G'day! My name is Paul Smedley, everyone calls me Smed. I admit it. I am nomadic and I am grey. Not to mention losing head hair yet growing nostril and ear hair, sporting a C cup in man boobs, suffering from gout and indigestion and finding myself in bed by 9pm if the fish aren't biting.
My travels started in 1985 when I grabbed me mates Rex the staffy and Doug the brickie, loaded up the 1980 Toyota Troop Carrier and Jayco campervan, and headed off on an adventure around Australia. This adventure lasted for 18 months and involved surfing and boating the Australian coastline, four wheel driving through its remote parts of rugged landscapes and meeting the various locals and colourful personalities along the way. We lived on fish, lobsters, oysters, beer, crabs, yabbies, beer, abalone, wild pigs, buffalo and beer.
I have since enjoyed more laps around this country and yes I love this lifestyle.
So much, in fact, I sulked in bed for over a week when Sharon wanted a house fix after 5 years on the road. What was she thinking? A dishwasher, wall oven, bath tub, her own clothes line to dry her undies on and a spare bedroom to avoid my excessive snoring? How does that compare with life on the road?
But when the electricity, excess water and phone bills arrived, I could see her thinking.
Admittedly we were mostly self sufficient whilst exploring Australia. Who could beat 5 litres of generator fuel to keep you comfortable for 13 hours straight? Or 9kgs of gas per month to cook dinner, boil the kettle and heat the hot water with?
How can you compare life in a house with bringing tonnes of rig to a halt so she could jump out and catch a thorny devil, or same again to photograph a pair of shingleback lizards? (The woman is wildlife crazed). What about when she finds it funny that you relocated a snake in her absence, only to find out later it topped one of the world’s top 10 deadliest? How can a dishwasher and bathtub compare with that experience?
Fine, she could never escape the snoring (beer breath, flatulence . . . ) in confined spaces, but our numerous prime real estate locations complete with wildlife, great sunrises and sunsets, wildflowers, great mates met on the way plus much more overcompensated for life back in one spot.
How many people do you know that live in a suburban house write a postcard saying ‘Having a great time, wish you were here?’
Travelling Australia is not something you can explain totally. It is something you have to do yourself. Doing it my way probably won’t suit you. Endless nights waiting to catch the mighty barramundi in mozzie infested rivers. Or a four hour return trip on ruthless corrugations to buy a carton of beer at ridiculous prices.
Like the wife says, this website is about you, not us.
You are the ones who are going to help the rest of us decide how to go about it, where to go, what to do, what to see, and more.
I hope you jump on board and become part of the Driving Force Discovering Australia. That way I’ll be able to pick your brains too.
Meanwhile, hopefully see you out there.
Have a good one,