Welcome to 2017!

Well – the new year is here at long last! With it, it brings me to some little items of high importance…

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Bring on Saturday March 18, 2017!

I will be travelling to Brisbane in March to spend a week relaxing and see this amazing duo from Ireland in concert – this trip will complete the trifecta of capital cities on the east coast of Australia.

I still have a few little things to sort out for this trip – going to visit Sea World on the Gold Coast and do one of their amazing Animal Adventures…. I have not chosen which one as yet as they are all amazing! Then I have to book my flights – will be flying with Jetgo Australia again.

Melbourne – What A City!

Well – my trip to Melbourne has been and gone… what a city! From a solo traveller’s point of view, it has all that you need….

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Meeting the penguins at Sea Life Melbourne Aquarium

Melbourne has so many different things to do and here’s just a selection of what I did get to do – contact details at the bottom of the post:
1. Chocoholic Tours – a company who delivers the best in chocolate tours and information. Designed to give even the sweetest tooth a chance to try new chocolates and pairings with wine2. Sea Life Melbourne Aquarium – see above photo. Sea Life Melbourne Aquarium is the place to go if you love all things ocean.
3. Melbourne Cricket Ground – you can do a tour and be able to stand on the hallowed turf of the “G” as it is locally known.

Getting to Melbourne: From Dubbo, getting to Melbourne is easy with Jetgo – they offer a service 3 days a week between Dubbo and Essendon return. Pricing is from $247 each way including taxes and charges. Book with Jetgo on 1300328000 or via http://www.jetgo.com/ using the search box on the top of the homepage.

Getting around Melbourne: It’s easy to get around Melbourne as they have quite a vast public transport system. The public transport network is cashless so you will need to get a myki before you travel – myki cards are easily obtainable at any manned railway station or where the myki logo is posted. It costs $6 to get and is valid for 4 years. Fares can vary on where you are in the network – example: it only cost me $2.90 to travel from Flinders Street Station to Watergardens Station on a weekday. Buses are, on average, $3.90 per trip and are capped at $7.80.

Contact details:
Chocoholic Tours – 1300915566
Sea Life Melbourne Aquarium – 1800026576
Melbourne Cricket Ground – MCG Tours – just show up at the “G” and enter through Gate 3

 

Stories from my travels: Part 1

I have some seriously funny stories I would love to share from my travels….

This story is from my first trip to Coffs Harbour in 2012 – I was on my way home from Sydney after an almost 6 hour layover. I fly Qantas/Qantaslink and they don’t have their Bombardier Dash-8 turboprops where they have the jets – the turboprops are in an entirely different section of the airport. Anyway – Qantaslink had just called our flight (QF2048) for boarding so we had to leave the terminal through gate 58 (this was back when Qantaslink was in terminal 2). We then had to walk down to a waiting bus which took us around to the plane – I was already on board the bus so I watched to see who was coming. Little was I to know my boss, Roger Fletcher, was going to share the same flight home with me….. I realised I had to be on my best behaviour for this flight! He boarded the bus and I had a spare seat next to me so I offered it to him – we got talking and I showed him the photo from my dolphin experience at Dolphin Marine Magic in Coffs Harbour. An hour and a quarter later, we were back on home soil at Dubbo Airport. That was a weird experience and one I’ll never forget

Langley’s Coaches Fleet Profile – Scania K320IB/Higer A30 TV7681

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Langley’s Coaches Scania K320IB/Higer A30 TV7681

Today I want to feature the largest 2 axle coach in the Langley’s fleet. This Scania K320IB is a 57 seat charter coach – featuring a Chinese built Higer A30 body, this is a fairly versatile vehicle for all small-medium charters and any local work.

A Day On The Green Trip Review

Yesterday (31/10/2015) saw me and a group of people make our way over to Mudgee, NSW, Australia for A Day On The Green. Although the day was drab and dismal, the rain held off and we all had a great time!

We left Dubbo a little later than usual because of the weather – but that delay was more than made up for with the coach we had…. we had TV4407 (1988 Denning Decker 92 Turbo – in this case, the 92 Turbo in this coach was a 8V92TA DDEC). Arrived a bit before 2:30pm and had to park… easier said than done on a wet field! Ended up heading down to the coach parking – we stopped for a moment and our coach slid down the grass. Got into the venue and went to sit down and realised I’d taken someone else’s chair – luckily I found the right owner!

Music started and we all got dancing – I didn’t drink as I am on new medication and I did not want to risk getting drowsy and missing the show…. I almost fell over a few times as it was! We enjoyed music from Mark Seymour, Pseudo Echo, Moving Pictures, James Reyne and Icehouse. The highlight for me was Icehouse – they were terrific! It was worth the $160 I spent to go and see an amazing concert!

I left the venue at around 9:20pm and headed back out to our coach – I met up with Adam, our coach captain, who was talking to an old colleague of his who still works for Ogden’s. I got introduced to him and, for the life of me, I couldn’t work out who it was…. I only figured it out after he told me about his project with the New South Wales Rural Fire Service Heritage division. I worked out it was a friend of mine on Facebook – mind you, I was so tired I got home and went straight to bed!

All in all, a great day and night and amazing music!

Coach Travel I have done

Hi folks! I had a thought today – I want to share some of my expansive coach travel “resume” with you all…. here it is! I will include vehicle details where I remember…

Coach trip 1 was with Ogden’s Coaches Dubbo. Brooks & Dunn, Sydney, May 2009. Mercedes-Benz O500RF-3, TV3908. I had brought myself this trip as a self-bought birthday present.
Each of the trips below were with Langley’s Coaches Dubbo.
Coach trip 2: Temora Aviation Museum, June 2011. Mitsubishi Rosa Deluxe, 5157MO. My first trip with Langley’s – and it sure as hell wasn’t the last!
Coach trip 3: Tamworth Country Music Festival, January 2012. Denning Landseer Super Decker, TV5580. My first trip to the mecca of country music in Australia – I had a ball and have done this trip twice after!

Denning Landseer Super Decker TV5580
Denning Landseer Super Decker TV5580

Coach trip 4: Canberra, March 2012. Scania K470EB 6×2*4, TV5594. This trip was to a Daniel O’Donnell concert at the National Convention Centre in Canberra. I was the youngest out of 46 people on the coach!

Scania K470EB 6x2*4 TV5594 outside the Quality Hotel Dickson
Scania K470EB 6×2*4 TV5594 outside the Quality Hotel Dickson

Coach trip 4: Tamworth Country Music Festival, January 2013. Scania K470EB 6×2*4, TV5594. Second trip to Tamworth. Had fun as this was quite a small group this year!
Coach trip 5: Tamworth Country Music Festival, January 2014. Scania K470EB 6×2*4, TV5594. Third trip to Tamworth…. had a little larger group than 2013…..

Scania K470EB 6x2*4 TV5594 - the first rear-steer coach sold in Australia
Scania K470EB 6×2*4 TV5594 – the first rear-steer coach sold in Australia

Coach trip 6: A Day on The Green, Mudgee, NSW, Australia, October 2014. Scania K94IB, TV7519. First time at this concert – had a ball! The highlight for me was seeing 5000 people singing along with Troy Cassar-Daley to an iconic Australian truck song, Lights On The Hill. It didn’t matter if they were country fans or not – they all sang along! See the video below for the original!

If you want to look up any particulars on the coaches mentioned in this blog, you can use this website: Bus Australia – you use the search function in the fourth box along on the top of the home page. Simply type the registration number (the number starting with TV) into the white search box – the Registration radio button is the default selection for searching – then press Enter!

Yesterday’s happenings

Yesterday, my mum, my aunty and I had a great day out looking around the region – here’s just some of what we did….

We got to visit the Peak Hill Open Cut Experience – this attraction is a decommissioned mine that the owner, Alkane Resources, has turned into an attraction. Entry into the mine and it’s surrounds is free and is easily found by following the signs from Caswell Street (Peak Hill’s main street) up to the mine.

Camshaft and flywheel for a mine crusher
Camshaft and flywheel for a mine crusher
Looking down into the main pit - water is an open pit mine's worst enemy!
Looking down into the main pit – water is an open pit mine’s worst enemy!
Looking at the wall of the main pit - Mum said she'd hate to be one of the haul truck drivers.....
Looking at the wall of the main pit – Mum said she’d hate to be one of the haul truck drivers…..
Main pit - another angle
Main pit – another angle
One of the many cross shafts for the Bobby Burns pit
One of the many cross shafts for the Bobby Burns pit
Bobby Burns pit
Bobby Burns pit
A part of the old boiler
A part of the old boiler

After this, we went to Parkes for lunch. We decided on McDonald’s where we had a break. After this, we paid a visit to the CSIRO’s Australian National Telescope Facility Parkes Radio Telescope Visitor Discovery Centre – this is also known as The Dish! Boy, hasn’t it changed in the last 25 years…

The Dish - the best view ever!
The Dish – the best view ever!
Control panel used in the 1969 moon landing which this telescope had a hand in
Control panel used in the 1969 moon landing which this telescope had a hand in
Curved mirrors - boy, I look skinny here!
Curved mirrors – boy, I look skinny here!
Some of the many projects that the CSIRO have helped develop
Some of the many projects that the CSIRO have helped develop
Some older components of the Dish
Some older components of the Dish
Phased-Array Feed (PAF) unit
Phased-Array Feed (PAF) unit
One of the amazing items outside the Centre
One of the amazing items outside the Centre
Whispering Dish - if you stand facing this dish and your friend stands facing the other, you whisper into it and they can hear your words clearly
Whispering Dish – if you stand facing this dish and your friend stands facing the other, you whisper into it and they can hear your words clearly
The Dish - another angle
The Dish – another angle

I finally had my camera with me to capture one of the rhinos on the Rhino Trail – the Rhino Trail starts at Taronga Zoo in Sydney and finishes at Taronga’s sister zoo in Dubbo, Taronga Western Plains Zoo….

Between Sydney and Dubbo, there is a trail of brightly decorated rhinos - this is to bring the plight of the rhino into the public spotlight as they are critically endangered. This is the Elvis rhino at Parkes - Parkes is home to the annual Parkes Elvis Festival, the biggest festival dedicated to the life of Elvis Aaron Presley outside the United States
Between Sydney and Dubbo, there is a trail of brightly decorated rhinos – this is to bring the plight of the rhino into the public spotlight as they are critically endangered. This is the Elvis rhino at Parkes – Parkes is home to the annual Parkes Elvis Festival, the biggest festival dedicated to the life of Elvis Aaron Presley outside the United States