Today started like every other day on this trip – with Rohan rising before the sun. Rohan’s penchant for waking at dawn, combined with his love of company make for explosive mornings as he not-too-subtly tries to wake everyone in sight. Kylah, Jazzy & Isabelle, like their mother, enjoy sleeping late and scream & screech at Rohan to choof off, in the process waking even more people (I’m sure that was his evil plan all along).
Mornings when we have to pack up after being somewhere for a while are always a pain in the butt. Everyone was grumpy (from being woken by Rohan) and Rohan, when faced with having to help out, suddenly remembered how sad he was about his dinosaur & sat down in the dirt bawling.
Jazzy, Kylah & Isabelle were great helpers, albeit very, very grumpy & snappy. So much so that Ben had to sit everyone down & threaten them with “no souveniers” if they didn’t start getting along.
I think I mentioned in an earlier post that my mum, bless her soul, ever so kindly gave the kids souvenir money. This has resulted in a constant prattle out of the younger ones mouths… “when can we spend our money?”, “when will there be shops?”, “what’s a souvenier exactly?”, “will we get to spend our souvenier money today???”. When you are in the middle of nowhere, not a shop in sight, it’s enough to send you bonkers!!
The threat of losing their opportunity to purchase souveniers made the kids toe the line & stop fighting.
It was only a short drive to our next destination but it took a while due to river crossings & having to pump Frankie’s tyres up & down (so the pressure suited the road).
We arrived at magical Umagico at lunch time & the kids fell instantly in love. There are wild horses & dogs roaming the streets which apparently is my childrens idea of heaven.
We are staying at Alau camp grounds, right on the beach. It is so stunningly beautiful. Our campsite faces Prince of Wales Island & staring at it has made me long to visit my former island home, Horn Island. Originally we were going to take the kids to Horn Island on this trip, but then we decided to save going to the Torres Straits for another holiday.
Staring at the Torres Strait Islands, being so close to the place I used to call home, the place that changed my life & turned my world upside down – I knew I had to go back.
Not wanting to disrupt Ben’s well thought out itinerary, I kindly offered to visit Horn Island by myself for 1 night while he & the children continued on with the plans. This did not go down very well with the kids (there were tears galore and Isabelle threatened to start a revolt!!) , but Ben was very supportive.
At Umagico I finally had reception, although only 1 bar of 3G. After wandering around the camp ground, holding my phone up in the air, I finally managed to post my blog. Would you believe that seconds after I posted it a friend messaged me saying that she had seen a post about someone finding a toy dinosaur near Coen!! What are the chances?!? To say Rohan is delighted is an understatement but the ones who are most thrilled are Ben & myself as we don’t have to listen to him whinge anymore.
Rohan saved up his pocket money to buy that dinosaur (which is a big deal for a kid who can’t save & wants everything yesterday). He was originally saving for an iPad but had a change of heart & instead ordered this toy off ebay at a greatly inflated price as they are no longer sold in toy shops. He plays with it all the time.
The lady who found it is going to meet up with us in a few days & return it to him.
All the locals at Umagico are so welcoming and lovely. Local kids asked my kids to play with them after school, which they did till dark fell and everyone we’ve met is so friendly. You really couldn’t ask for a nicer place. Rohan and Isabelle are already making plans to move here when they fly the nest. The lure of stray animals roaming the streets is too intoxicating to them. Never mind that the three dogs who have made themselves at home near our campsite are ridden with fleas. The kids have adopted and named them & will not listen to Ben & I when we tell them to leave the dogs alone.
All the kids slathered up in Stingoes insect cream tonight as they are all covered in flea bites. I loved smugly telling them “I told you so”, whilst reading my book & refusing to assist with the application of the cream. Don’t think the flea bites will keep them away from the animals though.
Everyone, bar Ben, has come to the conclusion that I am a secret genius & that the bee keeper get up I wear is an awesome idea. The kids all want me to buy them fly nets, next time we are near a BCF. The long pants & shirt thing isn’t catching on though.
Tomorrow we are going to the Northern most point of Australia. Ben has just informed me that I have to go to sleep because he is waking me early. Bloody brilliant.
Thanks for reading!!