Lucky for us, the rain didn't follow us to Byron Bay - but the wind did. We set up the awning on the camper van and the wind was so strong between that and the tent set up next to us, we were sure we were going to take flight and end up in Kansas. But we weer fine - just a lot of loud flapping. And it was also cold. But we were assured the next day would be gorgeous and it was.
And I FINALLY got to be a beach bum! The campsite was about 20m from a gorgeos beach wit hsand so soft it felt like powder. The water, though a bit cold, was cystal clear and a bright turquoise color. And the waves were fantastic so the surfers were out in full force. We spent most of the days vegging on the beach, riding waves, reading, sleeping, walking -- your normal beach stuff. And it was fantastic.
We were also surrounded by surfing schools, so by the end figured we could surf without a lesson. I was only kidding but L decided it looked easy and he had to give it a shot. So he hired a surfboard for a half day and hit the waves (literally) over and over again. After a couple hours or so he was knackered and decided that the board was put to much better use as a sun lounger. Gotta give him credit for trying!
Others we met who deserve a mention:
* 2 Irish guys traveling the country living in tents, Beavis and Butthead. They followed us up from Port McQuarie. We met them late night at one of the pubs in town. One of them was so drunk he passed out sitting in his chair. The other one kicked a curb in the middle of the night on the way to the toilet and had to go to the hospital.
* 2 Canadian girls, aged 20 and 24. Bought a 1974 green Ford cruiser straight out of the A-Team for $700. They spent 2 weeks in Tasmania picking potatoes to pay for it. They are spending a year in Australia and hope to find more work along the way to fund the rest of their trip. We ended up feeding them with beer as they couldn't afford to drink, the poor dears. Well worth it considering the entertainment value. Everything was "like, so cool" and "we were, like, so drunk." etc.
We did also manage to do a bit if exploring, despite the crazy weekend. We decided to check out the lighthouse we could see at the top of the hill in the distance. Didn't look that far away, but of course every time we thought we were close, we were so far away, especially when it completely disappeared from sight and we had no clue how to get there. Trial and error, we managed to find it -- turned out it was at least a 4K walk. But once we made it, we were glad we didn't turn around. Amazing views, which I will never tire of, and we stood on the easternmost part of the continent! We could also see a dozen dolphins playing and jumping in the sea in the distance.
The campsite was also located right next to the town. So we had easy access to bars, shops, supermarkets, etc. We timed it well bc we were there for the weekend. The local bar called the Beach Hotel had a fantastic band both Fri and Sat nights so we had no problems being entertained. More entertaining than the band, though, was the 50 year old woman we met who dressed like an 18 year old and had long blonde hair. She told us she goes there every Fri night to get pissed. After moments of meeting her, she insisted that I take off my glasses and let my hair down so I could truly enjoy the atmosphere. When I tried to explain how blind I was, she said she was blind, too but didn't care bc she was "embracing life" or something like that. So much to the point that she hit it off with a man half her age, who we're sure she went home with that night. SHe asked L if he was ashamed of her. (What? We just met the woman -- sounded more to us like she was ashamed - but at least she was having fun!)