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Wow how did I get to be 62 so quickly!! I have lots of passions one being travelling around Australia in our Camper trailer "Myrtle". We have already had 12 month on the road seeing a lot of Western Australia and South Australia and are now heading of to see some of the East Coast. I would love to have you join in on my adventure of travel and also my other passions which are my family, my jewellery business, my crafts and anything else that takes my fancy. You are most welcome to come along for the ride.

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Nan Tien Buddhist Temple

We are currently at a place called Windang which is a suburb of Woolongong. It's not that this is a happening place to stay, although it is quite pretty as its situated on Lake Illawarra. But my reason for wanting to stay here was because its only 15 minutes from the Nan Tien Temple. A number of years ago while driving back to Melbourne from Queensland I saw this magnificent building off in the distance. From that day I have been telling myself I will get here to visit one day. Unfortunately I couldn't do the tour as this is the one Saturday they weren't conducting it, but I was still able to spend time there and soak up the beauty and peace this magnificent temple exudes. Nan Tien Temple is one of the branch temples of Fo Guang Shan, founded in 1965 by Venerable Master Hsing Yun. "Nan Tien" in Chinese, literally means "Paradise of the South" and is the biggest Buddhist temple in the Southern Hemisphere.

Nan Tien Temple

The Nan Tien Gratitude Bell - The Gratitude Bell is to acknowledge
 the gratitude we have for our parents and ancestors. 
Yes it is the year of the monkey

The Pagoda as a storm brews in the background over Woolongong
This smiling Buddha greets you as you drive in the temple driveway

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Christmas is coming

We are now having a couple of lazy days in a suburb called Toowoon Bay, situated between Sydney and Newcastle. Once again we had to stock on a few grocery items so headed to the shopping centre down the road. After lunch we wondered into a Christmas Pop Up shop. I looooove Christmas, I love decorating my house inside and out so this shop was a little bit of heaven. It wasn't a very big shop and it was absolutely jam packed with Chrissy stuff. I have never been in any sort of shop so full of stuff. I may have to go back tomorrow as the amount of stock overwhelmed me a bit and I didn't buy anything. 

Tuesday, November 24, 2015


The last couple of days have been spent in Tuncurry which is another coastal town, this time in the Great Lakes area, about 308km north of Sydney. It is connected by bridge to its twin town of Forster, which is the larger of the two. We decided to have a couple of lazy days while in Tuncurry with just a bit of fishing and enjoying the nice warm weather. Yesterday we decided to go for a walk along the breakwater wall. As we set off the skies were blue with not a cloud in sight. As we headed back a little black cloud started heading our way. It grew and got blacker but was still only one cloud in a totally blue sky. Then all of a sudden the huge rain drops started falling, as we ducked for cover under a tree the heavens (actually it was still the one cloud) open up!! The rain certainly didn't last long at all and we headed back to the car. That was when we noticed the steam coming up off the still hot road. It was such an eerie sight it was like someone had turned on the steam machine.

Beautiful day for a walk
Then this little black cloud developed over our heads
Who turned on the steam machine

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Slim Dusty Centre

While driving last week we heard on the radio about the opening of the new Slim Dusty Centre in Kempsey. We both like country music and Shane really loves Slim Dusty music so seeing we are sort of in the area we knew we knew we had to head down there. So this morning we headed of early for Kempsey. I would think the majority of Aussies and quite a few people outside OZ would know of Slim Dusty. Born David Gordon Kirkpatrick in 1927, he changed his name to Slim Dusty at the age of 11. His career  continued until his passing in 2003. In his long and fantastic career Slim and his wife Joy McKean released 102 albums (her was working on 103 at the time he passed), was the first Australian to get a Gold Record, the first Australian to have an international hit with "A Pub with No Beer". He was the only artist to win 36 Golden Guitar awards from 72 nominations at the Tamworth Country Music Festival. In other words he was a pretty impressive artist. This new centre I. a multi purpose facility that includes the Slim Dusty Museum, the Columbia Lane Theatre, a Travelling Exhibition Gallery ( at the moment it visited of Aboriginal art - but I wasn't allowed to take photos. There is also a function centre, cafe, general store and visitors centre. The Museum features all of Slims Gold Records, Golden Guitar awards and so much more.

Shane outside the new Slim Dusty Centre
Just one of Slims Gold Records

How many Gold Records can an artist win!!!

This is just half of the Golden Guitar Awards

Slim and Joy travelled all over Australia in Old Purple and their caravan 

Sunrise and the Big Banana

For some reason I woke very early this morning and looking out my window noticed the sun had not yet risen for the day. So up I jumped and walked all of 50 steps to get this beautiful greeting to my Friday. There were about 5 other people walking along the boardwalk but I was the only one with my camera in my hand.
Urunga Boardwalk at sunrise
Good Morning
Looking down in the water I noticed a school of about 30 fish swimming about in the shallows, a couple were a pretty good size. Of course I didn't have my fishing rod with me!!! 
Later in the morning we decided to go for a drive into Coffs Harbour which is only about 20 minutes up the highway. I haven't been to Coffs Harbour since I was in my 20's and it certainly has changed. Australia is known for lots of towns having a big statue/structure of something relevant to the area. Well seeing Coffs Harbour has alway been a banana growing area, what else would be here but the "Big Banana". So yes I had to get a photo of it. After doing some much needed grocery shopping we had a little road trip around the town. 
The Big Banana - Coffs Harbour

While in town we stumbled onto a fishing tackle shop that claims to be the biggest tackle shop in the world. Now I don't know about the world but it certainly is the biggest fishing tackle shop I have ever been in. There were so many fishing rods and other stuff I thought Shane was going to hyperventilate!!!
The biggest tackle shop in the world ??????
We were going to head off from Urunga tomorrow but have decided to have another night here as it is such a lovely spot to spend some time. 

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Urunga - Coffs Coast

After another very short drive we have arrived in Urunga, another delightful small seaside village. Once again we are positioned between the ocean and a river. Often described as the place where the rivers meet the sea, it is here where the Belligan and Kalang rivers flow into the Pacific Ocean. Only a few steps from where we are camped is the Urunga boardwalk which extends 1 kilometre out to the ocean between the Urunga Lagoon and the Belligan and Kalang rivers.

This regions attraction is not only the beaches but the hinterland is something to behold. Today we ventured inland along the Waterfall Way to the villages of Belligan, Dorrigo and Ebor. Belligan, affectionately referred to by the locals as "Bello" is quite an arty village with galleries, handmade arts and crafts as well an edgy music scene.

After driving up the spectacular mountain road we reached Dorrigo, which is situated on the Dorrigo Plateau. Two of the attractions in this area are the World Heritage listed Dorrigo National Park and the Dangar Falls. The Dangar Falls is a 30 metre high cascading waterfall across the Beilsdown River. 

The last village on our road trip was Ebor which is a tiny hilltop village with a population of only around 160. This beautiful location is where you can watch the Guy Fawkes River plunge 100 metres over two waterfalls that are the Ebor Falls.