My next stop was Newcastle, so I downloaded true crime podcasts and left Port as my body felt relaxed after a few days of watching a marathon of Vikings. Luckily I got to relax as I was heading to a house that is home to a very excited 2 year old and a semi excited Monstrous Great Dane named Jake. Who am I kidding… Jake the Great Dane is 100% not phased if I’m there, but I’m 100% phased if Jake is there.
Newcastle has always been an industrial town, it was first founded in 1801. Well obviously the aboriginals lived here for 1000 years prior, so I hate using the word founded ( I think that word is used my the English when they want to claim something). So I guess I should rephrase it, it became a mining town in 1801. Most parts of Newcastle are not accessible at all, but I usually only visit to see friends and don’t explore to much.
One of my good friends lives in Newcastle, his name is Sam Nearey. Sam is the most caring man I’ve met, he is quiet and listens as you talk gathering information so he can come up with a solution. He’s honest and thoughtful with anything he does. He is a civil engineer, so extremely switched on as well. He actually was dating one of my friends in high school, they broke up but we still stayed really close, especially because he was one of the people who stepped up when my accident happened. Sam got married a few years ago…3 maybe 4? (I was the best man, just thought I would brag while I can), Bri, Sams wife has the same traits as Sam but a bit more fire when needed. When I say fire, we have long chats around her dining room table about society and how it should be, she will voice her opinion in a empathetical way and is strong with her values and morals, we both have this in common. She gets easily repulsed by peoples behaviour around me due to my disability, Sam and Bri would be the first to stick up for me if it was needed. Our long convos are usually followed by us laying on the lounge pigging out while watching some kind of magical show, usually Harry Potter related or American Horror Story. Now my all time favourite person of their family is Silas, a clever 2 year old who has blonde locks and beautiful blue eyes. The two days that I stayed, I think we got in atleast 8 hours a day of playing. He has neat set up of tables with farm houses and trucks, no barbies… YAY! I may be biased but he is the most awesome kid I’ve met.
A picture of Silas, Jake and I going for a walk
I really enjoyed the two days I spent in Newcastle, I wish I lived closer but I guess in a few more years he can come up and stay for the holidays ( I haven’t asked Sam yet, but I get Aunty rights to have him for holidays don’t I?).
I left Newcastle and drove 3 hours to Sydney, I drive like a grandma on the road so things always take much much much longer! As I say, Don’t Die for a Dead Line. I got to Sargood on Collaroy, which is a purpose built resort for people with a Spinal Cord Injury. I arrived and parked my car in the under ground carpark and within 5 minutes a Carer was there to help me gather my belongings and guide me to check in and to my room. In the main lobby there is a massive board that shows the inclusive activities that are on for the week. These activities include: Surfing, Snorkelling, Fishing, Golf… Anything outdoorsy and its there. You can also see Nurses, Ots, Physios and other specialists. There a massive gym down stairs that is perfect for a wheelchair user. The rooms is the most accessible place I’ve ever stayed, its more accessible and thought out than my own house!
Here is a video of the Activities board at Sargood on Collaroy
Thursday the day I arrived I decided to rest as I was headed to a concert on the Friday. I was teleporting back to my teenage years. I was off to see the real PIMP, that is 50 CENT!!! He was performing at Parramatta show ground. If I didn’t have my Batec, I would be extremely worried about access and anxious the whole day prior. Friday I had a carer wash all my clothes and straighten my hair for me, it saved so much energy. I hoped into the car and strapped my Batec in and headed towards Parramatta. I was meeting one of my best Mates Sam at the front of the show ground. Ive known Sam since i was 15, we met in math class both were not interested in math but we both wanted to do well , so we started to studying together, from then on I realised quickly she is the most genuine person I’ve ever met. She is so interesting; she rides motorbikes, she lived in the bush, she is outside the norm of what most girls were like in high school, and I loved that about her. She was never bitchy or clickey, she had the same sense of humour as me and we laughed and still laugh so much. She chose to get an electrical apprenticeship and now is studying electrical engineering, so she is extremely switched on. I class her as one of my the most valued friends.
I met Sam at the front of the show ground, she came prepared with her poncho, umbrella, jumpers and towels. I laughed at her for 10 minutes then I thanked her as it started to piss down! We looked like old grandmas but we were dry and warm, so who wins there? The concert was not accessible one bit, it was a grassy hill with massive mud puddles, if I didn’t have my Batec this would of ruined my night. I had the best night, we danced to PIMP in our ponchos.
50 Cent Rapping “In Da Club”
Heres a video of me wearing a cool poncho putting my Batec into the car