Peter & Judy

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Peter & Judy are happy with their ‘home’

Full timers Peter & Judy H (65 and 64) travel with a cat, a Bible … and a positive attitude

What do you travel in?
Kingdom Balmoral 23’6” van pulled by 2012 Mazda BT50. The Kingdom is our home and is set up for off road – with Simplicity Suspension, 300ltrs of water, solar, dual silicone batteries and recently we installed a diesel heater. The BT has lots of extras – long range fuel tank, bullbar and winch, upgraded suspension, canopy and lots of minor extras. We had enough superannuation to buy both vehicles and while we don’t have much, we have a beautiful ‘home’.

How long on the road?
We have lived in the Kingdom since November 2012. Since retiring, we have moved around south east Queensland for the past two years, acclimatising and readying ourselves for our next big trip – Tasmania for 8-10 months.

Any pets?
Our eight-year Ragdoll cat, Misty Rose, travels everywhere with us, so we don’t go into national parks unless we can leave her to guard the Kingdom while we do a day trip. She sleeps most of the day, so she is very comfortable in the van while we trip off. She loves going to new places and meeting new friends.

Where do you camp?
With limited super and pensions, we are learning from other grey nomads, the places and ways to save money. Not to be lousy … but to spend in the smaller towns and shops. Just this week we were ripped off at a caravan park at Tathra – $70 per night ‘outside school holidays peak times’. Today we are stopped at Eden – paying $28 in a lovely clean and enjoyable park. Bellbirds, kangaroos and friendly neighbours.

So, money is tight?
I don’t keep a tight budget but watch what we spend and this trip we are attempting to travel on our pensions and not draw anything from my superannuation. My most important grouch – is those of ‘us’ who whinge about paying $2, $5 or $10 for a ‘free or low cost’ camp! What comes out of your mouth is what is in your heart! Somebody had a vision to invite you onto their property, so appreciate their offer, look after their property – and be thankful.

Do you meet many people?
I have done a two-year full-time Bible College so I guess I am a ‘travelling chaplain’. I get to hear lots of guys’ stories, and chat with them over a beer and a fire. What do you chat about? I find that couples who are new to the ‘grey nomad lifestyle’ struggle with being enclosed and boxed in – especially after selling their home, buying a ‘new home’ – and then being together 24 hours a day. Ladies always have ways of dealing with the stress of life – whereas ‘us men’ don’t know how to deal with that. I find that talking one on one is a great time for each of us.

Advice for wannabe nomads?
Do a full-day towing course. This will be the best $500 you will ever spend!

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