Keef & Anne's Travel Blog

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By keef and annie hellinger, May 19 2020 07:52AM

During this Coronavirus / Covid-19 Pandemic lockdown why not break up your day by doing my “Where in the World “ motorhome travels quiz…every picture is a place we have visited and can be found here on the website. Answers are applied after a while so you can check back. Thanks for looking

If you want to look CLICK HERE

Below is also my take on whats happening, recorded for memories sake, troubling times, but it sure helps one focus on what is important and what & whom you miss!

In future when this appears in my memories, I will look back on hard times and will hopefully appreciate what are the important things in my life.

Living life in coronavirus times , which could be a while yet!

Prime Minister Boris Johnson started lockdown on the evening of 23rd of March 2020 On the 5th April he was admitted to hospital after 10 days self isolating with the Corona Virus On the 6th April he is in intensive care with deteriorating symptoms The Queen addressed the nation at 8pm on 5th April

Excel now known as NHS Nightingale and will be a hospital for up to 4,000 patients, most of whom are on ventilators. Similar venues being used in cities across the country. Opened by Prince Charles at 11am on 3rd April

Community support groups established, to support the vulnerable, elderly, immunocompromised and people in enforced isolation due to exposure, in their community

Petrol price close to home was less than £1… the first time since 2007, but when there is no where to go hardly surprising

Schools closed on Friday 20 March.Remote learning in place either via Home schooling or BBC Bitesize

Self-distancing measures required Don’t stand so close to me, i.e 2m

Tape on the floors at grocery stores and others to help distance shoppers (2 mtrs) from each other.

Limited number of people inside stores, therefore, line-ups outside the store doors

Non-essential stores, pubs and businesses mandated closed People who can work from home should do, Boris decreed back to work 14 May 2020 for construction workers and folk who can’t work from home

Parks , trails, entire cities closed or restricted to locals only in their bubble.

Entire sports seasons cancelled.

Olympics postponed to 2021 Concerts,tours, festivals etc cancelled

Weddings family celebrations holiday gatherings even funerals cancelled, although relaxed to allow upto 9 attendees mid may

No masses, churches are closed No gatherings of 50 or more, then 20 or more, then 10 or more. Now, Don't socialize with anyone outside of your home bubble , but rather confusingly from 14 May you can see 1 person from outside your household in an open space BUT if your parents are your cleaner or buying your house you can see both of them, confuseddotcom!

Netflix, Amazon Prime, Disney+, and all other TV networks are on in every home daily now Children's outdoor play parks are closed Reruns of the Chelsea flower show. Have I got news for you and just about anything else done via Zoom or Skype. Everyones bookcase as a background is the new Claim to fame, especially if you strategically place Stephen Hawkings a brief history of Time. We are to distance from each other. Shortage of masks gowns gloves for our front-line workers.Both NHS and Care Homes. Care homes sadly an afterthought. At least a 3rd are dieing there. Very worrying. Government main priority to “Protect the NHS” NOT surprisingly to “Save Lives” PPE (new vocabulary along with social distancing) meaning Personal Protective Equipment

Shortage of ventilators for the critically ill in many parts of the world.

Refrigerated trucks for the dead outside hospitals in the USA Italy Spain China and more. Sadly mid May UK becomes 2nd highest number of deaths in the world behind the US and highest in Europe 35k by 18 May although ONS figures show 3k higher (never explained rationally)

Panic buying sets in and we have limits on toilet paper disinfecting supplies, paper towels, staple foods (Eggs & milk become issues, definite supply chain issues as farmers say they are throwing away litres of milk) hand sanitizer Flour is hard to get because the packaging comes from China and borders are closed , interestingly not in the UK until 18 May announcement (and then not for allegedly selected countries Eire & France. Weird and inconsistent)

Manufacturers distilleries and other businesses switch their lines to help make visors, masks hand sanitizer and PPE , Multiple hand washes per day becomes the “New Normal”, even allowing post to sit on the door mat for 3 days, the time for Covid19/Coronavirus to go from packaging

Fines are established for breaking lockdown rules Initially £30 then increased to £100 although some debate about whether or not the police can enforce them

Stadiums and recreation facilities overseas open up for the overflow of Covid-19 patients.

Public Park areas turned into caravan parks for stranded tourists to self isolate

Press conferences daily from the PM and other government officials (Chief Medical Officer Chris Whitty becomes bit of a hero, Chief Scientist Sir Patrick Vallance the opposite after his Herd Immunity idea). Daily updates on new cases, recoveries, and deaths . Initial idea in March was < £20k deaths good target , by mid May it was £35k+

Government incentives to stay home. Barely anyone on the roads initially by mid May almost back to normal yet the death rate continues to rise steadily

People wearing masks and gloves outside . Mid May advice changes from probably not a good idea to YES it is a good idea. Especially on crowded public transport and narrow shop spaces

Also took months to lock down our borders (mostly) and that was only for airplanes, ferries and channel tunnel still OK… Hmmm!

Essential service workers are terrified to go to work with good reason

Medical field workers are afraid to go home to their families , some great folk live in caravans in the front garden to protect their love ones. “Key worker” is another phrase to enter the English language. There is a national clap every Thursday evening 8pm for NHS & Care workers. Sadly teachers who kept schools open o mind the children of Key workers seem to have been overlooked. Also true of Boris’s 5% off for NHS & Care workers buying new homes in what he hopes will “kick start” the economy

A 99 year old WWII veteran Captain Tom Moore raised £33 million for NHS charities walking 100 lengths of his garden before he turned 100. His target was £1000. People from all over the world donated to his cause.

319K deaths globally so far.(19 May 2020)

This is the Novel Coronavirus (Covid-19) Pandemic, WHO declared March 11th, 2020.

Why, you ask, do I write this status? One day it will show up in my memory feed, and it will be a yearly reminder that life is precious and not to take the things we dearly love for granted We have so much! Be thankful. Be grateful Be kind to each other - love one another - support everyone , and enjoy your garden and your grandchildren and families and friends everywhere

We are all one! Despite what a US president may think!

To see our "where in the world" quiz slideshows with all of the questions you will get, CLICK HERE , (parts 1-5), to see part6 onwards CLICK HERE, thanks, note every answer is somewhere on our website but you may have to dig around a bit, good luck, have fun

Phase 1 - March to May-Ish
Phase 1 - March to May-Ish
Phase 2 - Mid May
Phase 2 - Mid May
Phase 2 - Reality
Phase 2 - Reality

By keef and annie hellinger, Jul 22 2017 10:41AM

We carried on in our hired Britz van which we'd picked up in Adelaide and used thru Victoria. We covered all of the following and a lot more.

Entering New South Wales (NSW) from Mallacoota (Victoria), Eden, harbour & whale museum, Old Tom, Ben Boyd , Whale lookout, Twofold bay, Pambula beach, fishing, roos, birds, Rosellas, Brewery (closed), Farm stores, Horse food, Merimbula, Tura beach, Tathra wharf and beach, Catching flatheads, plaice and salmon (well almost), Bermagui, Dalmeny, Borrell, Meeting up with Steve & Laura, Forsters Bay, Wagonga inlet, Narooma, Wagonga princess, Sexist jokes (not good!),Eurobodalla NP, Mill Bay boardwalk, Rays, Rain (lots), Overpriced fish & chips by campsite, Mogo, Batemans Bay, Kings Highway (B52), Great Dividing Range - no pics too scary driving,Braidswood, Bungedore,Bywong,Goulburn, Marulan, Mittagong, Rural NSW, Balmoral, Buxton, Thirlmere, NSW Railway museum, Cockatoos, Horses, Silverdale, Warragamba dam, visitors centre, Haviland Park, Narabeen Lakes, Class driving campaigns, Handing van back at Britz in a new area of Mascot by airport , Public transport (bus/train/bus) back to Beacon hill apartment, Chilling, Views, Pool, BBQ, Movies, Food, Wine, Beer, Friends, Family, Bus to Manly, Manly Ferry, Harbour & Manly views, Voyager of the Seas cruise liner (D&P&C were on it 2 months later), Botanic gardens, Picnic, Mrs Macquaries chair, Sunsets, Opera, Carmen, Voyager of the Seas, last ferry back, Possum in the park in the dark, Sunny pool days around the Bali hut, No 169 bus route & timetable, Opal cards, Seeing LION at Warringah Mall on a rainy day , C&As time in Sydney with Laura & Steve visiting Blue Mountains & Parkes observatory , Jervis bay, Snakes, Walking, Rain, Hannah and Connor visited and we had a play in the pool, Balgowlah, Lamb dinner (yummy), Lovely seeing David & Hannah again, heavy rain for a day, bright sunshine, day out in sydney centre, manly ferry, circular quay, barangaroo wharf, cockle bay wharf, darling harbour, harbourside, Hard Rock Cafe, Circular ferry trip, Pyrmont bridge, History, Milsoms point, MacMahons point, Balmain East, Luna Park, Emerald Princess, Maritime museum, Endeavour, Sunsets, Rained all day so watched goldstone (poor), noctural animals (good) and oz gogglebox, Train trip to Broadmeadow, Newcastle to visit Annies cousin Susan, Gosford, Wygong, Hawkesbury river, back from Tassie, Ibis budget airport, Doughnuts (never again), fire alarm, Flight to NZ

If you want to see more please CLICK HERE, thanks

To see a quick summary video with lovely Clannad / Paul Young soundtrack click HERE

Our site in Mittagong, in rural NewSouth Wales, it rained a lot
Our site in Mittagong, in rural NewSouth Wales, it rained a lot

By keef and annie hellinger, May 11 2015 06:04AM

We have a fabulous board currently with 560 pix (or pins if I am being technically correct) and 220 followers.

Its the place I post pictures of motorhome / RVs / campervans we have come across in our travels, either at sites we have stayed at or on the road both in the UK and abroad. I also repin vans that I think will be of interest to other of our blog followers.

Maybe take a look HERE, join the board and repin some of the pins


UPDATE Oct 2021 We now have 1419 pins and 369 followers

Camping / Motorhomes pinboard
Camping / Motorhomes pinboard

By keef and annie hellinger, Apr 8 2015 05:39AM

UPDATE Nov 2020, due to the fact that Flash is removed Dec 2020 all of these mobile views are replaced by responsive code, please see BLOG 143 for further info.

I have reworked all our motorhome travel websites to ensure they are in technical parlance "responsive embedded" and suitable for use on all mobile phones.

They always worked on laptops, macs , desktop pcs and tablets but were a little quirky on phones.

Why not try them out on your phone and let us know of anything we could do better, many thanks and happy motorhoming!

motorhome-travels now on mobile phones
motorhome-travels now on mobile phones

from our travels to southern hemisphere by motorhome in 2007-8. click HERE to try out on your phone or other devices

from our travels across the whole of canada west to east in 2010 by motorhome. click HERE to try out on your phone or other devices

from our travels to malaysia,singapore ,new zealand and australia in 2013 by motorhome (mostly) click HERE to try out on your phone or other devices

Old MotorHome Travels Website for Unmigrated Blogs 1-67 available via INDEX
Old MotorHome Travels Website for Unmigrated Blogs 1-67 available via INDEX

See them HERE

By keef and annie hellinger, Sep 19 2014 05:50PM

This guide shows you how to fit one to a specific motorhome but in our humble opinion the principle is the same which ever home you fit it to.

Summary of steps

1. It’s a sensible precaution to test that the components are all functioning correctly before starting to install them. A fully charged 12V battery or suitable power supply will be required. Gentle flexing of the cable and joints should ensure that there are no breaks or snags.

2. Mark out the position of the camera bracket in the centre of reverse slope under the high-mounted stop lamp. Auto-Sleepers fit a horizontal metal reinforcement behind the inner skin of the Styrofoam panel and the hole should be above this. On this vehicle the reinforcement ended 40mm above the cupboard base, but this should be confirmed with a stud detector. Inside the rear cupboard, drill a 30mm diameter access hole through the inner insulation just above the camera bracket location.

3. Drill two 6mm diameter holes for the screw fixings, coat the camera bracket with mastic and temporarily secure with 6mm screws and nuts. Use large washers on the inner surface of the GRP panel. Use a ¼-inch M10 socket and universal drive to hold the nut. Tape the socket and any extension together to avoid dropping into the void. When the mastic has set, remove screws, coat the holes and washers with additional mastic and reassemble. This process gives a better seal because it allows the bracket to be secured before the mastic has set and then holds it while it sets.

4. Drill two 8mm diameter cable holes below the bracket. Fit the sleeve grommets to the cables, coat the holes and grommets with mastic and feed through the GRP panel and inner insulation. Wipe off excess mastic and arrange a loop in the cables to shed water. It may be easier to fit the sleeve grommets if they are split lengthwise and rejoined with superglue.

5. Remove left-side rear light and locate the harness feed hole. Drill a 19mm hole in left side of rear cupboard wall at level of 30mm hole.

6. Locate the left-rear light harness under the rear floor, remove the mastic from the feed hole through the floor and ensure that the hole is large enough to pass the cable plugs.?To avoid damaging the lighting harness it may be more convenient to cut it and pull it through the rear lamp feed hole. It can be rejoined later.

7. Moving to the front of the vehicle, remove the left fusebox cover and glovebox. To do this you need to remove the pocket above the fusebox to reveal a hidden fixing for the glovebox panel.

8. Inside the cab, remove the passenger wheelarch and side step trims and locate the large harness entry hole giving?access to the left side-member.

9. Feed the cable horizontally across the rear wall void from the 30mm hole to the 19mm hole made in step 5. Then vertically down to the rear light cable hole, through the floor, under the floor following the route of the rear light harness to the large grommet in the rear outer of the left side-member. Go along the interior of the left side-member, out the step harness entry hole, up the left wheelarch and into left fusebox area securing with tie wraps

10. The rear light hole and the 19mm hole are used as access holes and the cable is only temporarily looped through them. Electrician’s cable feed rods are strongly recommended for this process, though stiff wire may make a suitable alternative. Secure the cable to the access hole plugs with cable ties, feed the cable into the void and fit the plugs. These are purely precautionary measures in case cable recovery is required in the future.

11. Attach the mirror monitor to the existing mirror and route its cable tail to the left fusebox area via the headlining and left A-pillar trim. Secure the monitor control box to a blank area of the fusebox. Locate suitable feeds for the cameras and monitor.

12. Auto-Sleepers taps into the cigarette lighter feed from the fusebox for the rear step warning buzzer and this makes a suitable ignition-controlled source for the permanent camera. Connect with an inline fuse of 3-5A. A multi-terminal plug for the left rear light harness is located at the base of the A-pillar and the lead to the reversing light can be identified by cable colours and confirmed using a voltmeter. Connect the monitor AV2 switch wire to this lead. Fit the earth return to a suitable point. Connect all leads and loop any excess cable neatly in the left fusebox area.

13. Reconnect the rear light harness, if cut, and seal in a weatherproof junction box if external. Fill the floor access hole with a suitable non-setting mastic.

14. Tape the cable to the rear light harness and refit the rear light unit. Test that the system operates satisfactorily and adjust the camera angles using the adjustable brackets on the sides. When happy with the view, bolt the unit to its final position.

Rear camera fitted to a  2006 Marquis Lancashire (Auto-Sleeper Nuevo) coach
Rear camera fitted to a 2006 Marquis Lancashire (Auto-Sleeper Nuevo) coach

There are some other really useful and interesting articles that may help on other pages of the MMM blog , why not click HERE to take a look i.e water ingress, buying a new van etc etc