A resupply stop on our route west was Emerald, an agricultural cum coal mining town on the banks of the murky and often flooding Nogoa river. Apparently named for its rolling emerald pasture lands it was starting to look a little dry and not really emerald as we drove through. When looking for a spot in the cheap and cheerful caravan park in town, Kris mentioned that she thought there were comments on Wikicamps about a ‘permanent’ who had the TV on till 3am. ‘I’m sure it’s not here’ I said, ‘I mean, what are the odds?’. Pretty high as it turned out. We camped next to what I assumed was an abandoned caravan (no water connected). He turned out to be the Wiki-culprit, and for the record it wasn’t 3 am, it was 3:41 am the next morning when the TV went off. Next night, ear plugs.
Emerald sports not only a Coles, a Woolies and a BCF (good for cheap gas refills), but also an impressive railway station AND the world’s largest easel. That’s right, a 25 m high painting easel (with a similarly proportioned painting of course). It’s a tribute to Van Gogh’s sunflowers, which were apparently a major crop for the town. This oversized curio was almost as fascinating to me as the giant Gumboot in Tully a few weeks earlier.
Keeping fit on a stroll through the Botanic Gardens.