SA Day 3: Happy 3rd Wedding Anniversary to Us!

Lottie chasing Flynn chasing the ball Before we embark upon our day, I’m certain you’re all wondering ‘What was Lottie up to during all this?’!!  Lottie was at her holiday home back in Hobart.  Lottie was lucky because Naomi was home ill, so Lottie and Flynn were able to spend the days inside and warm with her when they weren’t galloping around the back garden.  (Naomi may not have thought it was such a great thing to be home ill!)

At home Lottie has a dog door, so if she needs to do any of her ‘dog business’ while I’m asleep she can make her way outside by herself.  Naomi was yet to get her dog door installed – plus has budgies that Lottie was obsessed with – so the routine soon became that Lottie would wake Naomi up between 5.30 – 6 am to ask to go outside.  And then at around 7 am Lottie would complain that it was time to wake up; she had important budgie staring to do.  And needed to gallop around with Flynn as well as generally being a mad thing.  Poor Naomi!

Tanunda BakeryWe woke up again with the sound of rain hitting the roof.  Scott may have food fantasies, but I have coffee fantasies.  I’d seen what I thought looked like a good cafe in the middle of town and was fantasising about it being a warm, coffee scented den.  With free wifi.  However Scott thought he’d seen a bakery across the street from our hotel.  After checking out, we soon found Scott had been hallucinating bakeries again.  We headed a short way down the road and found Tanunda Bakery.  At first it looked closed, but upon closer inspection it was open for business.  And it had an espresso machine.  I grabbed a table outside (in a tent structure with heating), and Scott soon came out with this morning’s fantasy: apple streusel cake.  It wasn’t great, but also wasn’t bad – and the coffee was decent.

I think Scott read the paper, however I have to admit that I was checking email, Twitter, etc.  At each food break during this trip (except dinners) and when we got to our accommodation at night, I had my new little netbook out and was reading things, updating things, etc.  I posted a couple photos during the trip and even considered adding blog posts at night, but I thought they wouldn’t be as long or have as many photos if I did them on the day.  I don’t know what’s best: content on timeliness.  Please feel free to express an opinion either way.  And I’ll feel free to do whatever – but then feel guilty I didn’t do what someone would prefer.

Our only plans for the day were to head north-ish for a cache that had come highly recommended, Astro La Vista, Baby! and then to head back to the south to Adelaide.  So I pointed the GPSr in the right direction, and we started caching our way.  The first cache we came to really tickled me.  It was called Ye Olde One, and the title referred to what was displayed in a small building across from GZ: a rather old and elaborate camper/motor home.  It was impossible to get a good photo as there was a lot of reflection on the glass (and I don’t have a polarising filter) but I’ll include a photo and what was written about it:

House on Wheels!
This ‘House on Wheels’ was designed and built in 1931 by G C Kaesler of Nuriootpa SA to accommodate himself, wife and three children during a tour of South Australia and the Easter States. ‘The tour took them to Brisbane via Broken Hill, Bourke, Cunnamulla (before roads were built or signs erected in this section of Australia’s outback), returning through Sydney, Canberra, Melbourne and Mt Gambier. ‘To assist with driving in the outback the vehicle was equipped with compass, gradometre, altitude barometre, gasometre and thermometre. The home comforts included wireless, electric lights and fan, gas stove, collapsible table and beds, toilet facilities, two water tanks of 55 litres each, also spotlight and rifle with telescopic sight.

One of the things you can’t see in this photo is that it has stained glass in the windows of the sort you see in ‘normal’ houses of the time.  Stained glass!

We did a few more caches around Nurioopta, then cached towards Kapunda.  At the beginning it was the same story – rain, rain, rain –  but eventually the rain stopped and we were actually in sunshine.  Sunshine!  It was lovely not getting bucketed upon when I ran out of the car for a cache!

View from Dutton Hill, Kapunda These Cows Mocked Me. . . Driving In the Barossa Vines In Sun

I’d never heard of Kapunda, and probably I wouldn’t have spent any time there if I wasn’t a geocacher, however it was a gold mine for caches.  Which meant we spent a bit of time getting to know it, and I thought it was a lovely town.  Yes, I may have been influenced by the number of caches – the sun – the water fowl in one of the parks – the tidiness of the place – but it was a great little Aussie town.
Mine Chimney at Dutton Hill Dutton Hill: colourful stone Building in Kapunda Building in Kapunda Dogs in the Tray of a Ute
We were almost running out of aches and the day was moving on, so we decided we’d best get going the last few kilometres to Astro La Vista, Baby! before it got too much later.  What can I say other than that it is a great cache.  I haven’t been including my logs in these blog posts, however I will for this cache as it probably says it all.
16 May 2006, on the morning of my wedding, my husband-to-be and I descended into the earth to seek the cache GCG0HZ ‘Below the Rim (Don’t Follow the Raven)’. Our mission was successful, and we were married at sunset on the rim of the Grand Canyon. Three years later, on a different continent, we again descended into the earth to seek a cache. There were some surprising similarities and differences: both cache hunts resulted in a healthy layer of red dust on our clothes and shoes, both were trips into the planet (although with one we still had a view of the sky and one we most definitely did not!), and both were journeys we would never forget. . ..
As it was recommended to us by SA cachers as the best cache in South Australia, we had to seek this one on our trip. We hadn’t been told what was special about it and I hadn’t checked out logs/photos, so I was a bit baffled when I arrived at GZ and thought I could see the cache. Nice area, but what’s so exciting about that? Then I opened the cache and realised something interesting was ahead of us. . .

After an extremely pleasant walk to our next destination, I did my best to deny where I needed to go. No – out here – surely we need to go this way. . .let’s give this a try!! [Have I mentioned my claustrophobia?] No way do I want to go there. . .there could be creatures. . .there could be a quake. But I had too; I could hear a cache calling to me. . .the voice from the darkness.

With safety equipment attached, we went to take a closer look. Real close. Real real close. In we went following unfamiliar navigational equipment, my trusty GPSr in my pocket and useless. I was certain I could feel the earth moving, heaving as though an enormous beast had swallowed us. Maybe it wasn’t in my head; maybe it wasn’t safe! I stopped as the husband switched to the next piece of equipment, the torchlight growing dimmer. He continued on, then suddenly a voice was heard in the darkness ‘Astro La Vista, Baby!’. The cache was found, the log was signed, and the darkness was defeated!!

Thank you very much for setting this highly enjoyable and memorable cache!

About to Enter the Darkness Astro La Vista, Baby!: Step Into the Darkness Astro La Vista, Baby!: Red Dust Out of the Darkness. . . 'Astro La Vista, Baby!' geocache: enter the darkness

Our first mission accomplished for the day, it was time to head back towards Adelaide.  We had not had lunch yet (I tend to forget lunch when caching!), so we only did a couple drive-bys until we got to Gawler.  At Gawler we at at Cafe Java; it specialised in crepes, so Scott was pleased!!  The food was simple but good and the service was excellent!  When Scott happened to mention that we’d be sharing things (we always eat half our food then swap), they plated everything specially.  And were just in general nice.  A lucky stop!

We didn’t think we’d make it to the Adelaide Botanic Garden before closing (last time Scott was there with his mum, sister, and brother-in-law they were locked into the garden!), so we headed for coastal bits of Adelaide between Find and Sign Fort Glanville and Royal Monsters of the Deep.

On the Beach in Adelaide Sunset Across Gulf St Vincent I of course enjoyed doing these cache, but one of the things that gave me an additional ‘tickle’ was that these are caches I’d seen firesafe logging in his Twitter feed only about a week before.

When we finished these caches it was dark, so we headed into the city to our accommodation (me looking at all the caches we were passing – sigh!).  My name being difficult to interpret it took a while for the guy at reception to find our reservation, but when he did we headed upstairs to the nicest room we’d had of the trip.  Scott went off to find the parking garage and I went in search of a printer so I could check us into tomorrow’s flight and print the boarding passes.  And then I realised: I let Scott out on his on in a city he doesn’t know with nothing but a map.  There is a reason Snuva used to refer to him as her chauffeur and me as her navigator!  Eventually he arrived back, and we headed out in search of a printer.  (Reception seemed bewildered by the request!)  We found an internet cafe – with emphasis on internet, not cafe – and eventually had the tickets printed out.  Oh how I love that we usually don’t have to go to that sort of place to be in contact with the world!  It just reeked of boy.

Almost backing up to our hotel was a 24 hour pancake restaurant I found out about because of a GCA webcam cache, The Original Pancake Kitchen.  Scott was keen to have pancakes, so in we went.  It is obviously a youthful hangout.  We were greeted by someone we weren’t really certain was a waiter, who took our order and asked us to pay in advance.  Luckily he must have worked there as our order started appearing.  We shared a savoury (eggs benedict) and a sweet dish (blueberry something).  We then headed back to the hotel and enjoyed a very yummy Langmeil The Freedom 1843 Shiraz.

1 comment for “SA Day 3: Happy 3rd Wedding Anniversary to Us!

  1. 15 June 2009 at 5:58 am

    I’m going to vote for the “more complete, less-timely” option because I enjoyed getting the full trip reports here. You can always offer up a few Twitter teasers while you’re there.

    Nice pics as always, and that sunset is really stunning. The “house on wheels” is pretty wild. I’m amazed that it could be practical, given the narrow tires of the era and it seems like it would also have a very high center of gravity.

    The cache looks like great fun. Those special, memorable caches are better than a thousand mundane urban micros.

    I’m just glad I had crepes this morning (for the first time in ages) or I’d also be very hungry after reading this post… As it is, I’m very much regretting that I already finished of the last of the coffee.

    Thanks for sharing! I’m saving part four for later…

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