Bright Busselton not Bunbury

So part way through a stunning week I decided I’d go on a night out to Busselton. It started out as Bunbury but morphed into Busselton. I looked up accommodation and even though it’s the last weekend of school holidays the area was quite booked. Not fully but first two choices were. I’m glad tho, my third choice is a winner. From the start though. Beware this is a long one…two days worth!

I decided a half day at work was in order, I actually had a few hours of work to do for the Charleroi bid. I left in lovely sunshine at eleven am. By the time I got to Busselton it was raining. The rain passed and it looked like it would just drizzle then clear so I decided I was mad enough to walk up the pier. Turns out I’m only half mad, I gave up at the half way point ish. I passed, twice, a couple of gents fishing. I asked if this weather meant more fish, the response ‘I’m hoping so’ didn’t fill me with confidence. On my way back past I told them they were more crazy than me…oddly they agreed. I guess they don’t know me.

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So I went and sat in a cafe for a hot chocolate to warm up. Partly worked then gave up and headed to the B&B. Broadwater B&B has two rooms and is run by the lovely John and Doreen, joined with lots of kisses from Angus the jack russell. They won me over when I walked in and the wood fire was lit. So glad they were expecting me.  I’m already in my PJ bottoms in front of the fire. Mostly to dry my jeans but who cares….fire, PJs, and book!

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So John and Doreen have four boys, three in mining. And seven grandkids, one is a girl. I can’t imagine how spoilt that 1.5 yo girl is! The house is them upstairs and guests down. There’s a little kitchenette and bathroom, a big lounge and small dining room. Don’t need heaps for two rooms. It seems like it would be pretty easy to run.

For dinner I asked where the best food is. Of course I had to clarify that I eat everything. Chinese at Jade was suggested by John. Nice food, potato covered prawns and garlic combination. Yum scrum. The place was surprisingly busy, takeaway was frantic!

In the morning I’d hoped to go and see the sunrise over the pier, but I woke up and opened the blinds and…thick fog. Insert more reading here. The driving was pretty in a different way to what you expect from WA.

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After a perfect breakfast by Doreen and a great play with Angus I headed to the Vasse market. Angus is such a sweetie, he begs like a meerkat, enjoys a cuddle, and when you play fight he doesn’t bite, just mouths. I was lucky he was allowed to play downstairs, it’s usually off limits. Both John and Doreen had a good chat about what to do today. John drives the Busselton jetty train so I told him I’d see him when the sun came out. Hot chocolate from the market was yummy but despite using ‘Cooper’ they still couldn’t spell it.

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And a cherry is popped. By which I mean this Vasse Virgin virgin is no longer a virgin. Hehe. Bad joke but the lady tried. The place started when the farmers kids had bad eczema, the docs said you can never buy soap again so they learnt to make it from olive oil. After word got out they made it for everyone, then started selling it, and then it got so big they didn’t need the keep the sheep farm going. Now they have soaps and lotions plus a room of foody things. More yummy.

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When I mentioned that the fog was pretty in an unexpected way Nicole, the girl in the food area, said she had an accident on the way in to work. Some tourist didn’t know how to drive on their side of the road and the car is a write off. She was fine though, poor girl. She didn’t want to buy my car.  I purchased a jar of blueberries and she mentioned something about getting a cool jar. My brain, and evidently mouth, went straight to filling the jar with home made Nutella. I then told them the recipe and they were so excited to try it. I’ll have to eat blueberries then make some more Nutella 🙂

I usually try to avoid wineries alone and driving but Doreen suggested it if only to gawk at the over the top decor. She wasn’t wrong about Laurance. The timbers are from an old Sydney pier, so it’s really pretty. But there are giant apples and gold statues and…oh just look at the photos.

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Oh and the loos! I didn’t need to go but Doreen said I had to see them, thanks Doreen!

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So then I hit a chocolate shop, another winery, and a brewery. The chocolate was yummy. The winery, House of Cards, resulted in a photo. And cider was purchased at the brewery. Oh boy, I wasn’t supposed to buy stuff when I’m so close (maybe) to leaving the country.

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I stopped by Canal Rocks on the way to Ngilgi caves. Thank you John for that suggestion! It was hard to see the puffs of waves from the fluffy white clouds. It was great to watch. And people wonder why I have a healthy respect for the ocean.

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On the way to Yallingup I stumbled across the local surf spot. I sat there for nearly half an hour just watching them. No photos of course, no zoom. But it was cool. The most people spent ages sitting in a very quiet area, and then some narrow but great waves would come through and…well I guess they enjoyed surfing it as much as I did watching it from their cheers. Then they had to paddle all the way back out. Ha

And into the caves I went. I missed the adventure trips, but the self guided was good. Sarah, our first guide, did the rules thing, took us in, pointed the way then let us go. First stop, the kids tunnel, a slippy slidey fun way in.

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Then through the main chamber. Lots of stalagmites and stalactites… Oddly there were many shall’s too. The caves were discovered in 1989 when a bloke fell in and miraculously clawed back out. He guided for thirty years, taking newly weds to cupids cave. I can’t fathom that people would clamber through there for eight hours carrying candles to get to the cupids spot in corsets. Madness. There was a story that if you got to cupids cave, kissed, and returned you’d have a long and loving relationship. With cruisey stairs and LEDs it took me fifteen minutes to get there and read the plaque. No kissing for me.

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I then headed to find some food but couldn’t find somewhere on the beach at Dunsborough so I grabbed a pie and headed for the pier. Try it again…this time with sunshine. Win! I suspect my ‘only half mad’ was actually really about a third. I guess all the rain made it seem further along. A lovely walk. Pity John’s shift was over, it was a different super friendly train driver.

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So I didn’t get to Bunbury and I didn’t go anywhere near dolphins. Bummer. But not the end of the world. I think the last thing on my list is Rottnest, thanks Onj for reminding me I’ve never been there. Let’s hope for good weather next Sunday.

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