Its been a long time since I spent a whole week on holidays in one spot. I think it is the nomadic soul I have developed into with every holiday I can remember in the direct past being spent sailing, riding, traveling from one cool destination to the next. I do remember getting my license and heading off on surfing holidays where we would head to Byron or Angourie and set up camp, dodging rangers and spending as much time in the water as we could, or pitching the tent on the banks of the Myall lakes and windsurfing all day, but that was such a long time ago.
Since then it has been part of the adventure to keep moving which has turned into vast distances been travelled both on the water and on the road.
After purchasing my first bike since my teen years Cooper and I have travelled on two wheels each year with our passages necessitating light luggage and minimal camping gear – a tent and mattress and if lucky a sleeping bag as we would stop over in a town over night and head off early the next day looking for food at cafe’s or service stations.
With his continuing independence now including his own motorcycle we headed out to Glen Echo riding park for these holidays. Set on around 200 acres north west of Gympie we packed the bikes onto a trailer and threw in all the camping accessories for a week long adventure in dirt and mud.
As I was digging around in the garage for all the camping equipment and buying replacements for what either no longer worked or had long since disappeared into unused oblivion it occurred to me that since I last camped, advertising material never needed to include facts such as there were no phone/internet services in the park and make sure you come self sufficient as services were limited.
Then came the recognition that perhaps I have become a little soft over the passage of time as the thought actually registered and lingered that there would be no cappuccino coffee for the next week!
Even as we pitched two tents and set out tables and chairs I was worried that perhaps I didn’t have enough gas for the cooker and how were we going to prepare food if that were to eventuate.
A sign on the way in said that firewood was available for $25 per bag which had me thinking we might need to buy some. I am embarrassed to have sunk so low when our campsite was surrounded by fallen branches and dry kindling maybe just a little too ready for ignition. After a quick gathering we had ample fuel for our fire and despite the temperature soaring into the late 30’s (degrees) each day I also remembered that I didn’t actually need the cooker because our fire could also boil the billy and cook more than just the marshmallows for desert!
With our basics sorted we then quickly fell into the routine of stoking fires in the morning, riding the many and varied tracks on offer and trying to find shade on our breaks during the day. The nights were clear and full of stars helped by the new moon and complete lack of light pollution and the mornings alive with the sounds of kookaburra’s and magpies fighting for tree domination above and the ever-present bush turkeys foraging around for anything not secured away around our camp.
After 3 days of total isolation and 2 more with the company of another family, it was time to go back to a world of internet and creature comforts that somehow had lost their relevance and importance in such a short period of time.