Sunday lunchtime and we were on our way, first stop for the night will be at Ayson’s Reserve at Elmore approximately 120kms North. We previously camped here for a HF Radio Meet in November. Ayson’s Reserve is a free camp situated on the banks of the Campaspe River. We can still see signs of the recent flooding to the area with the communal shed sporting a red tag to show how far the water came up. It was about our hip height so quite significant. Most of the other motorhomers had left the previous day to arrive at the rally a day early. If you sent your application in early for the rally you received a invitation to go in early. Some fellow bushwackers were there, namely Christine & Garry, Hel and Karen and Salty, also a couple from the bus “Life’s a Bitch” whom we met earlier on a visit. They also hail from Western Australia and supplement their income by helping out in the Olive harvesting in the area and are biding their time until the 28th when they will again be joining the harvest.
A wild, windy and night (weather wise)was endured, we dreaing seeing the results in the morning. It wasn’t as bad as it sounded and the ground was still hard enough to withstand the 20 odd tonne we were subjecting it to. So we set off for the rally about another 100kms up the road just across the border into NSW. Russell was in the lead and we arrived at the venue mid morning. They had a few problems siting everyone as they also experienced rain the day before and a lot of the grounds was wet and soggy.
They parked us up finally and as usual we were parked with a 19 metre rig into a 16 metre spot so we hang out onto the road a little bit. However we have a Birdseye view of the vehicles slipping and sliding along the track. By Wednesday they stopped all vehicle traffic in the area to try and smooth the ground out. We were the only members of our chapter so we opted to carry the banner on opening night. That also was a bit of a drama as we had to go around the outskirts of the chairs waving our banners and half of the area was under water. But like all good soldiers we joined into the spirit of the theme and laughed and smiled with everyone else. Our chapter, The South West Wanderers was the 28th chapter to form in 1995. So with 99 other chapters (the parade was in numerical order of when it was first formed) in the parade , we were lucky and our stint ended early and we were able to slip off home to have some tea. It was also the 25th Anniversary of the club so the speeches and banner carried on longer than usual. Yesterday I attended a seminar on photography using Adode Elements No 9, I just managed to squeeze it in amongst catching up with friends. We did a tour around town to see what was on offer and the locals were very friendly and chatty, afternoon tea at the local RSL then back for “Happy Hour” with the Bush Wackers, a rushed tea and then to the entertainment. We were serenaded by a group of 4 females who sang hits from the 40s, 50s, 60s and 70s, these high stepping ladies had us toe- tapping and singing along to songs like “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy”, “I only want to be with you”, “Mr Postman” and “Sop in the name of love”. The Fabulous Chandeliers are in an entertainment class of their own . They were really good.
The rain seems to be holding off so we are hoping the ground will harden in the meantime the volunteers are doing a sterling job working endlessly with graders and shovels of sand to make it more endurable for everyone.Talk again soon