This has been one heck of a busy week! There’s been so much going on that I’m only just able to sit down and type up the blog so my sincere apologies for the delay in getting this post out!
At the beginning of lat week I headed up to Mooloolaba to dive on the wreck of the HMAS Brisbane…but that’s another story entirely. What we are going to try and concentrate on here today is the visit I made on Thursday and Friday down to the Gold Coast Hinterland.
Tucked away in the lush, green rolling hills of the Lamington National Park area sits a traditional, quaint, untouched little piece of paradise known as Cedar Glen. It’s a working farm stay with buildings dating from the early days of the pioneers all in the traditional style.
The drive down the coast from Brisbane took a little over an hour, my hyper-environmentally friendly Toyota Prius whisking me along in near silence through the winding back roads that slowly got smaller and less used. There’s something exciting about leaving the beaten track and exploring these back roads, the seemingly endless driveways branching off the main drag to far off acreages in the distance.
My trip wasn’t just about another blog entry, I was here to meet 12 very important children from Korea who had been brought across to Queensland for an week long adventure by Daks Clothing – a major company in Korea.
The kids had been the lucky winners of a competition were aged between 8 – 12 and seemed full of life and excitement as I met them on the driveway to the farm – and so they should be with horse riding, cow milking, boomerang throwing, whip cracking and lots more to come in the next day!
Juweon and I dropped our bags off into our own little cottage, sat on the veranda and took in the view and prepared ourselves for the onslaught. 12 children for 2 days could be interesting.
First stop a quick horse-ride around the valley, then the boys all hopped in the 4WD and Mark drove us for half an hour along some pretty rough tracks slowly climbing up the side of the hillside. We stopped at the top and had time to grab some snaps of the vast, picturesque landscape below just making out the farm we’d come from in the distance.
With the our hunger building it was time for them all to attack a traditional billy kitchen down by the river complete with the skillful art of swinging a billy-can to sink the tea leaves. All the kids tried it and all, unfortunately, succeeded to keep themselves dry!
The afternoon was more about learning new Australian skills with lessons in boomerang throwing (and yes I did get to make one come back) and finally whip-cracking.
Now I tried this before when out at the Stockman’s Hall of Fame in Longreach and wasn’t particularly good then, but this time (once I’d put a great big red mark across my stomach) I actually got a good noise out of the thing. I doubt I’ll be mustering any cattle in the near future but it was a good enough attempt!
As the sun dropped down behind the hills the orange glow made for a great sunset and the temperature dropped away pretty quickly so it was back to the house for a change of clothes before returning to the main farm stay for a hearty dinner.
After dinner I gave the kids a talk about the Best Job, following your dreams and being the best that you can be whatever you take on…and only one of them fell asleep!
Next day Juweon and I awoke for the sunrise. It was a mystical time of day with a light mist sweeping through the valley adding to the atmosphere of the first part of the day. The odd kangaroo jumped past too!
Staying on a farm means a lot of work for everyone and we were no different. First job of the day – feeding the animals; sheep, pigs, geese, ducks, chickens and finally the cows!
Before hitting the road back to Brisbane there was one more job left to do – milking the cow. I don’t think some of the kids even knew that milk came from cows judging by their reaction as the first teat was pulled. They each had a go some looking very concerned, some although they did it every day!
Then suddenly that was it – I had to leave. There were 12 very bouncy wavy kids saying goodbye as I turned and drove away down the driveway. But what fun we have had together.
Good luck taking them all to Dreamworld then Juweon!