Day 253 – 259: Whitby to Manjimup
I’m writing today’s blog as we travel down the South Western Highway heading for Manjimup.
Our final week of property sitting has come to an end. We have had an amazing time in Whitby which is located approx 40km south east of Perth.
We were fortunate to be accepted by owners Greg and Raelene to look after their 5 acre property. Our van was parked in the back paddock and we had access to the laundry, toilet, power and fresh rain water.
Greg had built a terrific fire pit which we enjoyed many times during the cold winter months. We watched the garden explode into an array of colour and fragrance as spring approached.
We hosted pizza lunches for our friends Greg & Alison and Phillip and Linda. We caught up with both friends on several occasions. The Perth region has many tourist destinations which we explored during our stay.
Nine weeks has flown by so quickly. We can’t thank Greg & Raelene enough for giving us this opportunity to take care of their place. Whilst I feel sad to be leaving, the excitement of a new adventure every day is calling us both.
The past week has been spent preparing the car and mobile motel for travelling again. Andrew has done a great job, with a small amount of help from me. My week has been filled with work. I’m working towards an important deadline for a colleague and hope to have the majority of this job completed before reaching the Nullabour.
Our motel on wheels has plenty of storage and it’s surprising what you can fit in and exactly what you can do without. A box for all the shoes is essential, when its full of sand or dirt just tip it out to clean. When we are on the road the water container and our laundry bucket travel between the lounge seats. Half fill the bucket with water, throw in your dirty clothes and some wool wash and the washing is done by the time you reach your destination. I do last out and do the sheets and towels at the caravan parks. We have three pantry cupboards. Two are for the smaller items and a shelf in the cupboard is handy so that everything can fit in.
We have a couple of travel deadlines to meet; Port Lincoln by the 13th October for a car service, Adelaide by the 18th October for a few days with family and Melbourne by 10th November a few days before boarding Spirit of Tasmania. I have 2 board meetings to dial into and my special project to be completed by 28th October. It’s going to be a few hectic weeks while working & travelling the 3500km.
This week we have caught up with Andrew’s dad and my Mum and sister Julie via Skype and FaceTime. It’s always good to be able to actually see them.
Today’s journey is 259km and we’re travelling through all the small towns that end with “up”; meaning “place of water”. The scenery is so picturesque and we have passed every type of fruit orchard that you can think of. Pink Lady & gala apples, quinces, oranges, avocados, mandarins, strawberries and the list goes on. Pemberton is well known for its wine region, olive groves & the Gloucester Tree. Andrew climbed the tree over 30 years ago & he’s talked about it often on this trip.
We’ve checked into the Manjimup Central Caravan Park. It’s a small park and the sites are very tight. Andrew eventually gets the van in. You can see our car and van in the middle of the picture below.
We set up, have a light lunch & leave Cinta in the van as we head 34km to Pemberton to see the Gloucester Tree. The tree is located in the Gloucester National Park. No discount here for the “grey hair nomads” we’re charged the full $15 fee.
In today’s age of WHS mayhem we are surprised to see that the tree is still open to climbers. We sit for a while and watch as the tourists negotiate the steep ladder. To our amazement a guy is coming down with his 15kg child in a harness on his chest. He looked very fit! There would be no climbing the tree for Andrew or I; we know our fitness levels.
Back at the park it’s time to take Cinta out for a long walk and then get dinner organised. The wifi reception is terrible so it looks like I won’t be doing any work tonight, phew sigh of relief!
As I say to my dear friend Florrie when I phone her, over and out from the roving reporter.
Wildlife: dairy cows, crows, sheep, magpies.
Week 37 total expenses: $722.08 – higher this week due to stocking up on groceries and fueling up ready for the next leg of the journey.
That’s a wrap for Week 37 of the Lap of the Map.
PS: Don’t forget to leave me a comment