My kids are generally pretty good travellers. They have to be because we live in the middle of nowhere. However the trip wasn't up to movie standard. Car games and sing-alongs aren't our bag. Rather than punch buggy and Wheels on the Bus, we normally pontificate, pose philosophical questions and listen to music far too loud when we've had enough of each other. This time however, Willow insisted on reading even though it made her feel sick, then proceeded to vomit on the car floor. She was quite cheerful about it but Andre wasn't quite as cheerful having to clean it up. Jude decided that he wanted bananas. I hadn't packed any. Stupid me. He screamed for bananas until we bought some in Whyalla and Nate made us stop every fifty kilometres for a wee just because he likes to check out the scenery. I reminded myself that this travel business is fun goddammit and plastered a smile on my face.
We finally arrived at Kylee's, unpacked, fed the kids and had a few quiet bevvies and caught up. The problem with drinking as a parent is the hangover. It'd been a long time since I'd tied one on and my head wasn't my friend when Jude decided he had to wake up at 4.50 am. Serious, AM. That isn't even morning. That shit is night time. I stayed up with him until eight o'clock then I just had to wake Andre up and get him to have a turn before I died or something.
With the hangover drowned out with paracetamol and berocca, we went to do the touristy thing. The mini train in Moonta was like a dream come true for Nate. It was pretty noisy but he coped with it really well. All the kids were well behaved but that didn't stop some jaded mid forties woman making snide remarks. "It'd be alright if people would control their kids," just because some boys wandered to look at one of the ore pits. How dare they wander a sensible distance away silently! Their parents need a right talking to about how they're raising them. After a snap at little Lily, Kylee told back-boob lady that she hoped she enjoyed her judgmental flakes for breakfast and we waited back at the train until the train driver finished his long speech. I personally think all the kids did fabulously to stand about without making noise for nearly twenty minutes. I had totally zoned out by then and even Andre was bored and he's the biggest history nerd of them all.
The highlight for the kids was probably the little sweets shop across the road from the train. Who am I kidding? It's my favourite part of the trip too. It's like one of those cute little lolly shops you read about in Roald Dahl books, with toffees and fudge and stuff. I spent way too much money there.
On the way back to the Eyre Peninsula we promised to catch up with some friends in Crystal Brook and Laura. Andre consulted google maps. Just a tip for travellers; don't use google maps. The bitumen road turned to dirt and the dirt road to sand and, well, we were lost. I figured if we kept heading for the windmills we'd make it to the highway eventually but the more we drove the more we became turned around and ended up like this. We had a laugh about it. No point in getting emotional, we saw a different part of South Australia we wouldn't have seen before and the windmills were pretty awesome, if not a little samey after an hour of looking at them from varying angles.
It took over an hour longer to get there but we did get there! I fell in love with the whole area. I'd driven past along the highway so many times and had never turned off. It just goes to show that sometimes we just need to take the time to do something different. The trees grow so big over there and the towns even had supermarkets. I know! Fancy huh? So just let me know if you want to buy my house so I can move to the mid north, buy a block and build my dream house among the trees.