Easter Week in WA (Western Australia!)

Trip Start Dec 29, 2012
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Trip End Aug 15, 2013


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Flag of Australia  , Western Australia,
Thursday, March 28, 2013

For the next week we were busy in Mandurah.  The boys found playmates down the street - a family from Colombia with a couple of boys.  The youngest was eleven and spent a great deal of time with Caleb and Aiden when we were around Kirk and Barb's house and he was home from school!  The family was even gracious enough to invite the boys for a sleepover with another boy that Caleb knew from attending school with Uncle Kirk.  They were excited to have other kids to play with rather than only each other.

We drove into Freemantle one more time to a street performer's festival.  Performers from around the world lined the streets and waterfront.  We sat and watched a few comedy / stunt shows.  One duo from Ireland and one from Canada.   They had many similarities in their shows - physical gymnastic type tricks, although the Irish duo was a little more comedic and the Canadians a little more muscular! The day was sunny and bright and the streets filled with people!

Kirk and Barb's friends, Jenny and Steve had graciously invited the lot of us over to their home for Easter dinner.  It was quite different from what it would have been in Alberta, beginning with a pre-dinner kayak through the canal.  While the adults indulged in wine and appetizers, the boys busied themselves trying to catch Blue Mandurah Crabs with the nets and headlamps Steve provided.  One was caught prior to kayaking so they were pumped to catch more.  And they did catch a few that were two small to eat and finally another big one!  After a delicious dinner, Steve boiled up the crabs and we had a wonderful meringue and fresh crab for dessert.

For the rest of the week we spent time catching up on laundry and other chores like stocking up the first aid kit and buying some things that needed replacing - Barb and I spent a day in Perth shopping and having a girls lunch away from testosterone.   And of course we snuck in a few beach days! Uncle Kirk and Auntie Barb entertained Caleb and Aiden so Jim and I could have a nice dinner out together at Dolphin Bay.


Kirk had also booked a swim with the dolphins excursion that we were keen to try.  The boat took us out of Rockingham, north of Mandurah and into a little bay where the dolphins frequent.  There are several pods of resident dolphins that don't seem to be bothered by the presence of snorkelers.  The tour companies need to hold a permit and the participants are linked together - probably to lessen the disturbance to the dolphins.  We saw a small nursery pod on our first sighting, but the moms and babes moved away fairly quickly.  There was one little dolphin (affectionately named "Pimple" - his mother's name was "Zit" as she had a growth on the side of her face) that allowed us to observe him feeding.  There was a ray on the bottom that was turning up sand as it ate and Pimple would nudge it and sweep around behind it, scaring up little fish for himself to eat. It was quite amazing to watch him bump the fish with it's snout and then gulp it down!  We watched Pimple for a long time and then moved the boat to another area where we allowed to practise snorkelling with the motorized scooters.  A much faster way to move around for sure!

The four of us took the train into Perth one day to meet up with Brenda and her family - a friend of Jim's from high school.  Brenda had been kind to prepare a picnic lunch for us and she brought us to King's Park in Perth, overlooking the water.  We then picked up her eldest daughter from school for a quick swim and cider at the city beach (I heard this beach is the most often closed due to sharks - yikes!).  Afterwards we had a pizza dinner with both families.  The boys once again enjoyed the company of other children, albeit girls! Thanks Brenda for your hospitality!

For our last full day in Mandurah before heading up North, we went to the Peel Zoo - primarily for a chance to feed kangaroos and pet koalas! (Are we tourists, or what?!)  As it happens, this was such a fun experience for all of us!   The koala was quite amazing to touch.  There is a matted spot in the middle of their backs that can't be reached when they groom themselves, but the rest of their fur is soft and fluffy!   The kangaroos were quite docile and calm and we found a joey in a pouch!  At first only it's tail and leg were sticking out, but a few times it turned around so we could see it's head.  Ironically we had kangaroo steaks for dinner again that night.  The taste reminds me of venison!  All of us had a great time in the parrot cage - except for Caleb at the end when a corella tried to eat his eye!  Luckily it missed and just took a swipe at his cheek.  That ended our time in the parrot enclosure!

 
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Comments

Ryan & Michelle on

We've been following your blog since you've left. Looks like an amazing trip so far. You've certainly raised the bar on holidays!

Kelly on

Looks like your intro to Oz was awesome. Dad and Barb look great. Wow Jim, you and Dad look so much alike in that shot by the beach. Must be weird to look into someone's face and know what you're going to look like in 22 years.

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