’s a beautiful day here today and what better way to spend a sunny day than exploring the Serpentine National Park and Dam.  On arrival we are greeted by a beaming smile of the park attendant who is pleased to see a Queensland number plate and even more pleased when we tell her we are from Far North Queensland.  She is from the Torres Strait and tells us that many people have no idea where that is.  Without asking we are charged the concession rate of $7 per vehicle.  As we travel past the entry point we both smile at each other and I say to Andrew, “the grey hair has paid off again”.

A short walk from the car park takes us to the Serpentine Falls and causeway.  The water is cascading over the sheer granite rock face.  I’d love to see the falls after heavy rainfall, I’m sure it would be far more spectacular.  The sign at the causeway says Danger, do not cross, falling rocks.  There is a father with 2 young children climbing on the other side of the causeway along the rocks.  I can’t help but think how stupid is this man and what type of example is he setting for his children about obeying signs in National Parks.  Let alone their safety.

There are several bush walks in the National Park and we decide to walk a short distance along the Baldwins Bluff walk as it is a 3 hour walk and is a grade 4.  It’s steep, rocky and some areas are quite unstable.  It’s a grade 4 for that reason.  We stop several times as we realise the terrain is far too challenging for us.  A ladies walking group pass us, they have already completed 14km.  I take my hat off to them for being so fit.  Several other couples and children pass us by and offers of help come from all of them.  While taking in the view we both have that moment when we look at each other and say; we must look old and past it!  We slowly and cautiously make our way back down the track.  We can both feel the muscles in our legs already, I sense a dose of Nurofen coming on tonight.

We are now off to see the Serpentine Dam and driving through Jarrahdale the road is lined with wattle blooming everywhere.  I’m not sure how many varieties of wattle there are but we see many different species along the way.  It is so picturesque and the farmlands and valleys are lush and green.  There is a lovely cafe at the Dam; Serpentine Cafe on the Dam and the sign also says Gallery.  The cafe is buzzing with people and the deck overlooks the dam.  We can see Kookaburras and No 28 parrots perched along the railing and the sign reads:  BEWARE;  Our Kookaburras love to swoop and steal your food, please don’t feed them. The No 28’s are busy pecking at all the seed and children are lined up on the deck with arms out and handfuls of seed waiting for the birds to settle and feed.  The No 28 is a beautiful parrot and after lunch I take the oppportunity to get a few close ups of them in the trees and along the fence and decking.

Back at home Cinta is over excited to see us return and does laps in the paddock.  The afternoon is spent relaxing in the sunshine.  Andrew is reading and I’m colouring in some mandalas.  I had forgotten that I included a book in my craft box so I was over joyed to find it and ponder on which mandala to start with.  There are many benefits of colouring in some of which include: improving your mood, relieving stress, providing an outlet for self-expression, improving hand-eye coordination and maintaining motor functions.  I’ve completed colouring 2 mandalas, the first is with the three primary colours; red, blue and yellow and the second is with the secondary colours; orange, violet and green.  I’m currently colouring a larger mandala with the tertiary colours.

Overnight has been windy and cold.  The temperature is 7 degrees when we wake and we have a very lazy late start to the day having our cuppa tucked up in bed while the wind blows a gale outside.  By lunch time the wind has died down and Andrew is outside applying the marine grade sealant to the awning.  There is no rain expected today and there is not a cloud in sight, the temperature is 18 degrees so we are both hoping that the sealant will have time to cure and stop the rain from coming in through the loose stitching on the awning.  He’s done a great job, so now we just have to wait and see…

While the sun is shining and it’s a beautiful day we’re having a late pizza lunch and a glass of red.  The left overs from our roast during the week make great ingredients for a pizza.  Cheers and here’s to the closure of another week of our journey.


Wildlife:  horses, shetland ponnies, llama, goats, sheep, cattle, No 28 parrots, galahs, black cockatoos, pidgeons, magpies, blue wrens.

Week 30 total expenses: $658.30 Slightly higher this week due to a bulk purchase of Cinta’s dog food and a new lock for the caravan hitch.



That’s a wrap for Week 30 of the Lap of the Map.

PS: Don’t forget to leave me a comment!

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