It’s been nearly a month since we came to the blue mountains for the Australian Climbing Festival and to climb in the mountains. We had not anticipated staying this long and Mike and I both are eager to return west and check out the Grampians before winter settles in full force! Why are we still here? Well, the short of it is that physio just doesn’t stop because you are on the road. I have a few more sessions here in the blueys before I think I will be ready to stop therapy, again. Hopefully this round will last me until I get back home for some longer term conditioning. It’s really disturbing to me how out of whack my body has been ever since the illness and etc. abated just about a year ago, now. I’m actually quite thrilled that I can be out on this trip and climbing as well as I have been given all of the setbacks the last 2.5 years. 🙂 So, no need to worry about me, life is good. 🙂
I’ve been thinking about the blueys, the climbing here, the people, the cliques, the lifestyle, and more. With access to the city by train or car in under 2 hours, these parts have a suburban-esque feel to them more so than the small town feel of which the towns mostly resemble. On the surface, you could drive through a small town like Blackheath and notice the typical Fish and Chips shop on the main strip, or the Hotel boasting the best pies in the area (and they mean meat pies not sweet pies! :). But if you drove around a little or just parked and walked the tiny 2×2 sq blocks, you would find no less than 4 cafes, 2 hotels, several pubs, boutiques and antique shops, small bakeries, butcheries, organic food marts, along side your one stop shop market with eggs, milk, bread, jams and chips. There’s the liquer store and video store, 2nd hand store, hardware store, fitness gym, auto repair, pizza shop and post, too. It all seems rather ‘normal’ for a small town. But, look even a little closer and you begin to see that there are Chinese, Indian and Thai restaurants nestled inbetween. Boutiques offering asian trinkets, and an upscale restaurant offering a wide array of strange meals for $60 a head (think lamb brains as eccentric!). It must be the Sydney people’s lure to the mountains that sustains these shops or even creates the need to have such diversity in this kind of town in essentially, the middle of nowhere.
Well, we have left that town, Blackheath, for an even smaller town (I guess that town was too big for us!). We have now relocated to Mt. Victoria. As far as I know, there is a pub, hotel, bookstore and trinket store here, though I haven’t walked the short block to find out exactly, yet. Best of all for where we are staying is that we have internet!! So, staying in the blue mountains another 2 weeks will have one huge upside! I don’t want to jinx us by saying this (I really hope we aren’t jinxed from it!), but we have had some major luck since arriving in the blueys. ok, so we find a room in a stranger’s home that turns out isn’t really a place for us to stay but anyway, we have temporay internet in the home and time to find a new place. We then luck out on meeting someone who rents their holiday house and there’s room there for us for 2 weeks! ok, no internet, but we have 2 floors of a house to ourselves! Now, we hoped to be leaving for the Grampians by today and friends Monique and Simon were planning the same so it was a fun thought to think we’d be heading over there with them, but instead, therapy won and as luck would have it, Monique and Simon offered us their home to sit while they are away. 🙂 Their home is really nice and they have internet. I even get to tinker in Monique’s garden (and hopefully not kill anything), which will be a real treat. I hope my body ‘pulls up’ (as Julian, my therapist, says) successfully and quickly so we can meet up with them soon. Meanwhile, more climbing in the blueys, lots of sorting of things via the internet, and rehab!
Now that I’ve climbed a ton in the blue mountains, I’m going to put together my favs list. Keep an eye out for it if you are coming here to climb!