Day 32 – Monday, 25 October 2021

Awoke to a knock on the door at 9:00am. Tony and Margaret said they would return in a half hour, so we dashed madly through our breakfast and got dressed. We will have our showers after we have found out what is happening. We cleaned our teeth and went to find them. 

We have been told that we can stay where we are but that a party of two have booked the sites and asked to be together over the Melbourne Cup weekend. Rather than have them wandering around our van and talking or partying we have decided it is not worth it staying where we are. We went across to the fence line, well away from any others, and it looks good. Tony will mow the lawn first thing tomorrow morning – mostly Cape Weed – and we will shift across. 

Had a great chat with Tony and Margaret who have spent the last two years at Lake Learmonth Caravan Park in their fifth wheeler. It is huge! It has three different sections that concertina out to give them more space. Russ and I remember seeing it at Lake Learmonth as they were just around the corner from our favourite site. We think, from some things said, that they may have lost one of their sons to suicide, but they have indicated it was a very tough time in their lives. 

After some discussion Russ has said the idea of all the people is actually making him very anxious so we have now decided to leave the van in the park and go home on Saturday and come back on Tuesday. This way Russ can also get his tablets that have arrived, and I can admire the garden that Brett has been doing such a good job with, pat the animals, and do anything else we might need to do while there.  

The magpies have been warbling all around the park. I’m sure I have said it before, but I can listen to them for hours. One of them decided to walk across the roof of the van and when I went out to see they sat on the cross bar of the awning, and we spent some time communing. 

Brett tells us that we have new neighbours. They have bought the house on the side over the fence from our wood heap. It is Samantha Rogers, her partner and their young child. Sam’s dad was a policeman in Ouyen, and her mum worked with Russ at the old SEC. Laurie, her dad, actually took me for my license forty years ago. Sam grew up with our mob. 

We went off to the Information Centre just before lunch. They had some maps and info on the state parks, but there are some for which we can get no information at all. 

After lunch we decided to go for a drive to Maryborough and check out the Information Centre there, and for the first time we were asked to provide proof of our vaccinations. The Info Centre in Maryborough is now at the Maryborough Railway Station. It is a magnificent old building and has been well kept. We also got a fair bit more info and some maps. The ladies in both places were very helpful and friendly. 

We took the opportunity of washing Hornet while we were there, so he looks good again until we go through more water or mud. 

Russ drove around Maryborough for me so I could take some photos of older buildings. However, most of them are in the city centre and you can’t drive slowly there at all, so I came home with very little. 

We took a back road on the way back to Avoca and stopped off at Lower Homebush where the old State School is now an historical site. Unfortunately, all I could get was a photo of it as the place is securely locked up at the moment and I cannot find any info about contacting someone to see it. 

I rang the people who are doing the tour for gold prospecting and asked if we could bring our date forward by a week and it is not problem, so now we will do the prospecting on Friday, 12 November, before having to head back to Mildura for my specialist appointment. Hopefully, then we can relax and enjoy the last couple of weeks touring before heading home for Christmas. 

All in all, it was a fairly quiet, and restful day, although the temperature only got to 15 degrees and the night got chilly very quickly. I had to get out my electric overthrow to stay warm until it was time to go to bed, and the electric blanket has been on for the past few nights.