In Biblical Proportions …

We’ve seen plagues of vermin and locusts on our travels, as well as floods and storms. Justin over at Great Family Escape recently pointed out when that it sounds rather biblical when I was whinging about the plague of mice. So, here are the plagues:

The First Plague – Locusts

“Well, I think they’re rather cute,” I argued, as a few small grasshoppers sat around the pharmacy, and the town in general. Person after person told me;

“I hate these darn locusts. They’re going to destroy everything. They need to spray them and try and kill as many as possible. It’s harvest in a few weeks, and if the locusts get here before then, we’ll most likely loose everything.” It was a grain-growing region that had been in drought, and this was promising to be their first good season in ages. You’re just a city person, you wouldn’t understand.”

The locusts had been the major topic of conversation in the town for over a week, when I looked up from the pharmacy counter to see it slowly changing outside to black. The locusts had arrived. The sky darkened, and you could barely see anything out the shop windows for how many of these insects were flying past.

As Jarrad served dinner that night, Peter and Susan stumbled over each other to tell,. “Today, we were outside near the oval, and all of a sudden it turned black! The oval just looked like someone had painted it! It was moving and giggling as all these locusts moved around, and after a few minutes they all flew off! And do you know what, Mum? They left a few minutes later, and the oval was just dust. There was no grass left on the oval at all!”

“I’d been driving when they came in,” Jarrad told us, “It was so sudden. All of the cars were going so slowly because you just couldn’t see anything. I had the windscreen wipers going like mad, but there are bug guts everywhere. Apparently their sticky bastards to get off the car, too.” Every car we saw for the next month had flyscreen mesh over the front grill, because the kamikaze locusts would commit suicide on the cars, and that was bad news for the car radiator.

Oh, and they were right. I’d seen locust plagues on the six-o’clock news, but it’s nothing like seeing the locust plague hit a town when you are there.

The Floods

These have been huge, and covered in so much detail in the media that I won’t go into them too much. Let’s just say, we’ve got the Midas touch for bringing the rains. After spending winter at the ski fields, we had to leave in a hurry because of predicted floods, and then drove through areas in moderate-flood to escape.

The rain poured down as we crossed the border into the Northern Territory. It might be the desert, but parts of the road were underwater, and the flood-ways were all underwater. Many roads we’d drive down had crumbled away when the soil had simply washed out from underneath them.

The locals told us that it was the most rainfall they’d had in over 30 years, s0o rather than seeing the desert around Ayres Rock, we saw a lush green areas full of wildflowers and bloom.

We were camped on the Murray as we heard about Queensland and Brisbane’s terrible floods, and enjoyed the swollen banks, though moved in a sudden when we heard flooding was predicted around us that night.

We were in our campervan one night when a storm hit in the desert. We thought we were rather sheltered with a colorbond iron fence all around us. Until the winds that were over 100km/hour and more ripped the fence to shreds. We all sat glued to the window, silently staring at the sheets of metal flying around us like little bits of confetti. That was the same night that a bolt of lightning landed only a few hundred meters from our campervan.

In the morning we found out that 12 houses had lost their roofs and countless campervans had been blown over.

The Second Plague – Vermin

You see them running across the roads in the daylight. By night, under the campervan is almost a moving carpet of mice.

The mouse plague is terrible. They are everywhere. I went into the supermarket first thing one morning, and they hadn’t removed the mice traps yet … they were everywhere, and all full. I walked straight back out, even though I knew logically that I had to get food.

The supermarket brings in traps, and they are sold out by lunch time. The only ones available are RSPCA-approved traps that might catch a tail, but then the mouse runs away with the trap still attached. You’ll find the trap god-knows-where in a few days, without its victim. The town seems to have taken to making its own traps with a bucket, coke can and peanut butter instead.

Have you come across any plagues, or storms as you’ve travelled?

Travelling Australia in a campervan since 2009 with our four children aged 4, 7, 10, and 11. We are a family living on the road. Stopping to work in rural and remote towns as we need more money, we love this lifestyle. The four kids are homeschooled as we work our way slowly around Australia.

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About Amy and Jarrad

Travelling Australia in a campervan since 2009 with our four children aged 4, 7, 10, and 11. We are a family living on the road.
Stopping to work in rural and remote towns as we need more money, we love this lifestyle. The four kids are homeschooled as we work our way slowly around Australia.

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