Tuesday, 4 February 2020

Giving An Old Girl A New Lease of life.

I know I haven't posted for a while but things were a bit depressing around here with this horrible ongoing drought and I just haven't felt the drive to get back into posting.
Not far from our farm is a property where many of the past cars owned by Brian's family have  gone to rest as they have died.  Recently  Brian's  brothers were together and discussed the possibility of maybe restoring one of these old cars  as a great sentimental project.
The chosen car was a  1963 Ford Fairlane that Brian's parents owned.
This photograph of the proud new owners, my in laws  around 1967/1968 with the lovely old Fairlane when they  first purchased it.
Another photo showing Brian's youngest brother Andrew on the boot around the same time.
This was the sum total  of photographs of the car in it's earlier years that I could find.
Brian's  brother in law Graham had previously beautifully restored a Morris Mini Minor and he was asked if he would like to tackle the job and he happily accepted the challenge.
Myra and Graham travelled up from their home  and Everyone headed out to the old car graveyard to get the old Fairlane onto a car trailer .
One of the brothers wasn't feeling great when they left and thought that something he had eaten had  upset him a little, but he was determined not to miss out on the fun.
This is her, where she was resting since the mid 1980's.
The first job was to  put four  rims and tyres onto her to make winching up onto the trailer a little easier.

As the work progressed, the brother that was unwell went to get a drink and sit down and  suddenly collapsed. An Ambulance was called immediately  and we patiently waited for its arrival.
He was quickly accessed and transported to the local hospital for observation.
He was released several hours later after doctors decided he had suffered  an allergic reaction to a newly changed medication.
The car was eventually loaded and was brought back to our place.
I fell in love with her, and was a little obsessed  with some of the detail, so please bear with me.
We couldn't believe that the original keys were still in the car,
and the last  old rego sticker although long gone could still be read.

I loved the detail of the front grill,
and some of the old handles, trims and other bits.
The apholstery will need a complete refit, and I'm prettysure she will need a new motor.

The boys worked hard making sure that the car was  secure on the trailer for it's long trip home.

After  the car was all secure, Brian added some extra air to the tyres just to make sure those tie down straps were extra tight.
The next morning ,  they were ready to  head home .
And they were off,
The  next time the old girl travels this road it will be under her own steam and she will  have a beautiful new look. As we receive some progress photos, I will update.
This will be a labour of love that will probably take a couple of years to complete, I look forward to seeing her myself. Thanks Graham.
So until we meet again,
Take care,
Jane and Brian.

Sunday, 22 December 2019

A Birthday Gathering.

My brother recently had a milestone birthday and when asked what he wanted for his birthday he said a gathering of family and friends at the Gulargambone Caravan park.
My sister in law  grew up in Gulargambone and my brother worked there early in his career and that was where they met so it has a special connection for them.
We had expected to see Gulargambone  drier and dustier than here as it is about 140 klms  north west from here but were pleasantly surprised to find it a green oasis.
The caravan park is owned and ran by the very friendly  David and Bernadette Frazier.

We arrived early on Friday  and set up our camp.
We found this a great space to camp, well cared for with  a really well appointed camp kitchen ,meals area with lot's of quirky paraphernalia around the place.
They cater mostly to the grey nomads that travel the land and in winter it's standing room only with  up to 90 people lined up for their famous camp oven dinners served twice a week on Wednesdays and Sundays.

There were funny and quaint little things around that really make this spot  have character.
I especially loved the authentic "Dump Point" for the caravaners with ensuites in their vans to empty their toilet cassettes into.
I also loved the very original "ladies and Gents"  signs on the bathrooms.
On Saturday morning, my big brother cooked up a feast for breakfast for the early arrivals, we had supplied the eggs from the farm.
By lunchtime  on Saturday the caravan park was full of caravans, tents and other various camping set ups, in all there were about 60 of us there.
Brian and I went for a wander around town, Gulargambone  obviously has a great progressive group running the town as  it really shone in many areas,  There were  lovely  shops along the main street all well maintained and colourful as well as murals on the walls on many  buildings.
It was sad to see the  beautiful Castlereagh River completely dry, thank goodness most of its water runs along underground streams to supply the water for Gulargambone and other towns along  the river.
The local water tower reservoir has  been painted with a stunning mural,
Another great attraction was the "Ghosts of Bullocks Past" display, a replica of a traditional bullock team made of chicken wire.
Gulargambone should be very proud of their achievements, the town was a pleasure to visit.
The festivities got under way at our gathering, They held a surprise "This is Your Life " style  production, highlighting some of the  events in my brother's personal and career life.
It was great that all our siblings and their partners  were able to be present,

The  food was great, everybody contributed to the feast, bringing meat, salads and nibbles, my job was to supply the desserts.
My sister in law made the birthday cake, a replica beer stubby holder complete with a beer..
Hard to believe my big brother has turned 70, time is marching on so fast.
The entertainment at the party was brilliant and friend of my brother and sister in laws sang wonderful old songs we all knew and another friend did some great story telling and poetry recitals.
What a wonderful night we had, and just like with the food contributions everyone jumped in to clean the area and do the dishes and cleaning...just brilliant( loved seeing all the blokes at the kitchen sink)
Another great BBQ breakfast the next morning cooked by the boys,
We paid a visit to the historic  Armatree Hotel for lunch.
Armatree is a small village about 16 klms from Gulargambone with just a few houses and the hotel.
It is a popular spot  that caters to large groups, celebrations and  special  musical guests and attracts huge  audiences of hundreds of people at a time.  The Armatree hotel has been awarded the best NSW bush pub for the last two years by the NSW Australian Hotels Association.
About half of the  crowd headed off that day and late that afternoon we all sat around chatting and enjoying ourselves.
Somebody happened to mention that due to the smoke and dust that had moved across the sky, the sun  was creating a beautiful picture ass it started to set so I grabbed a few photos( I know there are a few, but I was just in awe of the colours)
The  wonder of Mother Nature in all her glory.

We had the most wonderful few days together catching up with family, re aqainting ourselves with some old friends and meeting a few new ones, that's what life's all about.
This will probably be the last post that I do before Christmas so we would like to take this opportunity to wish everyone a very merry Christmas and a happy, healthy and WET 2020.
So , until we meet up again down the track,
please take care of  yourselves and your families,
Merry Christmas 
Jane and Brian.