SUNDAY JULY 19 BROKEN HILL
The usual start to the day.
Late morning, we went to the Plaza shopping centre. John wanted to fill some scripts at the chemist and needed to do this in person, because it was not long since they were filled at home. He wanted to ensure he had a good supply before we headed further north. Of course, the chemist was closed.
I bought food for tonight’s tea as daughter was coming again. I had originally thought to make a chicken Caesar salad, but decided against that. It was too cold to eat outside on the larger table, and there is not enough room on the inside dinette table to put a platter of salad for diners to help themselves. Also, I would have to buy a platter for the purpose. All too hard. I bought strips of pork belly rashers instead, to make sticky pork ribs, a favourite of ours. Also bought some mince, to make us hamburgers tomorrow night, and a good bottle of Sauv Blanc.
I directed John to the hardware store – he couldn’t remember from last time – then it was back to Bus.
As he did yesterday, John went off to do repairs at daughter’s, and I stayed with dog at the park.
We walked around it twice, looking and the variety of rigs, and watching newcomers roll in. The park was close to full. It has a real variety of sites, some with a surface of loose wood chips, some gravel, some cement. Obviously, grass is not a viable option in a place as dry as this. Daughter had told us that the town’s drinking water supply was so low that it would run out later this year. She didn’t know what would happen then. After our first cup of chlorinated tea, at her place on Friday, I had gotten out our water filter jug and set it up in Bus. It took away some of the chlorine taste from the water, but it still wasn’t great.
Spacious, private site
John, accidentally but fortunately, had found out from daughter that she no longer eats pork. He phoned me immediately. Luckily I had the mince, and it was determined that, yes, she would eat spag bol. So, change of meal plan. John and I would be eating pork rashers for a couple of days, as I had no room for them in the freezebox.
I phoned Warrawong on Darling, our next planned destination and booked us in for a couple of nights. It would be R & R after the tensions of family relations. I wanted to make sure we had a prime site with a direct view over the billabong there. The person who answered sounded young and British and told me in an offhand way there was no need to book as she was sure there would be a site somewhere. This was not quite what I was after. My heart sank at the thought that this place might now be using backpackers to run it – in our experiences, unless firmly directed by a manager, they were often not associated with high standards. We had often been told in our working travels that this was why many places preferred grey nomads as seasonal workers.
John came back about 3.30pm – earlier than I’d expected. He was exhausted, as sometimes happens to him after not much effort at all. He needed to sleep. Daughter was going to an art exhibition of the 2014 Archibald Prize paintings, that was on in town, and wanted him to go with her. But he was too tired. I don’t think she really understands how limited his capacities are, these days.
John had his sleep. I cooked.
Daughter arrived a bit after 6pm. She was not happy and did not want to talk about anything, so John and I conversed around her. I offered yoghurt for dessert but she did not want any of that – or any wine. Fine – all the more for us. We were planning to watch Master Chef so daughter left straight away. She did not want to stay and watch the program with us, as she dislikes one of the judges. Can’t say it was a pleasant visit.
The TV program was enjoyable – and so was the bottle of wine: a quality above our usual cheaper standards.
Another really cold night.