Jamie and Beryl

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Jamie, 59, and Beryl, 56, are ready to travel … and work in the wool industry

What do you travel in? Nissan Navara and Regent Series 111, 6 metres. It’s our home on wheels. Being totally self-sufficient, we are able to set up camp anywhere. We realised we needed a bigger caravan with a shower and loo after our first trip from Cairns back to WA in 2006.

How long do you travel for? We live in Brookton, WA, and our trips last from three days to four months. In 18 months’ time we will hit the road for a couple of years ‘wool classing’ around Australia.

Likes of the lifestyle? No lawns to mow, housework done in a flash, different views all the time, meeting new people and socialising, stopping at the markets and buying from roadside fruit & vege stalls … absolutely everything really!

Dislikes of the lifestyle? We do miss the kids and grandkids at times, and are wary of the big trucks on skinny roads. Also, the quarantine stations. I understand they are necessary but I get tired of making vege soup on the side of the road to use up the veges!

Hobbies? Jamie loves to fish, talk, discuss and compare vehicles with other travellers. I make cards, scrapbook, knit, photograph and sell the soaps that I make.

Favourite places? Barn Hill, Cape Leveque, Great Australian Bight (laid in bed listening to the whales singing), Bremer Bay. So many wonderful places.

Scariest experience? A B-double nearly pushed us off the road near a bridge near Townsville. There was nowhere for us to pull over but he came through anyway with oncoming traffic. It was terrifying! It was Jamie’s experience at driving stock trucks that probably saved us.

Advice for grey nomads …? Take the time to enjoy where you are. Don’t get up at 6am crashing and bashing just because you are leaving. Be considerate and do all the noisy things the night before. Take time to talk to people – they may know something you don’t.

… and wannabe grey nomads? Just because you can tow a trailer, don’t take it for granted you can drive a car and van. Practise towing and reversing your caravan a lot. Don’t embarrass yourselves yelling at each other when trying to reverse the caravan. Learn how to do it quietly and effectively with signals.

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