After a fantastic night’s sleep, we discovered that Trixie had got himself into the tissue box and stuffed tissues under his arms. Luckily we are able to eat outside as he placed himself right in the middle of the inside table. The girls were very careful all day not to knock the table. Once up, we had a pancake breakfast cooked on the BBQ and decided that we should head into town to suss it out and decide what we are going to do for the next 2 days. We drove around and really liked the feel of Esperance. We have heard many people comment on it whilst we have been travelling, and everyone has said how lovely it is and that we must explore it. It really is lovely – everyone smiles, the town feels new and clean and it has a really nice feel to it. We are probably the most seasoned of travellers in our caravan park – I have drawn this assumption from the fact that 90% of the vans here are all Britz or Apollo campervans, who have hired vans for their summer holiday and travelling around Oz, no-one else here tonight has a proper caravan like us.
We went to a café called ‘Onshore Cafe’ for a coffee and milkshake, (the Beanhunter app came up trumps again) and we started talking to a local lady who gave us lots of tips of where to go in Esperance and also which beaches are the best if we want to go driving on the beach for the first time. I then heard her talking to her friend about a local art gallery, and so I asked her where it was as we are looking for that ‘magical’ piece of art for our house. So after the coffee, we ventured down to the gallery and Lach jumped out, as it was a small gallery and I think both of us assumed wouldn’t be worthwhile getting the girls out of the car. Lach returned to the car with a smile on his face and said “I think you should go and have a look”, so in I went without any word from Lach about what I was looking for. The art in there is amazing and all by a local artist called ‘Tammy Andrews’, both Lach and I fell in love with the same piece to go in our bedroom. All of the art had a little panel next to it telling the story of the art, and they were all local stories about local people and local places. An amazing gallery. We didn’t buy the art, but we also haven’t left Esperance yet 🙂
The girls didn’t need a sleep today, so we headed back to the caravan for lunch and then packed our bags to head out to the Best Beach in Esperance – Twilight Beach – we had high expectations of this beach as Esperance beaches are meant to have some of the best beaches in the world. We drove only 2km out of town and immediately we were surrounded by rugged bush, granite rocks, turquoise seas and pristine white sand. We passed three beaches before we arrived at Twilight Beach (all of which to me were picture perfect – how could Twilight Beach be any better?) – suddenly we arrived and voila……
I now knew why Twilight was THE beach. The beach was at least 3x the length of Bondi Beach, and there were maybe 4-5 families who were going to be sharing this magnificent beach with us – this was busy by Esperance standards. The sun was out and we were excited about spending our first proper afternoon on the beach since leaving. We set up out sunshade and the girls immediately ran down to the water and started to fill up buckets and run back and forth – they were in their element.
Lach and I looked out to sea at an amazing granite rock structure, with a massive hole in the middle, and noticed that people had swum out and climbed it – Challenge Accepted – Lach was off. It was about 200m out from the shoreline, but shallow enough for him to walk all the way out. The girls and I watched whilst Lach walked into the water (I was sure it was too cold for me and the girls) and then he climbed and looked like an ant on the top. I bet the views were fantastic and Lach confirmed that they were spectacular (shame he didn’t take the camera with him in the waterproof case – next time he says).
When Lach returned in true “dad on the beach playing with young children attitude” he dived into digging a big hole for the girls so that the waves filled it rather than them filling buckets to fill it (Ava was getting frustrated that the water would disappear by the time she was back with bucket number 2). I walked out to test the water temperature and was surprised that I managed to actually walk straight in (I am a fair weather swimmer!!) it did help that I could l walk out a long way and still be waist deep – no sudden dunking risk. When I walked back in I saw Lach covering himself with wet sand – head to toe – it was a sight and the girls loved it. He then started covering them with sand too (although he did see sense and didn’t put it on their hair like he had his own) and said it was bird poo going splat on them. Watching them playing like this was beautiful.
Lach and I then had a play with our bat and ball, as we didn’t need to worry about other beach goers and knocking them out with flying balls – both of us had holes in our rackets, but it was great fun and playing this on the beach as it is something Lach has never done, and I certainly haven’t done it for at least 10 years.
We left the beach at around 230pm and headed to the butcher to order some meat for the next few weeks so he could cryo-vac them whilst we took the girls off for a well-deserved ice-cream – not sure who enjoyed theirs more, Lach or the girls. The freezer is nearly empty and with Christmas only 6 days away and then being back on the Nullabor we need to stock up.
Whilst the girls played and did some craft, and I was tidying up and putting all the beach stuff away, I turned on the caravan music system (first time we have used it) and played Michael Bublé’s Christmas album through both the inside and outside speakers – fantastic surround sound. Luckily we are facing away from all other caravans in the park and so no-one else needed to share in my xmas spirit. It definitely put a magical feeling in the air.
Lach cooked a fantastic dinner of chicken schnitzel – the girls compared it to Lacey’s mums one (that’s you Bec) and it got the thumbs up. This was followed by a play in the playground and bed. I read the girls our new book – ‘Where’s Stripey?’ By Wendy Binks – which we bought in Denmark and the girls loved it and all the silly names of animals and places. Brilliant series of children books based on Emu’s where Wendy is both the author and artist based in Fremantle, WA.
The weather today has been one of the best so far this holiday, and even though we are sitting outside with all of our layers on after the girls have gone to bed, the wind has gone – please stay away Mr Wind.
Tomorrow we have a very special day planned……you’ll need to read tomorrows post to find out what it is…