What does "living the simple dream" mean to me?

I always hear people from our generation saying "Ahh, living the dream" when they are doing somthing our of the ordinary - for example: sipping cocktails in a spa of a fancy resort or perhaps they post "living the dream" as the caption beneath a photo of them moving into their new $500,000+ mansion-esque home they have just mortgaged their life away for. At first I was confused by how simple my ambitions were. All I wanted was to live in a caravan and be able to spend as much time enjoying the outdoors with my husband and son, without my husband having to be at work all the time. So for me, this became my simple dream. I find myself having those "Ahh living the dream" moments when I am sitting in a natural hot spring with my husband and son, drinking a beer, ten feet away from a crocodile infested river. Now mine, my husbands and my sons life is all about chasing our simple dream.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

How we began exploring the outback.

I would like to share with everyone somthing my mum wrote for this blog. She has an intense love of the outback and fairly extensive experience travelling through it. This is just a snippet of the travelling she has done through this beautiful country with her husband.

Mum (Vicki) with my son Zac on her last visit.

Hi, my name is Vicki and I am Melissa's mum. I have always loved camping, travelling and being outdoors, a lifestyle that was introduced to me at a very young age by my parents and a tradition I handed down to my children. How ever my love for the outback took a new turn when I met Tony in 1998, the man I am now married to.

These days we travel in a very capable 80 series Landcruiser, however our adventure began by taking a vacation together and travelling in a Holden Commodore and staying in backpackers accommodation and motels. We went through Longreach, Mt  Isa, across to Ayres Rock and then up to Darwin. Stopping at places like Mataranka Springs, Katherine Gorge and Litchfield. We had an absolute ball travelling for four weeks but doing it this way proved to be very costly.

We talked about our dream of travelling outback Australia and found we both loved camping and being outdoors sitting by a camp fire so we set about making the necessary changes to bring this to reality.
The first thing to go was the Commodore and we brought our 80 series Landcruiser and decked it out with drawers, a fridge, duel batteries and basic camping gear and tools of course. And slowly over the years modified it to where it is today, a very capable vehicle which has taken us to Cape York several times, across the Simpson Desert, through the Flinders Ranges, up the Canning Stock Route, The Pilbra, The Kimberleys and most of the coast of Western Australia, to mention just a few.

We began our travels by taking a four week vacation during the winter months each year. As the vehicle became more capable so did we. We learnt more about what we needed to pack and things we should leave behind. Our confidence grew and our trips became more remote every year and travelling longer distances meant taking longer holidays. So from 1998 to now our holidays have increased gradually from four weeks, to six weeks then to eight weeks and now that my husband has long service due, we will be taking three months next year.

In case you are wondering, no we did not win the lottery. We are fortunate enough to own our own home and work hard to save  through the year so we can have longer holidays. We are the kind of people who would rather go to the beach camping in our swag for the weekend than go out to fancy restaurants and spend lots of money, I know that's not great for the economy but it really works in our favour and in the long term what we do spend gets shared around the country.

When travelling we find most of our stops are only overnight with the occasional two or more nights, so setting up camp has to be kept simple. Our kitchen gear is in the draws in the back of the vehicle our gas bottle is on the roof rack in a clamp for easy removal and we have a camp shower. We collect fire wood when we get close to where our camp will be for that night and most of our camping this far has been done in a swag so it only take about five minutes and our very basic camp is ready.

1 comment:

  1. Love reading your Mums travelling stories - thank you so much for sharing how you like to travel around Australia - in your Landcruiser - and living a life that is full of adventure!

    Love the photos!