14 Aug 2017
WATCH: Meet RV gypsies Lynne and Graeme and see inside their home on the road.
Cheerful couple, Graeme and Lynne Pilcher invites us in for a peek at full-time life on the road. As they approach 60, they want to travel while still in their prime. “We’re still healthy and can enjoy the beautiful parts of Australia we had never seen,” Lynne says. “We are grey nomads Gypsies on the road.”
There’s a cook-up going on at site 59 and neighbouring campers look up in envy. There’s not much Lynne Pilcher can’t make in the Avida (Australian Winnebago) motorhome she shares with her hubby Graeme.
“I do roasts, and I do stir fries outside. I can cook anything I would have cooked at home,” Lynne says of their 31-foot (9.5 metre) abode that has all the trimmings.
It’s a good thing, too. The couple recently sold their Yamba home on the NSW north coast. They now live full-time on the road and have been travelling for three years.
“If we were to go out and park in the middle of a sand paddock with no power, no anything, we can easily survive for five days, until our water runs out,” Lynne says. “If you can get water from somewhere it’s endlessly self-sufficient. We’ve got power and a generator.”
“It’s quite large,” Graeme says. “You should never go shopping on a rainy day. That’s the unfortunate mistake we made and ended up with this lovely vehicle.” He laughs.
Jokes aside, they’re very happy with their purchase. They actually had their eye on it for years before retiring. Why the sea change? As they approach 60, they want to travel while still in their prime.
“We’re still healthy and can enjoy the beautiful parts of Australia we had never seen,” Lynne says. “We are grey nomads Gypsies on the road. If you live in this full-time you have to take it all with you. You live with what you have on board.”
They make the most of their space.
“It’s not like going away for three months… you have to have clothing for all seasons: bushwalking gear, waterproof shoes, as well as all your documents, passports, computer, winter doonas, summer doonas… and fit it all in.”
The motorhome has a full-size shower and toilet (which becomes an ensuite), and queen bed.
“I love to be able to walk around the bed to make it. I’m not into climbing over it. If you want to have those extra comfort features you need to go to something this big. There’s storage under the bed and lots of windows and air so you don’t get mould and mildew.”
There’s also a fully functional kitchen.
“A little more benchspace would be great. You’re limited on the amount of pots and pans you can have, so you have to clean as you go while you’re cooking so you’ve got that extra bowl to use in five minute’s time for something else.”
Graeme takes one of Lynne’s freshly baked Anzac biscuits and dunks it in his cuppa.
“My wife is the best chef to be found. She makes things so quickly, easily and they taste fantastic.” Graeme, meanwhile, does the talking. An essential skill for ice-breaking on the road.
“We’ve met lots of lovely like-minded people. They’re doing what we’re doing because they want to see the country. It’s an ideal way to travel and is by far cheaper than paying for accommodation in units or cabins, and flying.”
Of an evening, the pair can be found making the most out of the Jason recliners they added themselves. “Bearing in mind we’re not 20 anymore, so we like to recline with our feet up to watch telly at night.”
The biggest challenge is keeping food cold (Lynne shops for fresh fruit and veg every five days or so). The thing Graeme misses most is his tools. “I’ve gone from a large workshop facility with everything at my fingertips – from cranes, forklifts, gadgets and things – down to a small toolbox and drill.”
Lynne sometimes yearns for her garden. “You can’t even really have pot plants in the motorhome because you’re travelling between states.”
Their little red Suzuki Vitara (towed on an A-frame setup) gives them the flexibility to enjoy nature in other ways. “It works really well for us because we can set this vehicle up on site and use the car for doing shopping or touring around.”
Despite the challenges, they wouldn’t have it any other way. “It’s big enough for us to be comfortable,” Lynne says. “In three years of full-time touring, we still haven’t been everywhere. But we will. You can stay as long as a you want in a place you love or if you don’t like it, you can just get up the next morning and go.”
If you enjoyed Graeme and Lynne's story from the road, you're going to love Anne and Terry's outback adventure here.
If you’ve got a story from the road travelling Australia we’d love to hear from you. Email firstname.lastname@example.org
This travel feature was published in G’DAY Magazine.