The Family Travels North-West (Homeward Bound)

Day 11 (30th September 2015): Adelaide

      🎓 Graduation Day 🎓

Caches found: 8 (#1020 – #1027)

My graduation ceremony (and the purpose for our trip) was in the afternoon, which left us the morning to explore Adelaide city – although. Having said that, all the girls wanted to do was swim in the hotel pool, so Jen sorted them out with that, leaving me to explore cache on my own 😀 – and I had 1 mission, and 1 mission only, and that was to find a cache big enough to drop my new TB off in… I’d decided that it would be fun to drop a travelbug off in Adelaide to try and make it home in honour of my graduation, and with the geobro’s help I had affixed a little nurse figurine onto the dog tag, and set up the page for Nursey Kelly… Unfortunately all the caches I looked at around the hotel were micro or small size, so I didn’t like my chances, but I gave it a go anyway…

My first stop for the day was at the intersection nearest my hotel, one of the busiest in Adelaide CBD, where there was another Earthcache, but this time, it wanted me to Lick the rocks of the surrounding buildings and monuments, to determine basalt quality or something…. And well, to be honest, I was over travelled, or over earthcaches, or something because I frankly couldn’t be bothered to do it properly, and so just gave a stab in the dark answer for the buildings as I saw them, and hoped for the best. Approval was granted to log, so clearly I didn’t do too badly 😉. image From there I continued my wandering a, slowing down at a monument but at rush hour I felt a little exposed searching on it, so continued onto Rundel Mall – as I walked down the mall I took a photo of the sculptures where the webcam put me (even though the webcam was out of action it seemed a photo in the location was acceptable for $2 Freddo Cam, so I went with the flow before me, claiming a smiley on this rare cache type), and detoured up one of the lanes for a little nano that was Blending Into a Tetris patterned artwork outside the library… And that little sucker probably took me a good 10min of searching – not that the muggles around cared as they were busy doing whatever it was they were doing.

A laneway or 2 further along, and I found myself circling a Telstra building – I wanted to be 3 Steps Away From Telstra, but my GPS just didn’t want to play ball in the city, and it took me 5-10minutes to find the set of 3 steps leading to nothing but a wall at the back of the Royal Exchange building, not the Telstra Building… And then once I took up my position on the step, it was a moment or 2 longer before the man having smoko right there left and I could retrieve the “film canister” in peace (NB, the ‘film canister’ was an eclipse tin😆).  I walked a bit further thru the streets and laneways of the city, winding my way to the Playhouse Theatre, for what should have been an easy “small” find, which I hoped would be large enough to house the TB… As I approached though, I found 2 workmen having their smoko right onto of GZ, so I slowed down and pretended to play tourist for a moment or 3, but when I realised they weren’t moving anytime soon, nor cared a whole lot about my being there, I just excused myself, stood up on the bench they were using for their snack table, and grabbed  Acting Up – Act Two from the middle of the sign above the bench, stepping back down to the footpath, to explain myself further, but the guy didn’t seem to care in the slightest, so I just signed away and replaced it… An eclipse tin again, so not big enough for the TB, but a little amusing to my mind, as it was the same as the previous find – a micro… But to be fair, the micro was the smaller of the mint tins, and the smaller the slightly larger size, so… Pretty much convinced I was destined to only find mint tins that morning, I headed back to the hotel, but just to convince myself, I detoured down one more laneway, and found one more eclipse tin Blowing up my skirt.
imageFrom there it was time to take off my caching hat and don my mortar board ~ and with that and a celebratory dinner over with I returned my focus to the caches at hand… After dinner we all wandered over to the monument I had visited that morning, finding it a much better place to search after sundown, and with the geokids doing the searching posed no suspicion, and after prodding at Dame Mary Gilmore Sitting down on the job for a few minutes, they finally came up trumps with the well hidden cache 😀.  Then later that evening, back at the hotel room, I considered the other webcam cache and virtual cache in town, just down from Town Hall where I had graduated, and thought it would be cool to nab a few more of the rarer cache types, as well as mark my graduation with a couple of fortuitous smileys… Dad helped me out with the webcam cache, providing a screenshot from the Watch all about it webcam page, and marking “me” on the photo, so as to be clear which was me 😜. The other cache is an odd virtual that Ai didn’t really understand – but I did note that the answer required was about the naming rights for a nearby Educational Institution, and I thought it would kind of be ironic if the answer was Flinders (Matthew Flinders) – and as I had had a phot taken with “Mathew” at my graduation, I submitted this with a chuckle to the CO – as it was a complete stab in the dark and I have no idea if I am correct, I have left this one to log later, once I receive approval from the CO.
Day 12 (1st October 2015): Adelaide to Mildura, via the Barrossa Valley.

Caches found: 4 (#1028 -1031)

On the first leg of our homeward journey, and it was a busy one, although I found most places we stopped didn’t have a cache nearby, and I didn’t want to slow us down any further by stopping for random caches, so the find count was restricted to a couple of targets and one of convenience.

imageFirst stop was back at the uni campus in Bedford Park – I had to return my academic dress, and wanted to go to the campus store to buy a Flinders Uni jacket… But I had also picked out a regular sized cache on campus, worthy of my TB’s starting location – Easy Degrees not only was suitably placed, and suitably named for my TB, but it also coincidentally was my furthest find from home, and my most we sternly cache found to date. … And as it turned out was a good sized geo-tube, in the lovely bushland surrounds between the main campus and the northern campus where my department was housed. Sweet!😎

From there we headed off back over the Adelaide Hills to visit another of the Big Aussie Icons, this time the Big Rocking Horse (and toy factory) before heading cross country through the beautiful wine region of the Barrossa Valley (stopping at one of the estates so Jen could have a tasting of course!). At some point in our travels through those parts we stopped a quaint little country town for an ice cream and a play in the local park. Conveniently we had stopped at one with a cache – so while the kids played, I poked around the Artificer’s Toy (after all, what would a roadtrip be without ticking the micro-on-a-gun box?).. Another mint tin mind you 😆.

imageOur next major stop was for dinner in Renmark, just before the northern SA/Vic border, and of course we stopped at the border itself, which I was keen to do for the 2 caches there quite close together, one on either state – GeoJorjy was keen to come with me, so we crossed the road first to grab the one on the South Australian side, What State am I in Now, which Jorja commented was just like the one on the South eastern border… A bison attached to the fenceline.  I took the obligatory tourist shot of the SA sign, and thought we had timed our crossing perfectly as the sun set over the plains we had just travelled through… imageWhich was kind of ironic too, as the cache on the Victoian side was named My 1st Victorian Sunset, and as Jorja and I crossed back over and headed toward it, I laughed when I saw the sign for the National Park we were driving through – Sunset Murray National Park 😀. We made a quick find there too… Jorja said it was “obvious because someone put a rusty tincan over it”, and she was right, but it got us back in the car and back on the road to Mildura, where Victoria cross into NSW, and our bed for the night, well earns after a long day of travel.
Day 13 (2nd October 2015): Mildura to Central Coast, via the Riverina

Caches found: 2 (#1032 – $1033)

image,As you can probably tell by the cache count, or by the distance we travelled if you’re familiar with it, this was the final day and therefore all about just getting home, not about caches. We were hitting the road pretty early, so I ducked out even earlier for a quick find in Mildura before we got going… Luckily for me, Remember Miss Penny was right outside the hotel – in the median strip… But the median strips in these parts are meters wide, and so posed no issue, and gave me a little garden with good cover from the trucks getting an early start on the highway. nothing special, although I did note it was supposedly a regular sized cache, and what I found would be well considered small at home, reminding me how locational sizing can be. From there we pretty much drove onto Hay, where we stopped by the Sheep Shearing museum, had a milkshake and while the kids climbed all over the gate, I tracked down a little brown tin called Blade Runner.

While it was a long drive from there, I really enjoyed the scenic route we took through the Riverina region in south western NSW, especially as I spent my early years in the area, stopping in my hometown Narrandera for lunch (where I had grabbed the easy travellers cache on last year’s visit) and taking a few of the secondary roads through to Yass for dinner (where we’d stopped on the way out of Canberra 10 days earlier, so I’d already found the cache there), and finally onto home and our own beds 🏡

👣👣👣👣👣 Its not over till it’s over 👣👣👣👣👣

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