Australian Travel · Camping · Destinations · Four Wheel Driving · Free Camping · Home on the Road · National Parks · New South Wales · Victoria · Writing & Reading

A pretty Australian Australia day

“There was movement at the station, for the word had passed around”
“The Banjo”

What could be more Australian than reading about the life of Banjo Patterson while camping at Tom Groggin, NSW – the home of Jack Riley, “The Man from Snowy River”.

This past Australia Day weekend was our maiden voyage in the caravan since moving to the Snowy Monaro region last year. I know…..no caravaning for six months….. what the?!

Well this trip certainly dusted off the cobwebs on both the caravan and our noble steed, the Colorado.

Tom Groggin near Khancoban in the Snowy Mountains is probably one of the best camping spots we have stayed at…… golly I’m full of big calls lately! It’s totally true though.

On the banks of the upper reaches of the Murray River near the base of Mount Kosciouszko, Tom Groggin is picturesque, to say the least.

I wonder how much as really changed since Banjo visited in 1890? Apart from the obvious, you know – bitumen roads (any roads in fact), the odd “official” campground here and there with drop toilets, a smattering of picnic tables, parking barriers and fire pits. I really do wonder how much the natural portions of this region have changed…. I mean it is relatively untouched by humans.

Tom Groggin straddles the southern border of NSW and the upper Victorian High Country which as you can probably imagine has some great 4WD tracks.

We gave the Mt Pinnibar track a red hot go while we were out and about. Located in the Alpine National Park on the Victorian side of Tom Groggin, the track tackles the steep Mt Pinnibar (1727m above sea level) and it was rough – holy moly! It had definitely been chopped up and was one of the hardest 4WD trips we have tackled to date. If we had known what the track was like we probably wouldn’t have taken it by ourselves, there were plenty of people around so I’m sure we would of been fine if we became unstuck.

I will share some more adventures from Tom Groggin sooon…

Speak soon

S

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Australian Travel · Destinations · Home on the Road · New South Wales · Random Thoughts · Travel Photography · Writing & Reading

At home in the mountains

 

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It has been a looooooong time since I last wrote here……. almost a year in fact. As usual, the life of the Norris’ has been an absolute roller-coaster and a period of extended change.

It has only been in recent times that I have been reflecting on where we’ve been, who we’ve met along the way and what we have learned. If I could do it all again I would – the whole experience of living like an adventure book has paid out in trumps. Each of us have benefited individually and of course, our relationship has been strengthened.

So where are we now;

In mid-2018 we relocated from the sunny (and rainy) northern coast of NSW to the very (almost) south of the state! We made a home at the foothills of the Snowy Mountains in the sweet old town of Cooma – and sweet it has been. The Snowy-Monaro was an instant fit for us. It was like all the little Tetris pieces lined up.

We have been living here for over six months now and loved it so much that we bought a house here…… I know right! The nomadic gypsies who’ve spent the majority of our married life living in tents, swags, campers and caravans have ‘settled’ down! How did that happen? I think of this often and you now what, no matter how deep I dig – I honestly don’t know…… It all just snowballed (we all know I love a good pun!) It felt right – so we did it. There was no real umming and ahhing! It just kind of happened.

What’s not to love- the clean and crisp mountain air, the slow-down, the stillness, the peace, the variety of life in this region.

For those that aren’t aware – Cooma kind of has it all. BIG STATEMENT – I know! A population of about 6000 – makes it not too big and not too small. I guess if I was Goldilocks I would call it just right, but I’m not – so I will say it suit us. Our nation’s capital, Canberra is just over an hour up the Monaro Highway so the ‘city’ is at your fingertips, as is an airport to go anywhere. The beautiful southern beaches of NSW are just over an hour away in the other direction. And then the trifecta – the snow is an hour away up the mountains. The mountains are also spectacular in summer when skis and snowboards are swapped with hiking boots, mountain bikes and boats on the myriad of lakes.

You can wake up on a Sunday;

“What you want to do today?”

The city.

The beach.

The mountains.

In Cooma I guess you really can have it all…..

NEXT BLOG POST: Camping at Tom Groggin

Random Thoughts · Reader Interaction · Writing & Reading

waiting

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We have done our fair share of waiting these past few weeks and it is clear that I lack any form of patience what-so-ever.

Even when a wait ‘deadline’ has been provided it still fills me with a mixed feeling of anxiousness, dread, negativity and worse-case scenario’s playing over and over in my teeny tiny head.

No matter how hard I try to occupy my mind and keep myself busy, my mind is on constant replay and makes up the most ridiculous scenarios.

Waiting can be tortuous and let’s be honest, it totally sucks!

I can’t provide any advice such as go for a run or read a good book because let’s face it I wouldn’t do that myself. I do try to write, like I am now but this only allows me to fixate further.

All you can do is go about your business, prepare yourself as best you can for either result and enjoy the now. No matter the outcome, we all have right now.

 

 

 

 

Australian Travel · Home on the Road · Motivation · Random Thoughts · Reader Interaction · Words of Wisdom · Writing & Reading

Life isn’t always greener

12301501_972324566140240_8452318694570986748_nLife isn’t always greener on the other side,

but this should NOT hold you back.

A lady recently asked me if I had ever heard the saying; “the grass isn’t always greener on the other side.”

Of course I had!

Hasn’t everybody?

Her comment was made in the context of my lifestyle choices and our nomadic existence. She went on to say; “you may never find what you are looking for.”

It caught me off guard. I have never thought of it that way.

We live this life by choice. We are not looking for something in particular. We are not escaping something, not trying to improve on what has been or to run away from something horrible. We choose to live a life, full of change and exploration and there is nothing wrong with that. But it scares people because it is different.

My conversation with this lady really got me thinking. People have this life mentality hammered into them from very early in life. But what is wrong with dreaming of a different path or working towards a big life change or a completely new life? We all have the power to design our own life. We can change the aspects we don’t like or build upon the parts we do. You may go down several paths before you find the right one. But don’t let the unknown scare you from pursuing them. The grass may or may not always be greener but sometimes you need to spend some time amongst brown grass to move forward, to evolve, to change. You can always turn the sprinkler on, throw on some fertiliser and grow new green grass wherever you are. At the same time of wanting more you can appreciate what you currently have. Life is a journey. Our journey is constantly growing and evolving. We often get asked; “Why don’t you stay put?” We could ask in return; “Why do you stay?” But we don’t. Everyone is entitled to build and live their life their way. You need to be HAPPY within yourself. You need to build confidence in your choices. We are all capable of AMAZING things and whether that is building your dream home and raising your family or whether that is travelling across the countryside, it is completely your choice. There is nothing wrong with staying in one spot but this is not the way we live our life.

Why do people need to judge others to justify their choices? Is it human nature or is it purely to reassure themselves? Don’t be afraid of what is unknown to you. Next time a friend or family member tells you their plans or life dream don’t scoff at it or try to hold them back because you don’t agree, support them. It is their dream, not yours.

Random Thoughts · Reader Interaction · Words of Wisdom · Working on the Road · Writing & Reading

how decluttering at home can help you travel easier

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If you live simpler at home it is easier to travel.

Bold statement I know!

But it is true.

How can you live simply at home?

declutter, declutter, declutter

Get rid of any excess stuff or white noise from your home! Do you have 50 frypans but only use one or two? OR do have a favourite outfit that you haven’t worn for 15 years but will wear it again “one day”? We don’t need all this STUFF to live fulfilled lives. When we travel we strip our life back, why not live this life at home?

The more we live simpler at home the easier it is to experience the best travel can offer. Travel is about collecting moments not things.

To live we need minimal “things” like shelter, food, water etc

At home it goes a bit further than this we need/want a bed, cooking appliances, clothing, some luxuries and so forth!

Here is how we have been de-cluttering at our placw these past few weeks:

  • Culling our clothes. (Vinnies now have 6 BIG bags of our clothes!)
  • Cleaning out our kitchen of excess items and double ups.
  • Culling out our pantry!!! Do we really need that can of whatever from 1999?
  • Removing our DVD collection from DVD cases and placing them in DVD wallets. Same with the CD collection.
  • Giving away our myriad of books.
  • Selling items which haven’t been used….. do we need 3 DVD players? NO! A second TV?
  • Setting our bills to e-mail to cut back on how much paperwork we have lying around.

What do you need to de-clutter at your place?

Next job for us is our linen closet and office/study !!

Welford National Park

Australian Travel · Health & Wellness · Motivation · Preparation · Words of Wisdom · Working on the Road · Writing & Reading

we have only one life

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Life is full of wonderful highs and devastating lows.

We have one life and one life only.

It is important to make the most of everyday. Appreciate the little things!

Live a life you love. Surround yourself with people you love and people who love you.

Do something that makes you happy every single day.

Yes there are going to be things that happen that break your heart and knock you down.

Cherish the good times and hold on to the precious memories you have accumulated thus far to get you through.

AIM HIGH.

DREAM BIG.

Let go of your burdens and live simply.

Don’t hold onto things or people who bring you down.

Surround yourself with people who raise you up.

Don’t let people scoff at your dreams.

If you can dream it you can live it.

Again, life is full of ups and downs.

But you can live a life you love.

We have only one life.

No regrets.

Never give up.

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Australian Travel · Destinations · Finance · Queensland · Random Thoughts · Reader Interaction · Travel Photography · Words of Wisdom · Working on the Road · Writing & Reading

to Longreach with love

To Longreach with love, 

We all love a sunburnt country, but we really need our rain. 

As we drove by drought-stricken paddocks, we saw your heartache and your pain. 

With each mile of endless dryness, and each dusty patch of dirt. 

We pray you get the rain you need, and pray it heals your hurt. 

You are strong and resilient, though this drought has pushed you far. 

Your strength and perseverance, shows us what Australians really are.