a new chapter begins today…

About a year ago, I finished up working at the State Library of Queensland. Not because I hated the job or the people but because I thought it was time. Phil and I had decided then that we should reward ourselves with a pre-grey nomad break and take six to twelve months to travel. We originally thought we would do 9 months in Australia and then the rest overseas.

However – as life does – it takes a different course and we pretty much put things on hold for a year and only managed 3 weeks travelling up to Winton and back. Mind you, we managed to see so much in that short time but now….a new chapter begins.

Most of you know I have spent the past year working at the Queensland Performing Arts Centre as a producer which has had its ups and downs but all up, it has been a great growing experience both professionally and personally.

It’s a weird thing at 42 years of age to feel lonely in a workplace. That had nothing to do with anyone in the team whatsoever but more so with me dealing with my new surroundings. An interesting thing to have to go through but it made me stronger and I made some wonderful caring friends from the experience.

Last weeks at work are always interesting. Days go slow at the beginning of the week and then you wind up chasing your bum for the later half!!! I had a great last week at QPAC. I had catch ups, chats by the stage door, lunches, drinks and lots of laughter. That’s the perfect sign!!!!

I will miss so many people at QPAC as they have given me so many new tools and knowledges, I will be forever grateful! The team work incredibly hard….to hard sometimes!!!

So after some post work drinks, Phil and I took a few minutes to take stock of everything and think about the new chapter.

I started my new chapter with the winnem kunjiel. There is nothing like the sun beating down on you and the thrumming of the didge. Everytime I am at an event like this, I remind myself that my Mother and her Mother and beyond never had the chance to get up and dance, sing and celebrate their language like we do today.

 

 

It was such a great day! I had the deadliest conversations with people about our mob and felt the good vibes beaming down on everyone. It helped that the weather spirits were absolutely shining down on us because I even managed to work on my tan!

Walking back along the esplanade with Chessie, I kept reminding myself to stop and take in the views. There are going to be many days ahead like that so better start training myself to not walk to a clock but to follow the sun.

This afternoon we had to do some maintenance on the car yard that is forming out front of our place! We have gone from two cars to 2 x 4wds, car and a campertrailer…what have we become??? The renovations have caused a bit of a dust dilemma at our place so Phil was keen to clean up the troops!

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Phil bust keeping his pride and joy clean!

And I got to work on understanding our new home better. What pole goes where… Which end does the zip start…if I take off this panel, what happens…where does the table go…so many things to discover!!!

Even Chessie has manged to find that lizard from 1000000000 years ago that once crept through the yard via the camper trailer because its here….its here… it has to be here….I will wait till it comes back….

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Chessie waiting….waiting…..waiting…..waiting….

A new chapter begins today…there are so many things to do but you know what, we don’t care. In the coming sunrises, we will pack our bags for a long time and head off!

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and we are stoked!

#philandnadinegapyear

 

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48 hours

A lot can happpen in 48 hours.

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This is what planning looks like on a Saturday Night

When we committed to going on our Gap Year, we hadn’t really anticipated the amount of work it would take to get us to the point of getting even close to the starting line! Human hours, dollars, cents and madness seriously have kicked in the past 48 hours.

HOME RENOS

So…as many of you know, we have been slightly procrastinating over this for the past year. We thought we had HEAPS of time to do what we had to but alas, it silently crept up and bit us hard on the bum! All good though as we have Norm and his sons who started the long job of getting our backyard house ready.

Monday morning out came the jack hammer and BOOM went the cement! Every day I get home from work and get an update from the Foreman ( Chessie) who delights in spending time with the workers, chucking toys, looking for love and generally doing what she does best – being a lush!!!

WHAT TO TOW IT WITH

Phil has been searching endlessly online for our beast to tow the van. Not only has he been spending hours and hours researching the worst – colour coded and all! How deadly is Poppa Solid???

Endless hours of searching resulted in tracking down this beauty on gumtree. So off we trekked to Warner ( where the hell is that? Google that baby!) Do you think we could have picked the furthest place to look at a car? Yep!

So… by the lights of the full moon ( how romantic) off we went to this fellas place. Now, sometimes you get suss when buying from people online but the first glance at his workshop PRISTINE and then his collection of cars SUPER PRISTINE we knew that the Navara would be in top condition. ( some images are a bit blurry)

We took it for a test drive and Phil wanted to try a body roll which would have been okay IF HE HAD OF TOLD ME! We are cruising along, having a chin wag then nek minnut, Phil rips it around the bend! Poor lad in front was grabbing for the door! It survived…so did we.

Yes – it is also blue which means we will be the travelling blueberries…or the wandering gingers!!!! (HAHAHAHA just laughing to myself!!!)

So….its ours and we pick it up Thursday. There goes the bank balance 🙂

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Wee celebration….

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We purchased this little baby over a month ago when we went to the camping and caravan show. They said it would take six weeks to build and make but it only took them four! AMAZING! But we didn’t even have a car to tow it with! ( Thanks Mark and Jo for the loan of your baby!!!! It was great!)

There are so many things involved with purchasing a trailer but we knew we would need a day to do it. After breaky and chats with the tradies, off we went to the bank for a nice little bank cheque exchange. The lovely lady at the bank said it was so exciting! Not for our bank account balance! Lots of polite laughing and chatting ensued but I love the conversations you have with people when you say you are disappearing for a year.

‘You guys aren’t that old!’

‘ What a great idea!’

‘What about working? Income?’

What about LIVING I say! Yes, we are worried about all of those things but if life has taught us anything in the past 7 months, it’s about grabbing it by the hand and run!!! Run to what makes you happy and gives you life.

We made our way to EZYTRAIL and here she was waiting…. I did a quick happy clap dance and then it was a final chin wag, sign the dotted line, hand over the cheque and then she was OURS!!!

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She even followed us home after some quick instructions. We realised afterwards, that we will have to have some day trips away to practice putting it up and down… YAY WEEKEND TRIPS!

We took it to main roads to get her legal….

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Got the number plates and then took off to Chandler to do some driving and parking. Phil is great at the reverse parking job. He took to it like fish to water. I was more like a cat in a bathtub but I think I prefer to look over my shoulder instead of using the mirrors.

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From this day forth, Phil shall be known as the ‘Parking Master!’ Once we get the Navara, we will be spending a bit of time at Chandler doing the driving and parking practice. Its great! Just may want to stay away from that area for the next month during the week…you have been warned!

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Phil is very happy with himself!

We finally got her home and into the car port. I honestly cannot explain how bloody excited and happy I am and at the same time, slightly terrified.

Our little Ginger baby is home, safe and sound and now begins the planning! Even Chessie gave her the paw of approval though I am guessing, she doesn’t really care as long as she is with us!

Phil was delighted with his Solar Panel Bag!

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Everything comes in a bag! Seriously – it does. Maybe its a camper trailer thing but everything is packed neatly. One of my jobs coming up is to make bags for all of our belongs so we know where and what they are. My sewing machine will get one final workout before we go!!

Our fridge for the camper trailer also arrived today! It’s like CHRISTMAS!!!!

SO WHATS NEXT?

For the next couple of weeks, we will be spending a bit of time with our gingers – getting to know them! Over the next weeks, we will be planning to take our girls out and about, set them up, figure out the how to’s and the what to’s, where to store things, how to park, what this button does, how to put the skirts on ( That one will be explained in posts to come) and generally, getting our groove on.

We are extremely happy and excited for the days to come.

#philandnadinegapyear