Pineapple Pete

Port Douglas, Winter 2014 We have new neighbours in a large camper ute that is wider than the site that they are on. While we chat ‘Pete’ starts hacking at the shrubbery, our pretty little dividing garden, and small palms are dug up and despatched to the rubbish bin so that more guy ropes can be pegged in. Hmmm.  After they leave for ‘the Cape’ the management remove a rather large palm tree that Pete has felled in his efforts to create the perfect camp site. At least shrubbery grows quickly in this climate. Advertisements Continue reading Pineapple Pete

The Reverend David Campbell

Winter 2014 After crossing the Hunter River by ferry from the perfectly situated Stockton Beach Holiday Park our day on foot in Newcastle is to be spent chasing our travelling needs. Newcastle is a hilly city and it throws up some interesting sights. Fuelled with fresh coffee we need a supermarket and the nearest is in Newcastle West, thanks to Google Maps we’re off along King Street and we spot an interesting looking hilly garden. Up the stairs we go. It is the old churchyard of the Christ Church Cathedral and each step bears the inscription from a long gone … Continue reading The Reverend David Campbell

Just to Save a Buck

August 2014 We’re in western Qld and neighbours at the back of the roadhouse are Melburnians desperate for a good coffee but too tight to pay $20 for a powered overnight site. So they lug their coffee machine over to the picnic table and plug into a free power point there. Such a hassle when the poor old roadhouse owners are struggling to make a buck out here anyway. Woody calls these types ‘Tight Arse Tuesdays’. Continue reading Just to Save a Buck

Remembering the Little Things

When you are getting on in years it’s hard to remember details. We know a bloke who’s a farmer and who’s also fond of tattoos. When a few of his cattle went missing a while back he found them on a neighbouring property. It was easy to settle the ownership dispute because their ear tag registration number just happened to be tattooed on his arm. He also has his kid’s birth dates on his leg and heaven knows what else or where. Some would call him organised. Continue reading Remembering the Little Things

Fate and Mate’s Mates

By chance we are staying in a town that up until a week ago we’d never heard of. We’re camped at the Bowling Club enjoying the sun and the company of good neighbours. We join them for dinner and it turns out that they hail from West Rosebud, on the Mornington Peninsula and not far from us. The food by the way is great. We spend four days at the Kandanga Bowls Club, soaking up the sun and chatting happily with our neighbours and it takes that long for any of us to realise that one of them went to … Continue reading Fate and Mate’s Mates

Tit for Tat

The chap next door seems so nice and we’ve shared jokes as we’ve pottered about all arvo, so we invite he and his wife to join our group for happy hour. His wife a sweet looking senior quickly morphed into a most depressing, loud mouthed master of one up manship and the conversation went something like this: “Oh, you read Lee Child, he’s light. I read history, Ken Follett.” We suppress a giggle. And she hits us with a left hook. “A recent death in your family?” she asks. Instead of treading gently and with respect she wades in with: … Continue reading Tit for Tat

Only in Melbourne!

I make a flying visit home for my Aunt’s 90th birthday and on my way back to the airport I swing past Springvale (a Melbourne suburb known for it’s Asian groceries) and pick up a couple of pieces of Lup Yook (cured pork that resembles a skinny brown cricket bat) for Woody’s traditional birthday feast. I shove it in the side of my backpack and forget about it. At airport security the ‘fertiliser guy’ (the bloke who wands you for nitro or explosives or such) happens to be a young Chinese Aussie. “Lup Yook!” he shouts in excitement to his … Continue reading Only in Melbourne!

Beachcombing

This nomadic life can be so serendipitous. While wandering along a beach I meet a couple who were originally from the Mornington Peninsula and who now live on the north coast of NSW. They’re encouraging the littlies to find flotsam and we’re all picking about looking for interesting things from the last tide. It turns out that he is Bill Silverstein and he wrote a book called Down Under Magic about the early days of skin and SCUBA diving in Port Phillip Bay. Bill was in the diving search party for the body of Prime Minister Harold Holt (a keen … Continue reading Beachcombing