Oldies at Large – Finding Yesteryear in Port Macquarie

Screen Shot 2014-04-03 at 5.31.38 pmWe are on R&R in Port Macquarie and one of the nicest things about the old penal settlements, those that have come into their own down the century since colonial times, is walking around the site of the old settlement and seeking out the remnant of another age. We have lost so much that is rich and rigorous of colonial times that it is heartbreaking. But here they have endeavoured to preserve their fumbling beginnings where they can, fighting in the battle against progress and commerce.

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Oldies at Large – A Change of Pace

Screen Shot 2013-12-20 at 9.59.34 amIt is time to check into the main block (home) for catchup and repairs. Yep we are due some timely TLC on our Grampie Flat otherwise known as the caravan, with a major job coming up because The Man can’t back the damn thing in the dark…! and he managed to leave an untimely reminder of our visit on the roof of a picnic shelter. Not that I can back it at all either mind you.

We usually try to be settled and set up by no later than 4pm preferably 2ish… this isn’t hard when you don’t like travelling more than 200ks in a day. Yep… it is life in the slow lane for us. Mind you those travel days usually come only once a week, it isn’t as though we tow the home from pillar to post and back. On this particular day we were running later than usual and The Man was gamer than usual… hence the consequence. Life just has it’s moments at time so you just learn to roll with the slopes and fly with the winds.

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Oldies at Large – Housekeeping and Holidays

Screen Shot 2014-01-04 at 7.06.44 amWe are once more turning our noses to the sun, heading north as autumn sneaks around the corner and I must admit it has been an adventure travelling with the flow of the weather. For winter, a time of hibernation usually, we have planned a spruce up for our little mobile home. It is time for some serious housekeeping before we take the Grampie Flat deep into the northern rainforest’s and then out across the Outback along the Savannah Way with a side trip down into the heart of Aus., into the western arm of the Macdonnell Ranges where I can do some research for a book and these are our plans for 2014.

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You have Mail – Born on a Nugget of Gold

Sofala NSW - The Turon River Gold Fields

Sofala NSW – The Turon River Gold Fields

We have been camped on the Turon River, near Sofala NSW, which is an old gold town of the colonial era of early Australia. Settled amongst the she-oak trees it is wonderfully peaceful and you can’t help but think of the golden era, where men panned here for the wealth of the earth in their thousands and history was etched into the banks of these rivers.

Roos on TuronThe wallabies and roo’s pass us by each day and the birds move between the trees. The song of the bush is beautiful. There are wild blackberries here and wild tobacco, a remnant of the gold mining days. Plants that the diggers often nurtured to provide the sweet things in life that were difficult to live without. Wild goats roam the bush and goanna’s stalk quietly like a visitor from pre-history. Continue reading

Oldies at Large – Little Joys and Annoys of Freecamping

Screen Shot 2014-01-16 at 7.17.16 pmWe are coming up to near a month now where we have been ‘on the road’ freecamping and it has been a wonderful experience. We have only stayed where we have been happy to camp and I have to admit that we have overstayed the odd time embargo at what are idyllic spots. Naughty us… I know. But in these cases we have been welcome to do so with the agreement of those who oversee the management of the freecamp. They really just want you to respect their towns and care for what they value, peace, nature and what is their home.

We have travelled barely 600klm from home base, which has shocked some rels, but we aren’t in a rat race to anywhere so why hurry? We have seen a great deal, most which we haven’t seen before and we have met some truly lovely people … I am not thinking of those rednecks! Continue reading

Oldies at Large – Life Around Camp

Screen Shot 2014-01-11 at 11.45.47 amLike all things you soon fall into a pattern for life around a new camp and so it has happened around our first big camp. Our pattern is not entirely new to us, but it holds certain elements that bring us a huge amount of entertainment. The pups of course offer their own entertainments and travelling with dogs has some huge advantages and a couple of quaint disadvantages too.

I have told you about Tuppi, my little miniature poodle once or twice. She is my companion, my friend and my guardian. Our other pup, Scotty Dog, is strictly speaking not ours. He belongs to the Baby Boy (our 3rd son) but while maintaining his loyalties to his owner and master has attached himself to hubby. This created a dilemma for us all when we decided it was time to ‘hit the track’.

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Oldies at Large – Giving up the Rituals

DSC_0264Something which I have realised as we move closer to the event of our running away from home and that is giving up all those lovely well known and age old rituals of central family living. Yep… those things that you barely notice at times but which are markers of a family group in practice.

When hubby and I left home on our marriage, after we had returned from our honeymoon all those decades ago, gathering up our goods and chattels we headed north to what was to become home central for our new and growing family.

One of the first things we did once settled was organize the delivery of the Sunday paper. In this ritual we established our intent to nest. This practice of course was way back in the dark ages according to the kids, as was the delivery of the daily bread and milk but those ritual niceties have since fallen by the wayside over the years in the name of progress. Now-aday’s you are the one who delivers the monies to the shop and exchange it for milk and bread… the emphasis no longer on service but on sales.

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Oldies at Large – Camping in the Backyard

CampfireFor those new guys to the subscription list … welcome .. luv ya’s. If you read back you will discover that we are prepping for our escape as Grey Nomads in 4 short weeks . In the meantime however Christmas is just 2½ short weeks away and the family is preparing to descend. It is our Baby Boy’s turn to host Christmas and as he happens to live in the Granny Flat now as we have moved into the Grampie Flat (caravan) in prep for our tour about Aus. the family begins to descend on our place tomorrow and preparations are fully in force.

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