Day 1 arrives and we are early as usual 6:30 AM due to Shana knocking on the door to go for her early morning pee and of course Max chummies up with her and has his own splash and dash.
It’s a good thing really as we still have lot’s to do before we hit the road. Unfortunately I am not feeling great due a head, chest and nose thing for which I am stuffing myself with Codral Cold & Flue pils and Benadryl cough medicine. I hope to keep my spluttering to a minimum or be at risk of getting grabbed by the Chinese and put in to quarantine for 2 weeks due to the current Corona virus freaking everyone out.
We say our good buys to our fur babies and with everything loaded and car and van hooked up, safety check list ticked off we hit the road. Our first stop will be in the south West costal town of Portland. We stick Henty Park (where we will stay one night) in to the sat nav and off we head. About an hour later as we head through some rubbish roads we figure that the sat nav is taking us inland and north west instead of south west but we figure no point changing it now and we plod on.
The weather is shite with horizontal rain and real low cloud cover but hey it might be clear and dry in Portland.
Three and a half hours later we start to finally head south west and drop in to Portland. It looks quite an industrial sort of area with the deep Chanel port ready to welcome cruise ships and apart from that has the usual country town feel with Target Country a highlight. We turn in to Henty Park (Still following the sat nav) and are met with a guy in full cricket gear ordering us to stop as we have came in the wrong entrance and need to go back out and around the other side of the cricket pitch. Kaz does a great job of reversing and manages to turn around and get out without any drama. We then go around as instructed and drive in to the little camp area which seems not too bad with toilets, a dump point on site and pretty level grassy sites.
This one is a free camp where you must be self sufficient, carry your own water, power and have a catch tank for grey water. Tick, tick and tick for us. We have been warned that the ranger takes his job very seriously and we hope to get some entertainment with the ranger evicting someone who breaks these rules.
The little park is in a great spot and the town pub is an easy 5 minute walk. We will dine tonight in the Royal hotel which has a 5 star rating and looks like a good feed will be had.
We spend the afternoon chilling out people watching, cricket game watching reading and generally being lazy and before we know it we are back at the Royal Hotel and the place looks really good and is obviously a family owned business and we receive a warm welcome from the lady owner. She tells us if we want to eat that we should book a table straight away and order immediately as the place get’s busy. Looking around we reckon the place seemed pretty quiet but fair enough the lady comes back and tells us she has went ahead and booked us on to a table. So through to the restaurant we go to table number 8 and remember to order straight away and certainly before the Karting Club get here says our host.
As if scripted the door opens and in walks a bus load of people looking to order drinks and food. Immediately Kaz races up to the bar and gets our grub ordered. Strangely one of the members of said Karting Club and standing waiting to order is the ex AFL Western Bulldogs Footy player Brad Johnson.
A short time later having been offered other people’s food several time ours arrives, fish cakes for Kaz and a beef pie and mash for me.
Unfortunately as I am on the Codral flue stuff all I can taste is salt and mean salty. Not sure if it a ploy to make you drink more but Kaz reckons it’s not that salty and as I try the fish cake, bloody hell SALTY again. To show how good mine host is she convinces Kaz that it’s cheaper to buy a bottle of wine rather than a glass, as if Kaz would need talked in to that equation. and as a bonus she will supply a paper bag to take it home in if there is any left, definitely in the country now.
After the early start and having been fed and watered we head back to the van and I kid you not by 8pm it’s light out and we are dead to sleep within minutes.