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Home Sweet Home

The final installment

semi-overcast 20 °C
View Bringin' it home on Phil Croot's travel map.

After two very long days of driving I arrived back at Gidgegannup around 4pm on Tuesday. This included an 18 hour day across the Nullarbor - from Streaky Bay to Norseman, about 1400km. While this was hard driving, it was fueled by the strong desire to get back to my beautiful family, and it was a fantastic feeling driving through our gate and down our winding gravel road to meet a very welcoming wife and boys. Driving back through the wheatbelt was impressive for all the green that is about. So glad that we have had a good winter.
Canola fields east of Merredin

Canola fields east of Merredin


The only real hitch during the trip was a slow leak in one of the caravan tyres, which meant stopping and putting a bit of air in every 200km or so, until I was able to have it repaired at Southern Cross.
Frank, the wheel wiz from the land of the long white cloud

Frank, the wheel wiz from the land of the long white cloud


With the hindsight of a few days rest, the drive home was not as difficult as I anticipated, although the 18 hour day on the Nullarbor did push my endurance to the limit. I did not see a single kangaroo in my night stint, and considering the number of dead carcasses on the side of the road, this was very fortunate.
Leaving Streaky Bay early in the morning supplied the most inspirational moment of the drive. With the rising sun breaking through patches of fog, the vista of rolling green wheat fields was achingly beautiful. I was listening to a couple of worship CDs (Chris Tomlin), and was moved to tears as I sensed the presence of God all around me. I feel very strongly that the natural world is a significant source of nourishment for our spirit, and it is important that we don't allow ourselves to be disconnected from these places for too long. Of course, God is everywhere, but I think we have to work much harder to see Him/Her in a world constructed of glass, cement and bitumen.

The only missing piece in the blog is the stretch we drove between Sydney and the Gold Coast. We really enjoyed the North Coast of NSW, and highlights included a really great caravan park at Emerald Beach, Coffs Harbour, where we also visited the Big Banana. Further north, Ballina had a wonderful river foreshore, where you could walk/ride for a few kms right to the ocean, out onto the groin to watch the surfers weaving their magic up close on outstanding waves. It was amazing to drive across bridges spanning massive rivers every 100kms or so, there is just so much more water in these areas than we are used to in the West. We drove through Byron Bay on the way to Tweed Heads, but it was a sunny Sunday afternoon and the town was absolutely packed and very difficult to negotiate with a caravan in tow. Looked likes a great little town with a strong alternative culture, but we will have to see it in more detail next trip!
The Big Banana

The Big Banana

Frozen bananas dipped in chocolate

Frozen bananas dipped in chocolate

Phruity Phil

Phruity Phil

Lunch at Port Macquarie

Lunch at Port Macquarie

Emerald Beach, near Coffs

Emerald Beach, near Coffs

Beautiful beaches at Forster-Tuncurry

Beautiful beaches at Forster-Tuncurry

Speaking of the next trip... we are starting to plan for doing the top end by 2014. This will probably be the last chance we have for a big trip with the boys, before TEE studies set in. We loved so much about the chance to travel in the caravan as a family, and would recommend the experience to anyone. The Windsor was just about perfect for what we needed, so the plan is to keep it and start saving travel money all over again! I just need to find a job sometime soon...

Posted by Phil Croot 18:44

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Comments

WELCOME HOME!!!

What a wonderful blog. Thanks for letting us in on the journey with you.

I spent several seconds wondering why Phil was wearing such a bizarro creature from the black lagoon glove and Angela was letting him put his hand on her shoulder (the last photo). Doh!

Hope to see you soon.
G

by Gracious GG

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