It felt exciting heading to Coolum. Probably for two reasons, firstly Ken and I had been here before but for only a day and secondly, the focus of the first six weeks of travels has been about getting to Coolum to have Goldilocks fixed up and all the outstanding issues sorted.
But that excitement faded pretty quickly as we were faced with the daunting task of unloading most of the contents of the van in preparation of it going into the workshop early the next morning. Arriving not long before dark, with rain imminent, and no parking near the accommodation it made this task even less enjoyable.
In the end I gave up, the now heavy rain and 100 meter walk up a steep hill each load beat my usually sunny and determined nature to complete a job and complete it well.
The week ahead saw Ken returning to Perth for work and the arrival of Grandma and Papa in Coolum for a visit, holiday and support. It was also a great opportunity to re-organize and re-evaluate the contents of the van and a high priority was to really getting the homeschooling established! So all in all it was going to be a busy week.
Ken departed and the rain persisted for the first day or two but that didn’t stop the girls enjoying the swimming in the pool. The accommodation was well laid out, as I could be standing by our front door keeping an ear on Llewella while she slept and watch the girls in the pool at the same time. The weather isn’t particularly warm but nor is it too cool either with a little humidity, low twenty’s everyday, and this is winter.
Grandma and Papa arrived in the dark to much excitement. We shared a quick meal at the surf club and then got the kids to bed before a catch up. With trying to get a schooling routine established we decided to not catch up till 10am each morning giving the girls a chance to get some work done and Grandma and Papa a little time to themselves to sleep in, walk the beach or go for a coffee at one of the many coffee spots.
The first day we just walked the main drag, visited the beach, playground, lunch at a delicious French cafe and the information centre to help us decide what we may like to do. The girls got another long swim in the afternoon with Papa supervising this time, which turned out to be a regular arvo thing.
Noosa was just 20 mins up the road. We all squeezed in the car, the back seat was pretty crowded with 3 and a baby seat, but we got there. We headed to the national park to do one of the well designated walks and work up an appetite before lunch. It was a beautiful day, the sun was shining and I had put the kids bathers under the pram just Incase.
It was more of a meandering stroll than anything worthy of the lunch that was to come but delightful and scenic all the way. We got to Tea Tree Bay but the white powdery sand and clear still waters were too much to pass by and we had a lovely hour or two playing, paddling and swimming in total paradise.
For lunch we ended up at the most unlikely of joints to take mum to, but Betty’s Burger Bar was bustling and appeared to be too good to pass up. We needed to see what all the hype and crowds was about. Grandma hasn’t eaten a burger and chips for years but with a Naked Betty on the menu (burger with no bun) everyone was catered for. Simple burgers done well aside from the added crunch provided by the sand still in the lettuce.
The rest of the afternoon we potter around the shops and enjoy the theatre of icecream from Nitrogenie. The lady was so passionate about the liquid nitrogen she did more than just make the girls an icecream but a whole science experiment on the behavior of the liquid nitrogen compared to water. Science lesson for the week, done!
The next day we visited the Ginger Factory in Yandina. I wasn’t sure what to expect but what a fabulous day. The highlight for us adults was the most clear, concise, fascinating and knowledgeable presentation and demonstration from the bee keeper all about bees 🐝 and what they do, make, collect and behavior. It was super, I just hope the girls took it in but when I get a moment I hope I can build a lesson around these important and talented little creatures.
The rest of the day was equally well done. The highlight for Georgia was the boat ride. An indoor attraction in which you boarded a small boat which moved along a narrow channel and as you floated along you followed the story of the ginger bread man as he runs away from 3 bakers. His journey takes him all over the world, with the bakers never far behind, but with the gingerbread man hiding or in disguise you are trying to spot him in each scene. The whole thing is done with marionette puppets to a musical arrangement that takes on the flavor of the country the Ginger Breadman is in. At first I thought gosh, this is going to be naf, but it really was well done and in the end we enjoyed it so much we went around a second time.
Other attractions was a tour and tasting of the Budrum ginger factory, the largest confectionary ginger exporter in the world. Who would have known! A steam train ride around the lovely tropical grounds of the factory and pottering around the shops in Ginger town. The food also supported the ginger and honey themes of the day but while the menu was well designed the execution was a little disappointing. All in all the Ginger Factory, in a little known small town of Yandina is punching well above it’s weight.
Coolum to be continued …………