05 July, 2009

Travelling in Outback Queensland

This is just a note to let you know I haven't fallen off the ends of the earth. Although looking out the window where I'm typing, I'm not sure whether there is much else out there. I cannot see another house at all (and I'm not hiding behind a fence, either). We're between Springsure and Emerald (get out your maps) at my sister and brother-in-law's place. They manage a property here. It has been great catching up with family. All of my husband's immediate family is together for the first time since 2000! Yesterday we drove here from Moranbah, a mining town a couple of hours north of here, visiting with my sister, her husband and little boy (and Sampson, their dog). We were only there two nights, but it was a precious time catching up. Actually it is the closest in lifestage that I've been to my sister since we were at school. There are seven years between us, so when I was at uni, she was still at school, then I was working and she was at uni. I got married and started a family a long time before her, but finally we are both at the stage of being mothers. A real pleasure to spend some hours together. After a few days here, we'll go to Gracemere (a town outside Rockhampton) and then drive to Brisbane on the 9th to finally settle at the place we'll call home for our year in Australia. It will be very nice to settle into cupboards and our own kitchen and beds again. A bit more routine wouldn't go astray either. All that said, we're having a good time and the boys are being good travellers most of the time. The trip from Cairns to Moranbah took 14 hours - a very long drive (900km). The kids were great for the majority of the trip, we are both surprised and grateful! Right now the boys are out with their English uncle on quad bikes (or 4 wheelers) seeing some cattle and whatever else on the way. This morning they climbed in the cab of the 12m wide harvester and drove with their uncle on a tractor. So much fun!! In Moranabah they got to visit the local Firestation and climb all over the trucks with their fireman-uncle. It will be a long time before they forget this trip! Do pray for rest. We are quite tired and the lack of routine as well as long drives and unfamiliar beds contribute to that. We have a couple more long drives ahead. 3 hrs to Gracemere and 8 hrs to Brisbane. Pray we'll stay safe and be able to catch up as we settle down in Brisbane.

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