Saturday, 11 May 2013

#46 Halls Creek … cancelled

Well we thought we were off … 

This time, just as we left the caravan park the a.c. (that works while driving) in the "upgrade"  came to a clanking stop along with a electricity-burning smell.   This time the boys didn't even try the "good 'ol Aussie "go", they just called Britz. Britz said a mechanic will be there in half an our, so here we sit in the middle of the IGA parking lot, with crowds of Indigenous Australians people walking into town, most of them bare-foot, in the heat, for their groceries and to sit under the trees and hang out with their friends, and our huge "white fella" vans sticking out like sore thumbs!!

I sneak a pic of the Indigenous Australians sitting under the tree
 - this scene was repeated under every tree and every bit of shade.

Note: I am having trouble using the correct term for the Aboriginal Australians - so I checked and Indigenous Australians seems to be the correct term. Forgive my ignorance.

Turns out the "upgrade" can't be fixed. Everybody is frustrated; not the least Ken whose polite Canadian manners must be a pleasant change for the Britz people - he suggests to Britz, that he leave the van where it is, and rent a car and pick up a replacement van in Kununurra (600kms away). I'm pretty sure in N.A. the person at the rental place would have said "yes of course - go ahead - just keep the receipt and we'll reimburse you".  But not here in Australia where they follow the rules so well.   (note: there were no actual car rental agencies in Fitzroy Crossing - just a guy called Azzman in the garage who had a Commodore for rent!!! )

 Five hours later, with eight of us baking in our vans, Brtiz can't seem to get the rental thing sorted out and so after much (much) debating amongst the four couples we decide that it's too late to drive to Hall's Creek so we'll stay here again tonight (K&E in a motel) and then we'll drive the 600kms to Kununurra tomorrow with Ken & Eileen both joining us in our van (pretty sure there's gonna be a story there!).

Ken & Eileen just after they took charge of ...
the "upgrade"
note: Ken's not-so-happy face!
Now it's BYE BYE "UPGRADE"!!
("Maui" vans are supplied by BRITZ)

We book back into the caravan park at Fitzroy River Lodge and everybody heads straight to the pool with snack and drinks - lots of drinks - and there we sit/swim for the next four hours, with the pool to ourselves and with a very nice pizza from the on-site restaurant/bar as some, but not all, of the frustration melts away.

You know, way back in the middle of last year - the summer as we say in Canada - when I promised to write a blog about our trip - I honestly wondered what on earth I would write about. I thought i would have to take some small minute insignificant incident and make a funny story out of it … and perhaps that is what I have been doing … up until now.  Now I find myself struggling to stay up-to-date with everything that's happening - trying not to write too much and risk boring everybody to tears, and at the same time making sure I record the events, as much for all eight of us to look back on, as well as inform/entertain "the folks back home".  Seriously, this is ridiculous, and the camping part hasn't even started!!

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