We left Katherine gorge this morning about 9 and headed north stopping briefly at Pine Creek for coffee in a modern mock up railway themed resort which was a pleasant surprise after bush camping. Continuing on the highway the vegetation started looking more tropical with small palms and cabbage trees. As we got closer to Darwin we could see burning off on the horizon smoke billowing high into the air. All along the highway for the last couple of hundred Kms there are signs pointing out old airforce strips and military hospitals and bases from ww2. We were very lucky to have Mick and Kathy escort us into Darwin to where they are staying. Also we were phoning Neil on our way there and he organised a caravan park for us to stay. He also arranged for us to meet him at his yacht club tonight for dinner with Irene, his partner and Kathy and Mick. We had a great time with plenty of laughter, mainly at Neil's stories, and reminiscing. The setting was beautiful, all outdoor tables, perfect weather, good food and brilliant sunset on the sea.
We are having a bit of trouble with two of our batteries and are getting RAA to come and test them.
A first for me, I met my first gay aboriginal! I forgot the rule Dennis taught me about no eye contact!
I forgot to mention Dennis got locked out of the caravan park in Alice Springs. When we arrived he said he was going for a walk to the shop about 500metres down the road. I thought he was gone a long time, he explained that the gates locked at 7pm and you needed a code to get back in. I knew that, but forgot to tell him! He didn't take his phone! At the shop was a security guy and a police car and a group of aboriginals which made him feel uneasy about walking back with his box of ciders and to have to stand at the gate until someone drove in or out was a little worrying for the poor old fella! He finally showed up and enjoyed a well-earned drink!