It's Sun 6th Feb 2011 7:45am.

Our current trip has been postponed until end of March due to a family drama.

At 8:45pm on Sunday 30th Jan 2011, our phone rang and a fireman just informed us that Mum and Dad's rented house was on fire. Shit... They were both safe and as well as can be expected in this situation. Marg and I drove over to their place about 5kms away. There were 5 firetrucks and various other fire cars. After the fire was brought under control, we drove Mum and Dad back to our place. After much discussion, Mum and Dad were ordered by us to use our bedroom and we would use our fiver. You know how the conversation went, they didn't want to inconvenience us etc. They didn't, we are family.

As you may read further down, even though Mum and Dad are in their 80s, they still work as builders and their new townhouses are about 2 months away from moving in. There was a very bright side to the fire, they had contents insurance and this included temporary accomodation, we managed to find them a brand new Fully furnitured apartment, only opened 1 week ago, right in the middle of the Cheltenham shopping centre, so they were both ecstatic about moving there and guess what, so were Marg and I. hehehehehehe.

Marg and I have decided to NOT go to the Minerama Gem Festival on the 2nd weekend in March and wait until the end of March and head direct from Melbourne over to Port Augusta then continue on our proposed route through SA, WA, NT and Qld. We can now help Mum and Dad move into their new house, because all their clothing etc is stored in various rooms at our place.