Winter Warmer – 10

How remiss of me to miss many weeks of posting updates to our Warmer Winter trip. Here we are with a summary of the complete 8795 km and six and half months of traveling. With over 45 stops to set up and “break down” a day or two later, we are back to more permanent rain and lots of colder weather. Enjoy the post.

We left Woori Yallock 30th of April and after Grey Nomads Camp and a week with Sharlee in Grafton, we made an easy crossing into Queen Anna’s state of sunshine and zero Covid-19. Perhaps there’s some correlation there! Sunshine and zero Covid. I’m sure Anna doesn’t want that big of an influx of southerners to her state of “Queenslanders”.

We slowly moved up the coast after a service to the motor home on the Gold Coast, stopping at Bribie Island, Harvey Bay, the Whitesunday Islands and on up to Port Douglas where we did a U-turn and came back via the Atherton Tablelands. One town we passed through was where Lyn’s Dad first attended school, Tarsali. It was so small, and it was pouring with rain such that the cameras didn’t get a look.

Lyn’s younger sister and husband are housesitting in the beautiful coastal village of Cardwell while Peter drives trucks for the sugar cane harvest. We spent 3 weeks in the area notching up a few interesting locations while there. We enjoyed the mission beach area and Wallaman Falls.

Out west of Townsville, we were invited to stay at a camel farm and thought $20 per night for pensioners was a great tariff for two weeks. It was like an oasis in the middle of the Australian bush. The camels are bred from, and used, to improve the camel herds in the Middle East.

When we stock up the pantry and fridge of the motor home, we can get through two weeks, which gets us to the next pension payment. It’s surreal to be paid a regular pay after over 30 years of self employment.

We’ve met some interesting people while in Queensland, mainly from Victoria who escaped the lockdowns and curfews like we have managed. Some have made a rapid dash through NSW. Some have gone the long way round across to the NT, down to SA and into Victoria. Others, like us, have been patient and moved south when the annual electrical and hail storms started coming through from the west each day.

We crossed into NSW last Wednesday from the Kooralbyn valley. Traffic was sparse in the area and there were no physical checks other than the obligatory “smile at the camera” number plate photo. After a few days with Sharlee and Paul, we have started the 4 or 5 days of travel to the Victorian border. On checking the Victorian border crossing rules and application for permits, I think we’ll leave that until 30 minutes from the Murray in case the rules change a further time. (Has anyone been counting?)

As I write, Lyn is driving from last night’s stop at Uralla Golf Club to Gunnedah, and I’ll drive on to Dubbo. If we arrive by mid afternoon, we may continue for another hour or two.

It’s now a day later and we have enjoyed showing off our new satellite dish – our neighbours wonder how we are going to get in the driveway, but we’ll do our best.

We’ve made it to Albury tonight (Wednesday) and have had to change our plans of going to Geelong on the way home. Three of the grandkids have had to isolate as there’s been a few positive Covid cases at their school. That means we have to wait for the all clear.

We’ve been approved to return to Victoria as it appears the state needs us for some reason or another – maybe the population has decreased in the last six months and federal funding was on the decline.

Sorry, but your thoughts of hoping we would not return have been dashed. We will be home tomorrow- Thursday.

Ready to mow and trim

Strange, I found I hadn’t posted this prepared ramble I wrote 10 or so days ago. Since arriving home we have only seen the sun for short bursts which has enabled the garden to receive some attention.

Author: Colin Spain

The Official Blogger for Grey Nomads Travel and Cruise and GR8L1F

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