Sep 23, 2012
The rest of the day was spent poolside until 5.15 when the tide was right for dinosaur footprint spotting. The best days are marked on the tide timetable with little dinosaur footprints. We descended down a large cliff to the ocean floor of slippery rocks to join the other hopeful people in search of the elusive footprints. There was much stopping, staring and pointing. Many indentations could have been but then a group of Japanese tourists arrived and saved the day. We couldn't understand a word but they looked if they knew what they were doing and they did - success. The footprints were a little underwhelming in size and number but it was remarkable that they were made millions of years and we were standing there seeing them.
Kelli's big day had arrived with pearl shopping at Willie Creek on the agenda. Willie Creek is a working pearl farm some 30 minutes out of Broome via a very dodgy red dirt track wrongly called a road. Large trucks tear along the last section throwing red dust skyward - obviously they get paid by the hour and are not too concerned about pearl buying tourists. The farm is located on a beautiful turquoise Willie Creek with tidal movements of 10 metres, ideal for pearl growing. We had a talk about pearls for 45 minutes but it was entertaining and informative. We are all pearl experts now! Inside each pearl at Willie Creek the farmers implant a small piece of shell from the Mississippi River in America to be the core. The girls got to reach inside a live squishy and gooey mother of pearl shell and pull out a pearl worth around $6000! One prepared earlier no doubt. For morning tea we had some of the best damper ( I think I had 6 pieces before breakfast had been at 5.00 am) In the world. Afterwards we had a boat cruise on the creek to see how the pearls are farmed and 'encouraged' to grow. The pearls in Willie Creek are the 'naughty' ones who didn't have a pearl when they were X-rayed out at sea so they are bought back in for more help. Kelli picked out a beautiful pearl that will in time become a family heirloom for the girls to fight over.