Monday, 6 June 2016

Half-lap Day 34: Katherine

I was up first and went for a walk along the Katherine River. The path was up high and separated from the river by trees, I caught glimpses of the water from time to time and saw the sun come up behind the trees on the other side. I had hoped to walk to the Low Level Nature Reserve but didn’t know how far it was and turned back before I got there. Back at camp LiAM was awake and I walked him over to the toilets – some of the big dogs were off their leads and he didn’t want to walk over by himself.

We went and sat up in a communal area near the owner’s house, where there is a powerpoint I could plug my computer in. LiAM played on his iPad and I caught up a bit on blogging and email. We chatted to the owner’s grandson and his son, and found out a bit about Katherine and the surrounding areas, and about our car and other things. They told me of a mechanic (a relative) who might be able to have a look at our car.

After breakfast Caitlin and I went in to town to browse the op shops and get some clothes that we’re in need of in this hotter weather. Tony and I realised that most of the shirts we bought with us are dark colours and it would be good to have some lighter ones, or they have polyester in them which is just too hot and sticky. We went to 3 op shops and found a few things that were suitable (although the prices seemed high compared to the op shop prices I’m used to). We went to the Visitor Centre and talked to a lady at the counter who gave us lots of info about the area, then went to Target to try to find goggles for Caitlin – they didn’t have what she wanted, but I did get some slip on runners which are more comfortable than the ones I bought with me. We popped into Woolworths to get a chicken for lunch, and ran into Millie’s friend and her family, so had a good chat with them about everyone’s plans for while we are in Katherine.

We headed home and had some lunch, then spent a few hours sitting in the shade of our awning and playing games, chatting, patting the dog – the mummy dog has made our place her little home, she sleeps on our carpet and wanders around after us whenever we go anywhere. The kids went to see the puppies regularly, and Caitlin met a couple of other girls in the campground and showed them the puppies as well. It was a hot afternoon but sitting around in the shade wasn’t too bad, even though we were all sweating. Eventually we decided to head to the pool for a swim before it closed – when we got there we discovered that it closes earlier on weekends and we’d missed it by an hour. Everyone was very very disappointed, a swim would have been great. We played in the awesome playground across from the pool, and watched the local Rugby League game on the oval next to us. There were some cool birds there too, with blue heads and yellow wings. The security guy came in and asked us to close the gate when we left (we were the last people there and it was close to sunset) – we weren’t sure whether he meant to lock it or just close it – we locked it and hoped that was the right thing to do.

On the way home we stopped at Subway – we had a voucher to buy one footlong sub and get one free, so we bought the 2 footlongs and a 6 inch and everyone got a 6 inch sub. As usual it took us ages to decide what we wanted, we did eventually manage to order then stopped at Woolworths to get some cheap soft drink to have with dinner, then back to our tent to eat. The night was still warm but not hot anymore and we had a relaxing evening eating and playing and talking to the dog. As we were getting ready to go to bed I walked everyone over to the toilet – one of the big male dogs was out and playing with Bundy (the female that was hanging out at our tent). He was pretty scary and we asked Tony to walk with us as well – the dog kept appearing in front of us as we walked over (we walked the long way around, on the road and he could run between vans) and he really freaked us out. We figured that my head torch was freaking him out and that’s why he was barking at us – once I turned it off he settled down, but the kids were pretty spooked by then and I didn’t feel brave enough to walk past him on my own, we were all very glad Tony was with us, he comfortably went over and patted the dog and held his collar until we were past. The dog’s owner came and got him and took him home, so walking back was much more relaxing.

We hopped into bed and read for a little while and all fell asleep fairly quickly.

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