The heat woke us up early, as always. Linde left us roaming around alone for her scenic flight. Inez and I stayed at the campsite to pack up and write a card Linde could take home for our parents. We had a coffee at the bakery and waited for Linde. When she returned, she was ecstatic. She said it was fantastic. It was nice to hear that she could still do something fun before we dropped her off at the airport. Shortly after, we drove one hour to Learmonth Airport. We saw amazing scenery and the largest termite nests in large numbers, but all good things must come to an end. We said goodbye to Linde and headed toward Exmouth. It felt strange to travel with just the two of us again, but it was also good for us. We visited some shops and did some grocery shopping. We chose a campsite and booked four days, which gave us the fourth day for free. Going out to eat and drink together was enjoyable, and we really enjoyed it. At the campsite, we watched Temptation Island together and relaxed!
It was a sweltering night with no breeze. We were clearly traveling further north because it was getting hotter and more humid. We were tired, and it was evident that we wouldn’t do anything today. After a shower and breakfast, we worked on our blog and photos. With Linde with us, we had little time and were very behind. The swimming pool at the campsite was large and well-used. We had already found a favorite place in the town center to have drinks and aperitifs. We called Steve & Sheila and spent the entire evening playing card games. These relaxing and leisurely days were more than welcome.
In the coming days, the nights became slightly cooler, and the wind picked up. That was definitely a relief. We spent a lot of time at the pool and continued updating our blog and photos. We were still looking for work. We handed out our resumes at all the shops, restaurants, and stores, but we were told they weren’t hiring everywhere. I called all the campgrounds between Exmouth and Broome, but no one was looking for the staff there either. We talked to an Israeli couple who told us that we could call Hyden Wave Rock Motel. They had worked there for six weeks and knew they were always looking for staff. The only downside was that Hyden was 1,500 kilometers back down south and completely out of our way. We decided to give it a chance, and within two days, they let us know that we had the job and could come in to start as soon as possible. We were happy to have work finally, but we still preferred to stay in Exmouth. We let them know that we could start in one week.
We still had one week left and tried our best to find work closer to our route or more on our way to Darwin. A town called Katherine, near Darwin, offered us a second chance. It was similar work, but we would have to drive further, and, in the end, we were offered fewer hours. None of the other possibilities in Exmouth had responded. The choice was quickly made. We agreed to work in Hyden. Our life of doing nothing for the past seven months would soon come to an end. Nothing was left to do but make the most of the next few days. Cape Range National Park was located near Exmouth. The national park offered snorkeling and hiking opportunities. I had to brake abruptly during our first trip to the national park. A dingo was crossing the road. We were so happy to see one finally. We went snorkeling at Turquoise Bay. The water and beach were gorgeous. Snorkeling was great fun. The reef was stunning, with many large and small fish. We even saw a turtle and swam alongside it. At one point, the turtle surfaced to breathe, and we were only one meter away from it. It was an extraordinary moment for us. Unfortunately, we lost all the photos from our snorkeling trip, but we found two.
The next day, we revisited the national park. We drove to the end of the park and took a short hike among the rocks. We saw some beautiful natural formations, and it was nice to stretch our legs. Oyster Stacks Bay was a good spot for snorkeling. You can only enter the water when the tide is high enough. Other people were snorkeling there, so we decided to join in. The water wasn’t as high as before, but it was still high enough that we didn’t touch the coral. We saw a wide variety of fish. We could see more since the water was lower than at other snorkeling locations. Some people pointed out two baby reef sharks when we exited the water. Unfortunately, we had just missed them in the water.
We heard a cyclone approaching the campsite might land in Exmouth. Several roads heading north were already closed or inaccessible due to heavy rain. It quickly became clear that our plan to continue driving north was not the best idea. We went to bed early. The next morning, we set off for Hyden. Neither of us was looking forward to it, but it was either work or go home.
X Ely & Inez