I thank my lucky stars I married a man who really knows how to get a good fire going. We spent two lovely nights chilling out in front of the fire place, toasting marshmallows, looking at flames hug the logs, and drinking wine we bought from the Yarra valley. The cottages were built in 2002, but the one we were in is so new and well maintained that you could tell that a lot of love and care has gone into the cottages.
It is set on 4 hectares of landscaped ground, so you can imagine the amount of running space Kai had. The owners had put a lot of thoughts behind planning and landscaping, blending the cottages into the green foothills of the dramatic Otway Ranges that you are almost guaranteed to see some wild life. They'd even built a Secret Garden in the middle of the field you see above, where one can cook up a barbie! Kai had lots of fun running after the birds, poking around the bush, pulling up leaves, and... he had his first tumble on the gentle slope.
The beach is just a short walk across the road, with rock pools for you to explore as well. It was the start of winter when we went. Yet when it was time to explore the beach, Terence said to me: "This is the closest we'd ever get to a beach this holiday. If you don't wear your shorts now, you'd never wear it."
I regretted it instantly the minute I stepped out of our cottage. But I sort of got used to the cold and the wind, and after a while, I was snapping away. We saw piles and piles of the thick, leathery sea kelp that were washed up to shore for miles and miles. And found out what the end of the kelp would look at, if it were anchored in the bottom of the ocean.
While Terence explored the rock pools with Kai and helped the little monkey stomp in them, I was more fascinated by the colours thrown up by the rock pools in the setting sun.
After we all bubbled the aches of the long drive away in the spa bath, we sat down and flipped through what others thought about our dear cottage.
I started penning our love for the cottage on our last night, but I was just too sad to complete the words. Terence did it for us, and I thought about whether I should take a photo of what he wrote so we could remember it too. But I closed the book, so as to save the experience for another time when we, hopefully, make it back to the place.
Yes, Apollo Bay, we'd be back!