If you’ve seen the movie Groundhog Day, you’ll be familiar with the theme of reliving the same day over and over again.
We jokingly refer to our time on holidays at Moonta Bay on Yorke Peninsula as our Groundhog Day and believe me there could be plenty worse.
At its best you wake up around 630am to see the water in close to the wall in front of the caravan park. It’s a dead flat day on the water and it looks glassy. A crew for the tinnie is rounded up and somewhere near 7am after a coffee, they wade out to the boat anchored in a channel of water.
They motor off barely making a sound in the morning routines of everyone else around, and disappear to the other side of the sheltered bay to well-chosen sandy patches in the deep.
Meanwhile back at camp, our row of caravanning family are stirring and starting the day in their own ground hog day fashion. Walk the dogs on the beach, go for a brisk walk to the next bay at Port Hughes, tidy up the bottles and rubbish from the night before, check the emails and instagrams and ease into the day.
Before you know it the boat crew has returned, the dogs are taken for a run and chase out to meet the boat now over the larger expanse of sand that the tide has exposed.
The beach is filling up with families out for a day at the beach with sun shades and umbrellas set up, cricket games set up, beach balls blown up and sunscreen slapped on.
With any luck when you reach the fishos they have sly grins on their faces, hiding their haul so as not to attract too much attention. And to your joy you have a smorgasbord of seafood in buckets. Blue swimmer crabs, squid, tommies (Herrings), garfish and my personal favourite, whiting.
Now the chores begin. The fish need scaling and filleting, crabs need cracking and storing for later, squid to be cleaned, their tubes, flaps and tentacles kept for food and heads for tomorrows bait. The campsite is a hive of activity as everyone pitches in to prepare the seafood for a later shared feast.
Before long its mid-afternoon and thoughts turn to todays happy hour. Beers are cracked open, chilled wines shared or on the really hot days a refreshing G&T goes down well.
The evenings menu is sorted – who is cooking what and how? A little planning goes in to the timing so we can be sitting down at tables joined together to fit the somewhere up to 20 odd people for dinner at around 730pm. More good food, dare I say gourmet, lots of good reds, whites and rose to be enjoyed with our seafood feasts. What takes your fancy, crumbed calamari, beer battered whiting or perhaps grilled with olive oil and herbs, grilled calamari salad with rocket, baby spinach, red onion, and cucumber with a balsamic dressing? Sure! Do you want your crabs steamed or in a chilli sauce? Can do. Want some freshly made sour dough bread to go with that?
After our meal we sit back and watch the sunset, satisfied with the excellent spread we’ve all contributed to.
Yep this is my kind of ground hog day – roughing it on a caravanning holiday at a perfect South Australian beach.