“Shit. Are you OK?”
“Ah, no, not really. No no. I’ll be fine.”
“Jesus. Are you sure? Should we go to a hospital?”
“Hmm, maybe, I think so.”
That’s roughly how it went. I think. Frankly I was a bit flabbergasted by the whole thing.
We’d been in Fremantle for two weeks already though, and were desperate to get moving so we googled hospitals and found one in the Margaret River, so decided to scarper anyway. Maybe the foot wouldn’t be so bad when we got there.
We stopped to refuel in Busselton, and fortuitously, Erin got talking to a woman who was a GP. She told us the Margaret River hospital had no X-ray so we should go to Busselton instead, which was only two minutes round the corner.
We dropped her off, went to a play park and when we returned Erin was wearing what looked like a big ski boot on her left leg. A very badly sprained ankle, and a broken bone in her foot. Pretty much as she had predicted. Hmmm… Shit. That’s going to put a bit of a stop to our hikes.
But it’s not going to put a halt to the wine region 🙂 Off to the Margaret River, where we were going to stay with a friend I hadn’t seen in 15 years.
She lived in a lovely big house in Gracetown with her partner and three kids, and two weeks before we’d arrived, another family had temporarily moved in downstairs. Throw us into the mix and there were now 13 people living under one roof – it was great fun! Katie & Skye had a ball with all the other kids, and we hardly saw them the whole time we were there.
We even had a chance to visit one of the vineyards on our own, so we snuck off to Vasse Felix and enjoyed a lunch without reprimanding anyone for standing on chairs, picking up other people’s salt & pepper or stealing the flowers. Happiness indeed.
We spent three days there in total, and boy was I glad we were in a proper house. The weather was dreadful, and a storm blew through with 96km/hour winds, which is category 1 cyclone level. Our camper trailer would have been battered to pieces. And getting to spend all that time with a friend I hadn’t seen in so long, was a real gift.
The unexpectedly long time in Fremantle had kind of buggered us up though. There was still a long way to go, lots to see, and we still had the Nullarbor to cross – the notorious vast plain of nothingness that joins WA to SA.
Leaving Gracetown we travelled south along the coast road, heading to the most south westerly point of the country. Although it was a little bit out of our way, I was determined to make it there, having missed out on the most westerly point further up the coast.
We passed through a few more vineyards first, rolling hills and perfectly manicured lawns, then the trees took over. A thick and enormously tall forest of eucalypts which continued for about 100km to the bottom corner of the country.
Marked by the highest lighthouse in the country, Cape Leeuwin was pretty breezy, but a stunning location and definitely worth the visit.
“OK kids, let’s go, back in the car.”
I turned left, put the ocean on my right and powered off across the bottom of Australia. The last leg. Homeward bound.