Sunday, 31 October 2010

Wet and Cold Broken Hill to Mildura

So, here we are back in Victoria where we are on.... (wait for it) .... Victoria (Eastern Daylight) time! Yay finally a time zone that makes sense! Now if only my body would stop running on WA time!

It was no use hoping for a break in the rain for pack-up as it bucketed all night and continued pouring in the morning as we got ready to leave. It also got cold and I went from wearing shorts and a singlet the day before to jeans, jumper and jacket. Actually, there was a short break in the rain - just after we had finished! If only we had waited another half hour before starting we may not have gotten quite so soaked. Oh well, it made the trip in the car feel even more cozy.

Speaking of the car trip, it didn't turn out to be so cozy after all.  We came around a bend on the Silver City Highway to find a backup of cars. Up ahead was a sedan that had been pulling a caravan and must have lost control on the wet road. The caravan was still attached to the car by chains and flipped over onto it's roof which had forced the back of the car up in the air.

The car and caravan were across the road blocking traffic in both directions. There were a bunch of people queued up behind the wreck (they couldn't get past with their caravans) who were helping to jack up the car so they could separate it from the van. We stopped to see if anyone was hurt or if we could help. Luckily the woman was okay and had help on site but they hadn't been able to get through to the authorities via phone or CB.

We were able to drive on the dirt shoulder and squeeze past the wreck with our camper. We warned cars coming in the other direction and when we came to the next fuel stop, about 40k down the highway, Mike got the attendant to ring the local police.

The whole thing was so upsetting to see. I found myself getting emotional, especially thinking how terrifying it must have been for the driver. Sheesh - I am clearly useless in a crisis. The woman wasn't hurt, and I don't know her, but I've found myself periodically thinking of her ever since. The thing is, if it was a couple or a family with a caravan of course I'd feel badly for them, but I'd assume that they had lost their holiday van. Awful, but the loss would amount to dollars and an aborted holiday. In this case, because it was a woman on her own I've managed to convince myself that she was probably a full-timer living in the van and has lost her home.

At least we haven't seen any locusts so far. It's just as well too, because if I remember my Passover story correctly the next plague is darkness. The cold and the rain are bad enough, thankyouverymuch. Darkness might just send me over the edge. It might be interesting to see the parting of the red sea though .. or the pink lake as the case may be.

We arrived in Mildura and set up our wet camper in the rain. We managed to get our large awning erected during a rain break so at least we have a dry area to sit outside. It pretty much poured all night. Today is a bit better. Still cold, but only occasional showers and we've seen a bit of sun. We're in a nice spot on the Murray River, which is fuller than I've ever seen it.

Mildura is in the midst of a food and jazz festival so we headed out to Trentham Winery to listen to some jazz and sample some food and wine.

It was a lovely afternoon and we left with a couple of souvenier glasses and a half dozen bottles of wine. 

The perfect antidote for a cold and gray afternoon.

Someone has clearly had too much!
We were planning on staying in Mildura for three nights, but as of now are undecided.  I don't think we dare head any further south than we have to.  Brrrr!!

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