27-29 June: Returning to the coast

Author: Mrs A

Location: Palm Cove, Queensland

Wednesday: We hitched up in more showery weather and headed down the windy roads down to the coast, setting up our home for the next few days in Palm Cove.

Palm Cove is not our usual type of location – there are no hiking or biking opportunities here, but it does have plenty of restaurants, and is not too far from Cairns where we had tasks to complete.

It is quite a picturesque area, with lovely views along the coast and islands off shore, though as the local news reminded us last night – there are still plenty of estuarine crocodiles around, with one settling into a resort lagoon overnight just down the road from where we are camped!Our washing machine has not worked since the end of May, so we have been pretty tied to campground washers – of variable quality. Our first task was to get a sack of washing done, including our sheets and towels. Sadly, one of the machines did not spin, and our washing came out absolutely sopping wet (it took some pieces three days to dry!). So frustrating, and not helped by the continuing showery weather.

After hanging out the washing it was a visit to a local doctor. We are about to head into remote Queensland and I do not want to rely on the Flying Doctor to keep me alive, should something happen with my breathing again. The GP was fabulous, and I left with a pile of ‘just in case’ prescriptions for steroids, inhalers, antibiotics, anti-reflux medication and more, plus two holes in my arms from a flu immunisation and a pneumonia immunisation. You cannot say we’re not prepared!

I called into the local pharmacy to pick up my many supplies while Mr A called into the Post Office to collect our wine deliveries. Sadly, only one delivery made it – good old Amelia Park got the address right, Tscharke Wines sent to the billing address instead of the delivery address! Ugh! The tenants have a nice surprise. Margaret River one point, Barossa Valley nil, and we have six bottles of wine instead of a dozen.

Our final task of the day was to pick up our new washing machine from our friends’ apartment in Yorkeys Knob. That all went very smoothly!

Thursday morning was a much anticipated day, when we were finally to get our washing machine fitted. A mobile caravan repairer arrived as planned, his name was Demc. We were struggling to understand how to pronounce his name. He explained he’d been named after the Din Wai Electrical Manufacturing Co. fan in the room where he was born, and his name was pronounced ‘Dempsey’. He even carried around the old fan switch to back up his story…

Demc found the cause of all our washing machine drainage problems, a drainage pipe which had been installed backwards then bent over to try and rectify the problem! He replaced the piece of pipe and installed it correctly. Hopefully our days of drainage errors are now over – fingers crossed.It wasn’t long after that our friends Bob and Ann Gadd arrived to join us for lunch. We last saw them down in Adelaide where they live during the warmer months – this time of year they are found in their apartment in Port Douglas, escaping the cool South Australian winter. We ambled along the street, catching up on news and found a cafe for lunch. Lots of laughs were had, stories told, and maps looked at to help us plan for our next few weeks.After saying farewell to them, we returned to the Zone to find more Zoners were in town!

Before long, we had an impromptu Zoners catch up with Greg Nolan arriving, and Gary and Trish from the Sunshine Coast coming over for a chat. We exchanged tips and experiences, and continued with Greg over a bottle of wine and dinner at a local restaurant. Great fun!

Friday was another day of tasks, so little of interest to report. We dropped the car off early into Cairns to have new shocks fitted, and meanwhile we completed some final pieces of civilisation while we could – back to the hairdressers for both of us, and I got my nails done. Must keep up appearances after all!

We finished the day with Singapore Chilli Crab, thanks to a delicious cooked Mud Crab Greg had gifted to us, and chilli sauce I whipped up. Civilisation is not too bad after all!

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