We packed up the van at 6.00am while still dark amidst a chilly and persistent drizzle and drove down to get in line for embarkation on the Spirit of Tasmania 2.
The very large number of caravans indicated the mass migration from Tassie for winter.
We met an interesting bloke in line while waiting who is living in his 24ft Jayco caravan with his family including children.
The kids are being home schooled and he works on the road in a property investment/mortgage broker business.
After embarking and finding a seat high on the upper deck with a power outlet so we could do some work on the journey we sat and watched a dismal, cold and wet Devonport start to wake up.
It was so different from how we will remember Tasmania but perhaps it was fitting weather that seemed to match our mood as we were both sorry to leave.
The rest of the trip was calm and uneventful but remained grey and dismal.
Arriving in Melbourne was not the “exciting adventure filled” experience that we had felt when we left.
As if to compound our grey mood the drive from the port to Rockbank, where we would be staying, was dark, wet and cold.
On entering the Van Park we found we had been allotted a tiny difficult to maneuver into site and with no ground lighting and pouring rain we struggled to get the van into the tight spot.
The first sight of the neighbours didn’t help.
About 6 people were gathered under the next door’s annex drinking copious amounts of rum and, as often happens with inebriation, each one thought they were talking normally but were actually yelling, each one completely oblivious to what anyone else was saying but instead totally committed to making sure they were heard over every other sound.
Being all heavy smokers the smell of both fresh and stale cigarette smoke was thick in the air and as it mingled with the exhaled rum soaked breathe of each sorry participant our night became more dreary.
Then as if purposefully designed to add insult to injury about three mongrel dogs started barking at us as we struggled to set up in the rain.
The barking muts and the chorus of choking flem filled coughs from the actors in this sorry scene would have forced us to simply drive right out of that place had we not already paid for a week and were we not so tired.
Sleep came tonight more as an anesthetic to our thoroughly crap day than as the comfortable and welcome respite it usually is.