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Not Your Average Suburban Block

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Adrian Cloonan

Next day he was on the station satellite phone when he called out, “Adrian, can you help me? These insurance people can’t understand me”.

I took the phone.  The insurance company representative said, “This couple say they are at a station. Why can’t they catch a train?”

Trying very hard not to laugh, I asked “Where are you based?”. “Adelaide” was the reply. 

“Do you know that a very large rural property is called a station?”  “No, I wasn’t aware of that; well, why can’t they hire a car? The policy allows them two days’ car hire”.  This time I did laugh.  “It would take them two days to get to a hire car company from where we are now”.  “Oh” was the response.

Returning to Melbourne we traveled slowly, with many of the car accident couple’s items safely stowed on the roof rack and in our camper-trailer. On arrival in Adelaide these couples quickly became friends.  Over a long lunch Peter and Maureen insisted that “no one would ever take us in, in the city”.

At the driveway entrance to the property there was a roadside camp for travelers.  If we felt like company, we drove down in the farm ute with our cask of red wine to say, “G’day”, often to be greeted with startled looks when it was revealed that we were caretaking ½ million acres.

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