12 December 2018
Cornelia had a great sleep which she really needed, having stayed awake until late last night. She burst into our room yelling “Surpriiiiiise! It’s meeeeee!” and that lovely happy mood lasted all day. It’s just been one of those perfect days, when everything is even better than good.
We had a very lazy morning, all slightly stiff from surfing yesterday, and while Cornelia watched Peter Rabbit on the ginormous TV, we did a different type of surfing on the net, still trying to find somewhere to go between the Gold Coast and Brisbane for a few days.
Our second surf lesson was booked for 11:00, and it came around very quickly! We had to jump in the car and race down to Town Beach, about a mile away, where the surf was better than at Flynn’s Beach where we had been yesterday.
It is amazing here. You do not have to pay for parking! Yes, you heard me right! Free public parking, by the beach, all day, every day! We couldn’t believe it when Corey told us.
After a slow start getting us all down to the water, a group of seven of us headed in: Courtenay, a Canadian girl who has been in Australia for a year, is finally learning to surf, and is going home to -30 next week; Jim, our fellow student from yesterday; Danny, a Welsh guy who’s been living in Oz for three years, Nick, from South London, who learned to surf in Woollacombe; and the three of us.
Either Corey or Loren would spend a bit of time with Bugsy, then leave her to rest on the shore while coming to see each of us individually. I was thrilled that I am finally getting up on my board without using my knee, and I even progressed to catching waves in front of them before they break (green water), rather than waiting for the safety of the white water, which is what I have always done. It wasn’t pretty by all means, but I did it! Ian was also mastering it and perfecting his technique. He is much quicker than I am at getting up on the board, but my ability to keep my balance is better. I think…!
Courtenay’s boyfriend’s mum was on the beach, so I asked her if she’d mind taking some photos of Cornelia surfing and send them to me, and she very kindly did so. I couldn’t believe how good she was after just two lessons. She doesn’t mind wiping out or going under water at all, although she tired more quickly today than yesterday. And if I watched her (and she knew I was watching her) she’d sort of cry out and pretend she couldn’t do it. And then when she thought I wasn’t looking, she was absolutely fine. Haha, she is funny!
The lesson lasted an hour and a half, and we were all suitably knackered! Having agreed another 11:00 start with Corey tomorrow, we changed out of our wetsuits, rinsed off under the beach showers and had lunch at the cafe in Town Beach. Ian and Cornelia both had toasties and I had “loaded smashed avo” which was boiled egg, Mexican beans, smashed avocado, sweetcorn, feta and coriander all smothered over sourdough toast. Yum.
Cornelia had earned herself an ice cream which she ate perfectly, without spilling a drop. Like I said, today was just magical!
After lunch, we decided to look around the town, but as we started walking off up the road (playing Snow White) we realised that “town” as we might expect didn’t seem to exist – at least not within walking distance! So we retraced our steps to the car and drove to the Port Central shopping centre instead. First stop was Target where Cornelia did very well, receiving a new bucket and spade set, two new books and a new pair of crocs (the cheap sort).
Then we went to a swimwear shop, as I’m desperate for a new bikini. Despite the woman’s best efforts to assist me, none of the gazillion suits I tried on fitted me very nicely. It wasn’t the bikinis, it was definitely my tummy…! Probably need to do something about that at some point…! 😂😳
Ian and Cornelia then sat outside and read stories from one of her new books, while I went to the supermarket and browsed a book shop for a scrapbook. I suspect I shall have the same trouble I did in New Zealand trying to find a suitable one.
Back at our apartment, Ian and Cornelia showered while I cooked supper (roast chicken, boiled potatoes, broccoli, peas and carrots) and sorted out our stuff from today. While she was waiting for her supper, Bugsy started reading her book and then couldn’t put it down. She read the whole thing from front to back, all by herself, only twice stopping to ask me how to pronounce a word (which she actually managed to work out herself when I asked her to try). I was, once again, completely astonished. Everything about her today has been utterly amazing 🥰. And yes, she even ate all of her meal, without saying yeuch once!
I went out for a run after we’d finished eating, which is not really the best time to go, but my legs had felt heavy all day and I was hoping they would start to recover by the evening. Hmmm, well, I’m not sure that was really the case, but I did my two miles, so that’s day twelve in the bag at least.
Cornelia had brushed her teeth and was in bed having a story when I got back. I stayed as quiet as I could, as I’m trying (not very hard, if I’m honest!) to get her to sleep without needing me there with her every night. When Ian had finished reading, she wanted the door left wide open so she could hear when I returned. I told her I was back but still very sweaty from my run and that I’d be in after my shower.
Well, it’s now 21:15, and she’s STILL awake, and I can hear the pages of her book turning. And I still haven’t had a shower. 🥴