How can you fly for four hours and not cross half of one country?

Mon 27th Feb

Man this place is big. We’ve just flown for almost four hours and landed in another time zone without leaving the country. I realise that with two more flights to go I am tempting fate here but the flights so far have gone really well. There that’s put a curse on it – we can expect our bags to go astray on the way home (Not the guitar God; please not the guitar!).

What was really special about this flight was Katie meeting us at the airport. Katie is a Kiwi;  she lived with us for a while about twelve years ago (see earlier blog “Was that moo cow wearing a boob tube?”) and we’ve only seen her once since then. Katie settled in Perth a while back and we’ll be staying with her for much of our time around Perth. We have threatened to trash the bedroom, but she probably wouldn’t notice (only kidding xx). 

We have a few days with no gigs, the first two days we spent on the beach and in the sea with the temperature up into the high 30’s. It was beautiful.

Wed night 1st March, There’s a hell of a storm going on, thunder, lightning and it’s pissing down.

Thur 2nd March, The rain has stopped, it’s a cloudy morning but very warm. We drove into Perth to have a bit of a mooch around and then headed out to Lesmurdie, which is where we are playing on Friday night.

Robin Hood would’ve loved this tree.

Fri 3rd March, We stayed last night at Pauline and Kevin’s house in Lesmurdie, they have some cracking spiders.

Pauline and Kevin were both working today so we did a bit more sightseeing in Perth and then went to the beach at Cottesloe.

The beach was very nice but we don’t look great in the photos.

We played the Hills Folk Club that night. Itwas a smashing gig, all acoustic in Falls Farm, a community building which the locals refurbished and maintain for putting on events. Small world syndrome struck again, when we met up with a chap (Phil) who we’d met about four years ago in a folk club in the U.K. He was on his hols at the time and we were heading down to play Swanage festival. We swapped CDs and didn’t expect to see each other again. Until tonight.

Sat 4th March.

Tonight’s gig is in Bindoon. We left Pauline and Kevin’s house straight after breakfast and headed off, the plan being to spend some time having a good look around Bindoon. We arrived there about 11.15am and we’d seen it all by 11.45, which included having a coffee and jumping onto the cafe’s wifi for twenty minutes of Facebook shite. We took off down the road in search of excitement. We didn’t find any but we did have a nice Nanny Nap in the car. Back to Bindoon to meet up with Barni Norton. Barni has organised  tonight’s gig; she’s a whirlwind. Barni is on the local council; she’s also standing in the upcoming election, and she’s a folkie who plays keyboards in a rock band. She also has a great house full of musical instruments two dogs and a mannequin with no arms and a bare arse.

The gig was in Bindoon Community Hall (great sound from Tuarn). We hardly saw anyone in the afternoon but somehow Barni and her helpers sold eighty tickets to bring in a really good crowd that night. They were a friendly bunch. One guy came to us in the break and said “What a lovely show, it’s wonderful to see a couple getting on so well. I’m eighty one and me and my wife get on great, we don’t have sex anymore though…” Whoa there old fella – too much information!

Sun 5th March.

Back to Katie’s. In the afternoon Katie drove us over to Yanchep National PARK where we made another addition to the wild life count. Koalas (they are not bears apparently) are cute but not very energetic. We saw four or five, all clinging to tree trunks and chilling big style. In fact they could been stuffed and no one would have been any the wiser. We also discovered that parrots like chips.

They have a bar in a national park, well you would wouldn’t you.

Mon 6th March.
Beach, it’s a rare thing for us Brits to be able to swim in the sea and not then be able to use your nuts for collar studs (Dave) or your nipples for hat pegs (Kip). It is possible here though. The beaches are beautiful and are washed by the warm Indian Ocean. Every day around 12pm the Freo Doctor goes to work. The Freo Doctor is the name given by the locals to the very welcome breeze that sweeps the coastline from the direction of Fremantle (Freo). It’s caused by the rise in temperature overland, the hot air rises to be replaced by the cooler air from off the sea. And very welcome it is. We had a live session to do on Fremantle radio tonight, so we left early to call in at Cottesloe and have a look at the annual Sculpture by the Sea Festival.

We saw some beautiful and very unusual sculptures around and on the beach. There was also a great sunset plus a hell of a racket from the cockatoos roosting.

Onto Radio Fremantle to have a chat and sing a few songs on Bill Hale’s folk programme.

Tues 7th March.
This morning we met Al Riebau for a coffee. Al has been very good to us. He’s on the committee for the Western Australian Folk Federation and has set up several gigs around the Perth area. Al’s from the USA and settled here several years ago. We had a good chat and Al took notes for an article he’s writing about our tour for the Folk Federation’s newsletter. We then sorted out the problems of the world and discussed concertinas. Nice bloke. Then to the beach, back to Katie’s and out that night for a house concert in Joondalup. Our first ever gig in a garage. It was at Mags and Bill’s house, two Liverpudlian hippies who came here forty years ago and have done okay. Mags still has a broad scouse accent and Bill has a passion for Neil Young and Martin guitars. Fine by us.

Wed 8th March

Another beach, another gig. Nice photos from the gig courtesy of the bloke with the tattoos, nose ring and baseball cap at the Indy Lounge. He really knew his stuff and was explaining to me the problems of getting good photos under stage lighting – really interesting but I forgot his name.

Despite his colour Dave was breathing at this point.

Thurs 9th March.
Beach, parachute display and kangaroo steaks (Dave, not Kip. Very tasty) 

How about this, we were sat on the beach and this military aircraft came flying down the coast about half a mile out and drops a load of parachutist’s into the sea (they did have boats out there to collect those that didn’t get eaten by the sharks)

Nice beach.