Tuesday, 10th to Thursday 12th August, 1999

Tuesday - Getting There

Lodge photograph

Giraffe Lodge

Drop Cap e arose early, around 5.30, in order to be dressed, showered and breakfasted etc without discommoding Geoffrey too much, so as to catch the 7.35 train to Katoomba to catch the Central West XPT.

Drop Cap his accomplished, we settled down in the comfortably wide, aircraft style recliner seats with footrests and tray tables for the six hour ride to Dubbo. The XPT looked old and rather tired. The fabric on the chairs was worn and none too clean. My plastic tray table was cracked. Over the loudspeaker we were told to take tickets from staff passing through if we wanted a main meal for lunch. This had to be collected, along with any drinks, snacks etc during the trip, from the buffet in the next carriage. This was in First Class! Any European or American would have laughed at the idea.

However, it was not too bad, albeit rather slow for an allegedly XPT.

Mac in cage photograph


Drop Cap e arrived in Dubbo at approximately 1-45 and caught a cab to the Western Plains Zoo. We were met by friendly staff and shown to our lodge for the night.
These were superior tents - house shaped frames covered in sturdy canvas with screened windows and front door and roll down flaps to cover same for the night. They slept 5 and were pretty basic but had their own little pine log bathroom attached and were made cosy by the underfloor heating. There were folding chairs and a table and mini fridge under a verandah awning overlooking the Savannah area where grazing zebras, eland, oryx, camels and ostriches made an African prospect.

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