Thursday, January 23, 2014

24 January 2014 - Yandina Caravan Park, Yandina, Sunshine Coast, Queensland

It rained heavily through the evening, the creek bed behind us quickly filling; I moved our shoes and other items from ground level under the awning into the caravan. I had visions of the last of our sandals being swept down through the flooded drains, into Lagoon Creek and out into Deception Bay, to join the flotsam and jetsam that these Queensland downpours must surely bring.

However by the morning, the floodwater, shallow as it was, had receded and we were able to pack up camp with no adverse effects.

We bade farewell to our eighty one year old recently divorced neighbour who travels with his dog in a wide and well-appointed bus-motorhome towing a Toyota ute. His story is an interesting one and probably best not told here, but indicative of those we meet on the road.

We bade farewell to the Geordie woman who is staying with her working husband, and two sons travelling separately with their families, all working on the same infrastructure project. This lady is not a happy immigrant and pines for “home”; a couple of trips back to return for good were also unsatisfactory. She was on her phone at 6 am this morning, her harsh accent travelling through the clear morning air. I pity her husband, surely long suffering with such a wife, but probably too much said.

And finally we bade farewell to the couple who are trying to sell their bus-motorhome, car on trailer in tow. The grass has grown long under their rig; they were already here when we arrived. But unlike the raven haired witch next door, this woman always has a cheery wave from the doorstep where she sits and smokes and watches the mornings arrive; she and her paunchy husband are a far happier pair.

I had predicted problems with manoeuvring out of our corner through the packed jumble of motorhomes, caravans and vehicle, but my worries were superfluous. Worrying is something I seem to be doing a lot of these days! We were out and on the road just in time for the rain; we joined the heavy traffic on the Bruce Highway with wiper blades working overtime.

I seem to recall Tomtom telling us the distance to our next camp was only sixty four kilometres away, and all on good roads, or at least amongst the best Queensland has to offer. As we neared the turn off to Buderim and beyond, we decided to check out a caravan service place at Forest Glen we recalled from an earlier trip through. There we booked in to have the gas certificate sorted next week. Here in Australia, or should I say, Queensland, vehicles, caravans and trailers do not need a six monthly or annual warrant of fitness, or “roadworthy” as my husband always calls them. Instead you have to have a safety certificate, which is basically the same, before sale, or no ownership transfer can be formalised, and with caravans, a gas certificate as well. At about $100 a pop, this means about $300 to be spent by us the vendor, for the entire rig. Still, I guess if you consider that we have avoided the more regular checks, it probably all comes out to about the same cost.

We were also given the name of a truck and trailer service outfit who are in cahoots with the RV repair people; we telephoned them and made an appointment to dovetail with the first on next Wednesday.

It was still too early to check into this caravan park, so we drove up into the town centre of Yandina. A freshly painted sign reminded us that eight thousand people call Yandina home and we noted that a brand new shopping centre had risen from the ground in our absence, part of it open for business and sporting a smart IGA sign. We should be well served while we are here, although as we did wander about the centre, finding a branch of our bank which is useful except that it will be shut for much of our stay here, Yandina does seem to lack a charity shop; we may have to drive down to Nambour with our donated goods.

Arriving at the camp, we found the same friendly family in charge, but offering accommodation at an increase of 20%. Perhaps this is simply a seasonal matter and we were here at a different time of the year? But we did receive our loyalty 10% discount, before Mrs Manager noted that our loyalty card had expired a month ago. Fortunately she accepted the deed was done and we thought ourselves fortunate in that, but unfortunate that our membership had expired at this late stage of our travels.

Once down in the bowels of the caravan area, we were soon reminded that the sites here are tight at best. In fact our neighbour was initially allocated this one, and refused to take it. However after Chris spent some time with his pruning saw and a ball of string, we had our space sorted and we are cosily tucked between the pretty cane palms and walled garden beds. The drainage is as it was last time, slow to say the least, but we have water, and power to drive the overworked air-conditioner and of course the equally overworked television set. This afternoon there is the Santos Tour Down Under, the fourth of the one day cricket matches between the Australian and ever-beaten Poms, and the Australian Tennis Open…. It is nearly as busy as my head is these days!

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