Road trip to Newcastle

‘You’ll love it’ said Steve.

The National Band Championships are to be held in Newcastle. an hour north of Sydney. About 10 hours south of Brisbane.

We always go to our beach place at Caloundra for Easter but Steve has joined Brisbane Brass and will start with them playing his trombone after these championships.

Three days after being hit with covid we set off. Steve decided he could risk sitting with me in the car for the 10 hours it takes to drive. If I wear a mask.

We were to stay with our friends Peter & Elizabeth in their beautiful home on the hill overlooking Crescent Head beach. But I wouldn’t put them at risk.

Instead, we met them by the river in Gladstone. It’s a pretty spot. The weather was warm and Elizabeth had the Rose,beer and nibbles all ready at a socially acceptable distance. After sitting for 5.5 hrs with a mask I was ready for a splash of Rose!

After two hours of non stop chat we drove into Kempsey to stay the night at the Blue Moon Motel. At $140 it was a find. They had room service from their motel’s Chinese restaurant and a full moon. Just right for a night.

My covid symptoms are very mild almost non existent, thank goodness. So I’m coping well with the travel.

Last night we had dinner with Dinah, a school friend from Steve’s Canberra days. It was at a airy table almost on the verandah – to be away from others. It was at her sons restaurant Tinta. It’s on Lake Belmont and was just lovely. delicious barramundi.

Our hotel in Newcastle is well located next to City Hall where the championships are held.

This morning we heard the Brisbane Brass band 2 – the one Steve has joined and will start playing with when we return. They were very good and Steve is feeling nervous that he isn’t ready for it. But boy …..he’ll give it a go.

Dinah & Steve we’re at school together more than 55 years ago
The views over the lake were beautiful including the lightening behind the clouds.