Home-made spit roast

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Grey nomads invent things on the road
Ingenious, yes ... but was it really worth the effort?

There are a whole host of companies that produce all manner of clever gizmos and gadgets to make the grey nomad’s life easy, fun and interesting. Sometimes however you just can’t beat the quirkiness and the inventiveness of those actually out on the road. After all, they are the ones who know exactly what they need (even if nobody else is likely to ever need the same thing ever again!).

A case in point is the amazing contraption (pictured above, right) which was recently put up on the entertainment, social networking, and news website, Reddit, by a poster known only as ‘Justinthehill­billy’.

The waterwheel spit roast has been built using wooden poles carved from tree branches which are then stretched across a river. The current moves the ‘sails’ on the end of the pole, which then rotates, thus turning the spit and – presumably – cooking the chickens evenly above the campfire.

‘Justinhillbilly’ says he kept the chickens moist with beer as they turned. The social media reaction to the indis­putably ingenious device has been somewhat mixed. Some have suggested the inventor’s time could have been better spent.

“Wouldn’t it have been less time and effort to just twirl the meat yourself instead of gathering wood, drilling and building that contraption in a manner stable enough that the whole thing didn’t collapse and drag the meat down the river?” wrote one.

But that’s probably to miss the point of the whole exercise. Sometimes, when you are out there in the big wide yonder, you just have to do what you have to do when the mood takes you to do it.

From the bush mechanics who wind strips of blanket into windscreen-wiper blades, the campfire cooks who forge iron poles into saucepan holders, or the wild campers who fit toilet seats over chair frames to make a bush dunny, anything and everything is be­ing invented out there on the open road.

After all necessity – and some­times just plain old whim – is the mother of all invention.

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