Day 18 Thursday 3510km
Slept in a bit as I was unsure about what I was doing today. I needed to run up to Braidwood for petrol and some groceries, so I took my time preparing morning coffee and did a bit of laundry. Before nine a.m., I pulled out and headed up to the largest peach orchard in the area, but all of the fruit and most of the leaves were gone. The workers I saw were pruning off the majority of the branches, so I headed up to Braidwood to take care of business. On the way I saw a few wallabies jump out of my way, and soon a lyrebird scuttled right in front of me. The tail on that sucker was the spitting image of the ten-cent piece and I got a good laugh out of spotting it. In Braidwood, I found a café to plug my laptop in, and settled in for a nice breakfast of a ham and cheese sanga with a poached egg on top. After filling up jumpin’ joan as well as my 20 litre jerry can, I headed back down to Araluen and back up the Major’s creek road to a plot just beyond the orchard I had scoped out before. This one had lemons and I pulled in and painted a small oil panel. I finished up and hit the Araluen hotel on the way back to have a Toohey’s Old and talk a bit with the bartender. Back at Gail’s, I made up some gumbo and we had a big feed, during which she shared her Johnny Walker Blue with me, which made my night. As we settled in to retire, I grabbed one last beer and walked up the back paddock to the highest point and watched the moon and fog descend. Araluen is truly a magical place.