This Adventurous Age

Adventures travelling and working around Australia.

1999 Travels May 20

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Last night was appreciably warmer than it had been at Wilpena – we are thankful. We slept with the windows at our heads  and feet, open, to catch the cross breeze. It is a nice change to be able to do so.

We were up early – before 8am. No reason, it just happened that way.

I did the washing. Then I followed up things resulting from the mail – went to the Post Office here and paid the shire rates and the Telstra bill. Had completed some shares paperwork and mailed that. I phoned Breastscreen because they had sent me notice of a time for the routine check up – arranged to contact them about same when I am next at home.

I got John to phone the insurance broker he deals with, because I realized that we should have had the renewal notice for our house insurance, in this batch of mail, and it had not come. The response was a real shock. The broker told John it is not insured through him. His records show that, this time last year, John was going to do some research and get back to him – and never did. The Credit Union, who were contacted next, claim that the policy was cancelled in 1997!!! I have a recollection of thinking that the place was not insured, a year ago, and John supposedly fixing the matter. So we really are not quite sure who stuffed up, and how. But it certainly requires urgent and definite fixing now. John phoned the Credit Union, arranged a cover note, and they are forwarding a policy document to us – express mail. We will have to wait here until that gets here, and then return same before we continue on. We will ensure that it is automatic debit each year, from now on, like the contents  policy is.

All business completed, we drove into Leigh Creek, for a paper and a box of beer. We saw a Trakmaster in the servo there, so pulled in and chatted with the couple – from Melbourne. They have the Nullarbor model – still a single axle, but 17 foot long. The layout is fairly similar to ours, but they have a microwave built in, likewise a flushing toilet. That is not something we have room for – or a water pump to supply the flush! The man told John that he’d had a problem with the brakes on a rough road. Their cupboard door catches broke on rough roads, too, and were replaced by Trakmaster with the newer press button ones.

After lunch, we drove to view/inspect the huge open cut coal mine, that is just north of Copley, and is Leigh Creek’s raison d’etre. It is enormous. There are great overburden and coal heaps everywhere and very deep pits. I remember how vast this mine looked from the air when I was en route to Jakarta a few years ago.

05-20-1999 01 Leigh Ck coalfield old cut.jpg

The old Leigh Creek open cut coal mine – now disused

05-20-1999 02 old overburden shifter.jpg

An old over burden shifter

John enjoyed himself at the lookout point, “playing” at the controls of an old over burden shifter that is now an historic item there. But basically, he has been out of sorts all day, because of the insurance debacle.

05-20-1999 03 drivers eye view

Driver’s eye perspective from the controls of the overburden shifter

05-20-1999 04 coalfields from main road

The open cut coalfield from the main road

Back at camp, I cooked barley and veg soup to last the next few nights. For tea, I made a shepherds pie and served it with cooked baby spinach. Then yoghurt after.

There did not seem to be any coal trains today – either way.

It was a warm evening, but with some cloud about. Might it rain?

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