Friday, 15 January 2016

Map of Tassie Tour - Day 7 - Recovery

Today was a day of phone calls, messages, waiting and trying to accept a change of direction.

The first half of the day was spent trying to put actions in place for the repair of the Avan. Our insurers, GIO, worked most of the day trying to find the best solution in terms of a repairer, settling on our preference, which will see the van returned to the Avan factory for an assessment and repair. It was a juggling act, which involved assuring the towing company and eventually saw the van delivered to Avan by the afternoon.

By far the best news came from Ashley Gardens Big 4. With the park fully booked for the weekend
owing to the Australian Open tennis and the mishap which saw one of the Spirit of Tasmania ferries damaged, it appeared unlikely we would gain our cabin and to be honest, we weren't even certain there would be accommodation for us at all. Despite pressure on their resources, the manager and her staff remarkably managed to shift bookings around which allowed us to stay in our cabin but that wasn't the end of their miracles. The second half of their generosity was to continue to provide the caring to us at a greatly reduced rate. In fact, we were only charged two thirds of the rate they were entitled to. The empathy they showed us was beyond good business practice, it was a level of caring for people in a distressed state that is rare in these days of cynical self-absorption. In this very trying time for us, their care of us has been a key factor in our coping with this difficult situation.

I woke in the early hours from a dreadful nightmare: the screaming of a high performance engine featuring. My wife, as always, steered me in a direction I was unwilling to go, knowing the benefit of distracting me and breaking my desire to put the wagons in a circle and not leave the cabin. She is a shrewd operator and little wonder her canny understanding of people made her an outstanding teacher.

The result was at times an uncomfortable afternoon spent about Federation Square. We had our first use of the Myki transport card system and arrived in the city near the Eureka Tower and walked across Immgrants Bridge and along the Yarra to Federation Square. While Sue gathered information, downstairs at the city's excellent information centre, I stood upstairs watching people and the slow rain. There was too much of both for my mood.

In an effort to engage me, Sue took me to the Australian Centre for Moving Images, a place that would normally fascinate me but there was too much noise, too many people and too much stimulation. My best moments began in the foyer, watching a moving tribute to David Bowie but my revival came with an unexpected video call from son Sam in which we spent time talking to and watching our first grandson, now in his ninth week. I found my smile again. The bus ride home was better than the ride in.

As a final word, we have been very grateful for the numerous messages of support we have received through social media and particularly those from our close loved ones.

We will endure this and move on. No one died. No one was injured.

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