Today is a public holiday. Thank you to the Queen who had her birthday in April. We get to celebrate in June. I think it's kind of a kick in the pants really. Yes you may have a day off, but lets make it on what will inevitably be one of the coldest days of the year. But I'm not one to give up a holiday, so "Happy Birthday to the Queen".
Mum organised a day out while my sister is down visiting the family. Not sure if I've ever told you about any "Cluff Family Adventures", but if my mum ever asks if you want to spend a day or a week away with the family I would advise running away - FAST. If you think screaming will help, do that too. A couple of memorable moments come to mind.... Dad splitting his head open while ice skating, seven hours of motion sickness, "Carobana" (that one's for my sisters).
Our destination today - Hastings Cave. A good hour and half drive from Hobart. I got up early with LQ so we could get a few house chores done before we left for the cave at 10am. In what Dal will tell you is true Hel style, we didn't leave the house until 20 minutes after 10. That's ok, I'm pretty certain my family has the same genes as me. Before racing out of the house, I quickly checked google maps. Our printer doesn't work, so I tried to memorise the hour and half worth of directions. I was pretty certain I'd be fine.
Knowing that the Police would be out looking for those holiday "hoons" I kept my speed to just at the limit sometimes even below. We came to a fork in the highway - the same highway going in two different directions. I couldn't remember google maps telling me about this! I veered left - the wrong way. I kept driving looking for a sign to point me in the right direction. I found a sign. It was directly after another sign telling me to slow my speed down. Which I didn't do because I was too busy studying the sign with the directions. I continued to study the sign with directions as I sped toward the policeman standing in the middle of the road trying to wave me down. I feel lucky that I have a husband concerned with the welfare of our local policemen, or I would have run that man right down without realising it. Despite his near miss the dear policeman was very nice and gave me a bit of leniency with my speeding fine. All his niceness couldn't have stopped the tears from flowing, though. It is my second speeding fine in Three days!
An hour and a half of The Wiggles later, we arrived at the cave visitors centre and sat down to eat lunch. LQ fell apart. She wanted juice, she wanted chocolate milk. I bought her chocolate milk. She didn't like chocolate milk. Grandpa drank the chocolate milk. LQ fell apart because of Grandpa. The tears flowed, Grandpa bought two more different drinks that were no good to LQ. Dal managed to keep the tears at bay and we continued on to the main event - The Cave. Dal suggested we put LQ in a nappy while we were in the cave. I said I'd take one in with me and if she said she needed to go we could put her in one. We had a backpack to put LQ in so she didn't have to walk too far. LQ loved it. LQ wanted cuddles with daddy. LQ wanted cuddles with mummy. LQ wanted to walk. LQ wanted cuddles with daddy. LQ peed her pants while being held by daddy. A strong smell of urine permeated the cave for a short time. We hung at the back of the group for a while. Poor Dal had a nice wet stain all down his leg and all over his arm.
LQ insisted we find monkeys and tigers while we were in the cave. No monkeys or tigers could be found. The only thing that kept LQ happy was a torch that the nice tour guide loaned her. LQ searched for cave crickets and spiders with her torch.
We finally left the cave. It was an amazing experience, but could have done without the general unwell feeling that you get in a cave. We also could have done without the peeing incident. It was our intent to swim in the hot springs after, but LQ seemed too tired. It didn't stop her from insisting loudly that she wanted to swim. Several minutes later we were on our way home saying good bye to the monkeys. LQ cried because she didn't get to see the monkeys or tigers. I told her to shut her eyes and dream about the monkeys. I looked back about a minute later and her little eyes were still tightly squeezed shut, presumably still thinking about the monkeys she didn't get to see.
Tomorrow - Dal's take on spending a day with Hel's family.