Katherine is a small town in the Northern Territory of Australia. It’s located ‘just down the road’ from Darwin, that’s ‘just down the road’ by Australian outback standards, which can mean virtually any distance you can get to on a full tank of fuel.
Katherine is 317kms south of Darwin, and our son, Kelvin, lives south of Katherine on the road towards gorgeous Mataranka Springs. The warm springs at Mataranka are one of my favourite places in the top end, in fact, one of my favourite places in Australia. To drift down those waters on a noodle, is one of life’s memorable little highlights, and I’m looking forward to doing it again.
Katherine is a bit more than ‘just up the road’ from Busselton. It’s more than 4000kms away, so quite a distance for an impromptu road trip. This is how this little trip came about .
We had been considering flying up to the Northern Territory to spend Christmas with Kelvin, and his fiancée, Nikki. We contacted Kelvin to make sure our plans weren’t conflicting with any plans he and Nikki may have been making. No – they didn’t have plans for Christmas, but why not come up at the end of this month he suggested. His words were, “why not come up here at the end of this month instead, you can be our witnesses. Nikki and I are getting married”.
He assures me they are not having a wedding. It is to be a marriage ceremony, which I gather is to performed under the mango trees on the farm by a celebrant – a very, very small affair.
Niki is newly arrived in Australia after romance blossomed between the two of them when Kelvin went to the Phillipines on holiday last year. There has been a couple of visits since between the two countries, including one when Nikki spent a few months over here in Katherine. Kelvin wasn’t sure she would adapt to life in un-sophisticated Katherine after a life of hustle and bustle in the busy Phillipines. The visit was a success.
The slow and costly immigration process begins, and the expense of a fancy Australian wedding is unwanted in their budget at this point in time. Once one starts down the fancy wedding track here in Australia it’s not unusual for the cost to blow out to around the $40,000. That’s not a celebrity wedding, that’s just the cost ordinary, hard working folk are paying to get hitched. Crazy!
We considered flying up, but the idea of a quick road trip is far more appealing. We will leave in two days time, stopping in at Broome for a few nights on the way. We should arrive in Broome after five days of travel staying in road side stops on the way (I think that’s called boon docking in America). From Broome we’ll have another three nights on the road to get to Katherine.
We are anticipating that we will arrive on the Sunday, five nights before the ceremony. How exciting. I’ll try and post details of the trip, and of course photos of the happy couple as they tie the knot, How exciting!