The trip north was fairly short, but you wouldn't think so for all the "are we there yet?" comments. 'Happy Hallidays' holiday park is a couple of km from the beach, but the surf was too cold to swim in anyway. It's totally set up to be paradise for kids (under 8s for sure, though the teenagers we saw were also having a great time with badminton, footballs etc and on the jumping pillow). The Kidz Nook play room was a big hit! We sometimes pay to go to smaller play centres. The tropically warm (solar heated) pool has a beach-like wading pool, fountains and a channel under a bridge. Mr 5 played tennis with Pete for ages while Miss 4 enjoyed the outdoor adventure playground a few steps away ... flying fox, giant jumping pillow, monkey bars etc. There was also mini-golf which we didn't get around to, and a 'train' ride (tractor and trailer) around the site for thrill seekers. Lots of fun right there for the taking!
Our cabin was pretty comfortable. We would've stayed for longer but they were booked out. On Saturday we packed up and moved to Port Macquarie, and set about finding somewhere to stay. We unfortunately forgot our plans to stay in a nice resort, and ended up in a dodgy cabin in our haste to resettle. Dust, ants, dead bugs on the floor ... I'm sad to admit I'm a germ snob, and it was torture, I felt sick about being there! The kids didn't notice, except for picking up on my phobia, and thankfully the pool was clean. We went to the beach for a dinner picnic with a group of local friends and my brother. Early the next morning we walked out on the break wall, on which all the rocks are individually painted. We're now trying to design our own family rock! Some men were paddling kayaks against the strong current through the heads, and one kept overbalancing. Glad it wasn't me in the water ... I'm sure there'd be sharks in there just waiting for breakfast! They made it around to the next headland before we turned back.
We cruised around to some coastal lookouts and boardwalks, and spotted a distant whale, before heading back into town for church. The Revival Fellowship in Port is quite small, with only a dozen or so regulars, but a carload from Coffs Harbour and one from the Central Coast, plus our little tribe, boosted their numbers nicely! We saw a slideshow of photos from Vanuatu and our friend told us about the miracles he's seen over there in the past five years (during several trips a year to outreach) when they've prayed for people in villages, the hospital and jail. Things like blindness healed (both a baby and an old lady), a brain damaged child restored almost back to normal, a man and lady suddenly walking after years of lameness due to back injuries, and many others. There were baptisms, people receiving the Holy Spirit and lives changed. I went to outreaches in Vanuatu in 2002, and to Papua New Guinea in 2001, and it brought back memories of such happy, friendly people.
After lunch we started the trip home. It was a long trip, as we had to stop for hours because Pete was sick. He thinks he had food poisoning, and was better by late afternoon. The kids played in parks while he laid on a rug in the shade. Finally then, home!
After a holiday I always feel like my place is a luxury resort (despite the inevitable unpacking and washing). Yesterday was recovery day. Pete had a roster day, so he did all the washing, good man, while I did the grocery shopping and spent hours at the gardening, hardware and auto stores. The kids were content to be home and play.
Today I plan to work like a cyclone ... vacuum, bathroom, wash floors, more washing, kitchen, dusting. Then I can get stuck back into my projects, and pot the plants I bought yesterday.
P.S. One day I'll get around to posting photos, but for now you're stuck with verbose descriptions, sorry!