We used our two days in Geraldton to relax and refresh down at the beach. Ben desperately tried to sell his surfboard, but no-one offered him more than $200 for it, while it was as good as new, so he didn’t bother. At the same time he was tossing up the options of finding some work in Geraldton and stay, or to continue his trip with us to Broome. We constantly told him money was not an issue for us, that we enjoyed his company more than anything else. But worries kept playing in his mind. I can completely understand, being so dependent on faith is a tough thing.
Dick and I would tan up on the beach, while Mark would be rolling around the waves with his board, or the three of them took turns in showing off their guns doing push-ups. *rolling eyes again. I understand they want to stay in shape and Dick being a personal trainer and all, but really, guys?! I loved this town and became more aware of the Australian lifestyle. At around 3 pm when the schools were out, parents would come down to the beach with their kids, teach them how to surf and have a barbie (barbecue) with the neighbours. They really know how to enjoy their surroundings. Awesome.
Everything went smooth, apart from the one morning when a ranger discovered our hiding spot and woke us up, banging on the van door while seriously reminding us of the severity of illegal camping. Oh really? sorry we didn’t know.. We got away without a fine though, which was pretty lucky. That morning it rained and we came to the conclusion it was the best to use this weather for driving in. Ben chose the unknown path of faith and jumped back into the van ready for the next adventure. Let’s see what Kalbarri had to offer.
We used our ‘drive through’ method on a camp-site in Kalbarri we found that night.
*The drive through method: Driving onto a camp-site after the reception has closed. Have a very pleasant sleep, if necessary a shower and make full use of other facilities. (e.g. a shit on an actual toilet) Set alarm for early in the morning and make sure you leave before reception opens.
We spent our free night drinking and shaving Ben’s hair in turns, all captured on video. Dick and Mark had both agreed on not cutting their hair until their trip was done, which meant they now both had afro-like hairstyles, and were still figuring out why no female attention was given to them for ages. Hmm… Ben had given it some thought but the further north we went, the hotter it got. Extra hair felt more like a torture than a statement to him. Off it went, and on with the drinking.
The next day we got ready for some proper sightseeing. Kalbarri was a beautiful place and according to this lady at the I-centre, our crappy van would make it to the national park no bother. Wow, how wrong she was! The entrance to the national park itself was a 25 km unsealed road. It didn’t look too bad but it turned out to be in the worst state ever. Our van shook uncontrollably and the only way to make it was to slow down, completely, while other 4wd’s passed us at high speed either laughing or yelling at us to move out of the way. We had gone down too far to just turn and go back. Damage had already been done and we were almost there anyway. Well, with Ben holding the steering wheel and Dick holding his foot down on the gas while taking photo’s, it took us almost an hour to do the 25 km’s.
The park itself was stunning! Dark red rock formations, waterfalls and fresh water for swimming and what else…cliff-jumping! Earlier on the trip the guys had already pointed out that it was stupid to carry my bag around with me all the time. I had a little handbag with two straps, which I would wear as a backpack. It contained things like band-aids, water, my camera and all sorts of stuff. All in the name off you never know. I found myself quite clever to think of this but the guys would laugh and shake their heads. While I explored the national park with my camera, the others did so too, by jumping off the highest rocks they could find. Everything went great doing back-flips and god knows what, until Ben dived off a waterfall head first and ended up in ankle deep water smashing his face into a rock. Blood seemed to come from everywhere but he didn’t seem to panic. After the initial shock, it all turned out to be not so bad after all. I got to use my you-never-know equipment and cleaned up the wound nice and tidy Ben didn’t need any facial surgery but we decided to call it a day and head back.
On the bumpy way back we found a sign saying ‘Nature’s Window’ was just 3 km’s away. We had heard of it somewhere and decided to have a quick look to see what is was. Definitely worth the curiosity. Nature’s window is a rock formation with a large gap in the middle, making it look like a window because it looks out over the most incredible view of Kalbarri national park. We spent some time gazing at the beautiful scenery and took some cheesy pictures to go with it. It was almost 9 p.m. when we got back but it felt like 3 am. Time to really hit the sack now.