Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Gypsy soul tour diary - Kings Canyon and Coober Pedy SA

27th September 2010....

We passed the SA border yesterday and we’ve seen and done so much in between Uluru and Coober Pedy.

After Uluru we stopped by Kings Canyon which was about 300 k’s out of the way (if you can call that 'stopping by'), but we had the time and it was the only place we were allowed to take Freddy: no National Park - hooray! It’s starting to get very hot again ... nice

Heading up the steep steps to the top of Kings Canyon

The view from the top, a little further up you can see across to the Simpsons Desert

This is the sign at Kings Canyon -cute- look at the face : )
The guys at parks and wildlife were very creative!

After a mini picnic at Kings Canyon we headed off - we’ve been driving non stop since then. We need to get to Wagga Wagga on Friday for a 10 am interview with ABC Riverina and then a gig that night. Back from the 'tourist' thing to gigging again. We have a few gigs back to back from Friday onwards.

It’s the last leg of the tour and I’m feeling half nervous and half missing home. In 2 weeks we'll be back in Blackheath….yikes ... what will I do with myself when I get back home? Actually I’ve got so many visual art ideas that I’m dying to try out when I get home.

Today we were planning to just drive all day and get past Coober Pedy and then when we got to Coober Pedy we realised this was the town where everyone lives underground. It’s an opal mining town and the landscape looks like something from the moon: full of craters. We went to an underground cafĂ© for a milkshake - weird, like inside a cave.

Landscape surrounding Coober Pedy SA ".. ground control to Major Tom..."

This is the town of Coober Pedy ... with a very handsome tourist in the foreground:)
We then went on a tour to an underground home called ‘Fayes Home’. Faye, who no-longer lives there, (she sold about 7 years ago) moved to Coober Pedy in 1963 when there was just one shop and the opal miners.

Fayes' entertaining area

She built and dug the underground house all on her own and then got two friends who were girls to help with the other 3 rooms – Talk about girl power! I’m impressed.

me and Colin - who lives here now

There's even an indoor pool!
It’s very hot in Coober Pedy and this is why most people live in underground houses. The temperature in the 'house' never goes above 25 or below 21 - perfect.

This is what a house looks like in Coober Pedy! You'll see little pipes scattered over the hill, that means that there are people living underneath!
Okay, enough underground living, we headed off around 4 pm and we decided to drive for another hour or two - we've got looong way to go till Wagga. Need to get to Port Augusta tomorrow.

About 50 k's out of Coober Pedy we passed a truck with smoke pouring out of the motor, it looked like it was about to explode. We pulled over and helped the driver open the cab and make sure it wasn't about to catch fire. There's no reception this far out, so Stew drove back with the truck driver (Ian) to towards Coober Pedy to get some phone reception to ring for help. I waited at the truck with his dog ‘Taz’ in case anyone nicked his (un-insured) tools….I don’t know what I would have done if someone tried to nick something "Sure, go ahead, take what you need"?

It started to get dark and Stew and Ian weren't back yet ... mmm "I'm sure I'm safe. Wolf Creek WAS just a movie!" .... and then they returned - phew, no need to look for his shotgun in the truck - nah, only joking mum and dad!

All sorted, a tow truck was on the way and Ian would spend he night in Coober while he sorted out repairs. So, "Our work here was done!" and we drove off into the sunset, yet another happy ending in the name of truth, honour and justice!!  :)


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