Day 3 Saturday 12th January 2013 Bendigo – Castlemaine
During the night a mild cool change blew a lovely breeze through the van. Woody is up early and off for a long walk. We have a leisurely breakfast then pack up. We decide to head to Castlemaine for a coffee and then maybe Maldon, it’s so nice to not have any plans and plenty of time. I’m even starting to relax.
We pull into Castlemaine and realise that most of the streets have angle parking. We find a perfect parallel park outside a school and while I have my head buried in the Camps Guide, Woody reverses to make more room for other vehicles. There is a sickening crunch. We both realize that something is amiss. The rear awning arm has broken away from the van and is now sticking out at right angles. It appears that we have hit the school safety fence and the awning arm has ended up on the other side of the fence. It takes some maneuvering to get it back into a reasonable position against the caravan so that we can hold it in place with duct tape and octopus straps. We’ve come off the worst as there is no evidence of altercation on the fence.
To settle our nerves, we have lunch at Tog’s cafe before taking the Calder Highway home, so much for starting to feel relaxed. As we scoot down the highway I spend quite a bit of time on the phone sorting out insurance and a repairer who will see the van on Monday. We mope around at home, do a load of washing, and lament that most of our clothes are stuck in the cupboards that are locked by the pop-top hinges and we can’t open the pop-top without extending the now un extendable awning. I ring friend MV and tell her of our woes. “Is that all?” she says “You’re not a real caravanner until you’ve done 3 awnings!”