The addiction of travel

Melbourne cup Hat parade, originally uploaded by gypsy woman1.

My favourite part of travel is meeting new people and when it happens so unexpectedly and spontaneously as on this years Melbourne cup day it gives you a warm glow that becomes a travel memory and story.

We had arrived in Gympie on November 1st. I realized it was Melbourne cup day when I noticed women walking down Mary Street in all their finery and topped with frothy confections on their heads going into the bars, cafes and restaurants. We hurried to do our shopping as a number of shops had warnings that they would be closed after midday. After all this is the race that stops the nation…

Having finished our shopping we had lunch then walked to the art gallery to look at the exhibitions. Well what a surprise, we pushed open the door to be greeted by approx 20 women all befrocked and behatted and a table of finger food and a bar in the corner. “Have you come to join the party?” they asked. One look at us in our crumpled travel clothes you could tell we were not in party gear. I think the champagne had flowed freely.” Join us” they invited, and steered us to the finger food and sold us a couple of tickets in the sweep stake.

One lady was a very talented hat designer and a parade was held with some of the other ladies modelling the creations. For the first time we did not have our cameras with us, we had only planned to do shopping, but the Iphone came to the rescue, sort of, quality of photos not so good but it captured a record. A hat competition was held for others that had come in their own hats, one enterprising soul creating a hat from newspaper,  prizes were awarded, and the newspaper hat was given a bottle of champagne for originality. By now it was count down to the race and we all watched the big screen and cheered and barracked for our mounts. What a thrilling finish it was, just a whisker between first and second AND my horse, number nine, came third and I received the princely sum of $10…

We are coming to the end of this trip, ahead is a 3 week house sit, then we will be heading home. We are now only 300km from the Goldcoast. This has been a very differnt journey to last year. 2010 was all about discovery and moving on. This time it was to find the warm weather and stay in that area until the weather warmed back up again at home. We have achieved our objective along with many other grey nomads that travel up and down the east coast like a flock of migrating birds.

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