My friends and I just spent a wonderful weekend in Yeppoon, at Camp Lammermoor. Some of you may recall that we were there several months ago. Well, nothing much has changed… except for the weather. Last time, it was winter, and we spent our days going back and forth from pants to shorts, and staying inside during a 24 hr downpour.
This time around, it’s spring, though it feels like summer, and the days are hot. But being near the beach, there was a breeze, and the nights were pleasantly cool. Since I’ve been suffocating of the heat, at night, over the last week, the coolness of the beach nights… oh, it was bliss. One of these days, I’m going to get a decent night’s sleep again, and then maybe I’ll have some more energy.
Since we didn’t get a public holiday on Monday, this time around, several of us took Friday off and headed to Yeppoon during the morning. We arrived in the late afternoon, carried all our stuff inside, and several of us headed for the beach. Just a walk, no swimming this time. On the walk, I noticed the jellyfish picture on the sign, for the very first time. Pretty cool design, I think.
With the tide out, we wandered down to the rocks, and started climbing over them. Many of them were mossy, or coated in barnacles (or something) from being underwater, but I discovered quickly that it didn’t protect your feet from the sharp edges on the rocks. Of course, flip-flops might’ve helped protect our feet, but then you’d be unable to get a good footing, and I’d be just as likely to fall.
Two of my friends were climbing up the cliff, but I was just determined to get to a spot that looked like sand. I thought it would give my feet a rest. As you’ll see, it wasn’t actually sand, but kajillions of teeny-tiny shells, with some bigger ones thrown in. After getting back out of the shells, I had them stuck all over my feet, so the return trek was more painful than the hike in, because the little shells kept getting ground into my feet. Water on my feet felt so good, when I finally got out from among the rocks.
After some delicious pumpkin soup and a cappuccino, the rest of our group began to arrive. Cynthia, our cappuccino machine (officially, Saeco Syntia), became our special friend, over the weekend. Sure, most of us didn’t learn the trick of making cappuccino, but you could get a frothy, freshly ground coffee, whenever you wanted. Yes, she ground your coffee, right before brewing. Absolutely marvelous.
This weekend was a Bible retreat for some of my local friends and I, and our theme was God’s grace. So, we watched a variety of messages on DVDs, with all different speakers, on the subject of grace. It was really great.
Oh, and we did start the weekend by watching the movie Amazing Grace (starring Ioan Gruffudd, Romola Garai, & Albert Finney), as it obviously covered the subject and the song, as well. I still want a copy of the bagpipe version of the song, from the end of the movie.
I thought it was ridiculous to have breakfast scheduled for 7am on a Saturday, but when the sun poured into our veranda (we’d gone for the beds with the most breezes) in the morning, we were all up by slightly after 6:30am. I decided against having a scalding hot shower (only temperature we could get out of the showers) that morning, as having my skin boiled off, first thing, didn’t sound very appealing.
We ate well, I must say. Huge pancakes for breakfast, with any topping you wanted (ice cream included). Steaks and sausage, with salad fixings, for lunch. No, I’m not pulling your leg, even if I didn’t eat any of the salad fixings. People mock me for not liking raw vegetables, or like salad with just cheese and Italian dressing. Get over it. All the food was awesome. And it IS true that if my brothers and cousins were presented with these kinds of side dishes at a barbecue, they’d be slightly alarmed. I have at least two aunts that would be thrilled, though. Tomatoes, cucumbers, shredded carrots, green peppers, and corn, to go with the lettuce and shredded cheese. And no dressing, though there were plenty of sauces, like tomato and barbecue.
I’ve had a think about this, and a barbecue at home would have meat, with deviled eggs, baked beans, potato salad, and maybe a pre-made salad of some sort. Oh, and if it’s the best season of summer, we’d have corn on the cob, with blueberry something-or-other for dessert. Sorry, I’ve been away from home cooking for a while, so if you think of something else, fill me in.
Speaking of blueberries, we can get them at the store now. For somewhere between $3.50 and $4, you can get 125 grams of them. Translation: that’s about a handful of them. I ate about three of them out of the fridge today, and could practically cry, thinking of the buckets and buckets that my family eats every summer. My parents go blueberrying WEEKLY, when they’re in season and we practically get the runs, we eat so many. And I know we sure ain’t spending that kind of money on them.
Ok, back on track. In the afternoon, we headed for the beach, and before long, Dave took charge of starting the Ultimate Frisbee game, which included telling everyone that they weren’t allowed to sit the game out. So, all twelve of us played, so there are no pictures of Aussies playing Ultimate. Sorry. : )
Then we went swimming, while avoiding the occasional jellyfish. Most of the ones we saw were small, and the guys picked them out of the water, and threw them a good distance away. I rediscovered the joys of floating on my back in the water, because I didn’t have a lot of energy over the weekend, and treading water was really wearing me out. But the floating… oh, it was wonderful.
I happened to notice quite a lot of lovely flowers, during our travels. I recognize the frangipani, of course, having seen them in Hawaii. But for the rest, I’m really not sure. Someone did point out the mangrove, with it’s huge leaves. The one I’m holding my hand up against, that was quite a small leaf. Some of them were huge.
After dinner and watching the last video of the evening, I introduced some of them to playing Five Crowns, a card game similar to Phase 10 and Rummy, while the others played Bible Taboo. They were such a riotous group that we had a hard time not getting distracted from our own game. Eventually, we finished both games, and started playing Cranium… which I think now that I’ve only played once before. Having to figure out word puzzles, draw pictures with your eyes shut, use someone else as a puppet to act something out… it was really very fun.
We had to leave on Sunday, so after breakfast and our final video (and then finishing the movie), cleaned up the place, and went back to the beach. Last trip there, we were surprised to find the tide in. I hadn’t really planned to go swimming, though the rest had, but I was perfectly fine with swimming in my clothes. So, after flinging around the Frisbee in the incoming waves, in we went, where we found some muck in the water that looked like floating sand, but I think it was some kind of algae.
I say that, because when I got home, I washed my dirty clothes with my swimming togs, and everything came out smelling like that moldy algae. So, I ran it through the wash again, and the smell still didn’t go away. I’m praying it’ll finally come out after a few more washings.
And that was our weekend. It was a good one, and I hope we’ll fit one more in, before I head home in the fall (American spring). Now, if I could just get my energy back. If you think of it, pray for me. Something’s wrong, I don’t have much appetite and I don’t have a lot of energy, just enough to look after the kids, but not much left over. I’m hoping it’s just the heat, so I’m waiting to see if things improve after I get my AC, next week. It could be that I’m not sleeping well. But that doesn’t explain my not wanting to eat much.
How was your weekend? If you’re on the U.S. East Coast, did you get snow?