Ok, so when you’re about to turn the ripe old age of 30, how would you celebrate? Get your hair dyed blue and purple, cruise into Surfers Paradise, hire a cabin for the night, get drunk on Bundaberg rum and go to Dracula’s – a vampire cabaret show? Well that’s what I did! 🙂
Two days before my big 30, we headed back into the Hinterlands where we’d had so much fun previously. This time we stayed on Mount Tamborine, at a small camp within beautiful woodland. The town itself was much like Montville – full of craft shops and cafes, but this time with musicians lining the streets in different costumes. It was really cool here. We spent most of our time at the MT Brewery, firstly trying a tasting platter of their finest beers and ales, then deciding Black Cockatoo was the best to continue drinking. At $10 a pint (blame Aussie taxes) it wasn’t cheap but hey, it was two days before my birthday! I was allowed! On the morning before my big day, whilst listening to the birds surrounding our van in the woods where we camped, I sat still in my deck chair as Andy helped me dye the tips of my hair blue and purple (much to his annoyance ha ha!). It looked wicked!! It had been 7 months since I’d done anything to my hair, it felt good to have a change 🙂
So the big day arrived, I woke up a 30 year old women in a flowery hire van, in some woods in Australia with no home, no job, a pierced tongue and blue hair. Mid-life crises maybe? Ha ha! I opened my card from Andy (one from Australia Zoo with Steve Irwin on it, woo!) and bombed it down to the local Shell petrol garage where they had awesome free wifi. It was 6am and we skyped my mum and sister back in the UK (9pm their time, the night before) and got sung ‘happy birthday’ to 🙂 It was great to see them and it made my day even more special. So now all that was left to do was to celebrate in true Emma style.
We headed down the mountain towards the Golden Coast, joining the Pacific Highway for a while (no longer called the Bruce Highway), before turning off for Surfers Paradise. What a crazy place! High rises everywhere, shopping malls, bars, restaurants, theme parks and a huge long beach of white sand. Not many surfers though since the wind was so strong, it was pissing it down and at one point the sea swept the beach away! I wasn’t planning on swimming today anyway, our plan was to check into a campsite, hire a cabin for the night and get down to Dracula’s cabaret show for dinner and drinks. All of the above I can confirm we did successfully and I had such a wicked time! We drank rum and champers in our posh cabin before getting a bus to Dracula’s. Once there we went into a spooky lift and down into the haunted house. We were then taken on a ghost ride into the theatre. It was so nice to splash out and eat a three course dinner (lamb shanks ooooh!), get drunk whilst being entertained by vampires and wake up the next morning hangover-free in a proper bed. LUSH! Checking out of our posh cabin and back into our silly little van however was probably the most depressing moment of our travelling. We’ve realised that we really are flash-packers – or would like to be all the time at least! Ha ha!
After moving back into our tin can on wheels, we headed into Surfers Paradise itself for a look around. It was sunnier today but still cold, with a few more swimmers and surfers. Andy nursed his hangover (yes he got one but the birthday girl didn’t!) with an epic Hungry Jacks (known as Burger King in the UK) which quickly sorted him out. We mooched around for a while before deciding to head out of the city towards Coolangatta, a town on the border of Queensland and New South Wales. Yes our time in QLD had come to an end, we couldn’t believe how vast it had been. It was warmer in Coolangatta for some reason, it’s just down the coast to Surfers Paradise. We sat on a cliff sunning ourselves, watching whales pass by in the distance. We then went for a walk on the beach watching the surfers take on some cool waves while an Aboriginal dude stood there on a rock playing his didgeridoo and waving a boomerang round, wishing good luck to each surfer that passed him. Apparently he has been doing this for years! In the background we could make out a misty looking Surfers Paradise, but in comparison, it was really here in Coolangatta that the surfers were having a better time.
After crossing the border we entered an info centre to get the low down on camping in the area. We were given directions to a free rest area – that was our first bonus, then the second bonus came as huge shock when the volunteer in the centre told us that New South Wales was an hour ahead of QLD. What??!! This literally changed our lives. Gone were the dark ages of going to bed at 6.30pm! We now had an extra hour! Woo hoo! NSW was looking to be pretty awesome already and we couldn’t wait to explore it further!
Blue haired Limn xxx