Tuesday 20th January, (Kelso).

We have now moved to Kelso, and are looking forward to a lengthy stay here. I have spoken to some of our new neighbours and they are amazed that we have chosen to stay here for a period like 12 months permanently, but I answer by saying we will be living in the van no matter where it is parked.

We have noticed again that the park here gives that feeling that one could very easily occupy one’s time here. At the moment the park is rather full of young families, but strangely we do not seem to even notice the kids are even here.

Thursday 22nd January.

We have now settled in at Kelso and even started to clean up the van and offload unwanted articles.

I am enjoying, so far, our time at Kelso and it is looking like it might be a welcome place to spend our next 10-12 months. So much so in fact that I am starting to think that I may not even have time or the inclination to even apply for Newstart again, and have to put up with the work, or time one would have to put in to qualify.

My electronic woes are continuing: After buying a new mobile to get access to high speed data transfer I have had to reload the laptop with a compatible windows application, now done, and now my new phone has developed a fault and is in for repairs. I have also discovered that the battery in the laptop has failed, so if I can be bothered the next thing will be to find somebody to see if they can fix that. Hopefully soon things will settle down and I will not have to upgrade anything for a long time.


Saturday 17th January.

We thought things were going to be relaxing this last week: boy were we wrong! I haven’t been able to put any words down as I have been going through the process of reloading the laptop with a new version of windows to overcome a few problems of late, and time has been spent getting things working properly before putting it to proper use.

We, or Linda at least, have been busy trying to organise Adrian’s finances to get him out of debt before he can move into a new unit. This is now under control and will continue over the next couple of months.

I have also considered restarting, or reapplying for, newstart allowance, but this will mean that quite some of my time will be taken up satisfying centerlink to earn a small allowance. I am at this stage considering that it may not be actually worth it.

We have also had to consider where we intend living while back in Tassie and after consideration and checking caravan parks we have decided on Kelso. This park is a little far from anything, but it will assist in helping to save some money while there. We are moving there on Tuesday.


Chapter 24D.

Return to Tassie.

11th January, 2004, (Legana).

We are now back in Tassie at the caravan park at Legana.Our venture started early on Saturday the 10th at 7:00am. We left the caravan park in Melbourne on our way to Station pier to catch the boat, and as we made our way across the Westgate bridge a view of the wharf showed that the ferry (Spirit of Tasmania) was not docked. We at this stage started to wonder if we had picked the wrong day, but on arrival at the dock it became apparent that there were plenty of others there with the same idea as us. It turned out that the boat was 2 hours behind schedule, I guess making a night trip and a day trip each day may be just a little too much for them.

We did finally get under way at 10:30, an hour and a half late so this was going to make us a little late checking in to the park at Devonport, but we will just have to take it as it comes. Linda again vows that she will never again travel on the ferry, as she really does not handle sea travel. I didn’t think it was very rough, but then it does not bother me at all so I don’t really know what rough is.

We were a little fortunate when we drove onto the ferry as we were parked in a position that would mean we would be the very first off when we arrived in Devonport, and this meant that we weren’t really that late checking in to the park. We decided this time that we would check out the big4 park instead of the one we usually use, and it was not a very wise decision. The fact that we were late, and it was cold, and we were tired possibly had an influence on our feeling of the park but perhaps it didn’t. To start with the price was a few dollars dearer than the booklet indicated, but then we did expect that most parks in Tassie had increased their charges with the influx of travellers, but $28.00 for what we received was a little in excess seeing that it offered a lot less than most big4 parks on the mainland and was one of the most expensive. When we were setting up I had trouble with the power outlet where the safety mechanism within would not easily allow the power plug to be inserted, all outlets in the immediate area were the same, and I nearly broke the socket getting the plug to insert fully. I also noticed there was a TV outlet socket provided so to save setting my aerial up I decided to use theirs, and it didn’t work, so I had to set my own anyway.

I was also not happy with the fact that the sites were drive through and mainly used for overnight and they were so far out of level, so much so that I had to unhook the van from the car to get it level. Then the outside light for the en-suite didn’t work, so overall we were not very happy.

The next day, after letting the park managers know my feelings and telling them we would never be back, we headed off and made our way to Launceston, set up camp at Legana, and now feel settled comfortably once again. So now it is time to relax and without plans we will just casually do the few things we need to do and visit a few friends and family and just take things as they come.


Thursday 8th January, (Melbourne).

Linda and Narrelle really enjoyed their time together, and not surprisingly parting company last night was very hard for both of them. Matt and Narrelle left for Home at 8:30pm last evening and we were at the airport until about 7:30. Everybody wants it to be our turn next to visit them in England, but we will just have to see how the finances cope.

Matthew, son, did return the key he took with him, and surprise he decided to send it express post and it actually turned up this morning, he didn’t actually send it until Tuesday though.

Linda and I are now racing the weather in our two days of getting back to normality before we return to Tassie. It is still very windy and threatening to rain so today was a race to get the tent packed up while it was still dry. We did manage to get it packed away and so far the rain has held off, but tomorrow will be the teller when we have to get the awning and the rest of the van packed for an early start on Saturday. It is already showing that it is nice to be back on our own once again.

Its now back to Tassie on Saturday.


Sunday 4th January, (Melbourne).

Yet another drive from the bottom to the top of Victoria yesterday, Melbourne to Albury, to pick up Narrelle. She will be staying with us until they return to England. I have now vowed that I will never do that length trip again, as I have now done it twice in the last few weeks. A trip that long, 730k, is just too long and takes too much out of me. I’m not quite as young as I used to be.

The rest of the family are now back home, not without incident though, as Matthew took our amenities key with him. I am now hoping he will post it back in time to arrive before we depart due to the $20.00 deposit I paid for it.

Melbourne weather; It was stinking hot yesterday and the temperature gauge on the car ran very hot on my trip, and it is raining and windy today.

Narrelle and Linda have started off enjoying their time together, they are at the local shopping centre and have been there for about 4 hours, I guess it is what they need, some time just to themselves.