We survived our first weekend on Waiheke Island! Yesterday our hosts, Dave and Sue, invited us over for a Sunday roast with their friends Ben and Kim. It was a great afternoon playing cards with Zion and Kai (Dave and Sue’s kids), eating lots of good food, trying out mulled wine and Dave’s home brews (both of which are quite good), and chatting it up about everything from music to traveling to politics. And yes, Bobby even threw in a little singing and dancing to some punk music to show the Kiwis and Brits how we roll in the States. Definitely a night to remember. And so cool to receive such a warm welcome from Dave, Sue, Zion, Kai and their friends. Cheers!
Tag Archives: Party
Monday we had another full day in Adelaide. We started with the Botanic Garden, which was a great way to kick off the first sunshine in four days. There is a waterlily pavilion which is a greenhouse with tons of Victoria amazonica waterlilies in the center of the park. It explains the biology of the waterlilies but beware if you bring your kids along – the description of pollination says it is a night club for the bees and gives a play-by-play in night club terms of how the mating and pollination work.
A local Adelaidean (James Metz) told us about Vego and Lovin It – a fantastic vegetarian restaurant tucked away on Rundle Street. There is only a small mosaic sign above an unmarked doorway telling the world this place exists. As we ventured up the narrow staircase we came to a small door and inside was packed. It was an apartment with 200 sq ft holding 25 people with real retro (not manufactured to look retro) posters and clippings covering every surface. Walking in, we knew the food had to be good. All they really serve is veggie burgers and they are by far the best burgers we have ever eaten. And that includes any of the Aussie beef burgers I’ve been eating lately (which are kind of gross but in a good way with ham, egg, cheese, lettuce, tomato, onion, beetroot and sweet chili sauce).
After that we checked out the South Australian Museum for a little culture. A very cool exhibit on Aboriginal culture that included a few honest discussions about the past, which was refreshing to see.
Then we caught a train to Glenelg (that is a palindrome for my grammar savvy friends) to check out a brew pub we had read about called Holdfast Hotel. But the place was out of its own beer – yup, I said a brewery out of its own beer. It would be like going to Rock Bottom and they had none of their beer so they served Summit instead. After that we quickly headed back to the city to meet James and his friends to see where the locals hang out. And they definitely did not lead us astray. We hit up the Colonist for a few beers and a little Chinese restaurant that we knew had to be good because they greeted Marty, one of our new friends, by name. Always go where the locals go and you won’t be disappointed!
At our campsite a couple nights back, a fellow camper told us about a local watering hole we had to stop by on our way to Darwin. It’s about 5km off the highway, but was assured it was worth the stop in. Boy was he right. The place is called Daly Waters, specifically Daly Waters Pub.
One thing to note is the pubs in the outback are not like anything you find around the coast. It’s kind of like the decor of a Joe’s Crab Shack (but authentic), with the patronage of Chaska (but much rowdier). If you see one, stop in.
We arrived to Daly Waters pretty early in the day and jumped in the pool to cool off. There was this sweet steel guitar player on the stage and then later a ‘comedian’ came on. Looking through the crowd, we were by far the minority (being under 60). The jokes were straight out of every great rural U.S. casino comedian’s playbook. First, alienate the foreigners, second, throw out a joke for the silver-foxes, and third, let the racial slurs fly. Every joke started with, “Anyone from __(insert country)__ here tonight? Let me tell you about them….” All set with the background music of the Beach Boys’ greatest hits. Oh to be old.
As we drove out of Carmila Beach this morning, we stumbled on the single coolest sign in rural Australia. Drawing you a mental picture, the town has about 10 buildings in total, one being a police station and another a gas station / EMS garage. Across from the broken down tennis courts that haven’t seen a tennis ball in my lifetime, sits this cute little house. Next door sits a tractor with a fresh coat of paint, no tires, no engine and no seat. What a prize. Enjoy kiddos.
It’s official – I’m a carnivore. I kept telling myself that I was only eating meat on the farm to be a gracious guest. But in Byron (a hippie town with lots of tofu) I encouraged Rob to order chicken wings for us to share. (Bobby Interjecting – I wanted hummus, but she wanted wingies ) I liked them so much we had to order round two.
Byron is a lot like Isla Vista – lots of stoner kids wandering around with surfboards looking for a party. We did find a little slice of Key West at the Hogs Breath Saloon. Yup, we definitely know how to keep it classy.
Is it a bad thing that in a crazy party town the bartender said he was shocked that we were still standing after all the cocktails we ordered? Way to represent Minnie-apple! (Bobby Interjecting Again – I now am editing the post way too much for a guy that almost got cut off at the sassy bar, but here I go — Yes, the bartender is very touchy. In fact he’s about 17 years old and a tall drink of water…..for Bobby that is. But the food speaks for itself. Awesome wingies!)
And the music takes the cake — it screams 1990s meets eurotrash. Just don’t say that to the Europeans, I saw how mad they get firsthand when you rip on their dance music. I guess they don’t consider the term “eurotrash” to be a compliment…