The Rest Of The West

Trip Start Jan 03, 2012
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Trip End May 02, 2013


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Flag of Australia  , Western Australia,
Thursday, June 14, 2012

Approaching Perth under mostly sunny, partly cloudy skies the highway signs warned of severe weather on the way. We checked into our hostel just before the first short burst of rain fell.

After moving our things in we were disappointed with our selection since compared to other places it offered fewer amenities for more money.  Sylvia inquired about cancelling over the phone and the lady on the other end replied that a refund could be transacted the next morning.  Then we booked the hostel we had stayed in a week earlier and called back to cancel the first place, fully prepared to move.  This time a man answered and refused to refund the charges that had gone through before we arrived.  Sylvia pleaded with him but to no avail so, feeling defeated, we moved back in and took long hot showers.

After Jason finished he noticed that the reception office had reopened so he went in to inquire about the change of terms.  The woman was on duty.  Jason explained our situation and asked about the inconsistency between her and the man with respect to the offer of a refund.  She denied ever offering it but Sylvia knew what she'd heard and let the woman know it.  At the end of it all she gave us the refund and we moved on to One World Backpackers in the same room we'd slept in before. We spent a couple of hours using free wifi at the library, then cooked a hearty lamb pasta bolognese for dinner.

A tornado hit the city overnight, leaving a path of destruction in its wake.  We escaped unscathed, except for an unsettled sleep in the storm.  It was almost as if the whole thing happened somewhere else.

The following morning we drove out to Fremantle, a quaint little port town southwest of Perth with restored old buildings converted into shops, banks and cafes.  We stopped briefly at South Beach, no comparison to the glamour of Miami.  In town we perused the travel guidebooks for a place to stay in Bali and Jason bought a couple of Little Creatures pints while Sylvia purchased four chocolate bars to add to the one we already had.

It being our 'go all out' day we then parked at the Fremantle Fishing Boat Harbour for lunch.  At Kailis Fish Market we ordered seafood chowder, the catch of the day (the prized, meaty and slightly sweet dhufish) and a barbecue combo with fish kebab, scallops and squid, all washed down with a glass of cab-merlot from Margaret River, another wine region we didn't have time to visit.

The weather was fine so we sat out and paused only a moment for a photo when the gulls attacked our plates.  In a split second the fish kebab was gone and it took all of Jason's restraint not to kick the whole lot of them as they ate it on the boardwalk. The restaurateur graciously replaced the grilled morsels and we moved inside to enjoy our meal.

Stuffed to the gills we moved on to Cottesloe Beach.  We watched the golfers on the inland side of the road and the surfers on the breaking water. Both groups showed off their skills.  From there we made our way over to Kings Park.  Perhaps it was just over-hyped but despite offering some decent views of the city skyline over the Swan River, we found it a bit boring.

Laundry, leftovers, library wifi and packing occupied the rest of our evening.  With Bali only half a sleep away we prepared ourselves as best we could for the change in mindset to Asian travel again.  It would be very different this go around though as we'd be attending our friends' wedding and spending most of the time at a villa retreat away from it all.

Well before sunrise we dropped off the car at the airport and said goodbye to Perth.
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