Wednesday, 17 January 2007

A Good Night's Sleep, Take 2


Today is the evening of Tuesday, the 16th of January. We are still crossing the Nullarbor, and this time we don't have a phone connection, so we will upload this when we are able.

When we last left our hapless adventurers we were so pleased with ourselves that we had found such a beautiful spot with a cool breeze and we just knew that we would have the most wonderful sleep. We chatted with our newest friends (Happy Birthday!!) over a couple of glasses of wine enjoying the camraderie and the cool breeze. When the sun went down we were treated to another spectacular sunset, followed by the most amazing star filled sky. We all gazed at the stars and sky for a while trying to spot the sattelites. Soon after we were off to bed.

At first the gentle breeze was indeed lovely. The word I so smugly used to describe it in our last post was, I believe, "serenaded". Unfortunately act 2 didn't live up to the first act and our lovely breezy serenade was replaced by Milli Vanilli on an endless loop. We awoke to the sound of serious winds blowing, and although we were fine inside it was *SO* noisey. Add to that a very active imagination and it was really hard to get back to sleep. Plus, even though our camper felt solid, one does feel a bit precarious sleeping in an elevated overhanging bed while there are what sounds like gale force winds brewing outside. We did manage to get back to sleep, but were up twice more, once when Mike tightened a connection on our front awning to prevent it from getting damaged, and again when he removed the side awning once the winds changed direction. Both times we were wide awake and it was difficult to get back to sleep. By 6am we were up for the 3rd time, the skies looked threatening and we decided we may as well get going.

We headed off and got maybe 10 feet when a warning sounded on the car. There was an error with our electronic air suspension system, and the car was sitting low. Oh boy.. what a start to the day! Luckily Mike had the car serviced and prepared for the trip before we left. He knew that an EAS fault was a possibility and, Murphy's Law being what it is, brought along valves. When we got to Border Village he put the valves on, disconnected the automatic system and inflated the suspension manually with the electric air pump we carry (the service station's air thingy was broken, naturally). The car and it's suspension is fine and running well. The only problem is a computer fault which we may or may not have fixed in Esperance. No harm done except for some time spent under the bonnet instead of on the road.

We went through the WA quarantine/fruit & veggie inspection without any hassle, and spent the next few hours coasting along, stopping at a picturesque spot for a picnic lunch. As we drove along We came upon a few "kodak moments", a couple of lizards crossing the road, a kangaroo sitting roadside and an Emu with about 6 babies trailing behind.The stormy weather of the morning was actually a good thing as the Nullarbor was farily cool all day. The temps stayed in the low to mid 20s. We had not been looking forward to crossing in 40
degree temperatures. There was even a smattering of showers, and it was surprising to see how green everything was. Odd that the Nullarbor should be so much greener than Victoria! We met other travelers along the way who also camped along the Bight last night and were buffeted by the wind. Even a very large (read humongous oh-my-god what posessed you to buy that and how the heck do you tow that monster???) caravan was apparently rocking so much that it's occupants spent a sleepless night.

Thanks to our trusty "Camps 3" book We are now at another free camping spot along the 90 mile straight. We're 50 kilometres shy of Balladonia, set up comfortably in the shade with a provided table and barbecue. We were happy to find that this one has good toilet facilities as well. It's funny how on the road everything becomes so much more simplified. The recipe for happiness is soon whittled down to spending time with someone you love, some shade, a toilet, a shower, food, water, a comfy place to sleep, and a good internet connection. Okay okay.. maybe the broadband isn't an *absolute* necessity :)

p.s. Tonight I SWEAR we will get a good night's sleep!

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