Second Stop: Anna Bay

6 Nov

We are now in a lovely backpackers camping site called Melaleuca Backpackers, in Anna Bay, near Nelson Bay. (Lots of Bays here actually). They have a pet kangaroo called Georgie who ate from our hands. It pitter-pattered again so we’ll sleep in the car, in our lovely foam-cut-to-size at the back of the station wagon. Right now, we’re sitting in the backpacker’s lounge, which is warm and cosy, fitted with a kitchen and games, couches and books and colourful accents. The mood is tranquil. I’ve drunk three cups of green tea and O. is reading. Let the camping begin!

We woke up in a car full of sunshine. We carefully selected our variety-pack cereal for breakfast (O. took the Coco Pops, of course) and went to see the friendly manager, Michelle. She had a baby sugar glider down her shirt, as you do when you work for an animal rescue shelter. There was a kookaburra with a broken leg sitting on the desk next to her. She reminded me of Noni Hazelhurst, with a really friendly, open face and that matter-of-fact way of speaking.

She told us that as we walk to One Mile Beach, we should look up in the trees for koalas. We took her advice very seriously and tripped over branches like fools, our eyes on the treetops, desperately searching for a grey furry looking thing. Then…we spotted one! (Well, O. actually spotted it but whatever). There it was, in the wild! It was kind of stretching and having a yawn, then it went back to dreamland, where it remains for 22 hours a day. Amazing!!! And you know how when you see an animal in real life, it doesn’t usually look like it’s stuffed animal counterpart? Well, a koala looks exactly like it’s stuffed counterpart!  So cute!!!

We walked down to One Mile Beach, an amazing stretch of white sand, surfers dotting the waves. If you walk along the beach, you get to another called Samurai Beach, which is ‘clothing optional’. We stayed for a while, eliminating tan lines and such, before heading back to the car for the drive to Myall Lakes. Lakes Way is a really picturesque drive, through forests, passing huge rivers. O. nearly had an accident searching for more koalas along the way.

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