Monday, September 25, 2006

BBQ Sunday

No rest for the wicked.
Two hours after MDR landed at home from his week long Philippines/Brisbane trip, it was off to the local park for a BBQ lunch.

Here he is demonstrating his beer marindade technique.

Sunday, September 17, 2006


En route from Townsville back to Cairns, I stopped in for lunch at Muddy's in Cardwell (07 4066 8133, 221 Victoria St. Cardwell Qld 4849). I'd heard good things about this place from MDR and I'm a big fan of crabs so I was really looking forward to a big feed of chilli crab.

The chilli mud crab was priced at around $70 on the menu which seemed a bit toppy. I was pretty hungry, however, so I went ahead and ordered one anyway. Here's a picture of the crab I was served;

Well, I must say, the crab was excellent. Cooked to perfection with just enough chilli so as not to overwhelm the taste of the very fresh crab meat. Was it worth $70? Definitely!

Monday, September 11, 2006

Let them eat Spinach

Monday saw the departure of the MB family from Charters Towers, MDR was pushing everyone along in the morning, much to MB's disgruntlement. The girls managed to get in half an hour's shopping before being hustled back to the car for the return journey to Cairns.
Lunch was just south of Ingham, at one of those roadside rest stops. This one was adjacent to a farm with two very friendly ponys, who watched as the MB family made and ate salad rolls for lunch.
This equine pair's patience was rewarded when MB and Cindy (Son of MB's girlfriend) fed the remainder of the salad spinach to them, which was gobbled up with lots of lip smacking. This was so much fun more treats were offered, two fermenting mandarines and an old baby's rusk which the horses made short of work of as well.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Australian Bank of Commerce

Just one of the beautiful heritage buildings in Charters Towers, this one built in 1891.

Pioneer Cemetery

This large cemetery in Charters Towers contains so many graves of children and adults in the prime of their lives. A poignant reminder of the fortunate times and longevity we enjoy.
Thanks to son of MB for all of the CT photos.

Charters Towers Sunday Sightseeing

Sunday saw the MB family on a whirlwind sightseeing tour of Charters Towers with mother of MB and step-dad, Steve.
Luckily it was the second Sunday of the month and the local markets were being held at the CT showgrounds. Our party swarmed into the markets, scouring the stalls for underpriced treasure. Lots of country style crafts and some nice fresh produce on sale. MDR & MB are honey fans and found some excellent Bloodwood honey being sold by a smiling eyes local honey producer. MB also spotted a couple selling chickens and was able to have an illuminating discussion on the relative merits of the Transylvanian Naked Neck hens, apparently they are very good in the heat as their featherless necks can shed heat quickly. MB harbours a strong desire to establish a chook pen and so have a ready supply of the freshest eggs possible.
After the markets it was a stroll downtown and coffee at the cafe in Australia's first stock exchange. The slowest coffee ever, 50 minutes wait for a lukewarm latte. Charters was once the second largest city in Queensland and has a fine collection of heritage buildings, all in very good shape.
PB treated us with Lunch to go which he picked up from Chez Coq Rouge for a picnic by the Burdekin River Weir (pictured). CT is so well supplied with water that the Qld Govt. wants to pipe their water down to the parched south-east.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Expedition to the Interior

After days of planning and discussions the MB family loaded up the trucksters and hit the road for Charters Towers on Saturday morning, only 35 minutes behind schedule. Not bad for 6 adults and one baby.
At the last planning "meeting" the inland route incorporating a trip to the Undara Lave Tubes was cancelled in favour of the quicker (5.5hrs) coastal route. Amazing how one little baby can have so much influence.
The coastal route took the expedition party Townsville where they turned west to Charters Towers, which is approximately 120klms inland. Townsville has the temerity to proclaim itself the "Capital of North Queensland". This sign at the northern entrance to Townsville did not go unnoticed by some members of the travelling party. MDR feels it's been placed there, rather than on the southern entrance, just to antagonize the folks who live in that verdant jewel of a city 4 hours north of Townsville.

Friday, September 01, 2006

Farewell Winter

MDR & MB's last day in Melbourne happened also to be the last day of winter and reached a high of 24c, perfect for a stroll through the Botanic Gardens and Shrine of Remembrance. Pictured above is the view to the city from the steps of the Shrine.
One last gourmet meal was had at Trotters in Lygon St (recommended by The Age Cheap Eats). The veal and sage sausages were a treat and the service remarkably good.
MB's planned shopping spree was severely curtailed by strict enforcement of baggage restrictions, as it was her baggage was 5kg overweight, but the nice chap at Virgin check-in let it pass.

Stop Press: Keep posted for the next excursion, a road trip to Charters Towers soon to visit mother of MB. This is going to be one of those family vacation type road trips with kids, in-laws, the lot! Should be plenty of sparks flying.