After a week in Sydney, we were ready to head north to warmer weather. We knew we were welcome in our Airbnb in New Farm but hadn’t quite decided when we’d get there so held off booking.
First stop Somersby..
We always love catching up with Martin & Michelle, long-time friends from Mosman days – they are such an inspiration to us. They were in a similar predicament to us at the end of March when Australia was starting to go into lock down – they had sold their house and had nowhere to go. The big difference is that they have three children to house and support and a church to run. As Michelle said, she felt like Mary & Joseph – there was no room at the inn. As God does, He provided in spades and they are on a large property in Somersby, near Gosford, with room for their daughter’s horse.
We spent a relaxing timing sitting in the sunshine and having a good chat before joining two of their daughters for a BBQ lunch. Michelle is an amazing cook! All too soon, it was time to leave to head to our hotel in Newcastle.
On the harbour in Newcastle ….
Our evening stroll along the harbour front was very relaxing and the sunset was lovely – even if over the industrial part of town. There wasn’t much open – not sure whether it was due to Monday night or COVID – but given our big lunch, we were happy to buy some yogurt and fruit and munch it in the room.
Having been challenged by a few hills around the harbour in Sydney, it was exhilarating to have a faster hit out along the boardwalk and the out on the breakwater. There were plenty of people doing their morning exercise. Breakfast was a bacon & egg roll, washed down by a strong coffee at a little kiosk just down from the hotel. The staff there were super friendly and it was relaxing sitting on the wall alongside the water.
Relaxing in paradise
Before heading back to Brisbane, we thought we’d spoil ourselves with a piece of luxury. We searched for something nice, but everything we liked seemed to be full. School holidays and everyone making the most of the new found freedom. We were so glad to have held off on booking anything – at the very last minute, we discovered a chalet set right in the middle of the bush.
On arrival, we were greeted by Karissa, one of the very friendly owners and a magnificent view of the sunset over Mt Warning. It was amazing to see how the mountain changed during our short stay.
The chalet was so much better than we could have imagined. At 120 square metres, it was more than double the size of where we’d been locked down in Brisbane for 3 months. It was totally private, with a fully equipped kitchen and huge decks. There was no internet, phone or TV (except to watch DVDs). And it had a spa bath – something Glenda has been wanting for months!
We did absolutely nothing – very unusual for us! We just read, bathed, talked, bathed, ate, bathed and sat watching the changing light and birds in the trees for ages. We did have a few long chats to Karissa and her husband, Pete – the friendly couple that have owned Ecoasis for the last 5 years.
We decided to make our way back to Brisbane a little earlier than planned to get in before the border opened to people from the other states. And judging by the queues that have been building since, we seem to have made the right decision. We had our border pass visible in the windscreen and we had to slow down as there was only one lane, but the police did not stop us or anyone around us.
Back on the river
It was good to get back to our little place on the river to catch our breath. Now for some work and planning before the next adventure.