Days 7 and 8 – Wasted and the Wallabies
Heston runs a hostel. Thank God! We weren’t kidnapped by rabid backpackers after all, simply wheeled home by Aarron and Heston and put to bed like naughty children.
When I wander into the communal kitchen, I gag at the smell of Heston’s bacon sizzling in the pan and he gives me a cheery hello.
‘Alright, Aunty?’ He grins at me. ‘How’s the knees?’
Now you come to mention, they are a bit sore? I raise a quizzical eyebrow which sets of a host of flashing lights behind my eyes and I steady myself on the counter while he explains that I tried to can- can down a flight of stairs last night. Apparently I did quite well and managed at least three and a half high kicks before I finally took a less than elegant tumble and had to be scraped off the floor and chucked into a bunk whilst warbling a very loud rendition of Mustang Sally, accompanied by an equally trollied Jo who was providing the ‘ride sally rides’ with much enthusiasm. Christ on a bike!
We call a cab and ride back in silence to the hotel. Neither of us is capable of speech and it takes a long nap and seven hundred litres of fluid before we are able to consider movement. But move we do…finally. And we spend the afternoon pottering around the gorgeous Terrigal boutiques and taking pictures along the pretty promenade. We have a quiet dinner and Gingy laughs all night and calls us lightweights…and he may be right!
The next day we are up bright and early and ready to see what the locals are raving about. The Australian Reptile park. Since our arrival, everyone we’ve met has told us it’s a must see. Who am I to defy convention? So off we go, driving about half hour south and we arrive mid-morning ready to see Elvis the croc and friends.
One of the things Australians are passionate about (aside from surfing and the very dodgy practice of eating burgers covered in Beetroot, wtf?) Is their wildlife, and boy does it show. This not a zoo! It’s a park and you can wander around amongst the animals instead of viewing them through bars or glass. You’re encouraged to touch them and feed them and learn about them, through talks from the keepers and it is absolutely fecking awesome!
We spend the day feeding the kangaroos and wallabies. One in particulartakes a real shine to me and I name him Joey, cos as I’ve said before, I’m very originalwhen it comes to nicknames. He snuggles up for a few selfies and complains I didn’t get his best side then we have a long chat about how much fun it is to be a kangaroo , especially when you get to eat tourist picnics all day and have folk scratch your belly and tell you your beautiful. I think I’ve found my spirit animal. In fact , chuck in a bottle of vodka and I’m willing to don a fur suit and live out my days here , with my spirit clan….oh hang on , the mention of vodka has made me queasy again, bleugh! Joey gives me a lovely snotty kiss and tells me to come back soon and off we go to see the rest of the park.
We cuddle wallabies and Koalas we stroke alligators we perch with parrots and we ogle funnel spiders, we feed leaves to giant tortoises and we sigh at the baby dingoes. Elvis the crocodile enthrals us by moving 4cm in 4 hours and we learn so much from the keepers who are injected daily with huge amounts of knowledge and enthusiasm .
What a gorgeous place and a real treat to get up close and personal with some of Australia’s finest residents. We ride home babbling about how fab it all was. Surely nothing could top that…
Well nothing could…. until the following day……