The next couple of days are going to involve more travelling. I am looking for somewhere warm! Unfortunately I came south. Nangus was 8 degrees and Melbourne is no better. But tomorrow I head north. This is a very good thing and a very bad thing. Good, because it will get warmer. Bad, because I am leaving my Australian friends and heading towards London very slowly. Helen and Beth and their respective friends have given me so much love and care and hospitality. I will forever be grateful to them!
This morning Helen went to help Robert move some sheep. Real farming continues despite everything. A man is coming tomorrow to do ultra sound checks on the ewes to see who is in lamb. They get two chances and then they are out! Poor things. He will do 2500 sheep in a day. I am not surprised that Helen prepared about 100 bread rolls for the guy. He must need constant feeding.
While she was doing that I sat and thought. Sometimes I sit and think, and sometimes I just sit.
Before Robert headed off to the farm he showed me the rain charts for the last three years. They record the rainfall every day. It is a reminder as to how very important this is for the farm and the land. I will write more on that in a reflection paper I am writing as I go along. Yes, I am not just writing this endless waffle: I am also reflecting.
Helen and I then headed to Wagga for lunch with their daughter Susan, who has also stayed with us in London. Then she took me to Wagga Airport. Now, if the word Airport conjures up any image in your mind at all, you need to put it aside. This is a coffee bar with a few very small planes dropping by from time to time. If you ever did Lego in the past then that is the average size of a plane at Wagga.
I got my flight and we headed (late) towards Melbourne. It seems that in a plane this size even the clouds are a bit tough to get through. The flight was late leaving, and later arriving. You know the old saying: air traffic control has asked us to fly a holding pattern! That was OK, but once the beloved ATC said come and land it turned out that the clouds were more robust than the plane and we bounced off them several times! Well maybe I am exaggerating, but you get my drift. This inexperienced traveller was somewhat alarmed.
Then we landed. The hotel where I am staying overnight sent me a phone number to get a free ride to the hotel. It would not work on my UK mobile. So I queued for a taxi. The taxi man loaded my luggage and then I told him where I wanted to go. He got my luggage back out of the boot and pointed me in the right direction. I was thrown out of the taxi! How humiliating!
I still got lost on the way to the hotel, and walked through a McD car park and a BP garage before crossing a major road with my cases and nearly getting run over. I eventually arrived and collapsed in a distressed heap in reception!
When checking in they wanted to know what flight I was on tomorrow morning and did I want a lift? Yes, I said, but I have not yet recovered from arriving. I will come back later and book my departure.
Then I needed food and drink. Robert would have been so proud of me. I ordered lamb. And I have to admit, it was very good.
So, I am now about to collapse, with a very early alarm call, before the next stage of my journey. But you will just have to wait and see what that is all about. Patience dear reader!
PS. No pictures today. I could take a picture out of my room window of the hotel car park, but I suspect this would not excite you enough!