The first day back on the road

CHRIS’S VERSION

After a wonderful 7 weeks spent at David and Lacey’s in Wurtulla on the Sunshine Coast we are now back on the road heading to Central Queensland.

We’ve both left Wurtulla with the sure and certain knowledge that it is home. It’s where we’ll eventually and finally hang up the spurs and settle down.

It wasn’t easy leaving.

Roxy, David and Lacey’s dog didn’t make it easier.

We are not dog people but this amazing animal has truly stolen our hearts.
She looked so forlorn and depressed as we went through the process of packing up the van and refused to leave her favourite place on the swing seat choosing instead to curl up without so much as a wagging tail.
This is totally out of character for her and we can only assume she knew we were leaving and not just for an hour or two.

David and Lacey have been absolutely wonderful, as usual, during our stay and it’s been so nice to have long talks and enjoy meals together as well as spending many unforgettable hours on the boat.

During the 7 weeks at Wurtulla we’ve made some very big leaps with the business, deciding once and for all to convert all our programs to online applications and make them available as SaaS (Software as a Service) applications.
This is a big move for us as it means steep learning curves into unfamiliar technology, but it’s also very exciting and opens up many new possibilities.
It’s perfectly in tune with our life philosophy of always pushing the boundaries and never stopping learning and experiencing new and unknown universes.

We‘ve also completed a lot of work on the Nissan.

We’ve added the AMMS fuel chip and exhaust system.

This is a move aimed at reducing fuel costs through advanced performance.
We’ll know in a couple of days when we refuel. Kerrie’s diligent recording of all our fuel expenses will soon show if we’ve made the right move.

We also fitted air shocks which have eliminated a slight sagging in the back as the weight of the van is taken up on the towbar.

A complete redesign of the packing of the back of the ute and a further culling out of items that we don’t need have seen us travelling even lighter than before.

It’s not far off a year now that we’ve been living exclusively in the caravan and nothing has changed our delight in living this way.
Life seems so much more simple, easy to manage and enjoyable without our huge “Thing Collection”.
The caravan is so comfortable to live in and maintain and the freedom of being able to choose where to stay next and move there quickly with a minimum of fuss and expense is a remarkable experience.
How did we ever get so attached to a mountain of “Things” that now have very little significance to daily living?

During the last 6 weeks I also had a number of Sunspots removed including a surgical removal of another one from my ear.

All in all it was a time of reorganising, catching up with precious family and friends and rethinking some things in preparation for the next part of our journey wandering Australia.

So here we are free camping the first night away.

There is nothing much here at Fat Hen Creek, just silence, apart from the odd car passing along the highway and the night sounds of the surrounding bush.
There is however a great attraction for us at this unremarkable creek side site.
It is the freedom, the freedom of choice.
It is a freedom to just live for a day or two without the hefty costs of caravan parks, away from the traffic, the shopping centres and the barrage of advertising that insults the intellect.
It is to just enjoy a quiet peaceful place without the constant intrusion of the regulations and ordinances that are relentlessly ripping away at the free choice we enjoy so much.

Yes, yes I know, we are still subject to those regulations and ordnances, even here, but life seems more basic; don’t litter the place up and do the right thing by others.

We fear that a time will come when our political masters, who truly believe they know better than us what’s good for us, will demand an end to free camping.
Will we see a time when we must be tracked in these places (for our own good of course)?
Will we be required to log in on some digital monitor so our masters know where we are?
Already the highway is littered with signs stating “Vehicle Monitoring Cameras Ahead”.
Make no mistake the freedom we love and take for granted is being quietly eroded and most of us don’t even realise it.
Tell us “it’s for your safety and your own good” and we will accept any erosion of freedom at all.

Sometimes I long to yell out, “DON’T DO ANYTHING ELSE TO PROTECT ME PLEASE. IWILL LOOK AFTER ME AND MINE.”

KERRIE’S VERSION

Well we’re on the road again.

After spending a wonderful 8 weeks in Brisbane, 7 of those at David & Lacey’s, it was time to hit the road again.

It was wonderful to catch up with family & friends, accountant, dermatologist etc.

We were going to leave Tuesday but decided to get the Fuel Chip & exhaust modification fitted to the Nissan to improve economy. Barry had suggested it, and both David & Chris have it fitted to their car’s and love it.

Withhighway driving to ACU everyday we used to get approx 620km to the tank. That is average 9.8lt to the 100km. Then with the “Old girl” travelling we were getting appro 440km or 6.9lt to the 100km. With the new van it dropped to approx 330km or 5.2lt to the 100km. So any improvement will be a great saving.

This morning was like a scene from the movie “The Castle”.

Move the Toyota to get to the boat, move the boat so we can put in the Nissan to move the van. Then swap cars again to the Toyota to put back the boat and then put away the Toyota.

Chris also had to fill in the hole that Roxy had dug under the van.

She built her den under the van.

She built her den under the van.

She would sleep there every night and when she heard us awake would come and greet us very enthusiastically. We had gone out and bought turf for the large hole so at least when we left it didn’t look like the moon surface.

We are going to miss the chats with Lacey every night over dinner and David when he was home.

Roxy will also be missed by both of us. That dog has a personality that sucks you in. She knew something was up when we were packing this morning and ended up on the swing seat sulking, not even a tail wag.

She never left our side when we were there. If we were in the van she was either under it or outside the door. If we moved into the house she sat on the swing seat so she could keep an eye on us in the kitchen. She love the beach walks as much as we did and if we did go out without her, the greeting we received when we got home was amazing.

We finally got away after lunch after having a chat with Frank & Gloria from across the road but as we aren’t in any hurry it didn’t matter.

Our first stop was at a rest area 6km East of Kilkivan.

Honestly for the first hour you think you should be doing something? It’s sooo easy. Turn on the gas, change the fridge to gas ( switch a button and press start) turn the pump switch on then the hot water. Done.

Set up in less than 10min. Fridge on, hot water and a drink in the hand.

Set up in less than 10min. Fridge on, hot water and a drink in the hand.

The only thing is there is no internet reception here, oh well upload tomorrow when we go through a town.