Friday 3rd August 2012
Day 76 - Dicky Beach to Southport - 169kms.

It was another cool night but still cool with a minimum of 8.3°. We awoke around 6:00am, and laid in bed watching Sunrise, then I got up and started packing up. We were inno hurry to leave, as we didn't want to be caught in the Brisbane peak hour traffic, so we finally left at 9:32am after talking to Ray and another guy who wanted to know about the Satellite TV (VAST). It was only only 170kms today, so we just sat in the left lane on the Bruce hwy and kept up with the flow. The traffic was flowing well with no holdups the whole way, we did stop at one service centre for a smoko and I had forgot to lock one of the outside compartments, but it wasn't a drama as it has 2 locks. We arrived at Broadwater Tourist Park at 11:52am andspoke to Angie on reception. Our site 88 was waiting for us.
Last year and the 2 years before that we were on site 69, which was about 6 sites from the beach. Before we left last year, we checked out other sites that were better located or closer to the beach without being on waterfront sites, as you pay an extra premium and site 88 was the winner. We checked at the Office and it was available for our time period, but you can't book it until 1st Novemeber, this gives the previous occupants time to rebook if they want too. SO at 7:30am 1st November, I rang the Office and you wouldn't believe it the phones were experiencing a major problem, as it turned out, the office couldn't receive any incoming calls, but could make outgoing calls, so I send them an email to ring me and within 15 minutes they were on the phone to me and I was able to book site 88 for 50 nights, 3 nights less than normal, but we will suffer with 50 nights. Jumping to the present, I was talking to a couple of our fellow caravanners who come here each year and they all commented on the phone hassles on 1st November. I said did you email them and none of them thought to do that, so they stayed on their previous sites. Some of them would have tried to move sites if they could.

We checked in with Angie in reception (she had previously sent me an email which contained the following line "Don't drive faster than your guardian angel can fly", which I thought was a beautiful comment). It took all afternoon to setup camp, as we are here for 50 nights, we put the awning out, the grass floor on top of the dirt, the 2 wall ends and the side shade as well as the centipede and all the solar lights. By days end, I was rooted, that's a technical term meaning knackered.
Dinner was leftover casserole, something easy to heat up without to much trouble. Naturally, I was in bed very early.
That's right, I almost forgot, Jay our eldest son wrang during the arvo and said that he was up for a ride at 7am tomorrow, I did ring him back and we decided to postpone that ride to a more human time, when the sun has warmed up the earth. It is still very cold in the mornings.

Tomorrow, it is Jay's 31st Birthday. Shit, Marg is getting old.

Approaching the Gateway Bridge.

Over the Gateway Bridge and heading to the Gold Coast.

View through Marg's bedroom window.

Saturday 4th August 2012
Day 77 - Jay's 31st Birthday.

Happy 31st Birthday, Jay, we love you heaps!

I was glad that Jay and I decided not to ride this morning, as I slept in until 7:45am, so I must have been buggered, well I was. BUT it is still bloody COLD first thing, in the morning and I left my winter riding gear at home.
About mid morning, Luke and Jodi came to visit, it was great seeing them, as it is anytime that you meet up with your family, especially ones that you love heaps. While they were with us, we rang Jay to organise tonight's birthday going out for dinner. It was all arranged that we would go to the Logan Sizzler restaurant, we had to meet at Luke's and he would drive Marg and I and Jodi. After lunch when Luke and Jodi had gone, I was able to go for a ride out to the Gold Coast Seaway, this is my normal ride just on 20kms round trip.

I rode along the shared paths from our CP, over the Nerang River bridge, past the Southport YC, past Seaworld and onto the spit and then along the seawall to the end. On the way back, I checked out the Osprey's nest at the Nerang River bridge and I noticed that the council has moved their pole which houses their nest about 20 meters from their original position, as the link says "The council shifted them due to the construction of the Gold Coast light Rail project". The ride was about 20kms in total.

After my ride, I showered and we changed ready for tonight's dinner and headed off to Luke's, meeting at his place at 4:15pm and then Luke drove us to Sizzlers, as we were meeting up with Jay and Bec at Sizzlers at 5pm, to beat the crowd. We got to Lukes a few minutes late, but no drama, only that Jodi won't be joining us as she has come down with a migraine, bugger. So the three of us drove in Lukey's red terror (HSV Clubby) to Logan about 25 minutes north towards Brissy. As we were driving, Jay phoned to warn us of a police radar but we had already past it, under the speed limit. We arrived at the Logan Hyperdome, where Sizzler is just one of many eateries. Naturally, Jay and Bec were a few minutes late, I don't think Jay has ever been early, he is his mother's son, Luke takes after me, lucky bugger. There were probably 20 people in front of us in the queue, so we only waited a couple of minutes to be seated. We enjoy Sizzlers, I am a bit partial to chocolate ice cream and sprinkles, I think that I had one helping or was that 4. Must be a senior's moment, I think it was one. We all enjoyed our meals and when we left, probably just after 6pm, Marg couldn't believe how long the queue was, at least a hundred people in the queue, the place was chockers. Luke drove us back to his place and we picked up the mighty Navara and on our way back to camp, we called into Jay and Bec's home and Jay showed me his latest purchases (Batman figurines), I wonder where he gets that collecting bug from, not me who just happens to collect Toy cars and also ROCKS.

Tomorrow, we are studing the Art of Relaxation.

My usual resting spot at the end of the seawall.

The Opsrey's recently moved nest.

The newly constructed base for their nest.

Site 88 - Our camp.

Saturday night - Stairway to the moon.

The view from our site.

Sunday 5th August 2012
Day 78 - Fixing the annex flooring.

We slept in until 7:30am, I am getting used to this. We are both using our sleepingbags, due to the cold.
The only problem with our site is the dirt under the awning, there is no grass only black powdery dirt, so we need to do something. We have our mesh flooring down, but the dirt comes through it, so we went looking for a thin rubber mat about 5meters x 2 meters. First call was Bunnings, nothing suitable, but Marg did find some heavt duty tarps, so we bought those, but I thought that they would be slippery. SO back to camp, on the internet, found a Clark Rubber store and drove there, still nothing suitable, back home again, found Foam and Matting, in the Spotlight complex, drove there, they had marine carpet, but I wasn't prepared to pay $200, so we gave it a miss. While here, we visited Anaconda, but no good. We were so close to Spotlight, that Marg just had to go and check out Spotlight, luckily, she didn't buy anything.

Back at camp for lunch, Luke rings and asks us for dinner, naturally we accepted. During the arvo, we completely clear out everything in the annex and put the tarps down and then the mesh flooring over the top and peg it down. It all works great, so we pack everything back in the annex.
We arrive at Luke and Jodi's about 5pm for nachos. They were YUMMA, better than Margs. We were home about 8pm and watched the Olympics. How good was Usian Bolt's heat, he is so good.

No Photos taken today.

Monday 6th August 2012
Day 79 - Relaxing at Southport.

Still very cool overnight and we are both using our sleepingbags.
Marg and I walked the 10 meters to the beach about 8am and the view was magic, the Broadwater was as flat as a mill pond. George and his mates were there to welcome us here. Thanks George. This morning all that was planned was, I would go for a ride and Marg would do whatever she wants to do. I decided to ride to Runaway Bay marina about 10km north of here and then come back and continue past the CP on to the Gold Coast seawall about 40kms all up. I left camp about 9am and headed along the shared path towards Runaway Bay. As usual I kept riding up each street heading towards the Broadwater and saw some magic, as in bloody dear houses. Next time I go there, I will take a photo or two, if they don't lock me up for casing their property. At Runaway Bay marina, I noticed that there were plenty of boats for sale. I then rode back along the path, past our CP and continued onto the seaway, over the Nerang River bridge, past the Southport YC, past Seaworld and finally arrived at the seaway. I sat on the rocks at the end and ate my banana, while I took a couple of photos, then rode back to camp. It was a great day for a ride.
Latest riding update at Southport: Today was my 2nd ride here and I rode 40kms, bringing my total here to 60kms or 3,563km so far this year.
We had lunch at camp and then drove to South Park (Southport Park) for a coffee at Michels, not as good as Rachels and then did some food shopping.

For a few hours this arvo, we took our chairs to the beach and while Marg played on her iPad, I updated the website. It was just beautiful, sitting in the shade looking out over the Broadwater, just beautiful.
Dinner was egg and bacon pie and we watched the Olympics.

Tomorrow, it's Bingo at our club (Southport Workers Club).

George and his mates were there to welcome us.

George and his mates were there to welcome us.

Just lovely.

Looking across the Broadwater towards Surfers.

Looking across the Broadwater towards the Seaway.

At Runaway Bay marina.

George being a smartarse.

Who's a pretty boy?

George and his new best friends - 3 crows.

Sitting on the beach overlooking the Broadway. It was magic.

Marg doing it really tough!!

Some of the views from our chairs. Just beautiful.

Tuesday 7th August 2012
Day 80 - Bingo at our club.

Not as cool overnight, but we still used our sleepingbags and were on the warm side, but couldn't be bothered to kick them off and put on our blankets. We also didn't sleep well as we laid in bed last night and watched Tom Slingsby win his Gold medal in the yachting Laser class, similiar style to myself in my youth. I have been known to win the occassional Aust Title. So we went to sleep late and didn't sleep that flash. We were awake about 6:30am and laid in bed watching Sunrise.
We were in no hurry this morning, as it was Bingo at our club (Southport Workers Club) and it doesn't open until 10am, SO we left camp at 9:50am and drove there. We waited at the main door with 20 odd old ladies, when the doors opened it was every man or old lady for themselves. I was a gentleman and stood back and watched. We followed the crowd to the Bingo room and purchased our tickets (2 sets for $42). I won the 2nd game brilliantly and collected $10, that was our winnings for the morning, SO we lost $32. Again on the $500 game, I needed 61 for about 10 calls, but some old lady beat me. Bastard!! Bingo started at 10:30am and finished about 12:30pm, we were back at camp by 1pm eating lunch.
After lunch I rode out to the seawall and then back past camp upto Angler's Paradise, a couple of kilometers before Runaway Bay.
Latest riding update at Southport: Today was my 3rd ride here and I rode 28kms, bringing my total here to 88kms or 3,591km so far this year.

The remainder of the arvo was spent sitting in our chairs, in the sun and then shade, relaxing.
Dinner will be pies followed by watching the Olympics, but not a late night.

Tomorrow there is nothing planned apart from a bike ride, we may walk upto Aus Fair.

The Ancient Mariner returns, buzzed by jet skis.

The end of the seawall was very crowded today.

Looking from the spit towards Seaworld.

This Offshore Racer was parked at Southport YC.

George,just looking over me from above. thanks George.

The Jet Boat was having a ball.

Wednesday 8th August 2012
Day 81 - Drove to Lismore.

I was knackered last night, so Marg tells me that I was asleep before 8pm and awoke about 6am, so that was a good night's sleep.
Once we were up, we decided that we would walk upto Australia Fair and check it out, BUT that all changed when Luke rang and asked if we could pick up our granddaughter from her nanna in Lismore, due to circumstances beyond anyone's control, we agreed to do it. We had to drive to Luke's to pick the child seat and then we headed the 145kms to Lismore arrived about 12:15pm, picked up our granddaughter, stopped at Maccas for lunch, as one does. We arrived back at Lukes about 2:45pm, and finally got back to camp about 3;30pm.
Guess what, we are feeling knackered again, so probably another early night.
Dinner is just sangas tonight and may watch the Olympics, but not for long.

Tomorrow there is nothing planned apart from a bike ride, we may walk upto Aus Fair. Similar to today. we hope.

This is what we woke up too this morning.

I assume that it is very similair in Melbourne.

This is why we love staying at Broadwater Tourist Park.

Thursday 9th August 2012
Day 82 - Big Bike ride and dinner at our club.

We sleep well and awoke around 7am and laid in bed and watched Sunrise.
Today I planned to do my big ride and record it using Harry Hema. About 9am, I changed into my cycling outfit and headed off, Marg was more than happy just to stay at camp and do whatever she wanted too.

I started from the Broadwater Tourist park and head north along the bike path until Angler's Paradise (about 4kms) where I then ride on the road bike lane to Runaway Bay Marina for another 3 kms. This is my turnaround spot and on the way south, I then keep riding up most of the streets towards the Broadwater, to check out the shacks and any yachts that I can see.
Back at Angler's Paradise, I am back on the shared path heading towards Biggera Waters, then following the path all the way back to Loder Creek, which is where our Caravan Park is located. Over the bridge past the caravan park entrance, so far ridden 24.5kms. Now I head through the Broadwater Parklands where the Gold Coast Council has spent million of dollars on the park which stretches to the Nerang River bridge (3.9kms from camp) and it certainly shows. There are usually people everywhere and especially when I go past the various play areas, rock pools etc, there are plenty of toddlers about. So you just slow down and keep an eye out looking for anyone and everyone. Once past the play areas, it is easy riding, where you take in the vistas, they are beautiful. As you approach the Nerang River bridge, you look up to see if the ospreys are in their nest. At the bridge you can ride over the shared path or the bike lane on the Gold Coast hwy, I stick to the shared path. No cars. Over the bridge, turn left and along the shared path, upto and past the Southport Yacht Club, where I then ride along the road on the bike lane the whole way to the spit, past the Mariner's Cove, the Marina Mirage, the Palazzo Versace, the Sheraton Mirage, the Gold Coast Fish Co-Op, past Seaworld and Seaworld Resort and eventually arriving at the seaway (5.8kms from the Bridge). I ride out to the end of the spit or seawall and sit down there and take in the views, they are magic. North is Stradbroke Island, South is the highrise of Surfers and beyond and West is the Gold Coast hinterland. From here it is back to the caravan park, following the same path.
The total of this route is approx 48kms.

While I was out at the spit, I saw a movie crew, so me by a sticky beak, I rode over to check it out and when there was a break I asked one of the crew and found out that they are making an ad for BCF. It should be on TV in a couple of weeks. They had created a camping site under the trees, it looked good.

After I showered, Marg and I drove upto Australia Fair, to check it out and do some food shopping. Back at camp, we changed and left for our 'club' at 4:20pm for pokies and then dinner. While Marg played the pokies, I had taken my laptop with me and sat in front of the TV watching the Olympic highlights. About 5:40pm, I went and got Marg and we went and had dinner. Marg had Lamb Shanks and vegies, while I had both the roasts (beef and pork) with vegies and a few chilled refreshers. Dinner was YUMMA. The crowd was very light, so we will go to the club every Thursday night for pokies and dinner. Oh yeah, Marg won a $50 jackpot, I didn't get any of it, but that's pretty normal. What's that saying, "What's hers is hers and what's mine is hers".
At camp we watched the Olympics.

Tomorrow Marg is going back to the Pokies and I will probably go for a ride.

The Northern section - Runaway Bay to Angler's Paradise.

The Middle section - Angler's Paradise to Labrador.

The Southern section - Labrador to Main Beach.

One of the many nice shacks that I saw.

Some of the boats moored at your backdoor.

Shared path at Biggera Waters heading South.

Check out the view, Surfers in the distance.

Shared park through the Broadwater Parklands opposite Australia Fair.

Shared park through the Broadwater Parklands away from the crowds.

I crossed the Nerang River bridge on the shared path,
not using the bike lane on the road. Too many cars.

Heading along the shared path towards the Southport Yacht Club.

Approaching Mariner's Cove on the bike lane.

Approaching Seaworld on the bike lane.

Approaching the car park at the Spit.

The Gold Coast Seaway Tower.

At the end of the spit looking back towards the shore.

Looking from the Spit area back towards Southport YC and the Nerang River bridge.

Looking form the spit across the Broadwater to our camp site. Just to the right of the cabins.

The making of a BCF TV Ad.

The making of a BCF TV Ad.

The making of a BCF TV Ad.

*2012 - Index page*

Relaxing at Broadwater TP.