Saturday 24th October 2009, Narrabri.
We are now back into somewhat of civilisation at Narrabri, (see map) and it has become apparent how we have become spoiled over the past few years. It must have been a different time of the year that we were out that way, April-May, or it is just unbelievably hot for this time of year. We have been putting up with temperatures in the high 30’s over the past week or so, and the air-con has been getting a fair bit of work. We didn’t have air-con on past trips to the outback areas and do not have a recollection of needing it, then all past trips have been in early months of the year. One other thing is the water: for the past couple of weeks we have been using bore water, even for drinking, it has been good compared to some outback areas, but it is very welcome to be back into an area with non bore water. We have noticed the taste difference, and it is much different to shower in. One other major thing that has happened over the past couple of days is the decision I earlier made to give up smoking when I could not buy any more. I did run out of tobacco mid week this week at Lightning Ridge and it really had an adverse effect on me this time. It must be the difference in circumstances this time, being in excessive heat conditions and having to pack up and move in the heat. Last year in WA I went for two months without a smoke, but we were settled in Carnarvon in much more acceptable heat, and It didn’t frustrate me as much as it did this time. I have been absolutely ropable over the past few days so when we arrived yesterday I sent Linda down town to buy me a pack, and she happily obliged. The pack she got was different than I normally use, and was extremely old and dry, but a bit of potato peal in it overnight and it now has recovered a bit of moisture and is more tolerable. The local tobacconist is going to order me some good stuff so I will just have to make a decision about giving it up again some time in the future. More on Lightning Ridge: We did the other couple of ‘Car Door Tours’ one of which included a tour down and old mine, so we did enjoy our time at Lightning Ridge, apart from the heat and water, and we probably will return there some day. The hammer drill I purchased there for a pilot hole for tent pegs has once again come in handy. Here at Narrabri I also had trouble getting pegs in, so the drill did make it a lot easier. Park management insists that all that is under the grass is dirt, but I assure you that whatever is under the grass is a lot harder that dirt, and seemed to be a consistent couple of inches thick about 2-3 inches down. We are now looking forward to a week here to revisit some areas, and hopefully visit some we haven’t been to.