There’s always a reason


I didn’t just pluck our holiday destination out of thin air. I booked with intent. And this is why …

Three years ago Husband took the kids to Melbourne to visit their cousins and I had a bright idea – instead of flying back to Sydney, why not meet on the Gold Coast instead. I’d drive up and reunite with them at a cheap hotel.

A few days later we’d drive down and visit our tree-change friends in The Channon to see how permaculture and their alpacas were treating them.

Awesome plan.

If only Husband hadn’t come down with something scarily akin to scarlett fever in Coolangatta.

He manfully drove us to The Channon … said a perfunctory hello to our hosts and locked himself in their spare bedroom for the next three days, only emerging to drive himself to Lismore hospital when his throat almost swelled shut.

Each day he’d beg me to drive him home, but there was no way I was sharing a car with Typhoid Mario.

Finally, I caved. We said a perfunctory goodbye to our hosts and bundled him into the car for the long haul home, pulling into a Coffs Harbour medical centre at one point when an ominous red rash spread rapidly over his body.

OK, I confess, not wanting to share a car with Typhoid Mario wasn’t the only reason I dragged my feet on returning to Sydney. I’d also happened to score two free nights at Mantra Salt in exchange for a travel story in Woman’s Day … So I kept vainly hoping he’d make a miraculous recovery.

But it wasn’t to be … So I gave our free holidayto our tree-change hosts, who also happen to be journalists. And they had a lovely time.

So, I’ve finally returned to do things right.

So far, so good.

Mantra Salt, tick!

And now The Channon, tick!

(Although Husband freaked me out slightly by sneezing his way through lunch in Bangalow.)

The Channon is 20km outside Nimbin and such a beautiful part of the world. Our friends live on a lush, green hill in a rambling timber cottage surrounded by chooks, ducks, alpacas, a cat and a giant poodle called … Wait for it … Charlie.

Yesterday was outrageously hot, so they took us to a gorgeous waterhole for a swim. As my friend promised – it really did look like something out of a Norsca ad.

(I’d include more pics but the house on the hill is out of mobile range and I’m having a few technical difficulties. So you’ll have to make do with this pic of me Alana Housing on the water’s edge … Thank you to Leanne Baxter for the expression, I’m having lots of fun with it on Facebook.)

Then we laid our Bangalow spoils out on the verandah and feasted on cheeses, olives and dips in the gorgeous evening breeze.


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