Tuesday, 27 February 2007

Shuffle off to Busselton

Saturday morning we headed off to Busselton stopping along the way at the Margaret River Cheese Company and the Regional Wine Centre.

As we drove along we noticed the temperature outside was steadily rising. By the time we got settled in to our new temporary home the mercury had risen quite considerably and since we were camped on the foreshore we were tempted to spend the rest of the day at the beach but decided instead to drive into the town center to have a look around.

We hadn't really driven very far, but by the time dinnertime rolled around we were feeling lazy (mostly due to the heat) and decided against cooking. Mike fancied pizza and as we passed the pizza shop the aromas wafting out of the door were enough to convince us to go in. They had a special running and we bought two medium pizzas for under $20. Not bad considering it fed us for two evenings. Not wanting to leave Maggie in a hot car while we ate, we brought the pizza back to the caravan park and enjoyed some with a bottle of wine and then set out for the drive in movie theater which was just down the road.

We saw a double feature, the first was an animated film whose title I forget (about a bear being released back into the woods) which was surprisingly entertaining. The second was "The Pursuit of Happiness" starring Wil Smith, also very enjoyable. Even Maggie enjoyed himself, and was given a doggie biscuit to snack on during the movie by the ticket seller at the gate.

Bussleton's main attraction is the 2 kilometre long jetty which we visited he following morning in an effort to get a head start on the heat of the day. It is the longest wooden jetty in the Southern Hemisphere (the longest being in England). They began building it in 1865 and it took 95 years to complete. It served over a century as a working port (until 1972) after which maintenance stopped and the jetty began to deteriorate.

Then in 1978 cyclone Alby destroyed a significant part of the jetty and the government decided to demolish it. The town of Busselton banded together to save the jetty raising in excess of 9 million dollars. As we walked along the jetty we could see how important the jetty was to the locals. There were plaques honoring the deceased of the town and even the guide at the underwater observatory at the end of the pier mentioned that she had her first kiss on the jetty.

The underwater observatory at the end of the pier allows visitors to descend 8 metres below sea level. We saw coral, schools of fish as well as other sea creatures (including a couple of divers who wandered through). It was really special and well worth the 4 kilometre walk. There was a tram that crosses the jetty but this was not in operation. Additional restoration of the jetty is planned and the beginning of more works evident, so I assume that the tram will run again at some point.

After the jetty we decided to take a drive inland (in the nice air conditioned car - it was starting to get hot out!). Along the way we stopped at "Gnome Village" where there are hundreds of gnomes hailing from all over the world.

The following morning had us heading to Mandurah...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi Guys,

Wow - you just wait! I am going to do up my garden just like that - with all the Gnomes!! lol

You look like you are having a ball! I will call you guys tonight - missing you heaps... and you are both looking SO SKINNY!!! must be all that fresh air :)

Anyway - I will get back to my work... am counting down the days till you guys return - even though I dont have a date yet :) Well I CAN count the days down to "somebody's" birthday in a couple of days...

Ok - I'm really leaving now - missing you... heaps and heaps

Lots of love - Laura, Phil and Lyla

Nanook says "WOOF!" to Maggie