Posted by Neville | Posted in Destinations, Places, Preparations | Posted on 16-10-2012
Tags: Free Camping, Planning, Problems, Travel
After completing our stay near Melbourne we have moved north, and found a delightful camping spot just out of Bendigo. It means that we have been off the electricity grid, and the learning curve for Free Camping has been re-invigorated.
One factor that we have been struggling with is the lack of power for recharging things like the laptop, the modem, my iPhone, etc. The cloudy weather has not helped, although it is surprising just how much recharging of the caravan battery can be achieved with just a short burst of sunshine.
Things were not helped when we discovered on the first night at the free campsite that the battery was not powering even the lights, and especially not the water pump. A night spent reading by candlelight was our re-introduction to life off the grid. That was solved when I bought a new battery. Since then we have saved enough money from not paying caravan park fees to pay for the new battery.
The modern Grey Nomad lifestyle almost requires that there will be a range of appliances that will have batteries that need recharging. The laptop that I am using to write this post, has been idle for a few days while we worked out the best way to organise ways to recharge it. I almost ran the battery right down on the iPhone, which is not a smart thing to do.
New Friends and Old.
The atmosphere at this free camping site is a lot more friendly than that in caravan parks, as everyone tends to spend some time sharing experiences and plans with each other. It is a time to pick up few more hints and discover new places to visit and stay at.
You meet some interesting new people, such as Pat and Dave with their 3 dogs, who were waiting to move on after the sad experience of have to part with a fourth dog whose age and illness meant that she could not complete this trip.
And then just when it looked like we were going to have the site to ourselves tonight, who should arrive but a couple that we knew several years ago when we were working as volunteers on a community playground construction project. Australia is a big country, and it is surprising to be able to reconnect with people such a long way from home base.