A piece that I think somehow missed the blog
Everywhere we go people ask where we’re from. “Melbourne” we say and they laugh and pull faces and say “Bet you’re glad you’re up here”. We agree and we all laugh at the absurdity of the situation.
I reckon that pretty well sums up this trip.
Living in the van
123 Days, 122 Nights we left home on June 11th and arrived home on Oct 11th. Our longest trip in the van but our shortest winter trip in distance. That’s a long time to spend in a caravan that is only 18ft long by 8ft wide. But as most women would agree it’s not the size that matters but how you use it. To quote Elle “The longer you stay away the easier it is to stay away”.
Distance travelled: 7,471kms
Average accommodation cost: $29.18
Dearest accommodation: $41.00 per night at Mylestom
Average fuel use per day: $8.78, 14cents per km
Days travelling: 24
Days relaxing: 99 (Bugger, I knew we should have stayed away another day)
Gear failures: Our brake snatch cable broke, the 7 pin plug on the car needed replacing, a hose fitting on the hot water service also had to be replaced, the diesel heater died, the bathroom roof hatch fractured, the mains plug burnt out and the air conditioner appears to be a little unwell. VeeWee had TV aerial issues which needed rewiring. The Prado’s had TV aerial problems and no doubt the repairman was surprised to catch Elle in bed. They also needed a new sullage hose and had a hot water leak. Not a bad trip really, better than last year when we blew an engine on the Jeep and Elle lost a diamond in the red dirt of Alice.
Was it a gamble? Yes
We’re we worried? Yes, scared at times. Who would have known that Victoria would go into what was one of the world’s toughest lockdowns at that time.
Pie Makers – I thought Elle was mad when she said she’d be taking the pie maker. Yet Elle taught us so many tricks and recipes. It’s like having a miniature oven on the bench and a great way to roast a few veges when you feel like a little comfort food.
Ovens – We thought we used our caravan oven a lot until this trip. With more relaxing days on this trip it was even easier to throw a small roast in the oven and just forget about it. Yes, a chardy would be nice thanks.
Thanks to the pandemic there were so few planes and it was so quiet!
The chance to explore NSW and get to know places we’ve usually rushed through. And to see it in the Spring after good rains so lush and green.
Of course the obvious one, being out in the countryside and away from lockdown.
We’re not train buffs but by fluke we visited 2 train museums and stayed at 2 railway stations.
The surprising places
Coraki for its charm and beauty.
Darlington Beach for its wildlife and huge grassy sites.
Grenfell for its architecture, its friendly residents and the nicest freedom camp.
The places we’d return to
All of the above in a flash as well as Griffith (were not finished with you), Orange in better weather, Nambucca Heads of course for its natural beauty and Canowindra for that damned Fish Fossil Museum that we missed. And then there’s…..
What about the crew
Well VeeWee and little Nic returned home a little earlier to the Bellarine Peninsula in Regional Victoria where lockdown was eased much sooner. She was able to gad about and she did.
The Prado’s found a nice spot at Barham on the NSW side of the Murray River where they were able to look at Victoria mere metres away for another week or so.
And on being home (for the first few days at least)
It’s good to be home and nice to see our neighbours.
We can’t visit anyone.
The garden is overgrown but respectable.
Already I’m missing the birds of the bush and the proximity to nature that we have in the caravan.
I’m loving a full sized kitchen again and the Dyson stick vacuum. Fancy missing a vacuum cleaner!
It’s nice not to have to calculate the amount of water each time we flush the toilet.
My joints are not liking the stairs, the concrete floor and the cold weather.
I’m not looking forward to the washing, van cleaning and housework but it will take our minds off lockdown.
And I am loving the garden.
The wine we bought in Griffith is seriously good and we have ordered more online.
Woody’s hearing is still giving him problems and he’s well you could say, up to his ears in doctor’s appointments.
Melbourne’s 2nd Lockdown ended as the clock ticked over on October 28th however residents were limited to a radius of 25kms. It is anticipated that the 25km radius will be dropped by next week.
And most importantly
How fortunate we were to be able to have such an adventure with good friends and gee we miss them. (You know Elle I think we did win the lottery after all!)