A very early start for us this morning – originally we had planned to start our trip back to Sydney today, but instead had a change of plan.
Earlier in the week one of my friends from back at uni sent an email out inviting people to a breakfast gathering in a park in Adelaide to catch up with everyone. This group of friends from uni keep in touch regularly via email and get together every so often. This was a belated Christmas gathering, and since we hadn’t seen everyone for a few years, I thought it would be great to try and make it there.
I was able to make a few phone calls and fortunately there was no problem to re-arrange our accommodation for the return trip. I had actually planned to spend one night in Swan Hill and then two nights in Echuca – so we could then visit a fauna park in that region on the second day. However, with my camera still broken and the weather being so hot, I wasn’t that keen to make the effort to visit – staying only one night in Echuca wouldn’t make much difference to our plans.
So I pushed our stay in Swan Hill back one day and dropped the first night of our stay in Echuca so that we could then stay around the extra day to visit my friends.
So we got up early, packed the car, said goodbye to my parents and drove back up the freeway to Adelaide. After a brief stop at the wrong park (I misread the instructions – oops!), we managed to find everyone and spent an hour or so chatting and trying to avoid being soaked by the kids who had brought water-pistols to help keep cool.
It was already 36 degrees by 9am and the forecast was for 42, so we didn’t think we would last long at the park. I didn’t mind it that much – and Andres had fun playing with a bucket of water they had set up to refill the water-pistols with. He got completely muddy and wet, so we stripped him down to his nappy and he was quite happy playing there.
We agreed to relocate to a cafe in Norwood where it would be a bit cooler (it was over 40 by this time!) and we could grab some cool drinks or icecream, so after quickly cleaning up Andres and grabbing some clean clothes for him, we drove around and spent another hour or so chatting with my friends.
We decided to head down to Marion shopping centre for lunch, so drove down – of course Andres fell asleep almost straight away, so we took our time and then did a couple of slow laps of the car-park looking for a spot while to give him a bit longer to sleep. We wandered around the shops, noting that not much had changed in the years since we had visited, and stopped for lunch at Spargo’s restaurant where we used to go for dinner before we went to see a movie – again, not much had changed.
We stopped to let Andres play in a small kids play area for a bit and then headed out to the car. Of course, because we had a lot of our gear with us from our stay in Murray Bridge, the boot had to be just about fully unpacked to get the pram out and back in again – it was a little unpleasant doing that in 43 degree heat … just touching the outside of the car risked getting burns! I hate to think what the temperature was like inside the car – fortunately the air conditioning works pretty well, although it was struggling a little in the heat.
We eventually made our way back up the freeway to Leanne’s parents’ place at Mt Barker where we were staying the night – all the rest of our gear was there too, so we could re-pack and try and fit everything back in the car for our trip home.
It was a long, hot and tiring day – I was still hanging washed clothes out on the line after 11pm, but it was still mid-30s outside and the clothes were drying pretty well!