Photos compliments of Ramona Clark
For us, one of the best things about being on the road full time is being able to visit so many great places Australia has to offer. Another aspect of travelling is meeting all the great people along the way.
Recently we had the pleasure of meeting some fellow travellers in the holiday park we were staying at on the south coast of NSW. We have never met anyone who is enjoying a life on the road as much as these guys.
Ramona and Brian (both in their 50’s) packed up their lives, sold their house and hit the road not long after Brian’s retirement in June this year. Having lived in their home in Victoria for 26 years working and raising their 3 kids, they made the decision to start a new adventurous chapter in their life. Leaving the comfort zone of friends and family and moving away from the securities of their regular and almost predictable lifestyle- the wheels were put in motion and have now joined the growing number of nomads gracing the highways of OZ. And I get the impression that they have not regretted that decision one little bit!
When I asked Ramona what flagged the final decision to travel full time she told me they both loved camping and travelling and enjoyed many holidays away with their kids. In recent times they had done a few extended trips away and both started to feel as though “the road was calling”- and as they say, the rest is history. They invested in their new 21ft Windsor Genesis (home on wheels) and Brian spent many hours fitting out his trusty Nissan Patrol, getting it ready for the road and the adventures that lay ahead. They are very lucky that Brian is such a “handy man” and was able to do a lot of the preparation himself on the rig.
Ramona and Brian both feel that the best thing about being on the road full time is the freedom it offers, being able to stay as long as you want in one place or moving on if it feels right. Time seems to not exist and choosing their next destination is about the hardest decision they will ever need to make. Life’s tough isn’t it?
I asked them what their biggest hurdle was that they had to overcome before heading off- like most people, finances are always a concern. After all, it was going to cost money and needing to be adequately prepared was vital. The other main hurdle was their feelings of “what ifs”. Things like security on the road, reliability of the vehicle, health issues- the list could go on. But Ramona and Brian took the planning stage seriously and consulted their family, friends and a financial advisor to cover all bases which helped overcome most of the hurdles. Some apprehension of possible issues still exists but they agree that you only live once and they didn’t want to postpone seeing all the great landscapes and features Australia is home to. They have the attitude of “tackle it if it occurs”. And that’s a great outlook to have. Sometimes it best not to let the little things hold you back from doing what you think is best.
They told me that it would be hard to nominate a single favourite place they have visited so far but they did include Eden NSW, Echuca VIC and Yeppoon QLD on their list. They tend to look for outdoor activities when choosing a place to stay. The enjoy staying young by riding their bikes and bushwalking and this lifestyle is a great way to indulge their interests in amateur photography. So many opportunities present themselves along the way and their 4×4 allows them to see just that little bit more of the countryside.
They did admit to me that living in a caravan fulltime presents its issues, mainly to do with “getting in each other’s way”. We all have those days and the smaller space of a van can highlight these issues. But they have learnt to overcome this. They now just learn to “wiggle past” each other or jokingly tell each other where to go!
Their Windsor caravan is fantastic inside and is fully kitted-out with an ensuite. They have also had their annexe custom made to allow some extra room to move and is perfect for when they bunker down in the one spot for a while.
They love their rig (and so they should, it’s great) and Ramona tells me “We have made a few improvements to make life easier and there is certainly room for the two of us to be comfortable. It has been 4 months now and we still love being in the van, which is lucky because this is our home now until forever”.
We love meeting people like Ramona and Brian. They truly reinforce the joys of the travelling lifestyle and the possible “free and easy” approach to life. Our lives don’t always have to be so rigid and structured- these guys are living proof.
Good onya Ramona and Brian. We are glad we met you both. Safe and happy travels.
If you would like to follow Ramona and Brian’s travels- visit their Facebook page they have setup to record their journey and share their photos. They’d love it if you stopped by and said g’day!