This Adventurous Age

Adventures travelling and working around Australia.

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2000 Travels April 27


We managed an efficient pack up and departure.

It was a pleasant day for driving.

We travelled via Yarra Glen, Yea, Seymour, Tatura, Echuca, to Hay. In accordance with our general concept of leaving the exploration of parts closer to home until later years, the aim for the next few days was to get a reasonable distance northwards.

Truck was still blowing fuses! We stopped at an auto electrician in a little hamlet near Tatura. They were able to work on it immediately. John was impressed with their work, as he watched. It only took about an hour and cost us $29, with new globes too. The problem had been a rubbed wire shorting something. Pity Landrover missed that.

We took in some interestingly varied country today. From the forested ranges between Yarra Glen and Yea, through the dairying and crop country of the Goulburn Valley, to the extremely flat and somewhat boring areas north of Echuca.

We had a few stops to make coffee and to have our packed lunch.

Reached Hay late in the afternoon, feeling that was quite enough for one day.

At the Hay Plains Holiday Park, we were able to stay hitched up – for $13.50 for the night.

As dusk approached, we went for a walk across the Murrumbidgee River and around the town. That was enjoyable for an hour or so.

Tea was cold meats and a coleslaw that I’d made yesterday – it was alright to carry that through today’s quarantine areas.

John suddenly realized that, yesterday. he’d left some tools outside the unit, after doing the work in there, so he phoned K and left a message to retrieve same.

It was so good to be on the move again!

04-27-2000 to hay

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2000 Travels April 26


This was a day for final odds  and ends.

We drove to R’s to collect some mouse mats he forgot to give us the other day.

Then, at Nunawading, bought computer software – I bought games: Mahjong and Dragons. John bought a Star Wars game.

At Ringwood RACV bought a new caravan park guide.

At Chirnside, did banking, did Medicare claims. Bought a weed spray for K to use on the blackberries, at Bunnings. Had to go to a bank in Lilydale.

Drove home to leave the weed spray, collect the stored tent and its floor carpet pieces, which we’d left before going to Tasmania. John fixed light globes for the tenant.

Said final farewells to the dog, yet again. The cats rather ignored us.

Bought some groceries at Healesville. Had our prescriptions filled – $317. Ouch!

Refuelled – 83cpl.

Then we packed away the awning and outside furniture. John replaced the fuses, yet again.

It was another very tiring day. We needed to get back on the road for a rest!

Tea was cold meats and salads.

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2000 Travels April 25


Today was Anzac Day, added to Easter it made an extra day’s holiday for the masses!

P and K came about 11am. We BBQ’d steak, sausages and onions for lunch and had a very pleasant meal.

John told them we would be finishing this trip in November 2001. His decision, not mine!

They had to leave just after lunch, to go help P’s father move some cattle.

After they had gone, we did a good repack of Truck.

Tea was leftovers from lunch.

The caravan park emptied out considerably today.

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2000 Travels April 24


Another fairly early start, and back down the highway to Lilydale, where John was bowling again. Just had to drive without indicators, and hope!

I went on to Chirnside Park shops. Bought some nice sneakers – two pair, on a special deal. Later found that the ones intended for John did not fit him, so I ended up with both pairs.

Then to the doctor. My blood pressure was still as high, which shocked me. Still, we have been racing around, compared to our usual life, these days. I promised to get it checked again in Qld, when life has settled down a bit.

I drove to my brother’s, at Ivanhoe and had a lovely lunch – soup, bread, salad roll makings. He was interested in my Tasmanian photos, especially the ones with big skies, clouds and lighting effects – the subjects of his current print making. I lent him some of the negatives. We talked about my family research.

I stayed there longer than I should have. John phoned whilst I was driving back to Lilydale, wanting to know where I was, as he had finished bowls and was waiting. So, he wasn’t very happy – but I’d had a good time finally catching up with brother.

Drove 138kms today – it was certainly easy to mount up the kms when we were here!

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2000 Travels April 23


We rather pottered about in the morning, after a late start. I had to wash some bowls clothes for John.

Drove down to the shops for lunch foods. The bloody fuses blew again, which annoyed me mightily, after all the trouble I went to yesterday, plus the money spent.

When we got back from the shops, John’s daughter R had arrived.

We all had a pleasant lunch – the weather was fine for sitting out under the awning. Lunch was my usual cold meats, salads, bread, fruit, cheeses.

R stayed until 10pm, so I had to rather scrabble around for extra for tea. We ended up having skinless franks and the remnants of lunch.

One of R’s new bosses is a past student of mine.

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2000 Travels April 22


Another early start, to go to Beaumaris for bowls. But it was not as early as it should have been, as John was not very organized and had to do a big hunt for the right bowls clothes. We had to rather hurry. Truck blew the fuses again, on the way. When we got to John’s sister’s place, the other men had already left for the club, so sister H offered to drive him there.

I phoned Landrover Assist and they arranged for me to take Truck to the dealer’s at Frankston. That drive of some 20kms In Saturday morning traffic, was a tense one, with no indicators!

The workshop replaced the left hand indicator light, in the front bullbar, which was rusted and corroded – and the blinkers then worked again. That cost $85!

I’d had to phone my brother to cancel today’s lunch and arrangements with him, due to Truck issue.

On the way back to Beaumaris, I stopped at a shopping centre at Chelsea, bought a roll for my lunch, and some food offerings for tea at H’s. I got back there about 2pm.

H took a phone call that said her husband had won a big Easter egg raffle, and that the prize would be delivered.

I walked to the bowls club and watched the last part of the third game. John’s team (him, brother, brother in law, and friend of brother from the MCC club) was unbeaten. There had to be a playoff with three other unbeaten sides. They won the first elimination round fairly easily, but the final was closer. However, they won! The crowd was supporting the other side – all local members. I heard one man describe our team as “mongrel” – I think he meant hybrid! As in made up of men from different clubs.

The guys were so thrilled. They received $200 each – not bad! They also won a souvenir glass each for having one end where all eight of their bowls were winning ones. That is fairly rare. So they were on a real high. It was a pity that the other wives had not seen the final.

Back to H’s for tea – roast rolled chicken. It was a pleasant evening.

04-22-2000 winners beaumaris.jpg

Victorious bowlers – and a big basket of Easter eggs

We got back to Healesville about 1am – long drive back. Drove 210kms altogether today.

It had been another long and tiring day, albeit for different reasons for each of us.

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2000 Travels April 21


My daughter turned 28, this day.

We were up fairly early and drove to Lilydale, to be there by 9am, for bowls.  I left John there and went back to camp, where I pottered about for the rest of the morning.

Drove back to Lilydale and met friend T at the York on Lilydale hotel, for lunch. Much of the talk was about his future, post retirement,  housing options – build, rent, house, unit, retirement complex? And where? He was considering Brisbane or Hobart, and we discussed the pros and cons of each.

After lunch, we went and walked around the Lilydale Lake – something he had never done before.

I went to the bowls club and sat in Truck, waiting for John. I watched him bowl for a while. The man they had teamed him with was not very good, so clearly John was not having a great day.

It appeared, on my travels up and down the highway today, that Truck indicators had started to play up and were blowing fuses, which then affected the working of various gauges. John replaced the blown fuses when we got back to camp.

Tea was bought fish and chips.

Posted 126kms today, going back and forth.

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2000 Travels April 20


After breakfast, we drove home and did some pruning and gardening. John took the rubbish thus produced to the tip. Refuelled Truck – 81cpl – much cheaper than Tasmania!

The dog enjoyed being around while we worked, and the tip trip – old times!

Had a phone call from friend R and arranged for him to come to tea at the van, after dropping son and friends at the Gilderoy scout camp. He would be bringing John’s new laptop.

Back at camp, I prepared steak, mushrooms, jacket potatoes, salad, fruit and cheeses.

Soon after arriving, R decided to go get H, too, so I added to the food and we ate late – about 7.30pm.

We had to sit outside, of course, and fortunately the temperature was tolerable – just. We had the electric fan heater going under the table.

It was a most enjoyable evening – they did not leave until 1am!

John received the new laptop, but there was only time for a brief demonstration of its operation. There was much software with it, too. John was happy.

The afternoon and evening saw much movement into the caravan park – for Easter. The claiming of territory was interesting to watch, especially as people rushed to set up chairs around the fireplaces, which were soon packed out.

We had decided, once we knew we were able to get a booking, to see out the Easter period at Healesville – especially after the delay with the wood. Better to be there, than battling it out on the roads with the holiday traffic. Also, John would then be able to play with his relatives in the annual Easter bowls tournament at Beaumaris!

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2000 Travels April 19


We had a mid-morning appointment with the doctor, for check-ups and scripts. My blood pressure was way up, and she wanted to check it again next Monday. I was not surprised, as I felt very tense. John had been threatening to abandon the trip, forthwith, due to the state of the garden! He had insisted on calling in at home, on the way to the doctor, and hitching up the trailer, rather than go back for it later, so we were running very late. I could feel the pressure in my head!

John had some skin things burned off, and we got our scripts.

I posted a birthday card, and cheque, to V, Express Mail.

We drove to Yarraville, to the freight yard near the docks.

The timber consignment was huge! Instead of filling our original pack of boards with offcuts, to make it up to a cubic metre, they had sent a cubic metre of offcuts  as well – and a generous one, at that! So instead of the parcel we were expecting, that would sit on the trailer, we had all these individual pieces of timber to pack away. There was no way we could just load the pallet onto the trailer. It took us two hours to load it all into the trailer and the back of Truck.

04-19-2000 huon pine shipment yarraville.jpg

At Yarraville. The timber parcel we were expecting loaded onto the trailer. The unexpected stack of offcuts still to be loaded into Truck and trailer!

Back at home, it all had to be unloaded again, and taken, in wheelbarrow lots, up to the shed, where John had to find room to stack it. Much of the shed room was, of course, occupied by my car. The Huon pine stack in the corner of the shed looked huge. Lord only knows what John will eventually do with it all.

That took us until 8.30pm. And we hadn’t had lunch!

In amongst the unloading, met the new tenant of our unit. Don’t know what she thought of us! John fixed a faulty door in the unit, that she mentioned, and some lights, since we were there.

A very late tea was take away from the Chinese in Healesville.

We fell into bed, exhausted. On top of all the hauling around of wood, we’d driven 190kms, through city traffic, some of it towing a trailer.

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2000 Travels April 18


After breakfast, drove back home again, to pick up the animals and take them to the vet. Yesterday I’d phoned and made the appointment. They were all ok. Had their annual injections. I bought worm tablets for the cats, to leave at home, and some ointment for a fly bite on the dog’s ear.

After leaving the pets at home, we went on to friend R’s place, where John ordered a new laptop from him. We had lunch there. Admired the ring H had made up from the Gemtree garnet we gave her.

Then went to the accountant and talked tax matters.

Drove to an outdoor gear shop in Ringwood and bought me some light hiking boots, but could not find any that were comfortable for John. His totally flat feet are incompatible with a lot of footwear.

Back at camp, phoned friend T and arranged lunch for Friday, and my brother ditto, for Saturday.

Tea, after all that running about, was bought pizza.