A busy week and an exciting, stressful day Saturday

Stephen sang in the Verdi Requiem on Friday and Saturday nights and had rehearsals on the four preceding nights. Pretty intense! Although this is my least favourite requiem if you think,of it as an opera it makes sense. Eversley and I went Saturday night and I noticed for the first time that there are sections that are voice only, with the orchestra standing by. Quite unusual.

As well as learning his music, etc. we also decided to put the Winnie on Gumtree to see if we could sell it. I took some interior shots with a wide angle lens and used exterior shots from our travels. The advert went up on Tuesday and we had a serious offer by the evening. Part of our reason for selling is the feeling that as we are getting older the van is just too big. So, of course, the people who were serious about actually buying the van are older than us, downsizing from a caravan. They wanted a van with two sleeping areas as they are not used to sleeping together.

After viewing the van on Wednesday, I think, they made an offer that evening. It was just above our bottom price, quite good in fact. After being told that we wouldn’t get much for it, this was a nice feeling.

The buyers came back on Saturday to have a test drive and pick up the van. They paid by bank cheque, which we take to be a secure method of payment. It was a long handover process, and we are left with not only a sense of relief, but feeling happy that other people will now be able to enjoy having such a comfortable van. We certainly wish them well.

Getting our bottom line price opened up possibilities for a replacement. We had a choice of going very small, no shower and a porta Potti for a toilet, or a short van with a combined shower/toilet. We have been considering our options since we came home from England and were still undecided. Our bed in the Winnie was small and fairly enclosed, something we enjoyed more than we thought we would. That opened up the,possibility of a van with a dinette in the front and an east/west bed in the rear. This would allow us to buy quite a short van that is not only easier to drive, but which we can park in our spare parking bay next to the house.

After a long discussion going into all of the pros and cons of a very small van, we came to the conclusion that a medium van would work best. Although we like to snuggle together at night, having two living spaces allows for a bit more separation when Stephen wants to read after I go to bed at night.

One of the options was to buy a fairly new van, hopefully still under warranty. On Saturday morning I saw one advertised and after our long handover, I suggested we go to the dealer to have a look at it. And after a thorough walk through and some haggling between Stephen and the salesman (I’m not sure who won, but I hadn’t expect a reduction of almost $4000 on their asking price). It feels like a win.

This morning we found out that we can’t pick it up until the 18th December. It has to have the licence plates changed to WA, a service and thorough clean, and a new flexible arm for the TV which presently blocks one of the overhead cupboards. Plus the handover typically takes at least an hour and needs to be booked well in advance.

It is an Adria 600 SP, and I’d be worried about the lighter build of this European campervan except that it has already done 19,000 kilometres of travel across Australia from Queensland. This suggests that it’s well built and can cope with Australian conditions. It still has a year of new car warranty. And, it will fit into the parking space next to our house.

We also need to arrange our finances, but could pick up the van by the end of the week. Still, it’s good to have a waiting period to adjust. I don’t have any regrets about selling the Winnie. From the time on our last long trip in the Winnie earlier this year I have feeling the responsibility of driving the large heavy van and wishing we had something smaller and lighter. Plus all the maintenance was getting me down.

Matt and I went to Floreat Beach for morning tea on Thursday. He takes photos with a steep slope, I guess we could call this his signature style. I don’t dare try to straighten it. Of course, my photos sometimes have a bit of a slope as well. If I notice, I do correct them.

Life continues to be very busy, with two Working Voices rehearsals this week, plus the WASO Chorus is now preparing for their Christmas Symphony concert. Matt starts regular surfing again on Saturday morning and has a one off racing car experience booked for Sunday. He’s only been once before and had a wonderful time.

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