Field Trips

No Sat Nav – False Advertising

Are there any tourism sites that promote a location with images of rain-drenched scenery?   NO.   As a result, the mental picture of one’s holiday is built around bright days and gorgeous walks, requiring sunscreen and sunhats.  It’s even possible to imagine the sound of waves and the smell of the eucalypts.

That mental image crumbled in the wake of the 7-day forecast on the Bureau of Meteorology’s website.  It’s going to rain.

When planning the holiday, the possibility of rain was always present but the power of the visual image overwhelmed all that is rational and sensible, and pushed that possibility further and further to the background.

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This is the first in a series of posts about and, hopefully, during my holiday in Victoria.  It’s another holiday with my Mum.  Some in the family might instead call this series “Two Old Biddies Off Again”.  I decided to call the series “No Sat Nav” because I don’t own one.

When planning started, there were three aims for this trip.

The first aim is to get us both into new territory, doing new things, new experiences.  Brains have to be regularly challenged.

The second aim is slightly related to the first.  New experiences in distant places can be expensive.  So, it’s time to embrace the excitement that is old-people camping, or perhaps to create some excitement about the idea of old people camping.  Advertisements promote camping equipment with images of young families around a barbie, hip young mountaineers reaching the next summit or young-ish men with bellies bonding over a tinnie.  As people get older, they’re supposed to trade up to caravans and indoor accommodation.  I’m happy to buck that trend with the aim of organising many cheap, yet comfortable, long-weekends away for years to come.

The third aim was for a variety of spectacular landscapes and geological intrigue along bush trails and coastal beaches, subsequently juxtaposed with the bright lights and bustle of Melbourne.  But the start of the holiday is now appearing in the 7-day weather forecasts and it’s raining.  Some flexibility was required in the itinerary.

And that got me started on the problem of false advertising.

I don’t mind a bit of wild weather but not in a tent.

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Cape Leeuwin lighthouseRough weather is not unusual for my holidays.  This 2007 photo is from Cape Leeuwin, Western Australia.

Lighthouses are often seen onscreen surrounded by wild weather.  It heightens the drama and serves as a counterpoint to the idea that lighthouses are there to protect us.  When Mum and I visited Cape Leeuwin, it was blowing a gale.  The weather did, however, make for a dramatic demonstration of what happens when two oceans collide.

Most tourism operators aren’t into promoting drama; unless they’re from New Zealand.

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