Friday, March 7, 2014

Channeling Patrick Swayze

Hehe. This is a picture of a picture I took of Preston before I knew him :P

Basically the same.

Saturday 22 Feb-Wednesday 26 Feb

We had breakfast on Saturday on hip Acland Street along the water in Melbourne. We had a great and full breakfast for cheap ($15 each!!) and a REAL coffee. No one drinks drip coffee here…it’s all instant and it’s all terrible :P


We drove out of Melbourne across the expansive bridge and stopped at Woolies in Geelong to stock up on supplies and get a warmer blanket!!

I loved the architecture

The grey sky returned after our brief reprieve yesterday.  We headed straight to Torquay (Tor-key)...a well known surfing town…home to RipCurl and nearby Bell’s Beach. Bell’s Beach is a famous break where an International surf competition is held every year. It’s also the site of the final scene in Point Break. This is where Preston was determined to spend his birthday ;)

Found out this is NOT a porcupine, but some sort of egg laying mammal :P

We drove through the town before heading out to the beach. Preston surfed the adjacent beach “Wikipops”, while I snapped photos and learned (finally) the manual functions of my camera. It was cold and dreary, so I had to find refuge in the car from the wind, cold, and terrible sand flies.

I'm getting better at these action shots ;)

New Friend

Preston met a local guy in the water and we chatted a bit before grabbing a beer at “Growler’s”…a bar with a great beachfront location.

We settled into our PACKED campground on the beach. We met a super friendly Australian family with Polish roots, so Preston impressed everyone again with his Polish hellos;) We also met Steve (an American), Dominique (from the French West Indies) and Robert (from Germany) and they were great fun.

On Preston’s birthday, the Australian/Polish family sang him a big HAPPY BIRTHDAY!! It was great, especially b/c Preston is not the biggest fan of his birthday. He actually said to me that he was so glad that only ONE person (me) was going to be there to wish him a happy day. What a weirdo!! :P

The sun was shining and we headed back to Bell’s Beach. Preston surfed the long wave and I practiced again taking pictures. It was so great to finally sit in the sun!!

Thank God for the zoom lens

We returned to “Growlers” for a fantastic birthday lunch and checked out a RipCurl outlet. The rest of the afternoon was spent laughing and talking with Steve, Dominique, and Robert. It was a great day and I think Preston really enjoyed his bday.

Birthday Lunch!!

Since the date of Preston’s birthday differed from the date in America, we celebrated again on the following day ;) It was another great day…the sun was shining and we finally began our journey along the legendary Great Ocean Road.

The road weaves along the cliffs overlooking the ocean and the views are magnificent. The water is crystal blue and the waves are pounding. We took a book recommended detour up a side road to see koalas nestling in the trees. It took a while to spot them, but we finally did see a few.

Ah hah!!

Koala hunter (really he only spotted one b/c he got out of the car to pee!!)

The road turned inland across farmland. We found another surf beach…’Johanna’s Beach’… that is used for the surf competition when Bell’s Beach won’t do. Unfortunately there were no good waves and only terrible sand flies, so we continued on our way.

American B-day!!

We continued into higher elevation through forests before coming out again along the coast. At last, here we came upon the most famous icons of The Great Ocean Road-‘The Twelve Apostles’. The apostles are rock formations in the water, that were once part of the mainland, but have been beaten into submission by the sea. There aren’t actually 12…apparently that was just a catchy number ;)

We parked at the visitor center and crossed under the road to come around to the apostles. It was a truly breathtaking sight. We took a million pictures and didn’t want to leave.

Near the end of The Great Ocean Road, we stopped for WORLD FAMOUS milkshakes in dairy country. They weren’t all that great, but we were happy for the treat.

We found another campsite near the beach…Preston surfed the choppy waters and we settled in for the night.

The following day was mostly uneventful. We drove a long while through burnt farmland into South Australia.


We stayed in a sleepy seaport and enjoyed the last night in our tent. We’ll miss the place!!

I took a video of Pres taking down the tent to show how easy it is!!

Wednesday found us driving into Adelaide. The city is surrounded by hills and the ocean. Adelaide has a famous wine region…made from vines cut in Europe and brought here by the early settlers. It’s also the only non-convict first settlement in Australia.

We drove first through cute Glenelg (don't ask me how to say that)…the seaside neighborhood. It reminded us a bit of Santa Monica. I’d have stayed here if it had been closer to the airport.

We returned the car to an empty depot (more on this later) and then walked the city for a bit. We got a beer in the CBD (Central Business District) and had dinner in Chinatown near our hotel.

Murder in his eyes...or a good butt kickin

The service at dinner was terrible and I giggled behind my hand while Preston shot murderous looks at our waiter. Too funny. The food was good nonetheless.

Today we fly to Perth…the Adelaide airport has awesome free wifi!! More to come after we touchdown in Western Australia (my first time to visit the west coast!!)

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