Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Australia road trip day 11 - Eastern Creek car racing and off to Coffs Harbour

19 November 2013

It was one of the most exciting days for Viv. He had signed up a session at the Eastern Creek International Raceway (now renamed to Sydney Motorsport Park). Operated by the Australian Racing Drivers' Club, it's one of those places where you pay $35 per minute and attempt to drive at 200 kmph, aka go mad. He told me he hadn't slept all night out of excitement! He and Appa had left at 6:30 am, before Xena and I even woke up. The slot he had booked was for 8 am, and it was quite a distance away.

I'll leave Viv to fill in more details, but basically you drive in a racing car with an instructor sitting next to you. You can also choose to sit vella and let the instructor drive. But the aim in both is to drive at a crazy speed. Apparently, the oldest person ever to do this was a 92-year-old woman.

They charged just over $500 for 10 laps, which included a DVD of the experience which they mailed to us later. I'll try to add the video here.

They got back around noon. I had taken along lots of books, toys and puzzles to keep Xena entertained in the car, which came in handy as we waited for them. 

Xena taking a picture of me with her beloved Hello Kitty camera

Xena using her toe to solve a jigsaw puzzle

We said our goodbyes to our amazing hosts (we gave them a great review on airbnb.com, and they also gave us a great review, with a special mention of how much Xena had delighted them.) and left for Coffs Harbour, our stopover before reaching Brisbane. 

Xena puts on Viv's shades for the journey.

Appa, Xena and me 

Family shot with our rental car

The drive was a very scenic one, with lots of trees, streams against the beautiful cloudy sky. 

There was not much traffic, though we spotted an 18-wheeler which really freaked me out with its size!

The fire danger rating for the day was low. 

Xena was awake and chirpy for the first few minutes, after which she zonked out. 

We stopped for lunch around 2 pm. We went into a cafe but they had only pies and quiches so we decided to go to KFC and get some burgers without the patty for Viv and Appa. As we walked to the KFC, we passed by Hungry Jack's. We don't have that in Singapore so we thought we'd check it out. OMG. They not only had a veggie burger, it was the most divine-tasting one ever! (In Singapore, we're a little starved for good veggie burgers.) It reminded me of the veggie burgers in McDonald's in India. The strawberry milkshake and frozen Coke were also yummilicious!

Viv had woken up really early that morning and still had a lot of hours so drive so we asked him to stop and take a power nap, while Appa and I took Xena to a playground by the side of the road. 

Xena playing at the drive-thru in the playground

Xena takes over the wheel as her Poppy rests.

One of her favourite things to do was to jump down, holding her Thatsie's hand. 

Viv finished his nap and we were back on the road. We reached Coffs Harbour by about 8 pm. We checked into the Novotel Pacific Bay resort.

The place was nicely done up. 

Xena likes her room!

The bathroom was bigger than our bedroom at home!

Xena and her Poppy chilling in the living area

I gave Xena a bath and changed her into her night clothes. She insisted on sitting on the kitchen counter and putting on her socks by herself. 

Viv and Appa went out to get some packed dinner, which we ate in the apartment before calling it a day. 



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