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Travelling around Australia

a travel blog by michelle62



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Adding the Master Bedroom

Gordon, Australia


Dick with some help from Glenn has been madly working at Newlyn to fit the Master Bedroom to our vehicle. The plan is, at the last minute, to totally gut the truck and start again!!. Lets hope it all works out. You can see Dick working on the Truck followed by the finished product. It looks terrific - quite spacious - now Caitlin and Riley want to sleep there also but we have 'bags it' first. Not long till we go - We will keep you posted

permalink written by  michelle62 on March 17, 2007 from Gordon, Australia
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How many Shanahans does it take?????

Williamstown, Australia


How many Shanahans does it take to make tarps and a annex for the super vehicle? Chris was the driving force and enjoyed directing the process. Nettie, Chris, Liz, Lili, Jacinta, and the James worked over the Easter weekend to create a quite unique -in keeping- tarp and annex for the truck. At one stage we had Chris on the sewing machine and three of us holding fabric in different directions - Heaps of fun - We had a slumber party in Altona with Chris and the Easter bunny found us too! Many thanks to all involved especially Chris - it was hard work but lots of fun :)

permalink written by  michelle62 on April 7, 2007 from Williamstown, Australia
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We are on our way

Echuca, Australia


Well we have eventually hit the road after lots of hard work, blood, sweat and even tears. We certainly underestimated the amount of time in getting ready and should have allowed 3 months. We met Brynley and Jacinta for a fashionably late lunch yesterday and from there picked up our truck and headed to Bendigo. We were so tired that we stopped at a road stop in Rokewood and early this morning we had breakfast in Bendigo and are now in beautiful Echuca. We will be staying the night at Deniliquin tonight and see how our vehicle compares in the 'Ute capital' of Australia. Caitlin is happy with any playground we find and Riley is happy if we stumble upon a cheap book shop. Glenn and I are just numb at the moment as we have not had time to relax - I think it may take a good week before we can just relax and chat.

permalink written by  michelle62 on May 4, 2007 from Echuca, Australia
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On the way

Deniliquin, Australia


We are now at the Ute Capital of Australia and plan to stay here for two nights. We camped last night in a Caravan park on the edge of the Edward River and we were the only vehicle in our grassed area overlooking the River. The mossies were bad but fortunately we had our trusty fly screens (courtesy of Big Shot) and lots of Aeroguard so we stayed relatively unscathed - we dont want Ross River Fever at this stage. The kids are happy and Glenn and I are starting to relax again. We plan to potter today and then head on tomorow morning for another adventure. We are working out the vehicle and which cupboards things should be in so that we can get a system happening. We have been walking around Deniliquin today which is a very pretty town.



permalink written by  michelle62 on May 4, 2007 from Deniliquin, Australia
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On the way

West Wyalong, Australia


We have just arrived in West Wyalong where we will camp for the night. We have travelled to Jerrilderie where there is a very strong prescence of Ned Kelly. We walked the streets of Jerilderie and admired the history notes at each point where Ned had been. This included the famous 'Jerilderie Letter' which he wrote and wanted to be published to let the people of the district know his cause but instead it was not published until 50 years after his demise. From Jerilderie we went to Naranderra where we had Sunday lunch in a local Aussie Pub which served Chinese food only. It was very nice and they provided for Vegetarians so were 'sweet' as Riley would say. Caitlin cons us into stopping at every playground so she is in heaven. We did our laundry at the Laundromat in Naranderra and met some seasoned 'grey nomads' (14 months on the road and at least another 12 months until they settled) who provided us with substantial tips regarding our journey. We camped over at a road stop with a very flash Winebago but I didnt think our vehicle faired too badly. On waking and having breakfast we started on our trip to West Wyalong but were way laid when Caitlin had an urgent toilet need. We pulled of the highway and entered a small town where she promptly didnt need to go anymore - I am not sure if this was before or after she saw the playground -hmm. I went to the toilet as I always do and when I got back in the Truck I heard the tyre hissing. I alerted Glenn and it turned out that one of the trusty rivets which had fixed much of our truck had in fact pierced the tube. Fortunately we were able to get this repaired and then another matter which had been concerning Glenn regarding Linkages??? (too mechanical for me) was sorted at the same time. So the 'phantom toilet need' had proved useful. We are getting into the home schooling - Caitlin wants to do it all the time but Riley takes a little bit more encouragement. I must away Regards to all MJ

permalink written by  michelle62 on May 6, 2007 from West Wyalong, Australia
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Western Plains

Dubbo, Australia


We arrived in Dubbo about 2.30pm yesterday after travelling from West Wyalong. We found a caravan park close to the city which allowed us to shower and refresh. I found the library late last night but ran out of time to update the blog. We had a nice evening in Dubbo and enjoyed vegetable soup for dinner. After a good nights sleep we packed up and headed for the Western Plains Zoo, Dubbo. We took our bikes but Glenn still doesnt have one so he hired a fairly daggy bike and we rode around the zoo twice. We managed to see the Hippotomus being fed and the frozen icypoles (combination of blood and milk) being given to the Lions. The monkeys kept us entertained for hours with their antics and it was difficult to see the difference between Caitlin and the monkey. We are off to Gilgandra tonight. We have been staying at caravan parks every three days so we can have a shower and charge up our computers, etc. The other nights we generally stay at road side sidings or truck passes. They prove very comfortable and generally have toilet facilities and are clean.


permalink written by  michelle62 on May 8, 2007 from Dubbo, Australia
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On the Way

Coonabarabran, Australia


We have spent the last two nights out of Mobile telephone access in the Warrenbungle State Forest. It was beautiful, very similar to the Grampians as it is a Volcanic rock towering out of very flat land. The camping area had showers and toilets - really great and we went on bush walks and enjoyed the peaceful surrounds. The kangaroos were so brave they came up to us while were eating and made you feel really guilty. Obviously we can not feed them but their gorgeous eyes were pleading so someone must have been feeding them at some stage. One was so bold as to sit right in front of me and stare at my plate of food and then to put both his paws on my knees quietly begging me for food. We had a great time and Caitlin made a new friend Peta from Orange who just had a new baby sister.

Must away as the librarian is keen to close the library

Will update soon. - I need to go to the Laundramat - a housewifes work is never done!!!!


permalink written by  michelle62 on May 11, 2007 from Coonabarabran, Australia
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Outback

Pilliga, Australia


I didn’t quite finish at Coonabarabran as the Librarian was giving me the wind up. After a lovely break in the State Forest of 2 nights we headed to Coonabarabran. On the way we stopped at Siding Creek Observatory which was the home of the AAT (Anglo Australian Telescope) This is run by ANU and provides an insight into the Southern Sky for Astronomers who come from around the world. We were able to go up to the telescope and there are also a number of other telescopes there also. This was a good aside as Riley is studying Astronomy as part of his distance education.

We left Coonabarabran after updating the website, doing a load of washing and doing a big shop. We travelled from there to Pilliga which was about 60 km off on dirt, sandy, corrugated roads, a real challenge for the vehicle but it proved its worth. It took us a long time and many bumps to get there but once we were there we went straight to the Pub. Actually there wasn’t much else around and the Pub always has cool drinks and more importantly Toilets. We had a drink and asked some of the locals where the best place would be to camp for the night. They advised us that there was a hot bore Spring just back down the road with Toilets and it was possible to camp. It was a lovely spot and we set up camp there. It was crowded at the Spring, Saturday night it was obviously the place to be, and people had their tents, swags etc. and were cooking up dinner around the bath. We thought it was prudent not to impose ourselves at this stage but it did not stop some Road Train fellows who parked their trains near our vehicle and went in for a bath before hitting the hot dusty road again. I would imagine that this is a pleasant stop for them every trip.


permalink written by  michelle62 on May 13, 2007 from Pilliga, Australia
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Walgett

Walgett, Australia


When everyone left in the morning the family was able to have a hot bath on their own before breakfast it was really refreshing and most pleasant. And then it was off for more dirt driving to Walgett for Mothers Day. We arrived at Walgett for Mothers day lunch yesterday where we had a lovely lunch buffet with sweets and coffee. The sporting club put on a special lunch with with pink serviettes, pink balloons etc. I enjoyed it especially the free glass of champagne. I was totally pampered and we stayed in Walgett over night at the Roadside 'Rotary' Park - Rotary has certainly looked after his trip with lots of road side parks with toilets and cooking facilities. Only three more sleeps to Caitlins birthday and it cant come soon enough. She is counting the days and begging us for a Riley 'Early present opening' but we will not cave. Her choice of a dinner venue for her birthday is McDonalds which Glenn is really excited about as you can well imagine. Tonight we are off to Lightning Ridge where we hope to strike it rich and retire on the proceeds. Alas I think this is unlikely and we will just be eating cheese and tomato sandwiches for the rest of the six months.

Must go. I have added some photos for your benefit of the various places we have been.

Michelle

permalink written by  michelle62 on May 13, 2007 from Walgett, Australia
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Lightning Ridge

Lightning Ridge, Australia


We arrived at Lightning Ridge yesterday and have stayed here for two nights. The home of the black opal which we have not actually found apart from the ones under the counters at all the galleries and shops. I thought we may have struck it rich but unfortunately not. There is a pool here and we have been doing lots of swimming. The pool guy was quite surprised we were swimming and he had to remove the creepy crawly but when we explained that we were from Ballarat and in fact this 'warm' weather as he described it was hot in comparison to what we were used to he understood. We just found another DVD which I didnt realise that we had that has Gayle (Caitlin's Distance Ed. teacher) reading books and showing the pictures. Caitlin has not stopped watching this and I am not sure how many times Glenn can cope with 'Green Eggs and Ham' - we shall see. She loves it and keeps telling me how beautiful her rings are as apart from the book the only other thing we can see are her fingers. Riley has been practicing his snorkeling in the pool for when we face the serious water and fish life up North. We seem to be getting into a nomadic routine - I could get used to this - but ask me in three months my enthusiasm may be waning.


permalink written by  michelle62 on May 14, 2007 from Lightning Ridge, Australia
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Trip around Australia

4/5's of the James Family have been planning to go on a trip around Australia for a number of years. We now have the vehicle which we are having modified and we hope to leave late April 2007

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