So what have we been up to since last...well....
Our first day in Coffs Harbour changed to a hostel not camping!! Lee had started to pack the bag and stood up hitting his back really hard, he then decided to kick the wall four times really hard and ended up braking his toe! So we headed on the Greyhound bus towards Coffs Harbour to the 'Plantation Hotel' for a few nights in a bed rather than a tent! We manged to get a private room for 60$ per night so only cost around 70pounds for the two nights! We headed down that night to the pub downstairs and had a 7.95$ steak and chips deal, soooo yummy! The bar turned into a night club at night so as we were eating loads of people kept arriving and going into the club. We then headed back to the room as Lee could hardley walk .... he had his foot prop'd up all night!
The following morning we woke up in a bed (soooo happy), We got up and slowly walked to the shops to get some food. We manged to find a 'Big W' and bought a summer sleeping bag it only cost 12$! We then went to Coles food shop to get food for the next few days and again really slowly walked back to the hostel. Lee made us a feta and ham omlette for lunch. We found a room in the hostel with two computers so we decided to start booking our trip from Brisbane onwards. We ended up spending around five hours at a computer and booked the rest of our Australia trip. Just as we finished some bald headed man came in shouting at us saying the room should not have been open and internet access was not for backpackers....opps! Agh well we managed to book everything and didnt get charged :) That night we had chicken in breadcrumbs, jacket pots and pasta in chicken soup! Then headed to the room for our last night in a bed for 7nights!
Today I woke seriously excited as it was the day we got to see Ruth!!!! We checked out at 10am but just stayed in the hostel to eat and wait for Ruth and Jeffs arrival! WE had beans on toast and sat playing cards and reading our books. They took longer than they thought so when they got to the hostel around 3.30pm we were glad to go out and get fresh air! Jeff drove us to the beach in Coffs, it was seriously windy but a pretty beach. We had to walk through strong water to get on the beach, Ruth and I held on tight to each other so we didnt get washed away! We sat on the beach and caught up on gossip and life stories before heading to our new campsite. Jeff and Ruth dropped us off at 'Coffs Coast Holiday Parks 'PARK BEACH' and headed onwards. It was pretty hard putting up the tent as it was so windy, but finally managed it then went to the shop in the holiday park to get some tea. We manged to get a free sausage roll and small pie as they were going to throw them in the bin at the end of the day so we bought a few things to go with them... the extra things were soooo expensive! That night was suprisingly warm... it must be our new cheap sleeping bags!
The next morning (6.11.12) we woke up pretty early, it was boiling in the tent so got out straight away! We decided to take a stroll to the local shops as the shop on site was sooooo expensive, although the short stroll ended up taking around 40minutes to get there (Lees bad toe). We finally made it to an 'Aldi' and stcoked up for the next three days with chicken kababs, sausages and wedges etc. We strolled back with the bags taking even longer this time and had a pizza before sitting by the pool. We realised when we went to the fridge that someone had stollen Lees beers (Lee was NOT happy!) In the afternoon we just lay by the pool and had a go on the childrens water slides. The evening was spent eating hotdogs, wedges and beans!!!
Our next day started off pretty much the same as the last, straight out of the tent because of the hot weather! We took a stroll to the beach, it was sooo hot so only stayed a few hours before going back for a bacon omlette and another afternoon by the pool. Although this time when we played on the kids slides Lee was being mean to me, we were having a race down the slides and Lee didnt go so I was in the freezing cold water! Lee then laughed as we then started down the slide, although he didn't notice the top of the slide as he was laughing at me and smacked his head on the slide, by the time he got to the water at the bottom he already had a round lump on his head!!! (see pictures!) That evening we went to a pub called Hoey Moey's to have happy hour 3$ beers and steak and chips for 8$, it tasted good... oh and I had abottle of wine... of course!
Our last day in Coffs we decided to beach it and pool it, and luckly Lee is showing no signs of concussion yet! We headed to the beach when we decided to walk all the way to the pier and up the small nature mountain. They had loads of 'mutton birds' and you could see the holes in the hills. We walked up a steep hill to the top, the views were beautiful from up there! We strolled back to camp and had pizza with the extra bacon bits from the day before, then spent the afternoon by the pool with one last go on the slides, this time Lee didn't knock himself out... a lesson well learnt! That evening we had chicken kababs, wedges and BBQ sauce, then a sleep in the tent but the weather was rainy and very windy!
An early start to the next day, up at 4.50am for a 5.50am taxi to the greyhound stop, it cost 17$ for a 10minute drive!!!! We were so lucky because we packed the tent up. got in the taxi then it started pouring down with rain! We had a four hour bus journey to Byron Bay. We got off the bus and started walking towards the campsite, it was sooo hot by this point we were really struggling to walk with our bags, i was bent so far over trying to keep my bag on my back that I noticed a 50$ note on the floor! woohooooo! We then walked a few more steps when a lady stopped her car saw us struggling and offered to drive us the rest of the way! We set up camp, blew up the lilos then headed to the shops for food. We spent the afternoon by the pool then had steak, tinny pots and carrets. That night was seriously bad,m the worst night so far in a tent it rained so heavy and for hours and hours, from 6pm until well it didn't really stop.
We really didn't get much sleep the night before because of the weather. The park we were staying in 'Byron Bay Tourist Village' had flooded in areas as there was so much rain the drains could not get rid of the water fast enough. The rain slowed around midday, so we had some beans on toast and headed for Byron Bay town centre. There was some really nice shops there, a very pretty town, although it started raining heavy again so we headed back to the campsite. On route back we stopped in a garage, they sold 1$ tea and coffee, this help us warm up a little for the rest of the walk back. We spent that whole afternoon in the large kitchen with other people from the campsite, it was so rainy we could not go anywhere. We filled the afternoon up by eating noodles, playing cards, reading books and Lee watched a random black and white film on the TV. That evening we had hotdogs and beans, we drunk beer and wine and still had to stay in the kitchen, it was still raining by 10pm when we headed back to our tent.
So we had another sleepless night and because our tent is a two person tent, we have to get our huge backpacks in as well so not much room, although good news.... the sun was starting to shine in the morning...woohooo! 60hours of solid rain and then finally sunshine. We took a long walk to the lighthouse, we both forgot to put on suncream, the first time since we left the UK and we both burnt our nose! The view from the lighthouse was amazing, it was so pretty, at one point we were at the most eastern point of Australia! We headed back to the tent and were happy it had not rained as the next day we had to pack up the tent, but noooooooo, no luck for us, it rained loads in the night! Although we got up early the next day to dry it out on the line, which actually worked!
We headed towards surfers paradise the next day, the greyhound only took around two hours. We had a stop around lunch time when we grabbed a Maccy D's, then headed to our hostel.... we now have 8 nights in a bed :) We arrived at around 1.30pm, we had a time change of one hour difference. We checked into our hostel 'Backpackers in Paradise' into a 14 bed dorm! We took a stroll to the shops to get pizza, but when we go back we realised we didnt have a oven in the hostel...opps. Later on we walked to the centre to meet my school friend Sarah. She gave us some passes for the pub crawl for Wednesday night. We found a bowling place, if you buy one drink for over 6$ you had a free bowl, so we both did that! I ended up with my best score ever of 107, and Lee managed to get 136! We headed back early for an early night as we had so many poor nights sleep in the tent.
We had planned to go straight to the beach for the day today, although when we woke up I was feeling really lethargic and knew straight away I needed my B12 injection. We headed to a mall to sign up for medicare (an agreement that we can use their medical resourses for a discount then Australian people can use British NHS for cheaper), we then luckly found a doctors in the mall, he gave me my injection and a blood test for free, I just had to pay the 65$ appointment fee, and I can get 30$ back from medicare! We then found a cinema to watch 'Taken 2' it was cheap Tuesdays so it only cost 10$ each! That evening Sarah invited us to hers so we could cook our pizza. It was really cool just hanging out, catching up, drinking wine and watching TV on a sofa ( we have both missed the sofa). That evening when we got back to the hostel we met two more lads...and guess where they were from..... BARNSLEY!!!!
Wednesday I woke up with a little hangover, Lee was fine. We had beans on toast (again!), used the hostels free suncream and headed for a day at the beach. We led down on the beautiful sand, but it was suddenly really windy and all the sand stuck to us like glue as we had just put on the suncream! Went led for a while and had a dunk in the sea, then we managed to find a place that did less than 10$ meals. Lee had sweet chilli chciken wrap and I had BBQ chicken, cheese and ham. We met a guy called Mike who we were chatting to in our hostel, then took him to Sarah to get a pass for the pub crawl tonight. After heading back for a quick lay by the pool, we had showers and met Mike at 4pm. We drank GOON (a box of wine) although he had bought red goon, nooo way near as nice as white goon. We started the pub crawl at 5pm, heading to five clubs getting a free drink at every place and free pizza and hotdogs! In the second bar there was a dance competition on the x box motion thing, I had a go with our Korean friend 'Karl' and got throught to the next round, I managed to get to the final.... it was only at this point that I realised if I won I got 100$ cash! I WON..... woohooooo 100$! That night was brilliant we spent in total all night 30p!!! A huge thank you to Sarah for sorting us out!
Thursday we led by the pool pretty much all day as the beach was too windy yesterday. We went out that night to a ladies night, it meant I got in for free and drank free wine until midnight, and Lee paid 10$ to get in but then only had to pay 1$ per drink!!! So a cheap night of dancing and alcohol! We went out with Mike and the two Barnsley lads Ben and Will and the two new girls in our room from holland... although near the end of the night these Ozzy guys went up to Ben asked him if he was Australian, he said no so they punched him in the face! Idiots! We headed home around 12.30am.
The next day we woke up, Lee this time was the one with the hangover, we had to pack and cheack out for 10am, Lee struggled with this! After packing and checking out we realised they had charged us too much so they gave us 17$ back, good job we realised. We headed to say goodbye to Sarah, then had some beans on toast and headed to the greyhound. We arrived in Brisbane and chilled in the transport centre until 5 when we met Sian (our friend we met in Asia). We headed back to hers then went out that evening to a pizza resturant, had a few drinks at a bar with thier friends and headed back.
The following morning we woke up started to come up with a plan for the day then it started storming. It was the biggest storm I had ever seen, crazy lightning, seriously strong winds and so much rain. We saw a tree get spliut then crashed onto the eletric wires, it sparked up crazy, the eletricity went out straight away. TIn the afternoon we had a break from the rain so headed out to 'South Bank' a really pretty area, we had lunch near the river and strolled around a few free galleries. we walked back and got some tea to eat in at sians. We went to a bar that had just had 5million$ spent on it, it was amazing it was like a pretty garden inside with water walls and amazing seating (see pics). We got into the house when the next storm hit, 1000's of lightening strikes again for hours.
We woke up in the morning to yet another storm, although by the time we had got ready it had cleared so we headed to Australia Zoo. It was seriously amazing here, our best day yet. It was Steve Irwins legacy! It was more like a safari park of Australian animals than a zoo. We had a picture with a Koala and watched some fantasic shows. It was such and amazing day although we did get hit by another storm towards the end. We headed home and just before we got back a seriously bad storm hit, hail stones the size of golf balls... the radio announced for people to go indoors and stay indoors... so thats what we did! When it finally stopped we headed to an Indian to get take away for a chilled out evening at Sian and Chris's.
Well thats pretty much it guys, thats up to this moment in time. We are up ready to check into Brisbane Base hostel for one night then heading to Noosa for three days camping. We are meeting Sian and Chris at Wagamamas tonight then on greyhound tomorrow morning!
Hope all is well back home,
Love to everyone,
Zoe and Lee