On the way home from Queensland we stopped for the first night at a caravan park in Moree. We chose this particular caravan park because it had artesian pools that I knew Grace would love, especially after a solid day's driving. We got there only to read a sign that there were no cabins left. I went to the office resigned to staying in the tent in a park full of vans and not being allowed to light a fire (the no fire is a total deal breaker for winter camping) only to find that there had been a last minute cancellation. Grace was delighted to be staying in a cabin even though it was pretty crappy. I decided not to whinge, even to myself, about the degree of crappiness for the price, and enjoy the pools. We bathed after dinner and again in the morning and the pools were great. A different type of experience to the Pilliga bore bath which I prefer, but nice big pools with ledges to sit on and clean chlorinated water.
The next night we stopped at a camping spot near Dubbo. It was by a river and the night was freezing cold. The next night, after a day's driving on the crazy Newell, we stopped at Mirrool. We choose Mirrool because it was a good days drive from home, it was in Camps 6 and not too far from the highway. As we pulled in, the hand painted free camping sign looked promising and we parked in what looked to be a likely spot. There wasn't anyone else camping so we went into the pub to ask. And stayed for a chat, a beer, a soft drink, a shandy and a game of eight ball. It was one of the friendliest and most welcoming places we stopped at. The pub itself is a beauty. Fairly original and with lots of lovely art decco tile work. I would be tempted to take a room there on a future trip - just to look upstairs.
Every October the town hosts a silo kick - where the aim is to kick a football over the silo - and I remember thinking as I read the sign that the second Saturday in October was a long time away. Now that would be tomorrow and I am just finishing up dealing with the photos from the trip and posting about it. Still, even though it became a drawn out process, I'm glad I did. Each photo in the flickr set reminds me of something particular about our trip. I miss Betty and the girls and I would love to be back on the road again, but oh well.
After we sent up camp, I went for a walk around Mirrool with my camera. By myself. I find these walks by myself to be an essential part of a family holiday. Even 20 minutes. For a small town with no shops, just a pub, some silos by the railway and a collection of houses there was an awful lot to see. I'm sure a longer stay would reveal even more. Anyway, that brings me to the end of the July school holidays narrative. Just as the September school holidays are drawing to a close.