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The story as I remember it ....Apologies for any inaccuracies, omissions or mispellings, let me know if any facts need to be altered/added.
Sarah and I booked Edrom Lodge for New Years Eve 2004 in January 2003. 11 months later......
Day 1 Sunday 28 Dec 2003
Leave Canberra around 1300 with Hal Greenham and Kirstie Bowe with the car choc-a-bloc with supplies.
Everything was going to plan until I received a phone call from Caroline around
3.30pm ... "Scott, thank god you answered - where are you?"
Scott: "About an hour away, what's happened?"
Caro: "They've doubled booked us, the place has 50 people in it and they are waving around their receipt that has tonight's date on it, we need you here with our receipt ASAP."
At this stage I was impressed with her hoax skills, not a hint of laughter - in fact seemingly quite serious. The other thing was I didn't have a receipt, I just sent the deposit cash through the mail and never worried about following up the receipt - it's not like I can claim the thing as a tax deduction, why would you ever need a receipt? (gulp). This was my worst nightmare. I said something which I can't remember.
Caro: "Scott, I'm serious, I am not joking, just hurry up and get here!".
At this stage I thought there was a 20% chance that she was joking (and an 80% chance if Chris Thorp had arrived there), but there was a hint of seriousness there that prevented us from making the pit stop that we were planning. At least it wasn't raining.
The other problem was that the phone call was taken somewhere around Bombala - which is just where the road starts to get windy (but the speed limit remains at 100). Poor Kirstie was in the back, barricaded in with speakers, eskies and bags and it wasn't until we hadn't heard from her for about 10 minutes that I realised she was getting car sick.
Kirstie, being Caro's flat mate, was speculating that it was unlikely Caro was making this up. I had the dilemma, slow down and get there later, speed up and have car sick Kirstie - I think I alternated. To solve the problem we all did some brain storming, and with the help of Hal's activist years discussed the various merits and pitfalls of the revolutionary tactics of Ghandhi, Nelson Mandela and Che Guevara (we did have some firepower with Matt's spear fishing gear). Kirstie QC came to the conclusion that their receipt wasn't worth the paper it was written on.
Anyway, we reached Edrom around 4.30 and there was no doubt about it, 47 Chinese double booked into Edrom - with 25 of our friends either there or enroute ... we'd arrived on the WONG day!!!!!
All I can say is that the communication gap was impressive. They were stressed out that we were going to crash their party and I was stressed out that we had no where to sleep. At the back of my mind I knew things were going to work out - 25 friends, the beach and a truck load of beer (and it wasn't raining). After negotiations with Minh we managed to secure fridge space, use of the kitchen, the front verandah for dinner, occupancy of room I and some free air. The managers were nowhere to be seen - apparently out fishing. With nothing much to do the best thing was to crack open a beer and proceed to the beach. Figuring an outdoor activity was on the agenda Greg came up with the great idea of collecting wood for a beach bonfire.
Around 7pm the managers were spotted on the horizon coming in on their tinnie, I think at around 100m off the beach they realised what was going on - what a way to ruin an afternoon fish! They apologised profusely for the stuff up - I had spoken to them 5 days previously to confirm the booking, for the record I eyeballed the booking book in the morning and it had the Chinese moving out Sunday and us moving in Monday, both wrong! Extra beds were put in the private part of the lodge and a few more in the "villas". Everybody had a bed and it was time to sort dinner. The Chinese had prepared all of the their food and tempting as it was to change tactics and have Chinese for dinner - Caroline and co proceeded to cook up a fabulous pasta and garlic bread feast which was eaten on the front verandah.
We cleaned up in the kitchen and went down to the beach lit the bonfire, drank some wine and had a great singalong with Chris on the guitar. I assured all the folks that tomorrow night would be even better once we actually got the house - and on the bright side we had an extra $500!
At 2.00am there was still no sign of Setch, John, Fiona and Kristina. They did eventually turn up around 3am after a huge trip from Melbourne that involved 3 (three) burst radiator hoses on the Kombie.
Day 2 Monday 29 Dec 2003
Woke up and the moved into the house - YAY!
Spent the day relaxing, swimming and unpacking. I went spear fishing with Matt who landed the octopus that all the snorkellers knew as Edrom Eddie, a few abalone, black fish and one Australian Salmon (after being surrounded by about 5000 of them for a few minutes).
New arrivals included Ray and Nat, Nicola, Rinaz, Perry, Elena, Debbie, Daniel, Sarah ,Marisa, Simon and Ray Brown.
The food theme of the evening was Curry and the dishes included lamb vindaloo, chicken curry, dhaal, raita and salads. Needless to say the food was excellent.
Entertainment for the evening was Trivia night - which was won by the Pre Cum Drips (Andrew Setchell was in the team and obviously on the naming commitee).
Day 3 Tuesday 30 Dec 2003 - Caro's 30th Birthday
Late start to the day, the biggest task was to swim out and harvest the green mussels for the seafood smorgasboard that evening.
The theme of the party was Love Boat/70's and with the spare cash that we had as a result of the night 1 debacle it was decided to purchase alcohol for a cocktail party, 6kg of prawns and various other supplies.
Matt Landos headed up the all boy team in the kitchen, the steamed mussels and beer battered fish fillets with abalone salads was New arrivals were Steve, Paivi, Tina, Daniel, Habib, Ian and Verity.
Day 4 Wednesday 31 Dec 2003 - New Years Eve
Late start to the day
Day 5 Thursday 1 Jan 2004
Late start to the day