Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Day 2 - Drive to St Helens

Woke up real early to check out.

(Yes, 10am is REALLY early for us.)

Went for an aimless drive in town, and eventually stopped at the tourist information center. I needed a more detailed map than the one provided by Hertz. It ain't easy being a navigator, ya know? :p

I had just started sipping my hot cocoa at a cafe nearby when Allan rang me. He needed us to take him to submit his girlfriend's (yes, you read it right, his girlfriend's) assignment because they were running late. It ain't easy being a good sister too huh? :/

So we picked up my stupidly-in-love brother and his girlfriend, gave them a lift to their faculty, and waited in the car ever-so-patiently while they went MIA for nearly an hour.

Bee liked the building

I liked the path more

We got bored

Took Allan and his girlfriend grocery shopping for a bit before we had to leave to drive up to St Helens. It'd be nice to spend more time in Launie with Allan if it wasn't such a short trip for us. Though he's (kinda) all grown up now, to me he's still that annoying little brother who likes to follow me everywhere I go.

It's no wonder that parents always refuse to acknowledge the fact that their kids are adults now. This must be how it feels like huh?

Leaving Launceston

Bee and I stopped at a tiny town called Lilydale to grab a quick bite. We both have this particular interest in small town cuisine, believing that they tend to be more authentic and less commercialised.

Well, in this case, not true.

My overly-salty chunky beef pie

The food wasn't great, but I guess the walk at Lilydale Falls made up for it a little. That's the reason we made a detour from Tasman Highway in the first place anyway.

Actually, the two small falls were nothing too impressive, so don't get your hopes up. But Bee loved the fresh air and the walk. Me? I was just glad that it was only a short walk. Forests creep me out. x_x

The first fall at Lilydale Falls

There were actually many pit stops planned for the road trip, but we couldn't stop for any of them. By the time we left Lilydale Falls, it was nearly 4pm and starting to get dark.

From there on, we pretty much didn't have the mood or time to even appreciate the lovely countryside sceneries along the way because we were racing to get to St Helens before the night fell. That's the downside about traveling in winter, I guess.

The night caught up to us sooner than we thought. Before we knew it, we were driving in complete darkness on extremely narrow and winding roads, uphill and downhill! We had very limited visibility and hell-a-lot of sharp curves. To make the matter worse, we were the only car on the road!

It felt like a rally race in a horror show, if that makes sense.

Bee got a kick outta scaring me though. When there was no other car, he asked if I remembered "Dead End", the first movie we watched together, which also turned out to be a lame thriller. When a car started trailing us, he begun telling me about The Texas Chainsaw Massacre and serial killers. I nearly had to stuff a sock in his mouth to shut him up.

We breathed a sigh of relief when we finally reached St Helens just before 7pm because, well, I didn't booked our accommodation for the night. Haha.

Now don't shoot! It was only because I wanted this cozy little place that I stayed at when I visited St Helens in 2001, but I couldn't find it online. So, I thought we'd try our luck when we got in town. I couldn't remember the motel's name, but I vaguely remembered the directions.

After making a few rounds, we found the place, but only to realise that it's nothing like what I remembered it to be. I guess a lot of things could change in 7 years huh? Memories can be very deceiving sometimes.

We changed our minds and settled for this little villa on the hill that comes with a stunning water view. In the day, of course.

Upon checking in, the manager warned us that if we wanted anything to eat, we better hurried up. All restaurants were closing in an hour, and everything else in town, including supermarkets, had already closed for the day.

The view we were supposed to get from our deck

So we rushed into town and had dinner at the first decent looking restaurant we came across on the main road. The pasta and pizza were nothing to shout about, Bee and I were just glad that we got fed. Terrified at the mere thought of starving, we even ordered an extra pizza to takeaway. Just in case, huh?

Back at our villa, we quickly jumped into the hot shower and turned our heater to full blast. The rest of the night was spent lying on the couch, watching Austar on TV.

With no internet and no reception on my mobile, I suddenly felt like I've been cut off from the outside world. Have we become that reliant on modern technology without even realising it? Have I?

"Sweetie, do you feel like we're kinda disconnected from civilisation?" I asked Bee.

He nodded repeatedly.

"Could you see yourself living here?" I asked again. "It's kinda nice."

"Hell no!"

I guessed as much. -_-