Where would you expect the inhabitants of Chez ‘Abulous to vacation ( on the rare occasions when Dadabulous can be prized away from his office)? A spot of skiing in Aspen? Diving in Bora Bora? Gallery hoping in NYC?* Nah – we went somewhere far more exclusive – Dunbogan.
For those of you who are unaware of this up and coming glamour destination, Dunbogan is on NSW’s mid north coast, an hours drive south of Port Macquarie. It is not populated by dumb bogans as the name suggests. Rather its an entree to heaven for well to do retirees. Indeed the most common mode of transport in the district is the personal mobility scooter. This Mumrades is a very good thing. There is nothing that cashed up retirees enjoy more than a good stoush with evil property developers. As a result the place retains its sleepy fishing village feel but here’s the clincher – you can still get a decent cappuccino.
We were invited by some family friends (lets call them the Happy Campers) to join them on their annual camp at Crowdy Head National Park. We unwisely attempted this when P1 was 15 months old. It was a rain sodden disaster. This time around we took the family friendly option of renting a holiday house and driving out to meet the Happy Campers by day. This way we got the best bits of the camping experience but could return home to a hot shower and a comfortable bed for the evening.
We stayed in Dun Good. Its a place with loads of character, if character means clutter. We postulated that the owners had only purchased it as a reservoir for their junk. Clearly someone in the family has a shopping compulsion. Pretty much every available inch of wall space was covered with hanging rugs and miscellaneous art work. I’d never seen so many side boards and display cabinants outside an antique store. All of them were crammed full of objet d’arts, including one devoted to Australiana kitsch. Dadabulous counted over 20 teapots and 10 clocks. The spacious verandah was fortified with day beds. I don’t know how it was possible to accrue so many.
Still I can’t complain, its better to be over supplied than under supplied and the location was magnificent. We were a 2 minute walk from a glorious, pristine stretch of beach. Just about every place in the area is only a short walk away from beachy paradise. I’ll let the pictures do the talking.
We rocked up at the campsite on the Sunday of the long weekend to find the normally tranquil area more like a shanty town with every square foot of tent space taken up. There were four families in our group soaking up the sun whilst the kids went free range. We smiled at some light hearted jibes about us being “soft” and me being a” princess” but the group leaped at the chance to watch that night’s NRL Grand Final at Dun Good. When the pack converged on our accommodation, there were queues for the showers – all three of them.
The crowds thinned out over the following days and I got to enjoy some brief periods of relaxation. Although the sun is aging, I couldn’t stay out of it. All I wanted to do was defrost and now I have tan lines to show for it. The group’s choice of reading materials included biographies of Mawson and Ivan Milat as well as That book. (Not that 50 Shades was of much use when you are sharing a tent with two kids). Of course I had to go high brow. I found a copy of Andy Griffith’s Bumageddon – The Final Pongflict at the house. Clearly there’s an 8 year old boy inside of me wanting to get out as it had me snorting and cackling.
The girls had a ball on the beach but by far the greatest highlight for them was the campfire. They got to toast mega – mallows from Aldi which were almost the size of toilet rolls. As always the higher the sugar content the more fun is had. Likewise the adults consumed a lot of sugar but mostly in the form of alcohol. I discovered a sweet yet cheekily dry rose from local winery Bago as well as Devils Corner an “elegant” sparkling from Tassie (so said the label).
Naturally we left the best beach day travelling back to Sydney in the 35C heat. I was sad to go. I would have been content to potter around Dunbogan indefinitely. Perhaps if our superannuation does OK ……
As the novelty beanie at the Dunbogan boatshed says ” You aint dun nothin’ til you’ve dun Dunbogan”.
Hope you had a happy school holidays.
* That’s what Mrs Woog does.