Kalbarri WA

On arriving at Kalbarri we managed to locate our accommodation, despite the best efforts of our sat-nav which was intent on sending us off-road again. We were also confused by the name of the motel. All of my paperwork from the booking referred to Kalbarri Reef Villas. On the same street we found Kalbarri Seafront Villas and immediately behind was Reef Villas. No mention of Kalbarri on their signage but a quick chat with the manager confirmed we were in the right place. So Reef Villas it was and we were soon checked in, car unloaded and ready to explore.

The beach was just five minutes walk from the motel.

Kalbarri Beach – Kalbarri, WA

Kalbarri is to be found at the mouth of the Murchison River where it joins the Indian Ocean.

River / Ocean Meeting Place – Kalbarri, WA

Unfortunately, Gerry ricked her back on our first morning here. This meant that we had to curtail some of our exploring. So a tour of the gorges to see Natures Window & “Z” Bend was kicked into touch. The problem with these attractions is that they are only accessible along some sixteen kilometers of dirt road, not really conducive to reducing back pain.

As an alternative we decided to visit the numerous local ocean lookouts, all of which have paved roads right up to the car parks and also, in most cases, smooth pathways to the lookout. The following are a selection of the photo’s I took. I hope they give you a flavour of this area.

Some of the Aussies were really chuffed to see a car, with references to an English football team, sporting the Aussie flags.

While we were at the Blue Holes, a fellow Brit spotted the Pompey stickers and the rego plate. He was originally from Salisbury and knew all about our home area in Hampshire.

Every day pelicans are fed down on the Kalbarri foreshore. There is a seated arena for the early risers to use and children are invited to feed the pelicans. The couple that run the feed are very informative, with a touch of humour.

After touring the coastline, we returned to Kalbarri and found a site on the foreshore so that I could go fishing.

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Me Fishing – Murchison River, Kalbarri, WA

Although I did get a few bites, I didn’t manage to catch anything.

Chatty canoeists – Murchison River, Kalbarri,WA

The fish weren’t the only things biting. There were crabs in the river who were taking a repeated interest in my feet. The canoeists were friendly and chatty, interested in how I was doing. I think they were also amused by how far out in the river I was.

Later the same day we were, again, down on the foreshore to watch the Australia Day fireworks.

During our all too brief stay in Kalbarri we were lucky enough to eat at the Black Rock Cafe. Here we had our evening meal on the day that we arrived. Good food and a table to watch the sunset. For our breakfasts, we visited Angies Cafe where they do a really tasty Bacon, Egg and Tomato Toasty as well as filling Tuna Patties (fish cake). Both establishments seem to be very popular.

Angies Cafe – Kalbarri, WA

Angies was our last stop in Kalbarri, before heading off to Jurien Bay.



Conservatory Re-Build – Furniture

No further progress towards completion as yet. However, we are making as much use as we can. We have sat outside on the decking when ever the sun shines. There is still a lot of heat in the sun but the ambient temperature drops rapidly at the first hint of a cloud. This just drives us inside to sit in our new warm, draught free environment.

Inside just became a whole lot more comfortable as, yesterday, our new furniture arrived courtesy of The Fir Trade Furniture Company.

A year ago we visited their stand at the Garden Show, Stansted Park. Tried their seats and found them to be really comfortable. This year we revisited their stand, retried the seats and were really taken with their level of comfort and with the sturdiness of design. Managing Director Hugh Ross, following my enquiry about the strength of the seats due to the unusual leg angles, and my concerns about the seats ability to withstand my weight, did no more than turn one of the seats upside down. Then he proceeded to show me the large steel bolts securing the legs to the base of the seat and the additional wooden inserts used to strengthen the whole structure.

Knowing we were about to embark on the demolition and rebuild of our conservatory we decided, that once we knew exactly how much space we would have, we would visit the show rooms in Salisbury.

And so we duly visited their showrooms late in August where we remade our acquaintance with Hugh after quite the most horrendous journey . Torrential rain all the way with almost zero visibility on the M27 due to the spray. In a country that is known for rain you would think that our road builders would use quick draining surface as is the case on some of the autoroutes in France.

Anyway, back on topic, we were welcomed with coffee and biscuits and tried nearly all the seats in all styles but were drawn back to the Semarang set. Orders were placed, fabrics and patterns chosen, deposit paid and we were advised that the lead time to delivery would be four to six weeks.

A call from Hugh advised that our order was ready for delivery, unfortunately minus the foot stool, Friday was agreed and the new furniture arrived delivered by Igor, the Italian.

Semarang furniture set - The Fair Trade Furniture Company
Semarang furniture set – The Fair Trade Furniture Company

Our original order was for the two chairs, a foot stool and the “gin & tonic” table. As you can see in the photo, the chairs are lop-sided, left and right-handed. The low side provides easy access to the drinks on the table while the high side provides support for when ones chosen anaesthetic, be it G & T or some other suitable beverage, kicks in.

On Thursday morning we decided to add the lamp to our order. After several missed calls in both directions we eventually linked up and the lamp was added to our delivery for Friday.

The previous photo shows the lamp on but it really comes into its own at night-time, providing a cosier level of lighting and the reflections in the glass and tiled floor are really quite effective.

Semarang furniture set - The Fair Trade Furniture Company
Semarang furniture set – The Fair Trade Furniture Company

I would like to say that our dealings with this company have been superb. Everyone that we have spoken to has been really friendly and their response to our last-minute addition of the lamp to our order has been first class.

Conservatory Re-Build – Day 20

Finally !! The day has arrived when “all” the glass is installed. The guys have had a busy day.

First the plasterers arrived and set to work applying the plaster skim over the plaster board.

Conservatory -  Plaster has been applied to the perimeter ceiling and the walls of the utility room
Conservatory – Plaster has been applied to the perimeter ceiling and the walls of the utility room

Soon after the fitters arrived and set about removing our kitchen window and door. No pictures of this stage. During the morning we left the crew working while we headed over to Salisbury to procure some furniture for when the conservatory is completed.

While we were away the plumbers arrived, removed the radiator, capped off the hot water supply and connected the cold water supply for the utility room.

Conservatory - Old radiator removed and pipes capped pending the installation of a new tall panel radiator
Conservatory – Old radiator removed and pipes capped pending the installation of a new tall panel radiator

Removing the radiator will allow the plasterers to cover the wall with plaster board. There will not be any exposed brick this time round. Been there, done that, don’t want to do it again. Ever !!

Conservatory - Old, redundant hot water supply pipe is capped. New cold water supply line is connected.
Conservatory – Old, redundant hot water supply pipe is capped. New cold water supply line is connected.

When we arrived back from Salisbury the kitchen door and window were in place. Not only that but so was the new garage door. That was a surprise as nobody had told us that the door had been made yet.

Conservatory - New kitchen door and window.
Conservatory – New kitchen door and window.
Conservatory - New garage door.
Conservatory – New garage door.

Just when the guys were cleaning up from the door and window fitting another van pulled up onto our drive. Whoohoo !! The bi-fold doors had arrived and were duly installed.

Conservatory - The bi-fold doors are in
Conservatory – The bi-fold doors are in
Conservatory - External view of the bi-fold doors
Conservatory – External view of the bi-fold doors

The doors are in and functional but not finished. The glass is in but not all the seals have been fixed. Just sufficient to hold the glass in place overnight. The sealing will be completed tomorrow and other trim will also be installed.

And, no, that is not our new decking.

Unfortunately, this will be the last of my daily posts regarding the conservatory rebuild. We are away for a few days, going up north for a wedding. Then going further up north to visit with friends. While we are away the work will continue and, I hope, the next post on this subject will present to you the finished conservatory.

Lets hope the surprise is a pleasant one.