A dusty affair
Trip Start Nov 17, 2012
30Trip End Ongoing
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Where I stayed
We manage to convince ourselves that everything will be fine and dandy and set about trying to pack our suprisignly large collection of things into the restricted three items each. HOW THE HELL HAVE I COLLECTED SO MUCH STUFF? I have strictly avoided shopping (most of the time), have sold lots of stuff on ebay ( four items), chucked away loads of stuff, even stuff I haven't worn (a pair of shoes I ordered from Newlook and as per usual they cut my feet into smitherines the first time I wore them, so they sat on my shoerack for the last three months), Yes, I had minimised to the full...not that my bedroom floor would agree as I began the challenge of getting it all into the suitcase.
On route during a suprisingly comfortable and amicle train journey, I stare at the quiet rural surroundings out of the window, and feel any stress and anxiety float through the glass and tumble about over the still grass. A short stop in Cootamundra confirms that we have left the familiar world of Sydney, the people are strange and they are looking at us in that way that says 'your not from around these parts'.
On the last pit stop before Mildura, we clamber off the bus hearing the slur of the bus drivers words, all your stuff will be fine on the bus. As we take a seat by the ultra dark main road the bus revs his engine and he's off. All of the other passengers are nowhere to be seen, bar one group getting into a taxi. All that is at the station is a circus truck, with some chavy looking circus folk (no not clowns and lions, but the gypsy type.
Now, if this had of been me, alone. I would have been freaking the hell out. But this time I just laugh, which pretty much sums up the entire jourmey.
I have been fortunate enough to have endured 23 hour death bus rides in Cambodia, the most unconfurtable 'sleeper' 26 hour bus from Ho chi Minn to Saigon, 13 hour ride from Leeds to Southampton - All completely on me todd. But on this rare occasion, doing this journey
with my lovely boyfriend, I can't imagine how I did all of those and still got off at the other end smiling (except the time in Thailand where I had stupidly thought that the baht value of £200 would be safe in my locked suitcase under the bus, only to discover it unlocked and all the money gone when I arrived in Bangkok), I was certainly not smiling then.
I am so stressfree that I don't even text the girl who promised she would be there to pick us up in the middle of nowwhere at 11.30pm until Matteo tells me to, which is the time that my phone is displaying SOS. I admit, fear creeps in for a second and again when an hour later my signal returns and we recieve no reply.
''Where is the house?' I eagerly ask the quiet ginger scottish lad that has picked us up, 'were going to a caravan park tonight'. 'A caravan park with caravan's in it?' I naievely ask.
Everyone is smiling and laughing, the kitchen is to respectable standards (no visible cockroaches), theres a big TV, everyone looks happy, I feel happy. We hand over our $450 bucks that the driver 'helpfully' offered to take us take out of an ATM on the way and the ginger scott takes us to our caravan.
'Your sharing with two beautiful Swedish girls',... well Matteo, It's your lucky day.
Small is an understatement, it would be a challenge for even the best of contorsionists! Cramped, squashed, dirty, dark and strangely boiling.
We squeeze our suitcases through the tiny door, shaking the van with every bit of effort. Heading inside to check out the social situation in the living room, mostly all from the british isles, mostly guys sat around on sofa's, I shift uncomfortably for a bit, say a few words and head to my caravan.
I had a caravan once, when i was 13 years old I bought one for £100. Now I am paying $150 a week to share one with three other people. I thought my life would change for ever when I bought that mini home. I remember drawing out the plans for the way it would look. I remember the excitement as mum bought it home. Well I say mum, my dearest mother let me buy this caravan for this cheap price and then realised we would have to pay some £200 to put a tow bar on the back of the car for her to go and collect it all the way from kent, Which as always, she found the money and just did it. But on the way home , she broke down...and couldn't remember which company her brake down cover was with. After hours on the phone to me as I searched through mountains of paper work that decorate the dining room, Greenflag finally came to the rescue. So home came; the rescue truck, followed by mums car, followed by the caravan.
The caravan sat on the field next to my house and friends flocked to it to do all of the things that teenagers do. For a year or so everything was fine and dandy before the council advised it had to be moved – The only place to put it...our tiny little garden. So then, when you opened the back door, you stepped into my caravan...not a room for even the tiniest of plants. I can't remember how long my family endured it, until the time that mum asked me to get rid of the caravan, in return for the master bedroom, I can't believe she was so kind after all of that!
Back to the australian caravan in Mildura, we slide into our lumpy beds, with two single quilts that are a completely different shape to the covers. As I lay there looking up at the big aircon unit the sits over my head, with the collected dust and fluff, my chest starts to wheeze. The dust and damp is unbearable and laying under a shelf, you can't get away from it. Of course I can't find the blue inhaler, never can, and there is no room to even think about opening my suitcase to search for it. Darling Matteo swaps sides with me so that he takes the brunt of all the dust and mildew and we try, unsuccesfully to get to sleep.