Newman, Karijini and beyond

Following our short stint in Broome, we ventured inland to visit my Aunty in Newman. Newman is a pretty small town about five hours south of Port Hedland, which revolves almost entirely around mining. I was looking forward to seeing a familiar face and, well, having a little holiday from our holiday.

It was our first time being in a house in about three months, and it was so nice to be able to lounge around and escape the heat, as well as having excellent company to do it with! We stayed a couple of nights and basically just chilled right out. The most strenuous activity we did was walk up to the Radio Hill Lookout for a view of the town.

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Other than that, we slept in, lounged on squishy comfy couches, played games, watched movies and ate delicious food like these pizzas (hummus and grilled vegetables and ‘supreme’)

ImageImageand this kind of antipasto spread…

ImageAfter leaving Newman, we backtracked north a short way to visit Karijini National Park, which I had heard many great things about. The weather put on a bit of a show for us, and we camped out there in the pouring rain. It was pretty cold and overcast the next morning (I actually wore leggings for the first time in who knows how long!) so we didn’t much feel like taking a swim which was a shame, because there were some gorgeous spots.

ImageImageImageWhat I found to be the most incredible aspects of Karijini were the rock walls and formations, which display stunning layers and patterns throughout them. They are very special and unique – I’ve really never seen anything quite like them before. 

ImageImageThe colour of the place was so rich, you can only imagine how bright it must be when the clouds clear and the sun in beaming down.

ImageImageImageImageNature, huh?

After Karijini, we headed west towards the coast, with our next main town to hit being Exmouth. Along the way, we stopped at a lookout which we discovered had been turned into an open memorial site for loved ones, with passers-by leaving a rock to commemorate them.

ImageI found this little one that might as well have been put here by me for my first dog – Tilly – who was a Blue Heeler (though passed away a few years earlier than this puppy.

ImageI also spied this little guy trying to blend in amongst the rocks. They are sooo quick, the way they dart over rocks and into tiny gaps is really quite amazing.

ImageHe was just the beginning of our creature spotting adventures for the day, we passed many more (particularly reptiles) along our travels.

ImageImageAnd the strangest creatures of all….

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Sort-of Sausage Rolls for my Nan

Yesterday we set off from Bundaberg and drove up to Agnes Waters on the coast.

We were going to stay on a property belonging to Billy’s second cousin, but it didn’t work out as the floods earlier this year had washed away the driveway and we couldn’t get our van onto the property, and we accidentally went onto the wrong property and got confronted by a scary dog so we decided to abort that mission. Instead we looked around the area during the day, and kept heading north towards Gladstone in the evening. The area we stayed in had no reception, so I wasn’t able to blog yesterday…ba bowwww.

My family had some sad news the other day (I found out yesterday) – my Great Nanna passed away in her sleep. She was in her nineties and was the last living great-grandparent of mine. When I was born, I had four great grandmothers and three great grandfathers. At a young age, I didn’t realise the significance of this, or how lucky I was to have so many generations of my family in my life – it was just normal. I remember being shocked to find school friends didn’t have great grandparents, some didn’t even have grandparents!

While I moved away from Perth, where Nanna Wilson lived, when I was about 11, I still have fond memories of her from throughout my early childhood. She was a tough lady, and one thing in particular I remember about her is that she was always looking after everyone (usually through the provision of food). It just wasn’t a special occasion without Nanna Wilson’s homemade sausage rolls or one of her jam and cream sponge cakes, or a pavlova. I also still have intricately patterned cardigans in a cupboard at my parents’ house that were knitted by her when I was a little one.

While none of this suits my present vegan lifestyle, I still enjoy the memory. As a tribute to my Nan, I wanted to enjoy some of the foods that I associated with her, but this was surprisingly difficult to do in the van, without an oven. In an attempt to enjoy some (vegan) sausage rolls, we bought a box from the Linda McCartney range and tried to cook them on the stovetop. I realised that this would not allow them to puff like a normal sausage roll, but still I tried, and they were still edible. We had some Bundaberg vegetables on the side.

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They didn’t turn out quite like sausage rolls, but it’s the thought that counts.

So here’s to my Nan, a strong and wonderful lady who will be missed greatly by all who knew her. X x

veganmofo