Tuesday, 28 December 2010

93 - The Year That Was 2010

The year that was 2010

Seeing that not much is going to happen until we move on from here, 1st Feb 2011, I thought a good idea is to re-visit out travels in the form of our 2010 adventures in photo form.

We often sit down and reminisce on the year, that has just gone by, and every year on Xmas day, we say to each other, “I wonder where we will be this time next year.” We said it on Xmas day 2009, and we had, not a clue where the year would take us . That’s half the excitement….the unknown….just luv it!

Even the greatest Clairvoyant would not have picked the path we travelled in 2010.

So Xmas day 2010, we went through the same ritual, and apart from the end of January 2011, which will see the end of this “tour of duty”, that is all we know. Sure we have a rough plan, and probably true to form, it will not happen. As I continue to say our plans change by the nano second.

So let’s see some of the places of 2010


Bermagui Southern NSW
Armands Beach Southern NSW
Marouya Southern NSW
Narooma Southern NSW
Batemans Bay
 Canberra ACT
Cowra NSW
Dubbo NSW
Narrabri NSW
Goondiwindi Qld
Possum Park Qld
Clermont Qld
Undara Lave Tubes Qld (8th April to 31st August)

Mt. Surprise Qld
O'Brien's Creek Qld
Croyden Qld
Normanton Qld
Karumba Qld
Burke and Wills Road House Qld
Winton Qld
Longreach Qld
Barcaldine Qld

Sarina Qld

Mackay Qld (October 8th 2010 to February 1st 2011)

Well that's a bit of a fly around.

Where did 2010 go??????????

Everybody have a happy and safe new year and CYA sooooooon!!

Cheers and beers


Saturday, 25 December 2010

92 - Soggy Christmas Day 2010

What can one say, wet, wet, wet.

Cyclone Tasha crossed the coast just south of Cairns, in the early hours of this morning, and although a CAT 1, not a big blow, a little bit of damage, but mostly rain. Everything is in flood.

Hardly a soul in house (motel), and there is just me and the bride, and it is peeeeeeeing down. But we have organised some very dear friends of ours from back when we were here in the 80's and early 90's, as they were home alone as well. So they joined us at the motel for our own Chrissy lunch.

Heavy tropical rain and I mean heavy 

Poor old RetroLiner,  just water logged

The Val all tucked up and dry

The bride all dressed up and nowhere to go

Cheers and Beers

That's me and our great friends Ray and Vera Sellin
The bride with Ray and Vera

Stay tooooooooned for the next up date.

Thursday, 23 December 2010

91 - Merry Christmas

Hi Everybody, and a big thank you for following our blog. There seems to be a group of us keeping a close eye on "what each is doing". Good fun, and really enjoy the updates.

So may the bride and I wish you all



Hey guys, we are in the middle of that  above.......... break out the sand bags, the flippers and the  snorkles....a'h what the hell....... just go skinny dipp'n in the motel pool, there is no one here anyway!!!!!!!! 

Cheers and beers


Thursday, 16 December 2010

90 - It's Good News Week.

"Its Good News Week".  Who remembers the song out of the 60's by Hedgehoppers Anonymous. It was a protest song that focused on the medias obsession with making the most out of contrarily bad news, and had tones of the anti war movement in the Vietnam era. Showing my age now!!!!!!!

If I remember, this is how one of the verses went.

"Its good news week; someone dropped a bomb somewhere, contaminating atmosphere, and blackening the skies".

Hey how is that for a jaded memory. See somethings just stick in your mind.

Well I am going to use this as the positive!!

Guess what, all tucked up at the motel is the RetroLiner and the Val.....................Yahoo.!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I got the Val back this morning, after a false start on Wednesday. Won't bore ya with details about all the work that was done, however, we basically have a reconditioned car, and its going like I have never seen or felt it before.

I tell you what, if you are ever in Mackay, and you need mechanical work done, just pop into Torrissis Garage, McAlsiter street Mackay. I assure you, that any repairs will be handled extremely professionally, with compassion. This posting also gives me the opportunity to thank Ross Torrissi and his team for their patience and care with  the Val. The bride and I can't thank you enough!

Now the RetroLiner!

Went out to the repair man at Mirani, which is around 25kms from the motel, around 10.30am this morning and there she was. All ready to "rock and  Roll"  Apart from the grime and soil, due to not being for washed for near on six months now, she was just biting at the bit the get going.  Again I won't bore ya with details, but we have the RetroLiner ready to venture forth on our next leg commencing February.

The repair man also did a fantastic job, and will also highly recommend their services as well. Incidental both came in cost wise, just below what I anticipated for repair work on both chariots. It's good news week.

The difference in the behaviour of the Val, was just outstanding, with the RetroLiner on the back. Once up to cruising speed, I hardly knew it was there. Kept on looking in the mirror to make sure she was still on the back. Just touching the throttle, and cruising about 90ks, what a dream. Now that is what I expected of the Val two year ago, with a no thanks to the original repairer........You "Wally"

We are really quietening down here at the motel, as most of the corporate trade has ceased for the year, and take their annual holidays. It will give us a chance to recharge our own batteries and catch our breath, however we still have to be here 24/7. No big deal, I will be able to do boys things on the chariots that I have been wanting to do for ages.

Probably won't be posting in the next week, so to all that follow us, may we take the opportunity to wish you all a very happy and safe Christmas and a prosperous new year.

Cheeres and beers


Friday, 10 December 2010

89 - Another week, another milestone.

First of all, fantastic to hear from the Biz Wizards Adventurers, arriving back in OZ after a 6 month stint in the U.S of A. We met Mike and Kerry at the Big 4 CP at Southwest Rocks, northern NSW coast around October 2009. We continued to meet up, in various different places all the way down the NSW coast, with our final get together at Batemans Bay. From there we went west to Canberra, then to Dubbo, Goondiwindi, then coming to a stand still for 5 months at Undara Lava Tooooobes.

Mike and Kerry continued their Odyssey around the coast, and as per last blog will be around the Adelaide area till early next year. We do however, communicate quite regularly by email outside our respective postings. We may even meet up again on our tracks towards NT in 2011. Fantastic people and have an interesting blog, which is listed on the side here.

Mike and Kerry the Biz Wiz Adventurers with the Retro Roamers 

You know that's why I love about this traveling thing. Apart from the fantastic places you see and visit, the folks you meet out there are just awesome. Who cares what your background is, your lifestyle, the rig you have, how much money or possessions you have.......to mine no ones gives a rats. We all seem to have a common goal, of traveling and enjoying life. A mate of mine said to me some time ago.... "The curtain is coming down, and there ain't no encores. "How true is that!!!!!

WE have had a some new travels join us this week. Just love following all these folks, and all the others too, and we feel we are traveling with all of them. We get quite envious, especially us being in the one place for a period of time, however in saying that, this "tour of duty" is serving a purpose, so we are thankful for the longer stint.

As in our heading, Another week and another milestone. This of course is in relationship to the chariots. The Val and its nearly finished Ya!!!!!!!!!!!!. This week was all about a new fuel pump, which for the mechanically minded, is a Ford manual fuel pump, that the mechanic actually, re-worked it to fit the Val. Couldn't get a new manual fuel pump for Val, under a skillion dollars, so I hope the Val can handle a FORD part in her....sssssshhhhhhhhh.

Had the brakes adjusted, new oil and filter also. So what's left.......!!!!!!!! Yes the Val goes back to hospital again on Tooosday for the last time, for a final inspection. The brakes are still not quite right, just a tickle up here and there, and hopefully she is ready to go.  The hospital closes on Friday for six weeks so all has to be done. However the torn air bag will not be repaired, as it hasn't been a priority. Not an issue either, but will attend to it some time down the track.

We really can't wait to see how the Val performs with the RetroLiner on the back. In saying that, and as I posted earlier, with the woes of the car, caravaning to mine was becoming a real chore. The whole idea of re motoring the beast two years ago, was to hit the highways and byways with a Muscle car and have a ball, but for two years have been doing battle with an extremely under performing and very sick vehicle.

Lets hope our dream will be continued without the hassle of a broken motor car. Actually I am going to send the  bill for the repairs of the motor to the original mechanic, with a note highlighting their incompetency. Now I'm being a real bitch.  I know I won't get any compensation, but the satisfaction is the major factor here.

So where are we now! Well can't say much about the RetroLiner at this stage. Last report most of the minor repairs, are all but done. Just waiting now, for an element for the fridge, and a new gas lighting thingo. With a bit of luck, I will have the Val back later next week, and hopefully the repair on the RetroLiner will be  finished. One would like to think, both will be home here at the motel by no later than Friday 17th of December. Mmmmmmmmm we live in hope. Geeeeeeezus it is going to be a very expensive week all round, but all worth it.

Getting away from the chariots, weather wise still very ordinary here in Mackay, however we have not had the rain that most of the east coast  and central areas of NSW and Queensland have copped. I was saying to the bride, we are in a good place right now, with dry feet and a roof over our head. There is definitely a lot of travelers caught up with this rotten weather...our thoughts are with you.

Stay toooooned for this time next week.

Cheers and beers

Saturday, 4 December 2010

88 - An Interesting Story From A Wandering Bare

Over the past few years, the upsurge in the amount of people touring and sightseeing this great country of ours has been dramatic. Most fall into the Gray Nomad category: those who have opted for early retirement on a good superannuation payout. While these do make up the bulk of local tourists, there’s a good cross section of others.

There are those who have decided on an itinerant lifestyle, still young enough to take whatever work comes along to pay their bills, while seeing what Australia has to offer. Then, of course, there are the pensioners on extended holidays. A lot of travelers get on the road for the winter months, heading towards the northern parts of Oz, making it much easier to bare the cold . . . with the emphasis on “bare.”

Wrenbrook @ Bonalbo

The Royal Automobile Club of Queensland reports there are more than 600,000 Australians taking caravan holidays each year. The Campervan and Motorhome Club of Australia boasts in excess of 40,000 members. No wonder campsites and B&Bs are popping up all over the country to cash in on this lucrative market. Among these statistics is one group of which the average traveller is largely unaware: the naturist tourist.

Goodys @ Sarina

Those who belong in this category are finding, more and more, being catered for. Today’s naturists have a string of B&Bs, resorts, camping areas, legal beaches and, perhaps less often, district social clubs to cater to their requirements as they travel this wonderful country.

Sunlovers @ Hervey Bay

 All up the east coast, particularly Queensland, naturists have opened up their homes as B&Bs for the like-minded traveller. Others have small acreage blocks ideally suited for self-contained caravan or mobile home tourists. These are in secluded - but not necessarily remote - areas, ranging from three-star plus swimming pool, powered sites and all amenities, right down to simply a safe campsite with basic requirements (ie, a toilet and a hot shower).

Nudist Resort

Taylorwood @ The Whitsundays

The low costs of these places are a drawcard. The prices of a few “high profile” resorts, reflect the demand for higher-class amenities, but the average resort with powered sites and swimming pools are usually around the $28 per night per couple mark. The basic camping ground with no power and no pool ranges from $15 per night per couple to a low $5 per night per couple. These sorts of prices make seeing the country in winter a lot more affordable, especially on a pension.

Running Bare @ Narrabri

From the Retro Roamers, can't agree more!

Friday, 3 December 2010

87 - An Update On The Val & RetroLiner

Well here it is Saturday 4th December 2010, and guess what it's stop raining..........well today at least.

Before we get into the weekly up date on the chariots, we will be at this property now until end January 2011. The new resident managers, will not be taking over till Feb 1st, so we offered to stay. A couple of reasons, obviously the costs associated with the repairs of the Val and also the RetroLiner, and it is a nice property to work. Sure we are getting tired, but hey a few extra bucks in the bank won't go astray, as I do not know the cost of repairs....yet!

Okay the Val first. New brake booster fitted this week, rear brake cylinders, hand brake adjustment, re tune, head lights fixed.  However still not all done yet, however I brought home the Val for a bit of a kiss and a cuddle. It was feeling quite lonely at Rosses.

It is good these weekly home visits, gives me a chance to take the Val for a run. Still goes like the clappers, however the brakes were real spongy, the hand brake didn't seem to be adjusted, and the idle speed was miles to high. So when it goes back to hospital next Tooooosday, those items need to be attended too.

Still on the agenda.....fuel pump and air bag repair. Hopefully all will get done by the 17th of this month as that is when Ross closes down for the Christmas break. Hopefully Friday may be all done and dusted. The fuel pump is an issue, that is a suck it and see what happens.

Now I was really dreading the phone call to the repair man for the Retro Liner. But I was pleasantly surprised. Part of the frame issue where the fridge, freezer and air con has been fixed with new vents. The fridge which we thought was consigned to the scrap heap, seems to be alright.  Just needs a new Pizarro lighter thingy, and an element. The repair man said the fridge worked like a Trojan.

That is a relief of our mind as I really didn't want to buy another fridge, cause you are looking at $1500 bucks for these absorption jobbies, and they really don't work all that well in hot climates. By resurrecting the old one, we use it for non perishables anyway. We have the full freezer as well as the Engel. The repair man also said he has taken the door out and although feared the dropping the door was a frame issue, it is actually a chassis issue. He will try to straighten the door up as much as possible...however I will need to ge a welding type man to break the chassis just underneath the door and re weld. Not a big job as I understand it. I can live with a door out of whack at the moment.

The next little piece of work is fixing the frame that has fallen off the front, which was all part of the drama with the rotten frame that was discovered at Winton.

So all going well I may have the RetroLiner home at the motel hopefully at weeks end or early next......time will tell. Once I get the Retro Liner back here in the grounds of the motel, I will be able to get some things done ad well.

Once again sorry no pikkies

Stay toooooned for the conclusions.....hopefully

Cheers & beers