Saturday, 28 May 2016

Half-lap Day 25: Alice Springs

Millie was the first one awake and she got up and went out of the tent and got herself some breakfast (dry cereal, as she couldn’t get into the car to get the milk out of the fridge). I had a little bit of a sleep in – I was still up before 8 but it was the latest I’ve stayed in bed so far on the trip. I felt much better than I had the night before, and happier about staying here for a few days.

We had a very relaxed morning, catching up on some computer and internet stuff, playing with Millie’s animals, eating breakfast, reading about Alice Springs and surrounding areas, sorting out our stuff a little (there’s still more to be sorted, the car has been having stuff thrown into it lately and it all needs to come out and be repacked).

Late in the morning we all went to the pool for a swim. It was hot and sunny and even though the water was still cold it refreshing and felt great to be in there. A group of younger people who were camped near us were also swimming so we stayed more in the shallow end and tried to make a whirlpool, and LiAM and I had a water karate sparring session – it’s easier to kick in the water but harder to block as all our movements were so much slower.

We came back to the tent for chicken sandwiches then headed in to town. We parked near the library, Tony, LiAM and Millie went to check it out and Caitlin and I walked through town to do some shopping. We wandered along the Todd Mall and looked at some art shops and admired an old low stone building, which was the first hospital in Central Australia. We were approached by a man with a painting, which I loved, and chatted to him about his country (around Broome) and he offered us the painting for $20 – I wasn’t sure about the protocol or the ethics of buying from him and so I declined – I’ve talked to a couple of people since and I think if I see him again I might buy it.

We found one op shop which had closed at 1pm, so we walked to the far end of the town centre to the Salvation Army op shop, and found a couple of things that were on our list (replacing clothing that has fallen apart or we’ve found we need more of, and a hot water bottle as mine is perishing inside – hopefully this one is sound). We also bought some neck coolers that Caitlin has been eyeing off for a while, and the guy gave us a discount on them too. From there we walked back into town, explored a new and 2nd hand clothing and toy store, then checked Vinnies out and found a couple more things. Then to Kmart and then Target to complete our list. We also popped in to a couple of sports stores to try to find new swimming shorts for LiAM. I love walking around towns that I don’t know, starting to get a feel for them and become more familiar. I’m still not sure whether I like Alice Springs or not, I remember feeling the same the last time I was here.

Tony and the others had spent some time at the library and found that the wifi wasn’t a strong enough signal to watch videos, so LiAM played games and Millie and Tony played with blocks for a while, then they went and found a cool playground before coming to pick us up. We grabbed food for dinner and headed back to the caravan park. The kids went for another swim and I watched them while Tony cooked burgers on the BBQ. I sat with my feet in the water which was lovely and refreshing – it was still quite warm even though the sun had gone down.

We ate our burgers at the BBQ shelter and the kids had showers and we tidied up for the night then headed into bed for Brisingr and sleep.

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