Dan and Lu's Travels
Drove from the rest area in Alstonville west to Lismore and found our way to a Koala Car Sanctuary which was closed but the koalas were in a huge cage that was outdoors so we went to see them. They're exactly like cuddly toy koalas - so furry with fluffy ears and the cutest face!!! After we'd said goodbye to them we set out north for Nimbin. The countryside for the most part was very pretty, like south west England; rolling fields scattered with trees, The trees very deep dark green but the grass here has either turned or seems to be threatening to turn yellow under the sun. Every so often, when you do see a building (which is much less often than in England) it tends to have a corrugated tin roof and wooden walls rather than being stone. Nimbin is pretty much a one street town, as far as visiting goes. Its famous for its alternative hippy vibe and the fact that dope is grown and smoked everywhere. Wasn;t sure if I'd like the place but its one of a kind so thought we should go and see for ourselves. I imagined it to be full of shops selling dope smoking accoutrements, tie dyed shapeless clothes and lots of people speaking really slowly and saying 'man' after everything. I also thought this was probably very narrow minded of me. But that was exactly what it was. It was tedious. I don't have a problem with people smoking weed but I don't understand why people have to be such bores about it. And does it mean you have to wear rainbow clothes? The worst thing about the place was the fact that they've turned themselves into a living theme park. There are about 3 tour companies dedicated to bringing loads of travellers from Byron Bay to wander round, smoke too much and leave looking confused. Its a sham, this alternative "we don't have opening hours, we're on Nimbin time, man" crap; when half the shops wouldn't exist without the tourists, so they have to keep business hours. As you may guess I hated the place! Most people on the bus tours look like the kind of people who go to Uni and start listening to reggae with their ubiquitous Bob Marley-smoking-a-spliff posters on the walll the first night there. Arghhh!!! Sorry, I've ranted now. We left (after some stoned guy stole our potato wedges - don't get me started) and drove to a camp site in Nightcap National Park. Absolutely gorgeous location, deep in Whian Whian State Forest, which is a sub-tropical rainforest. We'd stocked up with food and wine and made a delicious pasta meal. Dan is (I'm pretty sure) the only person I know who would go to the trouble of making a starter of home made garlic bread when camping...but he did! A very basic version (we named it jungle bread), chunks of garlic fried in butter and spread on charcoaled bread with thin slices of raw red onion. Delicious... I'm not sure whether he was trying to off-set this rather gay culinary delight with some macho behaviour but he decided to build a fire after dinner. I thought it was most amusing that we didn't have any paper to burn to start the fire so we had to use the book dan had just finished reading. Now, I do not condone the buring of books at all, but I haven't said what the book is yet.... Bravo Two Zero by Andy McNab - an SAS story which is a badly written macho tomb and which Dan thought was appropriate to burn as it was for survival, and the author would have approved. I think that's taking it too far, especially since we were in a beautiful national park in Oz and the book is about being taken hostage in Iraq in the first Gulf war....!!