IT'S finally happened. Rita and I have become Grey Nomads.
Well, we're not actually nomadic yet 'cos I have to make a living and Smitty doesn't pay me enough to retire until I'm about 178 years old.
What we've done is procured a caravan. She's just a tiddler - 13 foot - and I'm sitting in her as I write this. What we do have is freedom.
Freedom from the kids. Freedom from botting a bed at friends' homes.
Freedom to talk to the neighbours or not.
Freedom to do what the hell we like.
We hooked her up and departed Hooterville for the beachscape of Narrabeen on Sydney's Northern beaches. Yes, I know it's not exactly the wilderness, but we've got a few mates up here and we get to drink their scotch without having to sleep on their decrepit fold-out beds.
Driving a truck I've never taken much note of the Nomads, rather put them in the same basket as the general driving populace. Some are good and some are bad. On this 900km journey however, all I saw were the others hauling caravans.
"Geez, look at that bewdy! How much did that cost 'em?"
"Bloody hell - there's one smaller than ours!" (only saw two of them).
I must say that on this, our first venture, we didn't see one Nomad doing the wrong thing. All kept to the left, no one was going too fast for their vehicle combination and politeness was the order of the day. Nomads: 1, Truckies: Minus 1. That's because some idiot with a flat-bed, doing 120 clicks, cut in front of us when his second axle was adjacent to my steering wheel. Every other rig we passed (and most passed us) were impeccable with their road behaviour.
So now I sit with the smell of sea salt and the sound of waves crashing on the beach. I look around and, believe me guys and gals, there are some vans and RVs here that make John Kelly's latest creation look cheap and cheerful. No matter - we are relaxed, comfortable and happy ...
Just talking to Fred Bloggs who has a 32-foot van with the moniker Grand Cruiser.
Fred's just about to hop a plane to Brisbane for a business meeting. Fred can keep the grand and the model cruiser he tows it with. I reckon I've got the best job in the world!
- Kermie 0418 139 415