Goodbye Van Morrison

Today is definitely my last in Rainbow Beach. I say this because I seem to be extending my visit here on a daily basis. I’ve enjoyed my time here but it’s nearly time to get Van Morrison back to Brisbane so he can perform for someone else. While I’d love to say it’s a beautiful, sunny day, it’s actually cloudy and a bit cool. Still, after a stop in town for breakfast and free WiFi, I head down to the beach. I’d hope to, once again, play in the waves but, with the turn of the weather, that seems like a crazy idea and I lay back on my towel to read.

Colors of sandFeeling chilly, I soon decided to take a walk down the side of the beach I hadn’t previously explored to see the supposed seventy-two different colors of sand. The sand is piled high on the dunes to my right. As I walk, I try spotting some of the seventy-two different colors, and perhaps I do, but they’re less impressive than I’d hoped. I see light brown, dark brown, sepia, beige, eggshell, taupe, tan, khaki, wheat and caramel. Sure, there’s a smattering of green, but that’s just the plant-life growing in the sand. Also, instead of passing dogs and horses, this side of the beach holds SUV’s and four-wheel-drive buses. Still, it’s a nice, hour-long walk before I head back to Van Morrison.

Cars on beachI walk and drive around asking about accommodations. I’ve decided to try to find a hotel room or something similar as I’ve been living inside Van Morrison for ten days with a break at the farm where I pulled out just the essentials and, as I return to Brisbane tomorrow, I really need to get organized. Things in Australia are very expensive and the only saving grace is the good exchange rate with the U.S. Dollar. This makes finding an affordable, basic hotel room a challenge. After chatting with people, driving around and questioning subjects (oh wait, that was on CSI), I fall upon Rainbow Waters Holiday Park. I know what you’re thinking. Didn’t you just check out of a holiday park and weren’t you looking for a room? Ah, yes, but this place has “cabins” and “villas.” While the cabins aren’t log-cabin-in-the-wood-types, and the villas are nothing you’d find on the French Riviera, they do provide enough space to re-pack in.

I look at two “cabins.” One is basic which includes a cook-top, cooking utensils, dishes and silverware, a small refrigerator, a TV, and a double bed (maybe it’s queen-sized; I can never tell the difference). It doesn’t include linens, pillows or a bathroom. For that, you must use the campground bathroom nearby, which, after living in Van Morrison, isn’t a big deal. This room costs AUD$60 (US$43). The more deluxe cabin I look at costs AUD$80 (US$57.60) and has everything the basic one had, plus two bunk-beds, and a bathroom and shower. While I could do without the kitchen and would rather have linens and pillows, the feel is better and I decide to spoil myself with the deluxe room.

I drag my blankets, pillows, computer, bags, and random clothing scattered about Van and begin the task of repacking. I turn on the TV because I can. I’d cook, as I have the facilities but alas, little food for cooking, so dinner is leftover bread, brie, Nutella and wine. My sheets are way too small to fit the double (or queen-sized) bed but I have two blankets and my own pillows, so I enjoy an evening in while listening to the huge storms crashing outside appreciating the fact that I chose the cabin with the restroom included.

I sleep well until about 6:30am when the very noisy child next door is clearly awake and seems to have had copious amounts of Sugar Pops. My earplugs do nothing to block out her screams, and I think about voicing my opinion but, today, I choose not to be that woman. I lay in bed for a little while longer before getting dressed, loading up Van, and heading back to Brisbane.

Two-and-a-half-hours later, I arrive back at Mark Janette’s house (read Virgin Germs), drop my bags on the back porch, and drive over to drop off Van. After letting the lady there know that the refrigerator didn’t work and that the fluids were obviously not checked as the brake light flashed until I had brake fluid added (really Spaceship, I heard about two other breakdowns of your vehicles while I was on the road and I really wonder about your service standards for your vehicles). I have a heartfelt goodbye with Van Morrison and Mark picks me up to take me back to their place.

It’s now time to enjoy a week in Brisbane before heading off to my next location. “Wait, what will that be?” you ask. “I don’t remember voting.”

This is true. I have big news coming up but first, as always, I’ll let you know The Good, the Bad, and the Thank-you’s of Australia – coming up next.

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