09 November 2014

A real live Norman Bates!?

Most readers know that we have travelled extensively in both developed and developing countries. In all of this travel we have generally met normal, nice people.

It took a trip to the isolated Goomburra Valley in Queensland, Australia to find a person who was so difficult and unpredictable that we found ourselves in a state of mild terror during our stay.

We named this person "Norman Bates".

Norman and his (lovely) wife own/manage the Goomburra Valley Camping Ground. The ground sits in an incredibly beautiful valley. There is a stream which carries pure water down from the Main Range. There are tall gums, inquisitive possums and birds of all colours that screeched "hello" as they landed at our campsite.

Everything appeared normal until we'd paid (upfront) for our 5 night stay. We hoped that the sheer beauty of the location would offer us peace and relaxation.

Then Norman made his presence felt. He strutted around his small camping ground as if it was a cattle ranch. Akubra hat on head, thumbs in front pockets, enamel swaggie cup in hand, cigarette dangling from lips, he pretended to watch his flock of 20 sheep...but really he was watching us...

One day we went for a drive. On our return at dusk I glanced over at Norman's house. At the window I saw someone looking out at us: a dark silhouette wearing an akubra...

One night as we placed our lamb chops on the BBQ, I heard a sound from Norman's house. I looked over to see the akubra watching us from the verandah. It was still watching us 20 minutes later...

Another night, taking heed of notices around the camping ground that warned us of snakes, we turned on 2 spotlights to light the way to our camper. Just as we arrived at our camper, the lights went out. We went back to investigate the apparent electrical fault only to see the akubra creeping back to his house. We wondered how long he'd been stalking us...

For 5 long pre-paid nights we had short showers (lest a knife found our bodies through the shower curtain!) and willed ourselves quickly to sleep at night (lest a dagger pierce the canvas of our tent!)...



  1. Boy,you guys have all the fun. I have missed your blog,glad there is a new story(with no snakes).

    1. Glad to be back and keeping one of my most avid readers happy!


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