Day one of my beach ‘crawl’ along the beaches around the area. I headed up to Red Rock, the northernmost point of the region. A pretty little place with a long desolate beach that proved too rough for a swim. I waded in up to my knees – as far as I dared to go. I claim myself as a pretty strong swimmer, but I know better than to venture into a wild surf on an unpatrolled beach. Instead, I scoured the sand for more items to add to my ‘rubbish collection’ for my artist friend.
I discovered an enticing inlet with a shady grassed area for relaxing on my beach chair and enjoyed my pre packed lunch (all part of my new budget lifestyle.) A cooling swim in the inlet where I had to keep my thongs on to get in – oyster shells everywhere – and a strong undercurrent had me struggling back to shore.
No more than ten minutes exposed to the sun and I am sunburnt! Hmmm, have to get better at this beach life. A quick shower and a walk to my first yoga class at the local community hall. I felt invigorated, the class was enjoyable and not too taxing. Off to the tavern across from my housesit for their Monday night special – rissoles and mash. One of my favourite meals, I was so looking forward to it. You guessed it – they’d run out by the time I got there! An overcooked chicken schnitzel was no substitute.
The following morning was spent in a local cafe with a lovely group of ladies – all friends of my housesit host – who had invited me to join them. Morning tea stretched through till after lunch for a few of us, they were an interesting bunch. One of them was a massage therapist – we made a deal for a copy of my book for a discounted massage, and set an appointment. Thankfully the day was a little overcast, so I took a break from my planned beach crawl to relieve my sunburnt chest.
I just had to take a drive out to the highway to take a couple of photographs at the abandoned old Indian marketplace – I couldn’t resist:
Another yoga class the following morning and I have renewed energy. Hopefully, I’m inspired enough to continue with these yoga sessions until they form a habit. However, the teacher is away for the next week. My lunch ladies informed me of another yoga class at the local sex club. (Oops – that’s C-ex Club, the local bowls club). Now that could have been an interesting class to attend!
My one hour massage was divine! And painful! Almost every muscle in my body was tender – I really do need to do something about my fitness, I realise. Meant to be quietly relaxing with scented oils burning and ‘massage’ music, it was far from that. We talked non stop through the whole ordeal!
Anna and I had so much to say that I stayed on for another hour or so just chit-chatting over a coffee. She’s a fellow traveller, so we had lots to tell each other. We agreed to take a day trip to the beautiful town of Bellingen the following week.
I headed up to beach number two on my beach crawl – Corindi. First stop though was The Amble Inn for a light lunch – my 9am massage had taken me through to after midday! I was pleasantly surprised by this very welcoming tavern with it’s Australian bushman’s memorabilia displayed throughout.
Corindi is another of the coast’s beautiful unspoilt beaches, accessed through a perfectly located caravan and camping ground. Another group of council men all stopped for lunch under the trees – everytime I head to a beach ’round here, they all seem to be having a lunch break!
Another surf too wild and woolly to venture in alone – when am I going to get a proper swim? Probably not till I return to the patrolled beach at Woolgoolga would be the sensible conclusion, I tell myself. A lone woman swimming in a rough surf on a deserted unpatrolled beach is a disaster waiting to happen – one I don’t wish to be a part of. Again, I venture in just up to my knees and let the waves break over me – at least I’m absorbing some of those lovely positive ions from the sea air.
I kept my eyes peeled on the walk back up the hill, for more objects for my ‘art rubbish collection’ – I added a bright orange work boot protector to my ecclectic gathering. My artist friend is going to be so impressed by my diligence!
Another hour or so laying under a shady tree reading my book whiled away the rest of the afternoon.
Phew, this housesitting role is exhausting!