“The best portion of a good man’s life? His little, nameless, unremembered acts of kindness and of love.”
Travel can be a little impersonal at times. You are no longer a person; you are a room number, a confirmation code, or a “customer.” We love finding places that treat their guests as family. The Bromeliad Bed and Breakfast is just one such place where you arrive a guest and leave a member of the family. The Bromeliad in located in a great spot in a quiet suburban neighborhood of Darwin, Australia.
Darwin, the capitol of the Northern Territory, is perched at the tippy top of the continent. The sundrenched red rock, lively city, and access to world renowned national parks make Darwin the perfect getaway for traveling couples. There are plenty of cheap flights from Southeast Asia including directs from Bali, Kula Lumpur, Thailand and Singapore. Low-cost carriers including Air Asia and Jet Star make adding a quick visit to Australia easy and affordable. When you realize how close Australia is to those places, it makes sense to catch a cheap flight and add a continent to your passport. For us, it provided an easy way to pick up a visit to our sixth continent!
Carol and Geoff have been running the Bromeliad Bed and Breakfast for a little over a year. They are turning a new chapter in life; both have recently retired and have realized a dream 10 years in the making to open their spacious home to guests from near and far.
Carol and Geoff have been married for over 50 years. Of course once we found this out, we launched into interview mode. We wanted to find out what the secret to success has been for their enduring relationship. Explained Carol, “We’ve never had a huge Barney.” (Now for those of you that don’t speak Australian, like us… a Barney is a fight.) “We usually like to compromise, we try to find a solution that works for both of us.” The two met over a friendly tennis match. Just as in tennis, the couple has found success in the give and take. Key to happiness in relationship is helping each other and breaking down the “roles” that culture has defined. “Geoff does things around the house that his father would never have dreamed of doing,” explained Carol, “What needs to be done gets done.”
We asked her what advice you would give a couple that has hit a rough patch and are not seeing eye to eye. A huge smile came over her face and she suggested, “Take 10 minutes and take a walk.” After a few minutes of reflection, you will quickly find, what was a huge deal, is no longer such a big deal.
“Having a big house and a nice car are not all that important.” Says Carol. “What really matters is a car that runs, a roof over your head, and someone to love.” What a great motto! We couldn’t agree more. Carol and Geoff practice what they preach. After their son was seriously injured in a car accident and in a wheelchair, Carol and Geoff remodeled their home and turned it into a bed and breakfast because there weren’t suitable accommodations for his friends who were also handicapped. “We took lemons and made them into lemonade,” Carol smiles.
Darwin the Beautiful
The Bromeliad is a great base to explore all Darwin has to offer. You can easily take day trips to either Kakadu or Litchfield National Park. You can read about our Litchfield Park adventure here. The town itself has a wonderful waterfront with public beaches, fun eateries, and one of the best military museums that we have visited. One of the highlights for us was spending the evening market at the Mindil Beach Sunset Market. There was live music, entertainment like fire dancers and whip wielding guys, and every type of food imaginable. When we say every type of food: Greek, Italian, Asian, and of course crocodile dogs! There are lots of choices for those with a sweet-tooth as well. There are rows of fresh fruit, cupcakes, and ice cream. Luci enjoyed Dutch baby pancakes covered in strawberries and bananas with ice cream on top. There are authentic handicrafts like Aborigine art, boomerangs, kangaroo leather and Luci found exquisite jewelry made of flowers from the Outback. The market is held twice weekly. Just ask Carol and she can line you out on how to get there, where to park, and what to eat.
Darwin and our good friends Geoff and Carol of the Bromeliad Bed and Breakfast offer a true taste of Australia. Granted, we rested well in their care, but we also came away with our relationship renewed a bit. Only one thing…we still like a good barney!
Just so you know, we partnered with the Bromeliad on our recent visit to Australia. Does this affect our opinion and ability to strongly recommend this B & B to our readers? Not one bit!
Didn’t get enough of Aussie Land? How about Mike eating Vegemite for the first time?